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By Lisa Gardiner

After an eight-day strike, the Sacramento City Teachers Association (SCTA) and the classified employee union SEIU Local 1021 reached tentative agreements with Sacramento City Unified School District (SCUSD) on April 3. School resumed Monday.

Thousands of educators, parents, students, and labor and community allies had joined the picket lines demanding that SCUSD address a staffing crisis. The new contracts, which are in the process of being ratified, will ease a critical staffing crisis that has resulted in 10,000 students without a permanent teacher and 3,000 students without even a substitute teacher. Students in schools in low-income neighborhoods were being hit disproportionately hard by the staffing crisis.

The tentative agreements contain no takeaways on health insurance — a key sticking point in negotiations — while SCTA agrees to work with the district to lower future health care costs. Agreements also include salary increases and provisions for improved health and safety.

Educators will receive three one-time bonuses and a 4% across-the-board, retroactive salary increase, as well as the possibility of a wage reopener for 2022-23 based on revised state budget numbers. For the average teacher who makes $83,000 a year, bonuses and retroactive pay will add up to $9,550.

SCTA President David Fisher speaking at a rally

SCTA President David Fisher

For the school community as a whole, the strike will translate into being better able to attract and retain the educators and school staff that Sacramento’s public school students need for success.

“From start to finish, our members have been united in the belief that schools should be adequately staffed with a teacher in front of every classroom,” says SCTA President  David Fisher. “We stayed strong, and as a result we now have a contract that will help us attract and retain staff and provide our members with modest raises.”

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