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Offer keeps MUSD teachers best paid in San Joaquin County
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Manteca Unified teachers will continue to be better paid than their counterparts in Stockton Unified — and most teachers in San Joaquin County — under the latest compensation offer made by the district.

The offer includes a 3 percent on salary schedule increase for the 2014-15 school year and a 3 percent off salary schedule for 12 hours of training for 2015-16. The 3 percent given this year would continue in subsequent years while the 3 percent for next year would be a one-time offer. 

Manteca Unified last year increased teacher pay by 5.5 percent. in exchange for adding back six days of work to bring teachers up to 186 days. The six days were cut during the budget crisis meaning teachers neither worked those days nor were paid for those days.

The district also gave a 1 percent bonus this year to teachers.

Without the offer now on the table, salary step movements based on longevity and units will cost Manteca Unified taxpayers $2.1 million this year. It will push the combined pay and benefits of teachers past the $90 million mark. When other employee benefits and salaries are added the district is spending $141.6 million this year in employee costs. That’s 84 percent of the district’s overall budget.

Manteca Unified, unlike some other districts, opted to continue giving salary step increases during the budget crisis. In doing so, they avoided having to play costly catch up when the economy improved.

Manteca’s offer nearly mirrors the Stockton Unified proposal that was just accepted by that district’s teacher bargaining unit. The big difference is Manteca Unified granted the 5.5 percent already last year while Stockton Unified is doing that in 2015-16 after two back-to-back years of 3 percent increases.

That means Manteca and Stockton salaries will ultimately increase proportionately.

A salary survey conducted this year shows beginning Manteca Unified teachers making $46,534 compared to $39,802 for Stockton Unified teachers, $45,294 for Tracy Unified and $40,492 for Lodi Unified. Manteca aims for the 55 percentile among nine districts surveyed for salaries including three in the East Bay.

Some people mistakenly portray percentile as a percentage thinking that Manteca Unified teachers are making $55 for every $100 a district at the top of the survey makes. Instead it divides groups — in this case teacher salaries— according to the value of the variable which is salaries. In the case of the salary survey Manteca is at $46,534 or $10,793 less than Pleasanton Unified that is the highest paying district in the survey for beginning salaries.

The Manteca Unified maximum base salary is $86,152, the highest in San Joaquin County by $2,310. Pleasanton — the highest in the survey — is at $101,990 for the top salary step.

 And once all compensation is factored in, teachers in Manteca Unified can earn a maximum of $94,895 a year, the fifth highest on the survey and 2.7 percent more than the next highest San Joaquin County school district which is Tracy Unified.