Friday, September 11, 2015

Teacher Salary Information

The Seattle Times' latest story on the strike provides some real numbers on the salary offer for teachers and I hope they illuminate the issue.

SEA
- Wants 5% raise this school year
- 5.5% 2016-2017
- 4.8% over the next two years from state (remembering that the state-funded amount is about 75% of teachers' salaries) for a COLA

( I can't seem to find what the SEA wants for 2017-2018; I think it's about 3.5%.)

District
- 2% this school year
- 3.2% the year after
- 4% in 2017-2018
- plus state COLA

Teachers did not get a COLA for the last 6 years even though there was an 2000 initiative requiring the Legislature to do that.

They also lost ground over the rising costs of healthcare.

From KUOW:

And it does come down to the district. The state didn’t raise its base pay – stuck at $34,048 for a starting teacher – for six years. The state finally raised the base pay by 2 percent this summer.

So teachers bargain with their districts for raises and money on top of the base. They would be doing this even if the state did raise its base, Wood said, which means salaries have increased at a sluggish pace.

That extra money is usually called TRI pay, for time, responsibility and incentive. Some districts give teachers that extra money without strings attached. Others demand that teachers work or take classes during the summer to earn that extra amount. Unions call that “more pay for more work."





40 comments:

kellie said...

I may be confused about this, but all the numbers about pay, don't seem to add much clarity about the Total Pay increase. Someone please take a look at this math and let me know if I am missing something.

Total Pay would look something like this

Base Pay (from the State of Washington) + TRI (from the District and local levy funds) = Total pay


According to the article, 75% is Base Pay and 25% is TRI. So the TOTAL INCREASE would look something like this.

State Cola * Base Pay + % Increase * TRI


So the COLA and Base Pay are fixed from the State and this will be the only COLA over an EIGHT year period. That is less than a 4% increase over an 8 years time period.

2015 - 3% * 75% = 2.25%
2016 - 1.8% * 75% = 1.35%


If I understand correctly, the negotiations are over the TRI increase. SPS's offer is

2015 - 2% * 25% = .5%
2016 - 3.2% * 25% = .8%


That would means that SPS's offer is a change to Total Pay of 2.75% in 2015 and 2.15% in 2016.

That is unless SPS offer is actually for an increase in the Total Pay. Does anyone know if the stated amount applies to TRI only?


kellie said...

That math for the SEA side would be (presuming that the negotiations are about the TRI)

2015 - 5% * 25% = 1.25%
2016 - 5.5% * 25% = 1.375%


That would means that SEA's offer is a change to Total Pay of 3.5% in 2015 and 2.725% in 2016.


Anonymous said...

Kellie,
Everything is figured on base pay. The state COLA is a % of the base pay on the teacher state pay scale. The tri pay being bargained right now between SPS and SEA is a % of base pay on the teacher state pay scale. It's confusing because some published raise negotiating figures include the COLA and some don't. Guess who does and who doesn't :) It makes it challenging to figure out the amount of money because we're really talking about increases based on 75% of teacher salary.
Helps?

Anonymous said...



The negotiations are not about TRI, they are about base pay that will then be added to TRI.

LAP

kellie said...

So if all the negotiations are purely about BASE PAY, then all of the numbers are then reduced by 25% because it is a increase on only 75%.

How is TRI calculated?

Anonymous said...

Everything is based on base pay. Base pay is figured from the state teacher pay scale. SEA/SPS do not negotiate base pay. SEA/SPS is negotiating the amount of money that will be add to teacher TRI pay. When SEA/SPS are discussing potential raise %, they are referring to a % of the state base pay. Whatever the dollar amount turns out to be would then be added to teacher TRI. You can say it isn't about TRI, but whatever raises come to the teachers from the SEA/SPS negotiations will come in the from of TRI pay.
Helps?

Anonymous said...

I don't know originally what TRI was based on, but now there is a pay scale that matches the state teacher scale in terms of education and years of experience. If a 5% raise was negotiated, then whatever amount of money that turns out to be would be added to the current TRI pay the teacher would receive. If you go on the SPS website under careers, you can find the SPS scale which breaks out state pay and TRI pay.
Helps?

Anonymous said...

Kellie - in answer to our question above, "Does anyone know if the stated amount applies to TRI only?" I was told by a teacher that the increases are only for TRI. Parent

kellie said...

This really helps. So all the increase will go into TRI, however, none of the percent increase include TRI.

So if you were trying to figure out the percent change to people take home pay, which is what people who read the press releases will naturally assume. The math looks more like this.

State Cola * Base Pay + % Increase * Base Pay + TRI = TOTAL PAY

As the Base Pay is currently only 75% of the total pay, SPS / SEA are negotiating over the Levy funds/additional State Funds. SPS is offering an additional 1.5% in 2015 and 2.4% in 2016 which will then show in TRI.

The State COLA clearly does not even belong in the conversation as the COLA is not even .5% per year over 8 years, which is significantly less than the COLA for federal employees or Social Security payment.s

Anonymous said...

Melissa,

My understanding is that the SEA's latest offer was for a two-year contract, with 5.0% the first year and 5.5% the second year.

As South Whidbey EA just settled on a 5% increase in each of the next two years, I'd say the SEA's proposal is very reasonable. I don't want the SEA to come down much from 10.5% over two years. Why should our increase be less than South Whidbey's? Isn't it more expensive to live in Seattle?

David Edelman

Anonymous said...

Kellie - also, do SPS and SEA even have control over state COLA? That's why I wondered about it being included in the publicity. A Parent

Anonymous said...

Kellie - OK, so I don't understand your math that gets to "SPS is offering an additional 1.5% in 2015 and 2.4% in 2016 which will then show in TRI." Duh. A Parent

Anonymous said...

Kellie - OK, so I don't understand your math that gets to "SPS is offering an additional 1.5% in 2015 and 2.4% in 2016 which will then show in TRI." Duh. A Parent

n said...

Numbers do not tell the whole story: if TRI demands more district-mandated working hours, then it isn't a raise. If TRI is paid according to its original intention - to compensate for the extra hours worked at teacher disgression (all those unpaid extra hours teachers work), then it would be a raise. Lose the TRI day(s) which often reflet that poor PD and I'll feel like I got a raise.

GarfieldMom said...

The latest update from SEA (seriously, both they and SPS have a lot of answers to the questions being asked on their respective websites, this info is not hard to find).

Strike Update 3

n said...

"discretion" - sorry!

Anonymous said...

I think it is really disingenuous not to include the state COLA in their raise calculations, because what the public wants to know is how much their teacher's pay is going up and if that is fair compensation, not what pot it comes from. It's doubly shady to then turn around and complain about a lack of COLA for several years and not include that the district made up for it for the last 2 years.

-sleeper

kellie said...

@ A Parent,

SPS and SEA have ZERO control over the state COLA so IMHO, it should be dropped from the conversation.

The remaining negotiation is over a percentage of salary. In other words, they negotiation is over the 75% base salary, not the total salary so using whole percentage is really misleading.

Reasonable people think a 5% raise would look like $2500 on a $50,000 salary. However, the 5% raise is only on $37,500 (75%) and would therefore be a raise of $1875 (3.75%)

The raise of $1875, $1125 has already been allocated by the State of Washington and the remaining $750 would be coming from Levy funds or discretionary funds.

All this math, makes it clear to me that BOTH, the SEA ask is very reasonable and that SPS can pay for it.



Anonymous said...

Thanks, Kellie. I think you need to help the SEA in their communication. SPS is winning that game - or at least muddying the waters. A Parent

kellie said...

@ sleeper,

I also think people want to know if this is fair compensation. I only object to the way COLA is being discussed as if it is this huge raise when that is not the full story, particularly as the COLA is only being applied to a portion of the salary and all of the SPS communication reads as if it was being applied to the entire salary.

For the last six years, COLA would have been about 13%, depending on which index you use (that is another debate). So if SPS has off-set that 13%, at different points in the last few years, then that off-set should be clearly daylighted and marked to the 13% that the State did not include.

The State authorized 4.8% going forward for two years, but remember that is 4.8% based on 75% the actual total pay for a net increase of 3.6% in the next two years which is pretty close to what the expected increase in cost of living for the two years going forward.

This whole thing makes it very clear that education funding is a big mess.

Anonymous said...

Kellie,

I'm not following your math. Yes, I understand the increase is on Base only.

My confusion is why you are using 5%. For this year, 2015-2016, the union is asking for 5% (1875). The district is offering 2% ($750).

SEA is asking for a 5% increase in Base pay, exclusive of the COLA.

This is very confusing, and I think it would be very helpful if SEA would give some examples.

LAP

Anonymous said...

Kellie,
I am not sure you have it right with your example of a teacher making $50,000. In this example- $37,500 of their salary comes from the state and $12,500 would come in the form of TRI from SPS. (Generally speaking in Seattle 75% of salary is state base and 25% is TRI)
With a 3% COLA raise and a 5% TRI raise this is what would happen with a $50,000 salary.
$37,500 (75% of state base pay) X 3% = $1,125 COLA increase
$37,500 + (COLA) $1,125 = $38,625 new base pay
(I assume, not sure, that SEA/SPS negotiated raise is on the new base pay. Don't know for sure.)
$38,625.00 X 5% (SEA/SPS negotiated raise)= $1,931 SEA/SPS negotiated raise
12,500 (Current TRI)+ $1,931 (SEA/SPS negotiated raise)= $14,431 new TRI pay
Total salary=
$38,625 (new base pay) + $14,431 (new TRI pay) = $53,056
The total raise for the year would be $3,056.
Helps?


Anonymous said...

Helps?, yes, you did an excellent job of illustrating what I was trying to say.

It would also be very helpful to show the math with what the total "raise" would be using the SPS offered numbers (2%)

$3056 is about $254/month (12 months).

The district offer comes out to be about $158/month.

LAP

Anonymous said...

LAP
Here you go. The example above is for the SEA proposed 5% raise. This is the math for the SPS proposal for a 2% raise for the same teacher making $50,000/yr.
The assumptions are the same. Generally speaking in Seattle, 75% of a teacher's salary comes from the state, 25% comes from the district through TRI pay. That means $37,500 of their salary comes from the state and $12,500 would come in the form of TRI from SPS.
With a 3% COLA raise and a 2% TRI raise this is what would happen with a $50,000 salary.
$37,500 (75% of state base pay) X 3% = $1,125 COLA increase
$37,500 + (COLA) $1,125 = $38,625 new base pay
(I assume, not sure, that SEA/SPS negotiated raise is on the new base pay. Don't know for sure.)
$38,625.00 X 2% (SPS proposed raise)= $772 SPS proposed raise
12,500 (Current TRI)+ $772 (SPS proposed raise)= $13,272 new TRI pay
Total salary=
$38,625 (new base pay) + $13,327 (new TRI pay) = $51,897
The total raise for the year would be $1,897.
Helps?

kellie said...

@ Helps?

I think you just validated my math.

However, all of this makes it very clear, that without concrete examples of the specific math being used to calculate the percentages on both sides that all of the percentages is just guess work and PR wordsmithing, or lie, damn lies and statistics.


The 5% I was referencing was the 5% "raise" that SPS is claiming in their offer, which is 3% cola and 2% negotiated increase.

My understanding is all of this is calculated off of the current base and none of the options are being calculated on the NEW base after the cola increase. That would change your example by $56

SPS is definitely winning the PR wordsmithing game because the way they are wording the press releases makes their offer look substantially more generous in principle than it will be in execution.

The SPS proposal looks like a $2500 increase on a $50,000 year salary for a total of $52,500. However, it is not really that it is actually only $51,875.

The SEA proposal looks like 5% on top of the 3% cola. That math sounds like an 8% raise or $54,000. The math then pencils out to $53,056 as you stated. However, the SEA ask really nets out to $53,000 when you apply the raise to the base only.

There is enough variation in all of this that it would be very good on both sides to start using some real world examples.



Anonymous said...

So, I have been trying to figure this out in earnest, and I think this is correct (from Helps?):

"With a 3% COLA raise and a 5% TRI raise this is what would happen with a $50,000 salary:
$37,500 (75% of state base pay) X 3% = $1,125 COLA increase
$37,500 + (COLA) $1,125 = $38,625 new base pay
(I assume, not sure, that SEA/SPS negotiated raise is on the new base pay. Don't know for sure.)
$38,625.00 X 5% (SEA/SPS negotiated raise)= $1,931 SEA/SPS negotiated raise
12,500 (Current TRI)+ $1,931 (SEA/SPS negotiated raise)= $14,431 new TRI pay
Total salary=
$38,625 (new base pay) + $14,431 (new TRI pay) = $53,056
The total raise for the year would be $3,056."

However, I would throw in one more monkey wrench, which is that the district proposal says that the 3.2% they propose would be calculated on "2016-2017 regular salary schedule
base salary (BA only/Step 1)." I take that to mean that the actual amount of added pay would be the same for everyone regardless of education/experience (i.e. based on Step 1 of the salary schedule (somewhere in the mid-30s, depending on whether or not the COLA gets added, not on the step someone happens to be on). Can anyone confirm or deny?

As confusing as the district's information appears, I am incredibly frustrated by SEA's lack of specificity and transparency on this, to say nothing of their dithering about the COLA ("We haven't gotten it in 6 years!" "It isn't part of the conversation!"). If they are proposing 5% (or 6% if you trust the proposal on the SPS website is the most recent) on everyone's actual base salary (not Step 1, as the district is seeming to offer), then that is a major difference. I support the strike, but I hate feeling misled by any party.

SPS alum and mom

Anonymous said...

Thanks Kellie. I'm with you regarding real world examples. Because it is so complex/confusing, it makes it easy for folks to make the numbers sounds different than they really are. SPS is definitely winning the media war. You would think that SEA would know the importance of media.
Helps?

Anonymous said...

SPS Alum and Mom
I copied below what Garfield Mom posted on another thread. I assumed when they talk about adding 2.0 % to the corresponding TRI cell that it meant you were using the same base salary cell to calculate the %. If all steps are only calculated from a BA only/Step 1 base salary that is truly depressing! Don't you think it is ridiculous that we are working this hard to figure it out!

FROM Garfield Mom
The Time Responsibility and Incentive Salary Schedule and Index is found in Appendix A and B. Effective September 1, 2015, the TRI increase for the 2015-2016 school year will be an across the board amount of 2.0 percent. This is calculated by adding 2.0 percent of the 2015-2016 regular salary schedule base salary (BA only/Step 1) to the the corresponding cell of TRI Responsibility Contract schedule. This new amount will then be applied to the TRI index found in Appendix B to generate the 2015-2016 TRI Salary Schedule.

f. Effective September 1, 2016, the annual TRI increase will be an additional across the board amount of [2.5] 3.2 percent. This is calculated by adding [2.5] 3.2 percent of the 2016-2017 regular salary schedule base salary (BA only/Step 1) the corresponding cell of TRI Responsibility Contract schedule. This new amount will then be applied to the TRI index found in Appendix B to generate the 2016-2017 TRI Salary Schedule.

g. Effective September 1, 2017, the annual TRI increase will be an additional across the board amount of [2.5] 3.75 percent. This is calculated by adding 2.53.75 percent of the 2017-18 regular salary schedule base salary (BA only/Step 1) to the the corresponding cell of TRI Responsibility Contract schedule. This new amount will then be applied to the TRI index found in Appendix B to generate the 2016-17 TRI Salary Schedule.

Helps?

Melissa Westbrook said...

See Meg Diaz' analysis of senior management salaries and teachers salaries in the Strike Update thread.

Maureen said...

So. Kellie, AS A BALLPARK, if all 5000 teachers had the same $50K total salary (obviously not true), we are talking about SPS' proposal costing slightly south of $10M per year and the SEA proposal costing slightly north of $15M per year. Am I in the right ballpark?

Now, what is the base salary, step 1? If that is what the negotiations are based on for all 5000 teachets, the math becomes easier and the totals lower.

kellie said...

So the math gets even stranger ...

"This is calculated by adding 2.0 percent of the 2015-2016 regular salary schedule base salary (BA only/Step 1) to the the corresponding cell of TRI Responsibility Contract schedule."

So this reads like the percent increase is not applied to the base pay but rather a specific dollar amount tied to BA only, step one, which is currently $34,048.

If that is correct, then we are talking about $680.96 raise per person at the 2% level and $1702.40 raise per person at the 5% level.

If that is correct, then there is no reason why anyone should be talking about a percent increase because a fixed dollar amount does not translate into a percentage for each teacher, it is a whole-dollar amount.

Is there anyone who can get someone at the union to clarify this amount.

GarfieldMom said...

kellie, I think I have figured this out by using the last contract. I'm going to run the numbers using the last contract (2013-2015) and see if I've got it. Then I'll run it with the proposed numbers from each side for the current contract negotiation.

If you want to work on this together, I'll email Melissa and she can pass my email address on to you. Would be good to have someone else look at what I'm doing before I start posting it.

Anonymous said...

And while you guys are busy trying to figure this out, remember that it is contingent on us increasing our workday by adding 10 minutes to our overall workday hours , and decreasing the amount of time we have to plan by 20 minutes over our current work day hours, for an increase in 30 of work that we still need to plan for. It is not worth the paltry amount that the district is offering.

Striking teacher

Maureen said...

And please try to estimate a total cost per year as well. Thank you so much for working on this!

GarfieldMom said...

I posted everything in the "From a Seattle School Teacher's POV" comments. I'll repost here to continue the salary discussion on this post. It's hard, because once Melissa posts something new, the discussion often moves to the new post, so if you want to catch people who are just coming in to see the latest info...

:)

GarfieldMom said...

I have numbers now. I would like to post it all with explanations of how it's calculated for discussion, but that's going to take some time. In the meantime:

I used the CBA from 2013-2015, which has the salary schedules and raise amounts in it, to check that my formula is correct. The salary increases being discussed (as shown in SPS proposals on their website) call for the following:

TRI pay increases are calculated according to this formula: (Base salary x proposed percent increase x TRI contract index figure) + existing TRI pay. The base salary x percent increase is figured on the lowest step (BA/Step 1), then multiplied by the index figure, then added to existing TRI. Base salary includes COLA increases, if any. The TRI Contract Index is part of the CBA. I used the one from the just expired CBA; I see no reason why this would have changed.

I'll give bottom line percentages first, then specific examples from the tables. I've only done this for certificated positions as that's the info most readily available.

SPS Proposals - three year contract
2% year 1, 3.2% year 2, 4% year 3.
This equates to a bottom line increase of 3.88% on total compensation in year 1, 3.85% in year 2, and 2.99% in year 3, with a total increase of 7.88% between 2014-15 and 2015-16, and 11.1% between 2014-15 and 2017-18.
Note that there is no decision on COLA yet for year 3. A COLA increase would increase SPS bottom line numbers in year 3.

SEA Proposals - two year contract
5% year 1, 5.5% year 2
This equates to a bottom line increase of 6.25% in year 1, and 5.5% in year 2, with a total increase of 12.1% between 2014-2015 and 2016/17.

I'm not sure trying to do this in table form will work but here goes.


* Percent increase of proposals for each year relative to previous year, and for each year relative to 2014/15 salary *

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 1st yr cumul. 2nd yr cumul. 3rd yr cumul.
SPS 3.88% 3.85% 2.99% 3.88% 7.88% 11.1%
SEA 6.25% 5.5% n/a 6.25% 12.1% n/a

SPS claims raises will be 5%, 5%, and 4%. This is patently false. These are not their actual proposed numbers; they just took COLA and added it to their numbers. That isn't how you do it, and they should know that. Either they are bad at math, or they are lying. They claim they are offering a total increase of 14% over the course of a three year contract (5%+5%+14%). Again: bad at math, or lying.

SEA pegs their raises at 5% and 5.5%. Those are accurate as far as being the percentages that would be applied in the above formula. They do not claim COLA as part of their numbers. The actual for year 1 is higher than their proposed number, because of COLA, while the second number is accurate. However, they claim they are proposing a total increase of 10.5% over two years (5%+5.5%). Again, not how you do it. Bad at math, or lying.

I'll leave it to individuals to weigh for themselves who is bad at math, and who is lying.

Specific examples in my next post.

GarfieldMom said...

Clearly tables don't work.

I'll use the same parameters as the Seattle Times did here Pay Varies for Teachers

These are PROJECTIONS based on the existing salary schedules, the formulas for calculating salary, and the proposed increases from each side in the negotiation.

Base salary is set by the state, and includes COLAs if there are any. TRI is set by the CBA, and is paid by SPS. Total is base + TRI.

First year teacher: BA
Current base: $34,048
Current TRI: $10,324
Current total: $44,372

First year teacher, SPS Year 1 proposal
Base: $35,069
TRI: $11,025
Total: 46,094

First year teacher, SEA Year 1 proposal
Base: $35,069
TRI: $12,077
Total: $47,146

First year teacher, SPS Year 2 proposal
Base: $35,701
TRI: $12,167
Total: $47,868

First year teacher, SEA Year 2 proposal
Base: $35,701
TRI: $14,040
Total: $49,741

First year teacher, SPS Year 3 proposal
Base: $35,701
TRI: $13,595
Total: $49,296

First year teacher, SEA Year 3 proposal
N/A (SEA proposes 2 year contract)

Mid-career teacher: 8th year, BA+90
Current base: $44,790
Current TRI: $14,654
Current Total: $59,444

Mid-career teacher, SPS Year 1 proposal
Base: $46,134
TRI: $15,657
Total: $61,791

Mid-career teacher, SEA Year 1 proposal
Base: $46,134
TRI: $17,162
Total: $63,295

Mid-career teacher, SPS Year 2 proposal
Base: $46,964
TRI: $17,291
Total: $64,255

Mid-career teacher, SEA Year 2 proposal
Base: $46,964
TRI: $19,970
Total: $66,934

Mid-career teacher, SPS Year 3 proposal
Base: $46,964
TRI: $19,333
Total: $66,297

Mid-career teacher, SEA Year 3 proposal
N/A (SEA proposes 2 year contract)

Veteran teacher: 15th year, BA+135 or MA+45
Current Base: $60,661
Current TRI: $19,127
Current Total: $79,788

Veteran teacher, SPS Year 1 proposal
Base: $62,481
TRI: $20,432
Total: $82,913

Veteran teacher, SEA Year 1 proposal
Base: $62,481
TRI: $22,389
Total: $84,870

Veteran teacher, SPS Year 2 proposal
Base: $63,605
TRI: $22,557
Total: $86,162

Veteran teacher, SEA Year 2 proposal
Base: $63,605
TRI: $26,041
Total: $89,646

Veteran teacher, SPS Year 3 proposal
Base: $63,605
TRI: $25,213
Total: $88,818

Veteran teacher, SEA Year 3 proposal
N/A (SEA proposes 2 year contract)

GarfieldMom said...

Oh, I almost forgot. One column of the 2014-2015 salary schedule is not correct according to the formula! It looks like teachers in lane 2 (200) got shortchanged by $3-5 on their TRI that year. That's $3-5 for the whole year, something an individual wouldn't notice, but if there are enough teachers in that lane, SPS would save some $. (Seriously, it probably was less than a $1000 for SPS, but little mistakes can add up...)

GarfieldMom said...

So ignore my last comment. I found the real TRI Contract Index, the one that actually gets used, not the one in the contract. Go figure.

Allen jeley said...

Well post and this article tell us a teacher how to perform his duty in daily routine and how to got his salary thanks for share it bsn nursing capstone project examples .