Clearing up record on teacher salaries 

click to enlarge A reader sheds reasoning on SFMTA's plan to enforce meters on Sundays. - COURTESY PHOTO
  • Courtesy Photo
  • A reader sheds reasoning on SFMTA's plan to enforce meters on Sundays.

Your story contained a few factual errors regarding the San Francisco Unified School District proposal for necessary deficit reduction measures (“Teachers gearing up for a strike,” Friday).

Reporter Amy Crawford wrote “with a proposed increase in class sizes in elementary school, from 22 to 25 students, which would be rolled out beginning with kindergarten next year.” The district’s class-size proposal is to increase kindergarten class size by one student per year beginning with the 2013-14 kindergarten class (not next year’s class). One student would be added per year with the eventual cap to K-3 class size of 25 after three years of being phased in. The SFUSD has had a long standing tradition of keeping class sizes as low as possible; in fact, according to the California Department of Education’s Ed-Data, the SFUSD’s average class sizes are lower than the state average.  

Second, Ms. Crawford wrote that “2008 was the last time SFUSD teachers received a raise.” SFUSD provides teachers annual wage increases through various mechanisms including “step and column increases,” which are salary increases that happen on a regular basis for all employees in good standing. Given the chronic underfunding from the state, the SFUSD went to the voters  in 2008 to approve a local revenue measure that would increase teacher salaries, paying special attention to teachers at the beginning of their careers and those in hard-to-fill subjects and hard-to-staff schools. The voters passed this measure, called the Quality Education and Teacher Act, and, effective 2009, the majority of our teachers saw their pay go up by at least $1,000 and as high as $6,000 for some.  

These times are hard enough for all of our teachers and students; we don’t need to portray them as worse than they are.

Tom Ruiz
SFUSD executive director
for labor relations
San Francisco

SoCal must fix water woes

As I read your editorial (“Delta water plan’s full impact needs close examination,” Friday) what struck me was that both sides want to do good. One way to solve this problem would be to limit growth to California. We have enough people living here draining the state’s resources.

As for sending Northern California water south, I am very much opposed to it. Let Southern California build cisterns and aqueducts like the Romans did to catch the rainwater and use it for their homes and on their crops. I am also a fan of desalination. If they can do it on cruise ships, why can’t they do it at the shore? I say we restore wetlands as best we can and stop diverting more water  from our Northern California uses.

Charles R. Sears II
San Francisco

Sunday fees hurt residents

According to Ed Reiskin, transportation director of the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, his plan to initiate Sunday parking meter fees is “meant to support business and ensure that parking is available for customers and visitors.” (“Sunday parking fees needed, official says,” Letters, Wednesday.)

Mr. Reiskin, the backlash to your plan will not only result in a loss of business from those customers who don’t want the hassle of feeding meters on Sundays (where everywhere else it’s free), it will also result in drivers spooling onto residential neighborhoods.

In order for the residential parking permit plan to be effective, your department will need to start enforcing residential parking on Sundays as well once you implement Sunday parking meters.

Ed Louie
San Francisco

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