SF teachers end 4-day protest after union, district agrees on quick fix to major pay issues

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Linh Gee, a 12th-grade English teacher at Phillip and Sala Burton Academic High School, said she was relieved to hear about the deal but was still waiting for a nearly $4,500 back payment and had doubts if she would will receive this soon.

“I’m not holding my breath,” she said.

Kyle Prince, who teaches ethnic studies at Burton High, said he was also owed about $4,500 for extra hours working as a teacher at the district’s online school. He received $1,200 of that this week, he said, and continues to constantly check his bank account for the balance.

“And that’s the most frustrating thing,” he said. “It seems to me that now, in addition to dealing with the pandemic and everything else – a changing world landscape – I now need to check my check. You must be vigilant. It’s so much work.”

Matthews said once the district completes its review of the immediate crisis, it will begin investigating the more endemic issues that arose prior to the introduction of the new system, including ongoing reports of improperly collected taxes and irregular payments for summer school hours.

Sarah Gadye, an English teacher at Herbert Hoover Middle School, said that despite the agreement, she and many of her colleagues remain concerned.

“There is nothing in the agreement about a payroll audit to address the serious error that caused many employees to under-withhold tax throughout 2021,” Gadye said.

Some teachers, she said, create shared spreadsheets to document ongoing problems and even hire professional accountants to identify irregularities.

“Have our W4s been modified? This is older [the new system], and the magnitude should ring alarm bells,” Gadye said. “I don’t see any indication that SFUSD has the capacity or capability to deal with the chaos.”

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