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What are Lodi School District employees paid?

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Posted: Friday, January 18, 2008 10:00 pm

Salaries at Lodi Unified have a wide range, but a couple rules hold true. First, administrators make the most money. Yet teachers and classified staff can earn a pretty good salary, too, if they have the education and are willing to put in the time.

If you're a teacher, you can make as little as $37,184 to as much as $80,297 in base pay.

Overtime, as in one rare case, can put a teacher's pay up to $147,369.

If you're a member of the district's classified staff - the secretaries, bus drivers, clerks, campus supervisors and other employees that do most of the district's behind the scenes jobs - you could earn $21,984 to $83,136, depending on your job.

If you're an administrator you can make anywhere from $80,000 to nearly $200,000, depending how your place on the district's hierarchy.

Teachers are paid based on the number of years they're been teaching and how many college units they've earned past their initial degree. The number of years a teacher has been working and the amount of education he or she has can mean the difference of a few hundred or a few thousand dollars.

A master's degree will earn a teacher an extra $1,000 a year and a doctorate $1,500.

Lodi Unified tries to use its salaries to lure people to the district.

"We pay competitive prices so we can get talented and qualified (people) to work in our district," said Bill Huyett, superintendent of Lodi Unified. "Frankly we have trouble doing that."

Not having a major teacher-producing university in the area makes it difficult for the district to recruit new teachers, said district officials. District officials say that University of the Pacific does produce some teachers - not near as many as California State University, Stanislaus or Sacramento, though.

Len Casanega, Lodi Unified assistant superintendent of personnel, said district staff members call around to the next seven school districts in California with higher and lower student populations than Lodi Unified to get a sampling of teacher salaries.

Casanega was recently appointed to the post of interim superintendent.

District staff also polls nearby school districts to see what their pay is like.

According to the district's information, Lodi Unified ranks near the middle in terms of compensation for its employees.

Sue Kenmotsu is the president of the Lodi Education Association, the union that represents Lodi Unified's teachers.

Kenmotsu said that looking at salaries without looking at what teachers pay for benefits can be quite misleading.

For instance, Kenmotsu said Stockton Unified School District teachers make less than Lodi Unified teachers in base pay.

The top paid teachers at Stockton Unified make $75,685, while the most experienced teachers at Lodi Unified earn $78,469, according a sampling done by Lodi Unified.

However, Kenmotsu said, those teachers that receive medical benefits through Lodi Unified pay anywhere from $3,100 to nearly $5,900 out of their pocket for medical coverage. Approximately 80 percent of teachers subscribe to district benefits.

"Stockton (Unified) salaries may appear to be lower, but their benefits are mostly paid for," Kenmotsu said.

Casanega admits that Lodi Unified's benefit package isn't great, but said that has improved over the years.

In general, Kenmotsu said teachers are underpaid considering the amount and the importance of the work they do.

Although most teachers do not make large amounts of overtime, for some, working overtime can increase their salaries by quite a bit.

Sandra Staples, who works with the visually impaired, made $147,369 during the 2006-07 school year.

That may seem like a lot, Casanega said, but Staples has a very rarefied credential, has a job that not a lot of people want and works many nights and weekends.

Education code also requires that the district employ somebody to serve children with special needs.

David Kline, spokesperson for the California Taxpayers' Association, said it's hard to make large generalizations about teachers' salaries because teachers vary so much in experience. Overall, though, Kline said California teachers have it pretty good compared to the rest of the nation.

According to the National Education Association, the U.S. average for teachers for the 2005-06 school year was $49,026. California teachers made $59,825.

"It seems California is doing right by its teachers," Kline said.

Administrators face a similar problem when it comes to benefits and how they affect salaries.

Like teacher salaries, administrator salaries are determined based on education and years of experience.

When compared to similar districts, the pay for Lodi Unified's top district officials seems competitive, according to Lodi Unified information.

However, Lodi Unified administrators' salaries include any money they would get from the district for their benefits. Administrators voted a few years ago to add any money the district would pay for benefits to their base salaries.

Lodi Unified administrators don't enjoy some of the perks that administrators at other school districts get either, such as expense accounts, cars or compensation for their mileage.

Casanega said that often times people look at what upper administrators are paid and are shocked. However, Casanega argues those administrators have a lot more responsibility and work a year-round schedule with a lot of hours.

"In negotiation people say, 'The superintendent makes that much?,'" Casanega said. "Yeah, but he's underpaid."

In the end, Huyett said, Lodi Unified tries hard to attract people and to keep them.

"It's really all decisions about how competitive you want to be," he said.

Top 20 earners for the 2006-07 school year

1. Bill Huyett, superintendent - $199,241
2. Odie Douglas, associate superintendent - $157,168
3. Sandra Staples, teacher - $147,369
4. Douglas Barge, chief business officer - $139,714
5. Leonard Casanega, assistant superintendent of personnel - $137,211
6. Catherine Pennington, assistant superintendent of elementary education - $137,211
7. Barbara Johnston, assistant superintendent of secondary education - $136,467
8. Catherine Conrado, administrative director of student services - $130,647
9. James Davis, principal at McNair High School - $130,174
10. Elliott Grauman, director of classified personnel - $125,909
11. Robert Rivas, principal at Liberty High School -$124,167
12. Bill Toledo, principal at Plaza Robles High School - $122,822
13. Michael McKilligan, director of certificated personnel - $121,173
14. Steve Colwell, principal at Lincoln Technical Academy - $120,955
15. Irene Outlaw, principal at Delta Sierra Middle School - $119,179
16. Deborah DeGanna, administrator - $119,165
17. Daryl Camp, principal at Bear Creek High School - $118,675
18. Bill Atterberry, principal at Lodi High School - $118,675
19. Erik Sandstrom, principal at Tokay High School - $117,675
20. John Coakley, GATE office and health curriculum coordinator - $116,123

Not included in this list are two of the highest paid district employees for the 2007-08 school year. They were not employed by Lodi Unified for the entire 2006-07 school year, so they were not included in the above list.

They are: Art Hand, assistant superintendent of facility planning, $141,019; and Mark Calonico, administrative director of curriculum, $134,734.

50 salaries from the 2007-08 school year

The following salaries and positions were selected to provide a sampling of Lodi Unified School District pay.

1. Elementary school principal - $115,324
2. Principal at a charter school - $110,718
3. High school assistant principal - $110,405
4. High school vice principal - $109,839
5. Elementary vice principal - $101,417
6. Psychologist - $98,299
7. Middle school vice principal - $93,947
8. School Nurse - $92,612
9. Risk manager - $92,369
10. Speech Therapist - $86,926
11. High school counselor - $86,926
12. Elementary school counselor - $81,239
13. Conflict management teacher - $80,297
14. Reading Recovery teacher - $80,297
15. Physical Education teacher - $80,297
16. French teacher - $80,297
17. Librarian - $80,297
18. Third-grade teacher - $76,876
19. Fifth-grade teacher - $76,876
20. Social science teacher - $76,876
21. Nutrition specialist - $72,960
22. Middle school counselor - $67,863
23. Music teacher -$62,635
24. Psychologist - $62,027
25. Accountant/budget analyst - $59,004
26. Systems analyst 1 - $55,368
27. Lead construction project specialist - $55,368
28. Cafeteria supervisor - $54,312
29. Sign language interpreter 2 - $50,376
30. Fifth-grade teacher - $49,206
31. Pool maintenance worker - $49,068
32. Payroll assistant - $48,036
33. Fire science teacher - $46,408
34. Administrative secretary - $45,828
35. Drivers' education/health science teacher - $43,770
36. School bus driver - $43,212
37. Carpenter - $43,116
38. Principal's secretary - $42,780
39. Fifth-grade teacher - $41,404
40. Locksmith - $41,052
41. Dispatcher - $40,428
42. Custodian - $39,048
43. Groundskeeper - $38,508
44. Paraeducator, special education - $36,828
45. Campus security - $35,736
46. Delivery driver - $35,496
47. Typist clerk 2 - $33,372
48. Cafeteria assistant 1 - $24,240
49. Adult crossing guard - $23,316
50. Infant/toddler care provider - $23,148

Contact reporter Amanda Dyer at amandad@lodinews.com.

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • posted at 5:31 am on Thu, Jan 24, 2008.


    Hey "teach" I was talking about teachers in general. Obviously I would have no idea when "you" work or dont, so just calm down. Have you ever heard of an RSP teacher. I know regular classroom teachers do not put in as much extra time as these teachers. Maybe you do,if so you must be real new at your job and it will get better for you with time. I know alot of teachers and none of them work as much as you claim to. So just relax and re-read my post I was praising you guys. When you try to convince us of things that clearly are not true it makes it hard to beleive anything you post. As I go back and read all of your posts I wonder why you are even a teacher. I know you say you want to give back to the community, but maybe you can find a way that doesnt make you bitter.

  • posted at 2:09 pm on Wed, Jan 23, 2008.


    Duh. Finally I get it. The salary list is a sampling.

  • posted at 3:18 am on Wed, Jan 23, 2008.


    Personally, I think the estimates are a little bit high. Like they said, there is a broad range of salaries.

  • posted at 3:17 am on Wed, Jan 23, 2008.


    Metric Time System: ditto.

  • posted at 3:16 am on Wed, Jan 23, 2008.


    Leonard: LUSD is using public money, providing a public service. The Lodi News Sentinel is private. If you want to apply for a job with the LNS, you can decide whether you like their salary or not. The LNS can decide how its economics are in balance with the quality of their employees, and the balancing of their books.

  • posted at 3:45 am on Tue, Jan 22, 2008.


    Leonard on Jan 20, 2008 7:21 PM: Well said!

  • posted at 3:41 am on Tue, Jan 22, 2008.


    If you make more $$$ than these people -you don't care, if you make less - they are over-paid. If these jobs appeal to you, don't whine, make a career change.

  • posted at 12:43 pm on Mon, Jan 21, 2008.


    As a rule, I try to leave one week of every two week break to do NO work. Many times I am not sitting in a seminar or whatever, but I am planning during the two week break. It was a huge eye opener at the start of this school year when I realized that I was spending more time focused on my students than on my own children so I have made a conscious effort to put down the school work at a certain time everyday. Truth is, as much as I do, there will always be something left. So, if I can't complete it all anyway, I don't. Now I play with my own kids a lot more (they are no longer hanging out in front of the theatre! Just kidding!)

  • posted at 11:31 am on Mon, Jan 21, 2008.


    Citizen - because your wife does not work breaks means that no one does? Perhaps she's been teaching long enough that she doesn't have to or perhaps she teaches a subject/grade level that does not require her to work breaks. I take one, maybe two weeks off during the summer. Over October break I usually work on curriculum for second semester. I met with students through the entire December break this year. Do not tell me when I do and do not work, as you would have absolutely no way of knowing unless you know me personally. I teach science, I teach advanced classes. I HAVE to go to conferences during the summer. I also know that I do NOT work the most out of all of my peers. I do not get paid extra for any of this, though I have been told that sometimes, if there is enough money, the conference fees are covered by the school. Even then, it doesn't always happen.

  • posted at 10:40 am on Mon, Jan 21, 2008.


    I agree that teachers work way more on their own time than they should have to, I always tell my wife to put down the work you are "off the clock" but she never listens to me. But lets not get carried away here. The two week breaks are not always filled with meeting, seminars or whatever. That is just not true. Yea some of it is but to say all or most of it is, is just a gross exaggeration. You might have to put in a week or two during the summer break but thats it. The teachers deserve these breaks because with their education they probably could be making alot more in the private sector. But please dont try to convince everyone out here that your entire break time is filled with work. I witness it every night first hand and its not.

  • posted at 8:24 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    my entire immediate family is made up of teachers. they work all the time. my brother and his girl friend spend their weekends in the classrooms preparing lessons and completing the newly added/not paid for time to enter test scores into computers. all their time at school is taken up teaching all this "no student left behind" crap, there's no room for creativity and zero for prep and grading. plus their supply budgets leave the footing 70% of the costs.

  • posted at 6:07 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    How much tax write offs do certain local businesses and politicians pay? Hmmm.

  • posted at 4:14 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    I'm waiting to hear from you "Taxpayer & citizen".

  • posted at 4:10 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    "Teacher", keep your chin up, you'll get there. I too am in a profession that behooves you to keep up with continuing education. Always on my days off, and all at my expense. But that's what makes you a professional. That's what will make you rise above mediocrity. If you love your job, you'll be good at it. If you're good at it, you'll make a good living from it. That house will be yours sooner than you think.

  • posted at 3:00 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    I am not complaining, though. I love what I do and would not trade it for anything. I am in the middle of my career and I do feel like I am adequately compensated, but it makes a difference if you are happy with your work.

  • posted at 2:52 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    But, I am not complaining. I love my job, feel that I am adequately compensated ( I am in the middle of my career). I would not trade my job for any other. I do have a higher level degree that would net me more money, however I choose to do what makes me happy - it's a great feeling to love what you do.

  • posted at 2:49 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    Lucius...you are wrong about how much teachers work. The contract is for 182 days. However, the vast majority of teachers work weekends, evenings and on their time "off". We do NOT get overtimes. So, the 10 hours that I spent this weekend grading papers was my own time, unpaid. There is no way that we can do everything that needs to be done (plan, correct, conference, fill out surveys, etc.) in the contracted time. Those two week breaks that you all think we have off are usually filled with staff development, including watching useless videos!

  • posted at 2:46 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    Cogito - Perhaps the conspiracy theorists at my school are correct then, and the district has it out for us.

    Lucius - School runs from the end of July until the beginning of June. There are 2 week "vacations" in October, December and March, but much of that time teachers are at conferences or working on curriculum. During the time we are in class, not only do we teach, but we have parent meetings, after school activities, grading papers, etc. I am at school from 6:30 am until at least 4:30 pm. I don't get to use the restroom whenever I want, I have to wait for a passing period or lunch. I get 30 minutes for lunch, if no kids come in for extra help. I also work on weekends. Many of my fellow teachers put in just as long of hours, if not more. It is a rare few that only work their contract. I usually do not complain about my salary, but make no mistake - I can qualify for public assistance (no, I don't use it), and I can't afford a house. While teachers at the top can live comfortably, those of us at the bottom are often barely making ends meet. Quit trying to tell me I'm overpaid/underworked. It is absolutely not true.

    I chose to go into teaching to give back to society. But it is becoming more and more apparent that my services are not wanted by a lot of people. Be careful or all you will be left with are the teachers who are "in it for the vacations."

  • posted at 1:21 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    When is the News Sentinel going to run an article on how much Lodi News Sentinel employees are paid?

  • posted at 12:38 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    and remember the teachers work 8 months out of the year... maybe 9 at the most.

  • posted at 12:35 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    LSN should have also listed the number of years those people have in the district. The more years = higher pay = may throw off the publics perception of what teachers are really making. Showing the range from starting to person on verge of retirement gives a better idea of salaries rather than showing that of someone that has been working for the district for years.

  • posted at 12:18 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    Wikipedia Coors, then look under "Labor"

  • posted at 12:15 pm on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    O.K. "Taxpayer&Citizen", I did a little research and found out that you were wrong. Coors IS a non-union company. In 1988 the Teamsters gathered enough signatures to force a union vote, but the employees rejected the union 2to1. So apparently the "best thing that ever happened",........ never happened. I guess my buddy is right in being adamant about not paying for Coors.Apparently their workers have rejected unionization twice.

  • posted at 11:42 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    "Teacher", I don't obviously know what your department is, but I know 2 people who have left teaching jobs with other districts in the last 2 years. One left Galt for better pay in LUSD, and one left Stockton for better working conditions. And to Taxpayer&Citizen, yeah you're right, unions have always been good at helping overpay the under-qualified. That's why (with the exception of government ones) most of them are in their death throes. I have a friend who is a past Teamster rep. If he buys a round, and you order a Coors, he will not pay for it. Maybe he's a sheep like me, or he never got the same memo you did. If you don't think unions are hostile toward the Republican party, you're the one who's oblivious here.

  • posted at 9:42 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    Cogito: Coors was forced to go Union years ago and they've repeatedly said it was the best thing they ever did. Their sales since have more than doubled, as have their profits and they've created many secure, well paying jobs for their employees. For someone claiming to know it all, you're pretty narrow minded if you think Union members all check that same Democratic box.

    I, for one, don't and never will. It's narrow minded people, like yourself, that indeed are lost in that same herd of sheep that follow merrily along.

  • posted at 9:21 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    Cogito - of course it "grinds my gears." My union doesn't listen to a word I have to say. However, it at least protects my job, something that wouldn't happen without them. After all, I'm too vocal about class size for this district. The district will do as much as they can to put the hurt on, ask Anthony Delaplain over at Tokay.

    As for attracting all kinds of people; the only people attracted to the job openings we've had in our department are uncredentialed, and its only been one or two per job. Of course, that's probably due to the fact that the district refuses to post the job until 2 weeks before school starts. Out of the last 5 job openings, only 1 person has come in with a full credential, and only 1 person (different than the first) has come in more than 1 week before school started.

  • posted at 4:19 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    oops...i posted on the wrong article!! I'll try that again!

  • posted at 4:19 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    Let these parents have their GATE only school. The school in which my kids go to does not have the GATE label, although most of the GATE kids choose to stay there. Why? This school teaches kids to work as a team, problem solve, recognize and accept each others differences and, most importantly, THINK! All the while, students are challenged at their level. So, take you Elkhorn and I'll take my home school.

  • posted at 3:28 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    2much, I feel better too. Thanks for playing along. Don't get me started on how the city wastes money. That's why we have to stay diligent, keep on their backs, and pay attention when it comes to public spending. And, by the way, developers don't pay fees. They just pass them on to those who buy their houses. Which drives up prices artificially. Which is inflationary etc. etc.....We need to believe caring about these things can, and will, make a difference. Too many parasites eventually kill the host organism.

  • posted at 3:13 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    I would also like to add these salary schedules are BEFORE they take out TAXES,INSURANCE,UNION DUES, And any other deductions we may have. That is quite a chunk of change.I have worked for LUSD 15 years. We also have to negotiate for our cost of living raise that should be given directly to us without negotiating or fighting for it!!

  • posted at 2:54 am on Sun, Jan 20, 2008.


    To Cogito Am I frustrated because the taxpayers know where the money goes? NO, thats been my point; they dont know where the money goes. Im frustrated that the LNS pretends it is performing a public service by publishing readily available information and calling it investigative journalism. I know, they had to make some phone calls and maybe leave the office, whoopee.

    When the city fathers were pouring money down the drain to the Shearson-Lehman- Envision Law stupidity, the LNS continued to support the geniuses that promoted it (Mann-Pennino-Land) yet chastised the women (Hitchcock) that said, maybe this isnt a good idea. All the public has to do is go to Council meetings, go to school board meetings, heck just watch them on television. The real drain on the taxpayers are things like diverting maintenance funds for downtown revitalization, art in public places, changeable message boards in front of Delta College. If the LNS wants to get credit for some purpose, look into how money is wasted on things that dont benefit the general public. Dont get me wrong, downtown looks better, but we cant afford to maintain it. Art in public places, yes the money comes form developers, but an additional 2% could make a big difference to the general fund. If I want art, Ill by it. OH, I love the pretty pictures on the sign in front of SJDC. I know ranting about it in this little blog wont make a difference, but I feel so much better.

  • posted at 6:00 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    P.S., my gay minority friends think I'm a kick in the tight fitting capris.

  • posted at 5:52 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    2much, "frustrated and bitter"?, the only one who seems to fit that bill here is YOU! Are you mad because we, the taxpaying public, are being informed as to where our money is going? I know, you're a taxpayer too, don't bore me. Trust me, I don't think you're overpaid! I just don't think that you're underpaid. If you think you can do better, THEN QUIT! I just don't think it would be that easy to replace your job. I don't envy your salary, but I must confess, I do envy your time off. As I do firemen. Some of the most influential people in my life were teachers. I honor those in your profession who are dedicated to being a positive role model in their students lives. Not too many kids get that at home these days. But it's a good thing that we know how much money govt. employees make. That's the whole idea behind this series of articles. Get it?

  • posted at 4:10 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    So, can anyone tell me what this has accomplished? You have the teachers defending their jobs and compensation. You have the grumpy people who evidently didn't end up in life where they wanted complaining about what others have and they dont. You have the LNS sitting back and printing pointless dribble that would incite a riot if this were a street corner with this group of people on it. But they are selling papers and making money, and that is their goal. I sure hope all those grossly overpaid public sector employees are paying attention. I dont think the LNS wants your tainted money!

  • posted at 3:56 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    To Cogito perhaps you should calm down and read slowly, the second paragraph was addressed to the LNS (Lodi News Sentinel). You are correct, your posting raised no questions, nor made any point other than you appear to be frustrated and bitter. Im always amazed when someone judges ALL persons of a group into one stereotypical ideal, you must be fun around minorities and gays.

  • posted at 3:30 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    To 2much,11:42 posting. Exactly what "questions" did I raise by my earlier statements? There wasn't a question to be found in my blog. Read it again my friend.

  • posted at 3:20 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Giovanna, "hard to recruit"? I don't think so. Look at how many applicants there are for any opening. LUSD is a plum district compared to those surrounding it and gets plenty of transfers.

  • posted at 3:14 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    To the teacher who said "I have no say in who my union endorses". Doesn't that grind your gears? They take hard earned wages from your check and give it to candidates who are looking out for themselves, and not necessarily for you. Thats why I always say that the DIRTIEST money in politics is from unions! The first place we need to reform campaign finance laws is there!

  • posted at 3:00 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Trust me teachers, I truly appreciate everything you do. I grew up in a trade union household and watched my father, a very intelligent, hard working, ethical man, vote Democrat his entire life. Long after his party had abandoned his core human values. He read his union newsletter religiously, and followed all their guidelines. He never allowed Coors beer in our house because it was a non-union beer! Teamster families know where I'm coming from! I know firsthand the influence of unions to their members and how they brainwash them. The NEA is one of the top 10 contributors to politics, the overwhelming share going to Democrats. (7 of the top 10 go to Dems). They know where to buy their influence.

  • posted at 1:16 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Single teachers with small children at home who are at the bottom of the pay scale actually qualify for Medi-Cal. Some refuse to take district insurance, saving themselves the co-pay, and take Medi-Cal instead. Many of the people have student loans to pay off as well. Childcare for infants and preschoolers is off the charts. Tell me, who in their right mind would think this is acceptable pay, when highly educated professionals qualify for public assistance?

  • posted at 12:43 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    I keep hearing a resounding theme that $75,000 is actually a lot of money. Not in this economy and more importantly, not in this state.

    With housing costs what they are and gas prices consistently skyrocketing, $75,000 is hardy well paid.

  • posted at 12:31 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Oh and I DO NOT DRINK kool aide LOL....

  • posted at 12:28 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    I dont vote as a block either, I pay my union dues out of MY PAYCHECK! I also pay another 700.00 for benefits for my family out of MY paycheck. In fact my tax lady said I have made less over the last 5 years so the cost of living raises dont even count!I don;t know how single people can even afford an apartment on our wages. The economy in horrible gas is off the charts this should all factor in. Trust me we work because we are dedicated to Children NOT the money!

  • posted at 12:23 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    I certainly don't "vote as a block", don't let the ads on tv fool you. I have no say in who my union endorses, other than electing people in those leadership positions. Unfortunately, its a case of "the lesser of two (or more) evils." But if I want to be a teacher, I have to be in the union. Sure, they say we can opt out, but that's not safe to do in this district.

    As for the salaries compared to other states, sure they look good when you compare just the actual dollar amount. However, when you compare cost of living, I really don't make all that much. I barely cover my bills. Of course, I'm at the beginning of my career, rather then the end. I will also tell you that salary is the least of my worries. I have enough to survive. What I'd REALLY like is to be able to do my job and do it well. I'd also like to be able to go home, and do things OTHER than trying to come up with the equipment I need, or grading 200 papers, or one of the other million school-related things I have to do.

  • posted at 12:09 pm on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    P.S. I don't have a problem with the pay of these individuals. I think it's fair compensation for top tier teachers. I do think they need to move entry level pay a little higher though.

  • posted at 11:17 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    "2much", I'll tell you why I think this is a good idea. All these people are union members. Union members are kool-aid drinkers for the most part and vote as a block. Politicians know this and will promise them higher pay if they endorse their candidacy. They use yours and my tax dollars (with public unions) to get themselves elected. Education doesn't get any better, it just costs us more. Thats why the prison guards make more than teachers. Gray Davis bought them.

  • posted at 8:06 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    I've always felt educator's were underpaid. Now I'm sure of it. Can you imagine being a high school principal for $120,000.00? You couldn't pay me enough for that job. I've also got to believe that any teacher making over $70,000 must have been teaching for quite some time. I've been self-employed all of my life and very suspicious of public employee salaries/benefits. But educator's are not in that same boat. We entrust our children's future's to these people and we don't pay them enough.

  • posted at 5:42 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    To Cogito I understand they are showing salaries paid by tax dollars. My issue is what is the point other than inciting people that dont have benefits and lousy pay? Have you ever been to a school board meeting or a city council meeting to actively participate? When you vote, do vote to make a change or do just figure it wont make a difference and just vote the status quo? People complain about things they dont have and how unfair it is, so if its such a gravy train why arent you working there?

    The other issue the LNS continues to try to exploit is the fact that the majority of these public sector budgets are spent on salary and benefits. Lets see, I want a teacher to teach my kids, thats a salary. I want a cop to come when I call, thats a salary. If my house catches on fire I want a fireman, thats a salary. This is just cheap sensationalism with no substance. They claim it is to make the public aware. Aware of what, and do you offer fixes or ideas to correct this? For that matter, does it need correcting? If you want people to provide these services, you have to pay them for it. People complain about the quality of teachers, or their streets, parks, etc. yet they complain when they have to pay for them. Raising questions without answers is a cheap shot.

  • posted at 5:36 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    It is tough to handle but My Husband is self employed and I carry our benefits.
    The health care is great the dental is AWESOME and the vision is even better.
    I have compared plans and really dollar for dollar I cannot get anything better or cheaper its really sad!! I wish CSEA and LEA would Merge we could be SOOOOO strong and get way better rates as a group! When we spoke ( as a group) the entire District would listen!!!

  • posted at 5:07 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Yea Roni I agree the benefits themselves are great if you can afford to pay approx one half of your monthly paycheck to get the top plan. That would be tough to handle.

  • posted at 4:30 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    I see alot of names of people I know but there are people missin who make "BIG BUCKS" also. Where is B. Johnsons assistant??? I think they missed a few names. I have the Districts insurance, GREAT insurance however OUTRAGEOUS premiums. We don't make very good money when you look at what the "TOP BRASS " makes. You can take 3 Employees of the lower levels to make ONE top position. HOwever the People who are on the " TOP" List are very deserving of those salaries. Most of them have been with LUSD a long time and have been Principals/Vice Principals at big high schools.

  • posted at 4:18 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    So I can assume by Art Hands title that he is the brain surgeon that axed the plan for a Lodi construction company to build free of charge new dugouts at the new Lodi High baseball diamond. Wow good move.

  • posted at 3:59 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    The Lodi teachers benefit package is horrible. It could possibly be the worst offered benefits I have ever seen in any occupation not just teaching. Whoever says that they are getting better is just flat out lying. My wife is a teacher and we dread the day that we ever have to take those lousy benefits.

  • posted at 3:08 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    As a teacher I am very comfortable with my salary and not too worried about my less attractive retirement and benefits packages. But did I miss the boat? My cousin who never went to college makes more money than I do, doesn't pay all the $ I do out of pocket for health care and he'll retire 5-6 years before me. He's a . . . (drum roll) prison guard! lol I wouldn't trade places but you gotta love the state we're in . . .

  • posted at 2:45 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    I have no problems with the wages being paid, or the names. OK, a teacher with say 20yrs experience is making $75K. Yes that does sound like alot but they are educating our children & grandchildren.

    In the LUSD they work 41 weeks a year, and get EVERY lil Holiday off. That $75K is looking pretty sweet about now. And finally, don't forget they awesome retirement package. Can anyone say "career change" LOL.

  • posted at 2:45 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Oh don't forget to add in another perk that District admins have, really nice bathrooms with heat/AC, hot water to wash your hands, and plenty of toilets for no waiting. Some schools don't have that, now do they? If you compare the stress levels of certified and classified at the sites to the leaders at the District, the site workers are underpaid.

  • posted at 2:44 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    It's not the lure of money that draws people to teaching, and it's not the lack of money that causes them to leave. Bad leadership, from the top down, with piecemeal policies and lack of support of the teachers in many different ways is the problem. A never ending barrage of new programs, new records to be kept and today's miracles cures for lack of student success cause most of the attrition. I hope other former teachers weigh in to this column to expose the real problems in Lodi Unified.

  • posted at 2:41 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Let's see, Len has been doing everything he could to undermine, break, or weaken the contracts of both CSEA and LEA, for years. In fact, he has said that he doens't have to abide by contracts. When you have a district office that is known for being that adversarial toward the employees that do most of the work, it makes it hard to recruit anyone.

  • posted at 2:30 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    But really, the names are unnecessary.

  • posted at 2:30 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Hey "2much", the LNS is just letting us know where the money, taken from our paychecks under threat of financial ruin and or imprisonment, is going. I have exactly zero problem with that. Good job Marty and staff, keep it up.

  • posted at 2:22 am on Sat, Jan 19, 2008.


    Once again you have to give the Lodi News Sentinel credit for their daring expose on information derived from the public records. Good investigative journalism! You have to admire them for attempting to uh what are they attempting to do? Oh, thats right, making the public aware of the wages paid to people that consciously choose a career patch that provides for good pay, benefits, and some security. Those wages for the employees for cities Galt & Lodi dont look so bad now do they? How much do the Weybrets make again? Oh thats right, none of our business, we dont have to buy a newspaper do we?



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