Urgent: Attend KEA member meeting 6 pm today, Green River Community College Gym

Negotiators for KEA and the district were at the bargaining table with a second state mediator throughout the weekend, and back again this morning.

Much of the contract discussion since our most recent KEA member meeting on Thursday has focused on increasing time with students by putting limits on administrative and staff meetings. While we are closer on this issue, we do not yet have a tentative agreement on that topic. The district waited until noon today to respond to a class size & caseload proposal that KEA delivered nearly three days ago, at 2:30 p.m. Friday afternoon. At this hour, KEA’s team is examining the response for its strengths and weaknesses. There has been no further discussion about compensation issues, although that has not been the major focus of our negotiations.

In summary, we have seen only incremental progress at the bargaining table. At this moment it does not appear we will reach an overall tentative agreement in time for a contract vote at today’s meeting unless the district’s response time to our proposals improves dramatically in the next few hours.

KEA members will meet at 6 p.m. this evening, Monday Sept. 7, at the Green River Community College gym to decide our next steps. Please attend. Arrive early and carpool because parking is limited.

The address is: 12401 SE 320th St., Auburn. Find online maps at:
http://www.greenriver.edu/about/campus/directions/

Advertisements

26 Responses to “Urgent: Attend KEA member meeting 6 pm today, Green River Community College Gym”

  1. Concerned for the kids Says:

    I would like to see a copy of the proposal KEA gave to the district on class size and they have not responded too yet. It will help in my decision making to have details of what we are now offering. I saw the district’s September 6th offer and want to be able to compare. To date, the only offer I have seen from the union is the per pupil dollar amount over the cap. I also thought I saw a tentative letter of agreement between the union and district on meetings, what has happened to this?

    • In Our School Says:

      Beware that the District’s posting may be a small portion of the overall proposal..in other words, slanted.

  2. Parent & Community Member Says:

    Teachers, please compromise and teach your classes on Wednesday! Please don’t be law breakers. Breaking the law because you disagree with the judge is a bad example to our children. It’s very bad to send that message to impressionable young children. These are the eight virtues taught at my local elementary school: The Eight Core Virtues

    Respect
    Self-Discipline
    Kindness
    Environmental Stewardship
    Giving
    Perseverance
    Honesty
    Responsibility

    You can’t control other people or the district into living up to these virtues, but you can live up to them yourself, and have a clear conscience that you did what what right. It’s not right to break the law. You can’t be honest, responsible, self disciplined, or respectful if you break the law. But you can be all these things if you go back to class even despite your disputes with the Kent School District.

    • Carefully Weighing the Issues Says:

      There is no black and white when it comes to labor negotiations. You are asking of teachers, what the District needs for leverage so they can continue this relentless bullying of their teachers and staff. Cautiously think of what the overall picture is. Our kids will not lose a day of school, for it has to be made up!!

      I trust our teachers to make the best possible choice, because it is THEIR JOBS that we are talking about. Not yours, not mine. If you simply want our kids back in school without regard for what is truly justice for our teachers, then maybe you are thinking teachers are just babysitters? Teachers rarely ask for things like this in Kent. It’s time we listen and suppor them. WE OWE THEM THAT MUCH.

    • Momx4 Says:

      We should never forget that everything Adolf Hitler did in Germany was “legal” and everything the Hungarian freedom fighters did in Hungary was “illegal.”

      ~Martin Luther King, Jr., “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” Why We Can’t Wait, 1963

      • a Kent teacher Says:

        I’ve asked before: is smaller class size for some and the number of meetings on the same scale as Hitler and civil rights?

      • kenteducationassociation Says:

        PLEASE!

        The point of using those examples is that everyone knows them as examples where civil disobedience was used or not used to defeat injustice. They are the examples we use when we teach our kids about standing up for what is right, even if there are risks in doing so. I would use these same examples to illustrate the point if a student asked what to do about a bully or another situation they felt was unjust. Some teachers believe that we are depriving our students, especially students of color or low income students, with their right to an equitable education if we continue with the status quo. To them, it is just as important as the right to use a drinking fountain or sit at a lunch counter was to some people 60 years ago. Never underestimate the power of a teacher’s passion and convictions.

      • Another Kent Parent Says:

        So use an example that does not compare what you are doing, to what people did when standing up against Hitler, because that was a poor example. Hitler killed millions….there is no comparasion between that and this….Apples, Banana’s. Martin Luther King…(I’ve gotten off the fence) his example I’ll agree with. But Rosa Parks would of been a better example.

        Sorry, but my kids have gone to school in Nova Scotia, Canada, Sandy, Utah, Memphis TN, and now here. I was raised in Arizona and let me tell you something…you all have much better schools. Better paid teachers, more parental support than I’ve seen anywhere! Sometimes you truly don’t know that you’ve got it good until you take a good hard look at someone else. Poverty, minority students….why don’t you try and go teach in the Memphis School district. Those teachers are doing miraculous things…with large classes, and alot less pay! Not to mention…I had to pay out of pocket for all supplies, including text books. They used to ask us to donate extra to pay for those kids whose parents could not afford to pay for text books and art supplies. We the parents supplied it. Truly…this is why I am so skeptical about the reasons for this strike. I’ve seen districts where teachers truly need to go on strike…but it would make no difference because Education is underfunded….quit going after the district…go after the state because until the State Governments commit to paying more, nothing will truly change.

      • Anonymous Says:

        Disobeying the law and giving examples of being on the playground and being bullied are not the same. They do not have the same consquences. I believe it is the parents responsibility to teach our children to disobey a law or not, not the teachers. If my child decided to stand up for what is right and they get in trouble with the law for doing so, are those teachers going to be there for my child and bail them out of trouble? NO, it will be the responsibility of the parent, so why don’t you quit teaching our children to disobey the law even if it is right.

        Another thing, it is not always about the minority. I am sick and tired of hearing that it is about the minority several of your teacher have told me that the school cannot provide help to my child because we are not ELL or low income. My child (middle class) has been denied help because the teacher do not have time for them, but be real.

        If the teacher say the district can create smaller classes with the public funds they currently have then show everyone where they are to get the funds to do it. This is an issue that may need to wait until the economy gets stronger. The union should know that the funds are just not there with all the teacher lay offs last year.

        Teachers today just don’t have the passion they had back when I was going to school, those teacher actually wanted to teach and it was not about the money.

      • teachersarenottheenemy Says:

        Momx4…That is powerful. Thanks. Puts it in perspective that civil disobedience is sometimes what is needed to right a wrong.

      • Parent & Community Member Says:

        Are you comparing large-ish class sizes and ridiculous-ish meetings to what HITLER DID!!!!??? That is beyond asinine! He killed millions of Jews. Teachers are getting less than ideal pay, and teaching more than ideal # of students, and attending a less than ideal # of meetings. IT’S NO COMPARISON! SORRY! I hope you are not a public school teacher.

      • Another Kent Parent Says:

        Using Hitler was a poor choice for comparision. MLK…still on the fence about that one — after all….I lived in Memphis for two years…and those teachers get paid less, have larger class sizes, and larger schools, I have no idea about meetings. But I hope you realize my kids came from an elementary school with 2100 kids, no joke, there were 8 to 9 teachers per grade level and over 20 portables. So for me this strike just seems kind of trivial, I am sure it is not, and I value my teachers, and am trying to be supportive, but to use Hitler as an argument…what were you thinking. Civil disobedience is sometimes needed to change something for the better, I am just not sure if this particular issue requires it.

      • teachersarenottheenemy Says:

        It’s the idea/concept of civil disobedience to right a wrong…not that the strike has the same capacity as Hitler…come on…

  3. Wondering Says:

    After reading the proposals from KSD and KEA–I don’t see much difference in numbers. If that is true, why are we continuing to debate it–to get 100% of what KEA wants or to prove a point? If this is a one year contract, why can’t we come to a reasonable agreement on both sides. Keeping kids out of school much longer is not helping the cause.

    • kenteducationassociation Says:

      The District’s last published proposal on class size included a poison pill clause that automatically invalidates itself for the next two years. I’m not sure what has developed since that proposal, but that is an issue to consider.

      • Concerned Parent Says:

        I keep hearing about this ‘poisin pill’ but cannot find it anywhere in the proposals posted. Is there a link someone could share to show us parents what is written which would make all of the class size proposal invalidated?

      • Resolute Says:

        Concerned Parent-
        If you go to the class size proposal on the KSD website dated September 7th and click on the last PDF page of the download you will be in the correct area. Go to page 4, item number 11.

        Here is the text.
        11. The parties recognize that the District’s ability to fully maintain these staffing levels would be impacted by the failure, reduction, or discontinuance of any one or more of the following funding sources:
        • Current I-728 funding
        • Basic State class size allocation
        • Current federal class size reduction funding
        • Current levy equalization
        • Current K-4 staff enhancement
        • Continue levy passage
        Should any of these conditions occur, this class size provision shall be renegotiated.
        If it becomes necessary to implement Article VII, Section 8, of this Agreement, it is understood that this section is not applicable.

        Since there have been state budget cuts, the district could argue that this section of the contract is void because of those cuts before we even implement any of it.

  4. Wanting to do the right thing.. Says:

    Will we be presented with the district’s current offers tonight? Are we ever going to get specifics? We have to make an informed decision.

  5. teacher Says:

    Respect: I respect myself too much to allow others to bully me or degrade me. I respect my students enough to stand up for them and make sure they have the best learning environment that is essential to their future.

    Self-Discipline: I remind myself of what is right and keep that goal in mind. I won’t take the easy way out and in turn let my students suffer those consequences.

    Kindness: I will continue to fight for my students in a nonviolent manner. I smile and listen to those who disagree with me and carry on a civil, kind conversation with them.

    Environmental Stewardship: I will continue to fight for my student’s environment to be safe and healthy.

    Giving: I am giving my time, my patience and love for my students by fighting for their future and not settling for anything less. I am giving them the best opportunity to learn.

    Perseverance: I am not giving up on what is right and my moral obligation to my students. I will not allow them to fail.

    Honesty: I am honest with myself, knowing this is an uphill battle. I will not lie to myself and say it is okay to back down and let my kids suffer with overcrowded classrooms and no time with me.

    Responsibility: As a teacher it is my responsibility to see that my students are well cared for, have their needs met, and have their rights honored. It is my responsibilty to see that they succeed.

    • Parent & Community Member Says:

      This is how I see these virtues.

      Respect: I respect and uphold the law, and teach others to do so by my actions and my words.

      Self-Discipline: Even when things aren’t going my way I control my own desires and do what is right, lawfully.

      Kindness: I think of others as higher than myself, as far as my priorities are concerned.

      Environmental Stewardship: I would never break the law for the sake of the environment, but I will keep the environment as a precious gift that needs tending.

      Giving: I will give up my own rights and preferences for the sake of others.

      Perseverance: I will persevere in the face of trial, and work toward justice lawfully.

      Honesty: I will be honest about my actions and intentions.

      Responsibility: I will be responsible with my authority over children and the community and I will obey a judges orders toward me.

      Are virtues fluid and changeable? Can we just twist them to mean what we want them to mean to suit our situation, and make our position right?

      The law is the highest moral standard on this side of heaven. Breaking the law is the lowest form of civility when living in a civilized community. If you are disobeying an injunction, you are breaking the law – you are a law breaker, and disrespecting yourself, the students, the parents, the community, the judge, and the law enforcement.

  6. ann Says:

    I hear teachers say they are ready to go to jail, but are you also ready to pay a daily fine for not returning to work, which is a more real probability? And since the district has committed to opening school on Wednesday, there is a very real posiibility they will open with subs. Are you ready to pay daily fines for a very long time?

  7. Anonymous Says:

    OKAY, I am not happy now. I really don’t think this is about the children anymore. Teachers teach our students to obey the legal system and WHAT ARE THE TEACHERS DOING, THEY ARE DISOBEYING THE JUDGE AND THE LEGAL SYSTEM. IF LOWERING THE CLASS SIZES IS GOING TO COST MONEY WELL THEN TRY AGAIN WHEN THE ECONOMY IS BETTER… GET TO CLASS SO THAT OUR KIDS CAN GO TO SCHOOL. THERE ARE A LOT OF KENT KIDS WHO ARE WANTING TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL WHO CAN’T BECAUSE THE TEACHERS ARE DISOBEYING THE LAW!!!!!! AND THEY SEE IT ON THE NEWS. MY DAUGHTER HAS COMMENTED ON THE FACT THAT THE TEACHERS TEACH THEM TO OBEY THE LAW AND HERE THEY ARE WATCHING THOSE SAME TEACHERS DISOBEY THE LAW…NOT GOOD, HOW DO YOU EXPECT THE CHILDREN TO RESPECT YOU!!!!

    • KSD Student Says:

      I don’t want to be taught to blindly follow the law! I know we all live in a society where we are expected to do what we’re told thoughtlessly. A lot of Americans have a problem understanding this, but it remains the truth…sometimes the law is unjust.

      I am PROUD of all of my teachers who have the courage to stand up for what is right, rather than fold for what is legal. The law is wrong here. I’d rather be taught by a group of people with a moral compass than with their noses buried in laws and regulations.

      Kent teachers, I love and support you guys! You are doing the right thing by me.

  8. Another Kent Parent Says:

    I’d like to know why my comments were not added and were deleted my the moderator?

  9. Jackie Says:

    Good luck! You are also helping set the course for other district who will be bargaining in the future with the same issue of class size. Help Administration understand class size makes a difference.

Comments are closed.


%d bloggers like this: