Commentary | Making the case for Measures G&H

These youngsters (Milana Miller, Josephine and Poppy Catalano), helping with the campaign, are three of MANY reasons to vote yes on G&H.

Dear Editor,

We are proud to be co-chairing the Yes on Measures G&H campaign. Since 1985, Piedmont has passed school support tax measures eight consecutive times. These school support taxes are one of the main reasons that Piedmont continues to have outstanding schools, ranking as among the best in California on student achievement.

There are several reasons why the Piedmont schools need to pass Measures G&H. Piedmont schools receive less state funding per student than neighboring districts because they have fewer students who are in special categories that get extra state funding. For example, Piedmont receives about $2,000 less per student than Oakland Unified School District and about $1,000 less per student than Berkeley Unified School District. In addition, Piedmont has only a few small businesses, and therefore can’t rely on revenues from businesses or donations from large companies. State funding for education is unreliable and has not grown fast enough to keep pace with rising costs, especially rising cost of living for teachers. Therefore, Measures G&H are critical for maintaining high quality schools in Piedmont. 

We are fortunate to live in a community that values education and that has passed school parcel taxes consistently for over 30 years. All of the money raised by our community stays in Piedmont to support our students. This local funding helps keep class sizes small, and maintains a range of programs in math, science, technology, and the arts, as well as advanced placement classes, counseling and libraries. This range of programs prepares students for college and careers, and keeps them engaged.

Overall, Piedmont teachers are paid less than teachers in many surrounding schools districts. The average Piedmont teacher has a lower salary than the average teacher in San Ramon, Emeryville, Albany, Union City, and Dublin. Piedmont has lost 22 teachers in the last two years, simply due to cost of living issues. The purpose of Measure H is to address this issue by providing compensation strategies to help recruit and retain high quality teachers.

Together, Measures G&H will provide nearly 30% of our district’s budget and will help maintain the excellence of our Piedmont schools. The strength of our schools helps to protect property values for everyone in Piedmont, not just the residents whose kids attend the schools. For more information about Measures G&H, please visit

Hilary Cooper, Doug Ireland, Christine Wente von Metzsch
Co-Chairs, Measures G&H

6 thoughts on “Commentary | Making the case for Measures G&H

  1. Lynn, the 22 teachers that we mentioned as leaving the Piedmont schools over the past two years all cited cost of living issues as their reason for leaving our district.

    Melanie, yes, Measure H will make our teachers’ salaries more competitive. All of the funds from Measures H will go to compensation strategies for teachers and classified staff (which includes the para-educators and other individuals who support students at the schools). For more specifics about the compensation strategies, please contact the Superintendent’s office.

  2. Thank you for the information, Hilary. But when you say that Piedmont is losing teachers because their salaries aren’t competitive with the other districts you mentioned, what I’d like to know is whether Measure H will make their salaries competitive. Also, will all the funds from Measure H go to teachers, or will some of the funds go to other employees or other expenses? Thanks very much for any clarifications you can provide.

  3. Just a question, please. Of the 22 teachers Piedmont has “lost”, how many retired, how many moved and how many got new jobs locally?

  4. I don’t see any language in the text of Measure H that says the money raised will go specifically to increase teacher compensation. Please comment

  5. The intention of Measure H is to provide compensation strategies in order to recruit and retain teachers. Compensation strategies may include salary, benefits, stipends, other allowances, etc. Teacher and staff compensation is a negotiation, and therefore we are not able to comment on the specifics. However, by passing Measures G&H, we will enable our school district to have a productive negotiation and to provide more competitive compensation packages for our teachers and staff.

  6. I’d like to know how much of an increase in teacher salaries will Measure H provide. Will it bring salaries to the level of the other districts mentioned in this report? Thanks very much.

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