If you have been watching the news, the governor of Wisconsin is proposing that all collective bargaining be stopped. This would impact all groups with associations who negotiate contracts, including teachers. A friend I met at new president training last June is Green Bay Education Association President. She told me what a great, collaborative relationship the Association had with their superintendent and board to the point that the teachers received a 4% COLA and then there were billboards and commercials showing how the Association and district worked together to gain that salary increase. I was jealous. I wrote to ask how things looked from her perspective. Below is her response.
"It is certainly a time of chaos and uncertainty here. As of right now we are still working with our district and trying to find ways that our staff can participate in the activities in Madison. I was there yesterday and the energy and support from around the state and the surrounding states has been such a welcome reminder that we all stand united and in support of each other. We are not certain of the impact to our collaborative relationship at this time as we don't yet know what the budget impact will be. We are anticipating some parts of the current bargaining agreement disappearing and causing some discord. We are also losing our current superintendent at the end of the school year! We had just been notified that we received a grant from NEA based on our collaborative efforts, which would allow us to expand and possibly develop ways to encourage parent engagement. We are hoping to be able to continue those efforts.
That being said...thank you soooooo much for your support and we will continue to fight for the rights of all of our public and private workers. Even the ones who do not realize what is all at stake with our governor's proposed bill."
If you know anyone in Wisconsin, have them contact the governor and their state legislators about not passing this bill. Should a bill removing collective bargaining pass in any other state, you can be sure that Utah will follow suit.
See this article in the Salt Lake Tribune. There is a sidebar in the print version that says police, fire, and highway patrol are not included. Who is left? Teacher, education support professionals, administrators, and state office workers.