Teacher work actions and reasoning.
Recently, the Board of Education and Dr. Roberts sent out an email communication talking about a potential strike. The teachers do not want to see this happen! However, we did have to file legal documents giving us the ability to voice our displeasure with the school board should negotiations fail to accomplish a fair contract.
We realize that as we move through the negotiating process with the Board of Education there are going to be many questions. We would like to highlight some of the steps the teachers will take and help you to understand what it they means to your students as we continue to deliver a top-notch education to them.
After working more than half of the school year without a contract and in “good faith” with the school board, the teachers association has decided to follow the language set forth under the contract. What this means for our students and community......
1. Contractual building hours are from 7:20am - 3:05 pm; meaning those are the hours that the school board pays teachers to be in the schools. Teachers are available to help, guide, and tutor students, and to respond to emails or phone calls from parents or students after grading and preparation for their classes are complete. All stipend athletic and extracurricular activities will go on as scheduled. (This includes all athletics)
2. Internal subbing positions will not be taken beyond the contractual agreement. Currently when a teacher is out of the building for whatever reason, a substitute teacher is called in to take that teacher’s responsibilities for the day. However, there are some instances when outside personnel cannot cover these absences, and a district teacher is asked to cover a period during their prep time. Based on the contract, all district teachers can be assigned 3 periods of internal subbing. After this limit is met, the BOE and administration will need consider how these absences will be covered professionally.
3. During a teacher’s free time after contractual building hours, many teachers volunteer their time to be a part of different committees in order to improve the school, students, and themselves. Since teachers are not required to attend these meetings, they will be put on hold until contract agreement is reached. This will offer teachers more time to focus on their classrooms and the students in them.
4. The district received a large payment from the state over the summer that they were not expecting. The BOE decided to use this money as a way to improve the technology throughout the district’s classrooms and computer labs. As the current 10- year old computers in each classroom begin to fail, they will be replaced with laptops and tablets. However, before district personnel are allowed to receive these technology devices they must volunteer their time to attend 8 three hours sessions to learn the educational advantages that these devices offer. So far approximately 37 staff members have completed this training. Until a contract is agreed upon, no staff members will willingly attend these classes outside of building hours; therefore, the purchased devices will remain in storage.
5. Extra duty assignments such as ticket takers, score-keepers, crowd control, etc. will not be taken beyond the contractual agreement. Currently all district personnel can be assigned to 1 duty. After this limit is met, the BOE and administration will need consider how these duties will be covered professionally.
As you can imagine, teachers were drawn to this profession to help students. The plan, as outlined in this document, puts more pressure on teachers to make the most of their time while in the school building. Its intention is not to impact the educational experience of the students, but rather to put a little pressure on the decision makers, the Board of Education and administration, to help them realize the many tasks that teachers already do to help the district.