Chariho School Parents’ Forum

December 11, 2008

Contract input

Filed under: contract negotiations — Editor @ 12:17 pm

There is a meeting scheduled for 10:00 on Saturday for the school committee to hear input from the public on what they would like to see in the upcoming contract negotiations. 

We are opening our home for the Christmas Stroll so I won’t be there – but I have sent my request to the committee several times – and recently to the new chair.

1) hold the contract negotiation meetings in open sessions – there is no law against it, it was always done years ago (until the unions took control) and as we see in East PRovidence, it is very much appreciated by the taxpayers.
2) stop the seniority system – you can see at www.transparencytrain.orgthat Chariho gives its teachers AVERAGE raises for each of the first 10 years of 10.8%.  AVERAGE!  Implement a merit based system like those working in the private sector.

In other words, stop the madness

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19 Comments »

  1. 3) All teachers pay at least 15% co-pay for health insurance regardless of when they were hired.

    Comment by CharihoParent — December 11, 2008 @ 1:20 pm | Reply

  2. Good one – you might also want to share with Ms. Eaves she said she would read my request to the group – [hollyeaves@cox.net]

    Comment by Bill Felkner — December 11, 2008 @ 1:45 pm | Reply

  3. 3) All teachers pay at least 15% co-pay for health insurance regardless of when they were hired.

    Comment by CharihoParent — December 11, 2008 @ 1:20 pm

    Can you reference the source please…..I cannot find this exact wording in the contract.

    http://www.chariho.k12.ri.us/admin/contracts/certified.pdf

    Comment by RS — December 11, 2008 @ 4:26 pm | Reply

  4. While I am excited about the additions of Mr. Vecchio and Ms. Carney, does anyone see this School Committee doing anything difference than the last?

    Send along your suggestions by all means, but don’t expect anything to come of it. The teachers will continue to receive salaries and benefits far above what is happening in the real world. Maybe someday we’ll see change. Based on the evidence, someday is not here yet.

    Comment by Curious Resident — December 11, 2008 @ 5:18 pm | Reply

  5. CR, you’re dead on with that one!

    Something else I’ve thought about, too. Why do the teachers not teach on the two days of parent teacher conferences? The school administration then requests parents to ask for times during the day when most of us are working. I do realize that some parents work 2nd shift which would inconvenience them to have conferences only in the late afternoon and evening but I’m sure that if the powers that be really wanted to, they could do something, make some special arrangements for them.

    Comment by CharihoParent — December 11, 2008 @ 6:27 pm | Reply

  6. I’d like to start moving teacher compensation to something like the rest of us professionals have:

    1. No tenture
    2. Merit raises
    3. No paid sick time when retire
    4. No pension, need 401K
    5. Med insurance co-pays

    et al

    Comment by genedaniell — December 12, 2008 @ 5:19 pm | Reply

  7. Thanks for posting this; I’m back early from a business trip and I will do my best to attend.

    I would approach this as offering the teachers responsibility and authoirty in exchange for some of the ridiculously inflationary attributes of the current system (11 automatic steps, rigid class size limits, overly generous benefits package). Any contract package considered should absolytely have its financial impact IN TOTAL calculated for public understanding. It’s an old trick to have no raise the first year of a contract and a extra-large raise in the last year of that contract…

    Maybe they don’t want responsibilty and autjhority, just money. I somehow doubt it; I expect that most teachers want to do their best and should have more automoy and authority. This would require the school committee and central administration ceding that authority.

    Comment by david — December 12, 2008 @ 11:27 pm | Reply

  8. RS,
    Sorry, I didn’t see your post until just now and I made a mistake… it’s 20%, not 15%… Article 23, page 30, it states the following:

    The Chariho Regional School Committee shall pay eighty percent (80%) of the annual cost of the following coverages for all certified personnel hired after July 1, 1996

    About halfway down the page it states:

    The Chariho Regional School Committee shall provide, on a fully-paid basis, the following coverages for all certified personnel prior to July 1, 1996.

    Comment by CharihoParent — December 13, 2008 @ 10:20 am | Reply

  9. Well, a few people came, 5 spoke (1 Ch, 3 Ri, 1 Ho). One of the local newspapers was there. There was a big push for open negotiations.

    Comment by Gene Daniell — December 13, 2008 @ 1:54 pm | Reply

  10. Transparent negotiations makes everyone more responsible. Teachers are more likely to be ashamed of publically admitting they want the sun and the moon. School Committees will be ashamed to publically admit they gave teachers the sun and the moon.

    Comment by Curious Resident — December 13, 2008 @ 10:15 pm | Reply

  11. In this day and age so many feel that they are entitled to something (in this case taxpayer’s money) they don’t feel ashamed when they want the sun and the moon.

    Comment by CharihoParent — December 14, 2008 @ 8:40 am | Reply

  12. Well I did make the meeting, and rambled for a few minutes. With just one night notice, I didn’t have a chance to develop a decent speech. I think I’ll take my notes and create an email to send as a follow up to the committee.

    Astonishing that this is the first time they have requested any public input at all into the teacher contract process!

    I’m personally not sold on public negotiations, but I do think that public knowledge of goals, progress, and sticking points in negotiations is essential.

    Comment by david — December 14, 2008 @ 10:36 am | Reply

  13. Time will tell if public input is designed to CYA or the School Committee really mean to get tough this time and bring teachers’ compensation in line with the rest of us. Since most of these same committee members negotiated the support contract, I see no reason to think they’ll be any more responsible with this negotiation, but there’s always hope.

    Not sure why anyone in the public would favor secret negotiations, but I’m sure there’s some argument for it. At the very least, we should be given specific details of proposals as they are made. Then we’ll know what we’re offering and what they are demanding as the process unfolds.

    Comment by Curious Resident — December 14, 2008 @ 10:43 am | Reply

  14. Questions were asked about the process going forward. Another session with the public to discuss particular possible proposal elements was suggested (I think by Barbara C.), and I asked questions about about public disclosure during the negotiation process.

    Mr. Ricci said that ‘ground rules’ had to be worked out between the district and the union to govern such disclosures. We’ll see how it goes! I believe the attendees (who, to be clear, were few) would be unhappy if there were no public disclosure during negotiations.

    Comment by david — December 14, 2008 @ 11:24 am | Reply

  15. If Mr. Ricci said the ground rules “had” to be worked out, he was incorrect. East PRovidence suggested open meetings, the union said, ‘no’ but EP said you don’t ahve to agree, but this is what we are doing.

    Interesting that Ricci would be allowed to comment on that issue but we were told that it was a “listening” session only. I will send Eaves this info

    Comment by Bill Felkner — December 14, 2008 @ 11:40 am | Reply

  16. Mr. Felkner do you know of any other school districts, wherever, where contract negotiation are done in public? It would be interesting to see how open negotiation districts turn out versus secret negotiations (which we know firsthand end up with the community taking it on the chin).

    Comment by Curious Resident — December 14, 2008 @ 1:13 pm | Reply

  17. In East PRovidence, the SC said they were going to do it, but he union said “no.” The SC said, do what you want, we are not hiding it. – so the “groundrules” were never agreed upon and the meetings go on. Mr. Ricci was incorrect when he said the groundrules “had” to be agreed upon.

    Comment by Bill Felkner — December 14, 2008 @ 5:41 pm | Reply

  18. In fairness to Mr. Ricci, he was asked the question at the end, in a “looser” exchange with several of us. The question was about providing updates to the public on the negotiation, His answer was that the ground rules had not been established yet, and something to the effect that open negotiation would be good.

    Clearly, I won’t attempt to infer veracity, but that’s what he said.

    Comment by Gene Daniell — December 14, 2008 @ 7:56 pm | Reply

  19. If Mr. Ricci truly believes open negotiations would be good, then open negotiations are within reach. The School Committee majority is at his beck and call, so if Mr. Ricci isn’t just blowing smoke, then Chariho’s School Committee can easily do the same thing as East Providence. The proof is in the pudding as they say. We’ll know before long whether Mr. Ricci had a moment of honesty or if he was telling you what he knew you wanted to hear.

    Comment by Curious Resident — December 14, 2008 @ 8:18 pm | Reply


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