KEA members get it. Parents get it. Why doesn’t the district get it?

KEA and the district are taking a break from bargaining this week. Even though we’re not at the negotiating table, I wanted to let you know that our issues are reaching our parents. We’ve shared some of our key concerns in a letter to PTA leaders in our district, and KEA’s Connie Compton and Cindy Prescott presented our views in an editorial opinion article in the Kent Reporter last month. Our members will continue talking with parents this summer at community festivals and other venues about the district’s misguided budget priorities.

Our efforts do seem to be creating a greater understanding in the community. At the school board meeting last week, two parents from the Ridgewood area spoke in support of teachers. They asked that the board do what is necessary to keep quality teachers in Kent and to look at the budget to make sure the priorities are focused on students and teachers. They also wanted to know why Kent’s teachers were the lowest paid in the Puget Sound area. They stated that the board should “… give teachers what they are asking for. It is reasonable and they deserve even more.” They also stated that the board needs to do “whatever is necessary to support the teachers and no action by the board is not acceptable.”

The issues we’re fighting for at the bargaining table are affordable and necessary — time for individual students, workload that puts student needs ahead of administrators’ demands, and compensation that allows us to hire and keep great teachers. The issues we’re fighting for will help our members. And most importantly, they will improve the education available for our students.

Relax and recharge over the holiday weekend. Our work this summer is not yet done.

Lisa

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Upcoming dates:

  • Next bargaining session: July 9
  • KEA general membership meeting for contract ratification or strike vote: 5 p.m. Aug. 26, Kentlake High School
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2 Responses to “KEA members get it. Parents get it. Why doesn’t the district get it?”

  1. emma Says:

    We’ve GOT to let the parents and paras know what is going on. A big complaint from parents during the Bellevue strike last year was that the parents felt uninformed, and some wouldn’t support the teachers because of this lack of information. I know that we are getting the information out in bits and pieces, but if we are truly talking strike, then we have GOT to talk to all the parents we can and get their support. I’ve been talking to my own children’s friend’s parents and they were grateful for the information (they had no idea!) and promised to tell their 2 friends, and hopefully their 2 friends will tell 2 more friends, etc, etc. If we don’t have their support now or we wait until mid-August, then there will be LOTS of grumbling among the parents, mainly because ‘we’ve’ messed up their schedule. Gain their support and understanding now, we’ve gained our momentum against KSD and will hopefully get the respect we deserve.

  2. Karen Says:

    There will be a KEA booth set up at Cornicopia Days and Covington Days. Please volunteer a couple of hours to help inform parents and build support. Check your emails and find out who to contact if you can do this. We still need to fill time slots for Cornicopia Days this weekend (July 10,11,and 12). Covington Days are scheduled for next weekend. Your building reps have contact information. This is a small opportunity for members to do something.

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