CCSD may try not to honor ruling to give raises to teachers - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

CCSD may try not to honor ruling to give raises to teachers

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The emblem for the Clark County School District is shown in an undated image. (File/FOX5) The emblem for the Clark County School District is shown in an undated image. (File/FOX5)

An arbitrator has ruled that the Clark County School District must provide raises to its teachers. CCSD had been battling with the teacher's union for months over salaries. 

But the district may be trying to avoid having to honor the ruling. 

"The Board of Trustees and district leadership recognize the need to compensate our employees for their hard work and to keep up with their own rising costs," wrote Melinda Malone, a spokesperson for CCSD. "Unfortunately, the district is currently unable to provide raises to our employees, though we did offer to put teachers on the district health care plan in order to provide them with reliable and stable health care coverage ... We will consult with our counsel and the Trustees to determine our next courses of action."

John Vellardita, the executive director of the Clark County Education Association, said rulings like this are supposed to be final and binding. Teachers are not allowed to go on strike. 

"The school district knows that," Vellardita said. "I mean, it's the law."

The district said it just cut $60 million from its budget and does not have the money to pay for teacher raises. Vellardita said he is wondering if CCSD is going to waste more taxpayer dollars to appeal to a judge. If so, the CCEA is prepared to keep fighting.

"We certainly took it into account and the arbitrator took it into account," he said. "The union's proposal is reasonable. It's less than .06 percent of a $2.4 billion budget. You have the money. You should be able to find the money and pay them ... Move on. Let's bring closure to this. Let's not talk about whether or not we're not going to honor this."

The arbitrator's ruling will also have CCSD pay more for employee's health insurance premiums.

Vellardita said the union did not get everything it asked for, but he said hopefully it's a step that will prevent teachers from leaving CCSD, especially since the state of Nevada has been trying to pitch in to pay for teacher salaries.

"Every year, 1,600 to 1,700 educators leave the school district," he said. "They chose not to use that money and put it into educators. They chose to use it in different ways. They have that right under the law. That's a flawed law. We're going to fix that law."

CCSD said the budget will be discussed at Wednesday morning's school board work session. That meeting is open to the public at 8:00 a.m. and is scheduled to be at the CCSD Education Center on Flamingo Road.

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