Archive for August, 2011

Tentative Agreement

August 25, 2011

Bargaining team goal: To strengthen the KEA contract in the areas of working conditions, compensation, and benefits to improve teaching, and learning for the students of the Kent School District.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
Your KEA Bargaining Team is pleased to announce a tentative agreement has been reached. We look forward to sharing the details with you at the general membership meeting.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
Please be advised that the calendar is part of the tentative agreement and provides that KEA members will attend the district workshop days on Aug. 29 and 30. The “floating” classroom prep day (7.5 hours including your 30 minute lunch) can be worked any time between Aug. 15 and Aug. 31.

On a personal note, I hope all KEA members will take a minute to thank your representatives on the bargaining team. They have put in many long, volunteer hours, including a 14-hour day yesterday. They were committed, thoughtful and intentional as they worked for the good of the entire membership.                                                                                                                          Connie

General Membership Meeting                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Aug. 30, 2011, 5-7 p.m., Kentwood High School
This is your opportunity to ask questions and vote on the tentative agreement                       

KEA Bargaining Team                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Connie Compton, KEA President
Cindy Prescott, 4th/5th grade, Crestwood / KEA Vice President
Michael Kerstetter, Music, Daniel / KEA Secretary Treasurer
Lisa Brackin-Johnson, Language Arts, Mattson
Brian Thornton, Social Studies, Meridian Middle
Emma Goliff, 1st grade, Panther Lake                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Ron Nauer, Science, Meeker                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Rose Racicot, Occupational Therapy/Assistive Technology
Sandra Goveia, KEA Uniserv Representative

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Because you asked…

August 24, 2011

Several people have wondered why you can’t have the details of the Tentative Agreement before the General Membership meeting on Tuesday, so I asked Connie Compton if she could craft an official response to that question.  Here it is:

It is best practice in Bargaining a contract to present the details to membership in a general meeting that allows all members the opportunity to hear the same information at the same time. This allows for members to participate in a question and answer period as well as debate any issues.  Then, in a democratic process, the contract can be put to a vote.

While ideally, we would like to present the details to members immediately, we are a very large group and we must plan logistics and reserve space in advance.  At the time we scheduled the August 30th date we had no way of predicting when we might reach a tentative agreement.  Therefore, it was prudent to plan for as much time as possible to complete the bargain.

We appreciate your patience and look forward to meeting with all members next week.

Connie Compton
President
Kent Education Association

TENTATIVE AGREEMENT!!!

August 24, 2011

TENTATIVE AGREEMENT HAS BEEN REACHED!  COME TO THE SCHOOL BOARD MEETING TONIGHT (8/24) TO HEAR THE ANNOUNCEMENT AND BE READY TO COME TO THE GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING ON AUG. 30 (5:00 PM AT KW) FOR RATIFICATION VOTE, DETAILS  AND DISCUSSION !

Bargaining Update 8/18

August 24, 2011

Bargaining Team Goal: To strengthen the KEA contract                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        in the areas of working conditions, compensation and                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              benefits in order to improve teaching, and learning for                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            the students of the Kent School District.

Bargaining continued today. Your KEA Bargaining Team                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    presented a package that encapsulated the issues in the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           last bargaining update. The KSD team is reviewing the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  proposals. The teams have agreed to reconvene on Tuesday,                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Aug. 23, for a marathon session with the hope of reaching                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        a tentative agreement.

Post your questions and comments for the KEA Bargaining                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Team on the KEA Blog.

General Membership Meeting
5-7 p.m. Aug. 30, 2011
Kentwood High School

Be there. Your vote matters.

KEA Bargaining Team
Connie Compton, KEA President
Cindy Prescott, 4th/5th grade, Crestwood, KEA Vice President
Michael Kerstetter, Music, Daniel, KEA Secretary Treasurer
Lisa Brackin-Johnson, Language Arts, Mattson
Brian Thornton, Social Studies, Meridian Middle
Emma Goliff, 1st/2nd grade, Panther Lake
Ron Nauer, Science, Meeker
Rose Racicot, Occupational Therapy/Assistive Technology
Sandra Goveia, KEA UniServ Representative

Bargaining Update

August 16, 2011

 

 

KEA Bargaining Update      August 9, 2011,

Bargaining Team Goal:  To strengthen the KEA contract in the areas of working conditions and compensation and benefits to improve teaching and learning for the students of the Kent School District.

 Your KEA Bargaining Team was at the table early both Monday and Tuesday mornings this week. Discussion focused on the Learning Collaboration Time, the 1.9%, and a proposal to enable nurses to meet the expectations of state law. Your KEA team has remainded focused on containing the workload of our members and on decreasing the expectation of time commitments outside the workday.

 While districts across the state have back-filled the 1.9% and agreed the work will be deemed done, the KSD bargaining team proposed tying pay for the 1.9% to incentive and accountability. KEA bargaining team members stated clearly that more work for the same pay would not be acceptable to our members. The value of our professional educators in Kent is certainly worth the 1.9%.

 In addition to the above issues, KEA is waiting for the district to respond to proposals on establishing a Workload Committee, Classroom Visitors, Bereavement Leave, Department Head duties, Meetings and the CTE CAM.

Some KEA members have expressed concern that the calendar is not yet settled. The bargaining team is unable to tentatively agree to a calendar until we have agreement on the 1.9%. That said, it would be reasonable to set aside August 29th and 30th as workshop days and one additional day for classroom preparation.

The next joint bargaining session is scheduled for August 18th.

Post your questions and comments for the KEA Bargaining Team on the KEA Blog – https://kenteducationassociation.wordpress.com/ .

 

General Membership Meeting

August 30, 2011, 5-7 p.m.

Kentwood High School 

Make sure you’re there!

 

KEA Bargaining Team

Connie Compton, KEA President

Cindy Prescott, 4th/5th grade, Crestwood / KEA Vice President

Michael Kerstetter, Music, Daniel / KEA Secretary Treasurer

Lisa Brackin-Johnson, Language Arts, Mattson

Brian Thornton, Social Studies, Meridian Middle

Emma Goliff, 1st grade, Panther Lake

Ron Nauer, Science, Meeker

Rose Racicot, Occupational Therapy / Assistive Technology

Sandra Goveia, KEA Uniserv Representative

The person who sweeps the floor should choose the broom

August 6, 2011

This just in from Cindy Prescott, KEA Vice President: 

“The person who sweeps the floor should choose the broom.” This is a quote I read recently from Howard Behar, President of Starbucks North America. I got to thinking about this quote and how it applies to the Kent School District and to us, as educators.

Brooms have parts and they can all be researched to find the best the industry can offer. The bristles can be made from various synthetic or natural materials. What binds the bristles together likewise can be made from different materials. Bristles might be bound in differing ways, such as in a slant. The research on these materials might show different results in performance and longevity.

The handle itself can be fashioned in many ways and thus the handle would show various results in performance and longevity. The overall design of the broom might also be a source of research results, as we like or dislike the very looks of things that we buy to use in our homes.

Like brooms, instructional programs and initiatives are made of various “materials”. Research on these programs and curricula provides various results on performance, which might include longevity and overall appeal.

Consider then, a sweeper who is given a “broom” (program) that has been highly researched by those at the top. The “broom” might have bristles that last quite a bit longer than other bristles. It might have a handle that purports to be the best in the industry. Perhaps the overall look of the “broom” is pleasing to those choosing it.  In fact, the “broom” is chosen with the intention and desire for the best fit for the sweeper.

However, the broom chosen may not be the best fit for the sweeper. Perhaps the sweeper understands that the floor being swept is uneven and needs a particular kind of slant or bristle. Perhaps the handle is too long for that particular sweeper.

This is the problem with being given a “broom” when we are the actual sweepers. Those of us sweeping have additional information that cannot be easily known by those choosing brooms because they are not involved in the actual sweeping. Without our input, the wrong “broom” might be chosen.

Complicating matters, when the wrong “broom” is chosen by others, those choosing sometimes have difficulty hearing that they have chosen the wrong broom. After our report on the broom, we sweepers are sometimes told to continue using the wrong broom anyway. In fact, we are sometimes told to use the wrong broom to sweep a bigger room. And to leave no particle behind!

Collaboration is not just a word. It is an action that includes hearing and taking into account the knowledge the sweeper has when choosing a broom. If the sweepers in our district were part of the process in choosing brooms, I can only believe we would see great results.

 

Cindy Prescott
KEA Vice President