Chariho School Parents’ Forum

September 26, 2007

“R.I. students lagging on national tests”

Filed under: State-wide,Student Performance — Editor @ 3:18 pm

That was the title of today’s ProJo article.  Analysis over at the OSPRI blog.

September 25, 2007

RISC highlights their concerns on the contract

Filed under: contract negotiations — Editor @ 11:49 pm

The chariman of the Rhode Island Statewide Coalition, Harry Staley, has an excellent LTE in the Westerly Sun outlining some of their views on the current contract. 

It is an informative letter but I have to correct one point.  The support personnel do not get a 25% buy back.  They get two 25% buy backs (on in Dec, one in June) for a total of 50% – approx $7000 for a family plan.

I know because I have made the same mistake.

Contract analysis continues

Filed under: contract negotiations — Editor @ 11:44 pm

The East Greenwich NEA team continue to say that pay cuts are being pushed by the school board.  Don Hawthorn at Anchorrising has created an Excel spreadsheet to calculate teacher compensation (includes contract raise, steps, longevity, copays, etc..) and shows that this “pay cut” claim is completely false.   Mr. Hawthorn has offered to publish any data the NEA can provide to disprove his calculation.  They are on NEA “Pay cut” Analysis Hostage Day 4.

This is not unlike the false comments made in the press after the NEA meeting last week.  So, we have a similar analysis done for the Chariho contract here.

Board meeting on ch. 18 Wednesday @ 8PM, Friday @ noon

Filed under: contract negotiations,meeting notice,MGT — Editor @ 11:32 pm

Just a reminder to watch the board meeting on Wed or Friday.   During the public forum – Richmond updated on the water situation and its moving forward.

Pete Gingras brought up the complaint that he filed at the Labor Relations Board – he said I should “cease and desist” in my activities.  Since I’m not doing anything wrong, I’ll continue to do what I do.

The business section was non-eventful until MGTFirst were brief discussions of Young Adolescent month (Oct), mentoring program and the Salt report.  Salt reported that we should improve opportunities for high achieving students.  Also a good outline of the portfolios if you have been wondering.  Its a mandate from RIDE (at least this is our interpretation of that mandate – there are different approaches in diff districts).

The MGT study ran into another roadblock.  There seems to be some confusion on the bids.  It said we were getting a discount for doing business with them in the past.  But the bid offered was the same as it was before MGT knew about the other study.   The Johnstown bid was for $125k, so the $105 could be seen as a discounted rate, but they didn’t frame it well if that’s the case.  Either way, its back out for clarification.

September 24, 2007

NEA files complaint with Labor Relations Board over this blog

Filed under: contract negotiations,Unions — Editor @ 3:04 pm

NEA negotiator Pete Gingas filed a complaint with the Labor Relations Board last week.   His claim is that I have “purposely attempted to communicate directly with” union members and that I am attempting to “discourage union membership” and these actions are “tantamount to a refusal to bargain with the certified representative of the union.”

According to the complaint, the violations started on September 14th

The following complaint was faxed to the Westerly Sun on Thursday and filed with the Labor Board on Friday (at least that was the date Pete dated his signature). 

 Here is the relevant sections of the law:

(5) Encourage membership in any company union or discourage membership in any labor organization, by discrimination in regard to hire or tenure or in any term or condition of employment; provided that nothing in this chapter precludes an employer from making an agreement with a labor organization requiring membership in that labor organization as a condition of employment, if that labor organization is the representative of employees as provided in §§ 28-7-14 – 28-7-19.    

(6) Refuse to bargain collectively with the representatives of employees, subject to the provisions of §§ 28-7-14 – 28-7-19, except that the refusal to bargain collectively with any representative is not, unless a certification with respect to the representative is in effect under §§ 28-7-14 – 28-7-19, an unfair labor practice in any case where any other representative, other than a company union, has made a claim that it represents a majority of the employees in a conflicting bargaining unit.   

(10) Do any acts, other than those already enumerated in this section, which interfere with, restrain or coerce employees in the exercise of the rights guaranteed by § 28-7-12.

September 22, 2007


We are getting a lot of new visitors and I don’t want the info to get lost in the pile – here is a recap of relevant posts.

Here is the Sept 11 meeting where I was told I may not ask about the arrests without board approval.

Here is a Hopkinton Town Council member’s response to the claim made by Chariho that the HTC “endorsed” Campus 2010.

Here is some info put out by the NEA about the current state of affairs in the contract.

Here is an analysis of the current contract (correcting the NEA) – with links to the actual contracts.

Employee data

Filed under: Budget — Editor @ 11:55 am

According to the RI Department of Education, as reported to the U.S. Dept of Ed, Chariho has 562.2 full time employees (FTE’s) – two half (.5) time employees would make one full time employee. 

The Providence Journal requested a list of all Chariho employees – the spreadsheet provided by Chariho has 775 employees listed.  137 are substitutes – 41 are part time – 177 have no designation of full or part time (no hours listed – 137 are substitutes so that leaves 40) but they all get some kind of compensation – either salary, stipend or “fringe.” 

Plus – I know of at least one person that is not on the list – the person who signs the check, Ronald Difabio.  Mr. Difabio did Brian Stanley’s job when Mr. Pini was Superintendent.   He is now our treasurer, and I believe is compensated with benfits only.  Mr. Difabio is also the Director of Business Operations at the Narragansett School and was a former NEA president.

 For those of you keeping score – John Pini is now the Executive Director of the RI Association of Superintendents.  He got the job when the Superintendent from North Kingstown (who was also the former exec director of the Assoc of Supers) was identified as “misspending” $245,000 of special education funds on lobster dinners and fancy outings.

September 21, 2007

“Sealed” versus “Closed”

Filed under: executive sessions,Sept 11 meeting — Editor @ 11:42 pm

The Chariho Times ran a very nice article and editorial.  Unfortunately, they reported that Mr. Ricci accused me of violating the Open Meeting Act.  He has done this when I disclosed the agenda for the March 27 executive session and he has done this by saying the minutes are “sealed.”   And it was also said here.

I have spoken with the AG’s Office and the OMA does not address the issue of internal agenda items.  There is no violation

And, I have already said that the meeting involved a few board members trying to stop me from writing in the paper.  I don’t care if the minutes were sealed or not – you can’t protect that information because it is not protected under OMA. 

That being said, the minutes are not “sealed.”  Below are the minutes that clearly show we “closed” the minutes.  That means they have been public information for nearly 5 months.

Don’t believe everything people tell you – no matter how many times they say it.  Ask yourself this – why would the the board and the Superintendent make false statements like this?  I don’t blame the press – they trust the Superintendent to tell them the truth.

The NEA strongly dislikes transparency

Filed under: contract negotiations,Unions — Editor @ 10:36 pm

Negotiator files complaint vs.Chariho school board member By Chris Keegan Westerly Sun – September 21, 2007.  

Dear Toothfairy:

Filed under: Unions — Editor @ 10:15 pm

Forgive my pun, I haven’t said that in 40 years.

“Toothfairy” has been sharing some important information in the comments here.  It occured to me that perhaps employees don’t know what school board members face when it comes to dealing with ineffective employees.  Here is a cute diagram of the process in NY.  I’d guess RI is similar.  This has been discussed before.

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