Wednesday, January 18, 2006


The news today is the Union and District have reached a "tentative agreement" regarding our contract. While details are not forthcoming, I've heard it involves a 2% raise, an 80-20 split of health care coverage, which would be in effect for three years.

This is a good thing.

The alternatives coming down the road were not so good, initially involving a "work-to-rule" strike, perhaps the worst idea in the history of labor negotiations. Such is avoided, and the masses are rejoicing. Seriously, whenever teacher unions turn it into overdrive, I start gritting my teeth, because they take a completely valid, reasonable, and important position, then distort the facts to make it seem better, dial up the rhetoric to ridiculous extremes, and take actions that hurt kids -- work-to-rule strikes, not writing letters of rec, etc. There is no organization in America that needs an image consultant and a P.R. team to help them message more than the NEA/CTA/my local chapter.

This, coupled with the Board's unanimous rejection of the most recent charter proposals, seem to signal an acknowledgement of the progress that community schools have brought to our District, as well as a commitment to work for reform for all students. I hope.

Next up: Follow the successes of charter schools/ small schools/ my school and bring an extended day schedule to every middle school student in the District.


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