Dear TRUE Members,
It has been over a year since we began the negotiations process for our Contract re-openers. I would have to say ,a lot has changed in a year: historically high number of grievances filed because of Contract violations are going to mediation (in the past TRUE Leadership and district leadership have met and worked out many grievances before legal consultation had to get involved); less collaboration with district leadership on concerns TRUE brings forward on behalf of all certificated staff (meetings cancelled on the district’s part due to TRUE Organizing actions for negotiation); more safety concerns reported to TRUE Leadership than I have experienced since being the Vice President and President of TRUE, and the filing of TRUE’s first unfair labor practice against the district. There is more I can share but I think that is enough to digest for now.
As TRUE President, I talk frequently with the classified (CSEA) union President and the Twin Rivers School Police Association President. We often comment to each other that everything is a battle with district leadership and often our members do not see what we are fighting for on a daily basis.
As a TRUE Organizing event, we are meeting next Tuesday, April 4th at 6:00 p.m. under the water tower to show the Board that we are united for a fair contract settlement. We are fighting for safe schools and classrooms, lower class size and fair compensation to attract and retain our educators. It is fight, it is a battle. The media has been called in the past and will be again, to come out and share what Twin Rivers’ employees are fighting for.
If you are at a site where you have effective, supportive administrators, count your blessing because that could change any year. We have sites that are not safe, staff is not treated respectfully and we need safety language, which has already been approved by our TRUSD School Board, to be put into our Contract so we can hold administrators and the district accountable for student safety and employee safety. The rest of TRUE needs you to come out for them. We need to keep our teachers who continue to leave TR.
Negotiations/Work to Rule/Organizing:
I hope that your Site Representative has reached out to you in regards to holding a meeting this week to create a Work to Rule plan for your site. We are moving to Work To Rule after Spring Break, if there is no tentative agreement reached by April 5th. The Negotiations Team meets again on April 4th with a possible extension to April 5th. If no agreement is reached, then we move onto the Fact Finding process.
Work to Rule: Each site will decide on their own, what Work to Rule will look like at their site and share that plan with TRUE. Here are some ways your fellow colleagues will be working to rule after Spring Break:
- Arriving at school at their 20 minute before school report time, no earlier, and walking onto campus together
- Leaving after student dismissal and not staying on campus beyond the school day unless they are being compensated for a service to students or colleagues
- Parking their cars on the street and not in the parking lot, with a sign in their car so parents and the community take notice of the empty parking lot
- Not working at all during their 30 minute lunch: this includes making copies, talking to the Principal about an issue or student, making phone calls, checking work email. Actually take a duty free lunch!
- Not continuing to tutor students for free or holding a club before or after school
- If teachers have already gone beyond their 20 hours of adjunct duties, they are ending their committee work. (Adjunct duties include: working on any type of committees or team outside of the school’s Leadership Team, Ex: science, math, art or reading, parent nights, awards committees, attending sports events, dances, etc.).
I know you are all very dedicated educators that worry how Work to Rule might affect students, but you need to understand that it is vital to make the district and parents realize and appreciate that educators work many long hours beyond their Contract for the benefit of their students. Half of our battle is lost if the District does not respect us and our profession.
If your Site Rep has not called a meeting to discuss Work to Rule, please ask them to do so.
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See you Tuesday!
We stand stronger together!
TRUE Office: (916) 648-9791