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Wednesday, April 10, 2013 - 10:32pm
The Ysleta Independent School District is at odds with some of its veteran teachers who say the District owes them almost $7 million in back pay.
"Teachers who they're talking about are teachers who have been in the school district for over 26 years. I mean these are teachers who are committed to our kids," said Liza Montelongo, a former YISD school board member running again for a seat in May.
According to the Ysleta Teacher's Association, YISD owes its teachers with 26 years of experience or more thousands of dollars in longevity pay for the 2006-2007 school year. The teacher's association argues teachers were never paid this money and those who have retired in the years since, missed out on valuable benefits.
"Me as a former teacher, I see that that's something those teachers deserve and need," said Rosalinda Ramirez with the Ysleta Teacher's Association.
Last Thursday, a district court judge in Austin upheld a decision made by former Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott in 2011, who said YISD should indeed pay teachers the millions owed.
"At the end of the day, morale is really down in our district. I really feel that it's time for the administration to reach out to the Teacher's Association and sit down and start working together because at the end of the day it affect everyone in our community and our students," said Montelongo.
At a school board meeting tonight, attorneys for Ysleta ISD denied that the District owes the teachers millions in back pay, arguing instead that YISD owes teachers no more than a one time payment of $200.
"The Ysleta Teacher's Association is not happy with that. We will not settle for that and we will move forward," said Ramirez.
YISD Trustees are not commenting on their disagreement with teachers about back pay. At tonight's meeting, they decided in executive session to postpone a decision until May on how to compensate the teachers.