SCV35 invests over half a million dollars in staff

SCV35 invests over half a million dollars in staff
Posted on 05/09/2022
SCV35 staff in the gym at the annual welcome back celebrationOn April 12, 2022, the SCV35 Governing Board voted unanimously to approve the most significant wage increase to classified staff in District history. The sum total of this investment in staff is $565,811 for the 2023 fiscal year.

In 2015, SCV35 hired a consulting firm to conduct a compensation study. A more competitive placement guide was implemented in July of 2016 for classified staff, “but the rise in minimum wage just 6 months later (in January of 2017) negated our efforts,” said Human Resource Manager Julieta Quiroz.

In addition, continuous minimum wage increases since 2017, created a financial situation known as compression. Compression occurs when one group of employees are given raises disproportionate to another group of employees, causing the distinction between the two wage groups to ”compress.” As a result, In 2020, the District hired another consulting firm, Heinfield Meech, to review and study the compensation schedule. The study reviewed job descriptions, duties performed and compared the fair market value of the position in surrounding and similar school districts.

During the 2021-2022 school year, the SCV35 Interest Based Bargaining team (IBB), which is comprised of administrators, classified and certified employees focused their efforts on reducing compression created by the minimum wage increase using the compensation study as their guide.

In April, Ms. Quiroz and Business Manager Isela Brown, who are part of the IBB team, proposed the new pay scale to the Governing Board for approval. The proposed guide would recognize the different duties and responsibilities between different positions. “It will benefit over 130 employees, and the cost associated with this is over $500,000. It is a significant investment, probably the most prominent investment our district has done for our hourly employees,” said Brown.

Before the vote, Board Clerk, Brad Beach said “I think it’s a step in the right direction.” Superintendent David Verdugo explained to board members that on the same agenda was also the recommendation for a 3% increase for all staff. Since both items were approved, classified staff would receive a 3% increase or placement on the new guide, whichever was most beneficial to the employee. “Because of the new placement guide, employees will receive the recommendation of anywhere from 3-27% increase. I want to thank the IBB team for bringing this proposal forward., said Verdugo.

The new placement guide and increase will be implemented for the 2022-2023 school year.