The Oakley school board unanimously denied Oakley teachers their 2007-2008 negotiated salary settlement in light of the state budget crisis. Nearly 100 members of the Oakley Union Teachers Association attended the Wednesday night board meeting and spoke about their need for a cost of living adjustment.

With rising health care costs and living expenses, some of the teachers said they and their colleagues have taken second jobs and that their families are suffering financially. Some teachers urged the school board to approve the negotiated contract using money from the Oakley school district's reserve.

District officials said that the reserve is there so that the district can weather this fiscal emergency without layoffs and program cuts. Oakley Superintendent Rick Rogers said that the district should wait on this decision until the state budget situation is more clear to everyone and then the school board can re-examine the agreement.

-- Paula King



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