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speshuledteacher19 karma

Negotiations started last June. But when the district takes months to respond and the union takes days, you end up with things coming to a head at inconvenient times.

speshuledteacher18 karma

Teachers don’t get paid in summer, similar to being laid off but no unemployment. some have the option to have their pay reduced each month so they can get a portion of their other checks During summer, I guess that’s a perk in some districts if you have a hard time budgeting. We are contracted for a specific number of days and that’s it. You can work a 2nd job (or for most where we live, a 3rd job in summer) to make ends meet.

speshuledteacher15 karma

In our county it’s not high. We are one of the most expensive counties in the state for cost of living, but the district is 20% below the state average in salaries. I could name 13 other districts in our county that pay better, and the raise being asked for wouldn’t even put the district in the top 3. And in the county next door people could make 30-50k more a year.

And yes, the community backs the teachers. 87%+ have kept kids home to not cross the picket lines, the community support is the only reason some of the teachers stay. It’s pretty incredible actually, I’ve never seen this level of community support.

speshuledteacher9 karma

That’s not exactly how schools work. Teachers have a choice of where to teach. Lower paying districts may hire applicants because no one else applied. They get whoever shows up. Higher paying districts are competitive. More applicants means you get to pick the best.

speshuledteacher9 karma

When the district’s low pay is harming kids and you’ve gone through the appropriate channels, you’re left with little choice. When salaries are that low, teachers don’t apply. When teachers don’t apply, you have to hire people on emergency credentials who are unqualified, and in some cases, have never worked with kids before or received any teacher training. It has happened in this district. When schools have multiple new teachers every year who are not fully credentialed because they are interns, and multiple teachers who quit part way through the year because they had no clue what they were getting into as interns, it harms kids. The strike process is not a perfect system, but it’s the option teachers have to be able to provide the best education we can.

And of course, if the district had followed the fact finder’s recommendations after agreeing to the fact finding process, none of this would be necessary.