Fresno Unified staff asking for one-time payment for working through pandemic

Coronavirus

FRESNO, California. (KSEE) – Fresno Unified staff are asking the district for a one-time payment of $3,200 for working through the pandemic. Other valley school districts recently approved this, and the Fresno Teachers Association is asking the district if they will approve one for FUSD.

Manuel Bonilla is the President of the Fresno Teacher Association. Bonilla said this payment isn’t just for teachers but for all school staff. 

“All employees during this time have really stepped up to meet the needs of their students. Again, that’s food service workers, that’s teachers, that’s principals so we are saying all employees should get that,” said Bonilla. 

Bonilla said the district and the teacher’s union spoke about this weeks ago. Bonilla said he is waiting for the district to come through.

“This district is getting 720 million dollars for pandemic and pandemic recovery there is enough funding there to for things we have asked for like have lower class sizes more social support more social and emotional support,” said Bonilla. 

Since the start of the pandemic Bonilla and Bob Nelson, the Superintendent of Fresno Unified, have been working together to make sure students and teachers were safe during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Bonilla said Clovis Unified’s school board recently approved to have their full-time employees who qualify a one-time payment of $4,000.

However, Fresno Unified trustee Terry Slatic said this money could go towards the students to help catch them up after a year of distance learning. 

“For FTA and their membership to maintain that this money is better put in the pockets of the teachers versus use as a resource to make up the insane amount of learning loss that these kids have had,” said Slatic.

Slatic said he and other trustees spoke about this proposal during closes session. Fresno Unified trustee Keshia Thomas said they did not reach a decision.

“And right now, I really don’t know what that bargaining process looks like because I haven’t seen the final letters. So, we are still waiting for some things to come back in closed session so we can look at them and come up with what’s best for our district,” said Thomas. 

The next school board meeting is this upcoming Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.

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