New Bedford Educators Association President Lou St. John issued a statement today letting the public know that proposed schedule changes at two elementary schools reported in last week’s Standard-Times have yet to be bargained. The schools are Hayden-McFadden and Parker, both Level 4 schools.
The Standard-Times reported on July 25 that “two of the city’s struggling elementary schools are extending the school day for students in a preview of changes that could appear across the district.” The article added, “The changes were announced to families in June…”
In a written statement released today, St. John said, “I don’t know if the reporter got the facts wrong or if the administration intended to mislead by announcing changes that have not been bargained, but the truth is that our first date to begin bargaining over proposed schedule changes is August 1. The specific changes reported in the paper are by no means a done deal.”
St. John explained that teachers are already working longer hours in the two schools. What has yet to be bargained is how much of the additional time will be spent on direct instruction versus teacher preparation. “You can’t have good instruction without good preparation,” said St. John. “You need both. What we will determine through bargaining is how the additional time will be used.”
“The place to bargain on teachers’ working conditions is at the bargaining table, not in the press,” he added. “If parents at those schools think the schedule has already been changed, Superintendent Pia Durkin should let them know immediately that that is not true.
“It can poison the atmosphere for bargaining if teachers are being blind-sided by public announcements of changes that they have never had a chance to study, consider and negotiate over,” St. John continued. “We all want what’s best for New Bedford’s students. There’s a better chance of a good outcome if the legitimate role of teachers in this process is respected.”
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Schedule changes reported by the Standard Times are by no means a done deal
Posted by NBEA