The CTU finalized a settlement this week that will result in approximately 10,000 members receiving their step increases early this coming school year. The settlement stemmed from a grievance the Union filed at the beginning of the 2022-23 school year.
As readers will remember, the beginning of the last school year was pushed up ten days, establishing a new calendar which will continue in upcoming years. However, members who began their careers in CPS at the beginning of a prior school year now had Hire Dates about two weeks later than the starting date of the 2022-23 school year. As a result, the members with Hire Dates up to and including September 15 did not receive their step increases until as late as two weeks after they began work. Because of this, those members worked as many as 218 days at their lower step rate and fewer than the contractual 208 days at the higher rate. This reduced their annual salary for the year in violation of the contract.
CTU’s grievance demanded retro pay for all impacted members to make up the difference between the lower step and the higher step for impacted members. This week’s settlement improves on that demand.
Under the settlement, anyone with a fall Hire Date up to September 15 who was hired prior to this coming school year will benefit. This amounts to more than 10,000 CTU members. Impacted members will receive this year’s step increase at the beginning of the school year–up to two weeks before their step anniversary. Thus, the members will be paid at the higher rate for more than the normal 208-day school year, which will more than compensate them for last year’s pay loss.
One part of the result may be confusing. Going forward, members with start dates after the day they return will only receive their step increase on the step anniversary. That means, like the 2022-23 school year, their first two weeks of work will still be at the lower step. At first blush, it might seem like that would repeat the problem addressed by the grievance, but this is not the case because it doesn’t involve transitioning to a different calendar. Unlike SY2022-23, members will work 208 days at each step rate, meaning they will earn the full salary established by the contract.