The School Board met in this executive session at 2:30 yesterday afternoon, at which time a proposal which would result in nearly a 3% increase for employees was formulated.At 4:30 PM, the School Board’s negotiating team met with union officials, and by 6:00 I received word via a phone call that the union had agreed to the district’s proposal.
I see in this morning’s PNJ online that the union already got word to the press about this proposed settlement of the salary issue for 2010-2011 and 2011-2012. EEA president Kathy Breakall was quoted in the story saying the following:
"While the salary proposal can't compensate our employees for continuing to go extra miles for the students in Escambia County, it is an attempt of both the union and the district to recognize that even in these gloomy budget years, we know their work is at the heart of any successes [in] the (school district),"
I would have hoped for a more magnanimous quote—perhaps reflecting gratitude that the employees will receive some increase in compensation from the taxpayers despite the dreadful economic landscape that currently exists in Florida—but instead we are told that the only reason for ANY progress in our schools is because of the EEA and its members. Not Parents, not the students, not the volunteers from the community---Nope, it’s just the union members that make a difference.
Off-putting quotes like this one from today’s PNJ are why so many taxpayers have disdain for public sector white collar unions. It takes a concerted effort between parents, schools, teachers and students to achieve high performance--but this quote pours cold water on that perspective.
To follow up on this quote this morning, in my email inbox I (and every other district employee) received this “announcement” from the union about the salary settlement. (Which also doubles as a membership solicitation, by the way)
I’m not sure how I feel about the union using district resources and time for their recruiting effort—I mean, I know they want to reach 50% membership,(which they currently do not have) but they ought to recruit outside of utilizing district email; many employees will be opening and reading this union “bulletin” during working hours today.