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My teachers are striking.

Posted on 08/28/2006 9:26:05 PM PDT by letsgonova19087

I apologize if people feel this is a waste of space...this is the first thread I've started here but I have some complaints and some questions.

In my local township, our public school teachers are preparing to strike. Obviously, we, as students, are furious at the prospect of losing our holidays and summer to the greed of our teachers. But it becomes far worse when we look at the numbers.

Best I can tell (from general googling), the average national teachers salary is about $45,000. We live in a very affluent community, with some of the best schools in the state of PA. The MINIMUM starting salary, yes starting salary, at our school is roughly $50,000. Meaning, a first year teacher can walk into our district and make more than the national average of all teachers in the country, regardless of experience. The MAXIMUM salary for a teacher -cash compensation- is just under $100,000 a year. This does not include benefits, andd while I don't have a number for those, it would be at least enough to put that number well into six figures. Needless to say, the teachers in our district are far from deprived.

I've had several of the head union reps as teachers, and I can attest to the fact that many of them are extreme leftists. I generally don't hold it too much against them. Except now, their greed and selfishness is interfering with everybody else's lives.

I have a couple questions. The first are legal, and really more out of my own curiousity than anything else. 1. Can teachers on strike be fired? At the levels we pay these people, we could have those positions filled again overnight. If I were the superintendent, I would have said "show up for work tomorrow, or you're fired". Is that legally possible? 2. are there such things as illegitimate grounds for a strike? I think it would be tough to make a case that a teacher making a hundred grand really has grounds to strike. Is it possible for a judge to throw that out?

Lastly, I would just like some ideas as to how we as students could become involved in the process without damaging ourselves in school. Nobody is in favor of this, but the vast majority I've talked to are fearful of retribution by the teachers once school DOES get started? How can we influence this without becomming targets?

Thanks for your time.


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Education
KEYWORDS: academia; education; liberals; nea

1 posted on 08/28/2006 9:26:05 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087


One word, tenure.


2 posted on 08/28/2006 9:35:12 PM PDT by LauraleeBraswell (Try reading the article before you post)
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To: letsgonova19087
Ques. 1. Depends on the state. In N.Y, teachers are forbidden to strike [the Taylor Law]. Can they be jailed? Possibly, especially if they ignore a back to work order from a judge. Does it happen much? Nope. Are they fired? Haven't seen it in my lifetime. What the state does is fine the Union and the teachers [two days' pay for each day on strike]. The meat hooks strike anyway.

Can you do anything? Don't know. But if you're going in worried about the impact on you, you shouldn't ask the question. If your position is the right one, and you don't have the stones to risk the consequences, you shouldn't be asking the questions. Right is right. Consequences be damned [assuming no illegality on your part].
3 posted on 08/28/2006 9:37:03 PM PDT by PzLdr ("The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am" - Darth Vader)
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To: letsgonova19087



You would probably have to have a lawyer review their union contract if you want to find out.


4 posted on 08/28/2006 9:37:54 PM PDT by LauraleeBraswell (Try reading the article before you post)
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To: LauraleeBraswell

That's a little out of my league. Besides, I'm sure somebody has already done that. Pisses me off though.


5 posted on 08/28/2006 9:42:07 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087
Could be the best think that could happen to you.

Now, instead of spending hours a day on socialist indoctrination, you could go to the library, pick out a book and LEARN SOMETHING. No chance of that happening if you are in school with these people.

Organize study groups. Send the teachers a message - we will learn better WITHOUT you.

Good luck!
6 posted on 08/28/2006 10:00:58 PM PDT by Fido969 ("The hardest thing in the world to understand is income tax." - Albert Einstein)
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To: Fido969

Haha now THERE's an idea. Get local media involved...cameras, lots of cameras, and show them how resolute students are to learn by defying the eeeeeeevvillll greedy teachers and learning on their own...talk about a PR victory...


7 posted on 08/28/2006 10:06:26 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: Fido969
Send the teachers a message - we will learn better WITHOUT you.

The teachers could be really pissed if they did this, their students might think an economics text by Walter Williams or Thomas Sowell was worthy reading material. Or they could read what Whittaker Chambers tells of the Communist Party USA.

8 posted on 08/29/2006 5:52:33 AM PDT by Fraxinus
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To: metmom; tamed
We have a student here interested in home schooling, as his teachers do not want to work. I believe that he is interested in a self started study group, do you have suggestions?
9 posted on 08/29/2006 8:00:08 AM PDT by Fraxinus
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To: Fraxinus
Where to begin? Wow. How old is the student and does he have access to a computer at home? What state are you in?

There is a computer curriculum called *Switched on Schoolhouse* by Alpha-Omega Publishers that a co-worker of my husbands used with a great deal of success. She had a troubled teen who the PUBLIC school wouldn't take any more. He was headed for JD. She had no alternative but homeschooling and used that program and they loved it. You can get the major subjects, English, Math, Science, and Social Studies. There's a five curriculum pack that also includes a Bible Study.

If the student is a teen and is really motivated, they can do an awful lot by themselves. This is not an unheard of situation and these kids are often highly motivated and will do the work on their own. That's really the key. If a kid doesn't want to learn, you just can't force it into him.That was the situation with the family above. She's a single parent who worked full time and he stayed home and did his school work. It's very reasonably priced per subject. Much of the curriculum is over-priced IMO. Here is a link to a curriculum provider that has excellent prices on material.
http://www.rocksolidinc.com/
The curriculum they sell has a distinct Christian perspective, which includes Alpha-Omega.

For math, however, I would not ever use anything other that Saxon Math. I learned a lot from it and is very self-explanatory. The lessons are explained clearly to the point that my kids really taught themsemves by the time they got to jr. high. They would ask my help when they came to something they didn't understand but other than that, they pretty much did it on their own, even as far as the calculus.

I'm sure that hardly covers it but don't hesitate to ask more.

10 posted on 08/29/2006 1:55:37 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: letsgonova19087
This is NOT a waste of time. The future plans of a whole grade of graduating seniors depends on this plus the kids behind them.

There was a stiuation many years ago that I recall, where the teachers struck and they did it for such a long time that it threatened the kids ability to go to college. I don't remember how it all panned out but the kids were furious for the same reasons you mentioned.

Obviously, the teachers are not striking over working conditions. PA is a tough state to homeschool in, but that is an option. It would be the ultimate irony if the kids and their families boycotted the school by homeschooling for the year.

11 posted on 08/29/2006 2:04:57 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: DaveLoneRanger; Tired of Taxes

Any input?


12 posted on 08/29/2006 2:05:27 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

Thanks for adding some usefull information for a student whose teachers have put him in a bind.


13 posted on 08/29/2006 2:14:09 PM PDT by Fraxinus
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To: metmom; All

Thanks for your advice and support. There is one final set of negotiations tomorrow, and a large group of us are going out to protest the strike. Hopefully, it can be avoided all together.

Thanks again.


14 posted on 08/29/2006 8:46:46 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087

Keep us posted. I'd like to now what happens.


15 posted on 08/29/2006 8:56:41 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: 2Jedismom; Aggie Mama; agrace; bboop; blu; cgk; Clintonfatigued; Conservativehomeschoolmama; ...
ANOTHER REASON TO HOMESCHOOL PING!

This freeper's school is on strike. Any input or advice?

This ping list is for the "other" articles of interest to homeschoolers about education and public school. If you want on/off this list, please freepmail me. The main Homeschool Ping List by DaveLoneRanger handles the homeschool-specific articles.

16 posted on 08/29/2006 9:29:16 PM PDT by Tired of Taxes (That's taxes, not Texas. I have no beef with TX. NJ has the highest property taxes in the nation.)
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To: letsgonova19087
Sounds like what happened to my schoo about 6 years back. Here is what the teachers get in our area:

1. Average Salary of $50,000.00

2. Full Dental and Medical and Life

3. Generous Vacation Package

4. Full Pension

5. Insurance untill they die

6. Paid Funeral

7. 401K and other retirment plans

And they have the balls to say they are underpaid and only want to help the "children". That is why they made the threat to strike. You show me another job you can get with a 4 year degree that has that kind of benefits package.

17 posted on 08/29/2006 9:35:35 PM PDT by LukeL
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To: LukeL

It's #3 that gets me. Weekends and holidays off, Christmas, winter and spring breaks and all of summer. All for what the average worker has to work full time year round for, well, actually for MORE than what the average joe gets when you include benefits.


18 posted on 08/29/2006 9:41:36 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: letsgonova19087

I'm moving to PA from CA, so this is of interest to me. I found these sites that may assist you & your fellow students (teachers post here too, not necessarily from your township), but there is quite a bit of information on PA teacher strikes in and around the Wayne, PA area.

http://www.topix.net/forum/city/wayne-pa/T9F7FN5JJR38C9AOV/p56#lastPost

The link is to the last, current, page of comments. You can go back to read previous, more relevant comments.

I also found this page directly concerning PA teacher strikes:

http://www.stopteacherstrikes.org/

Best of luck to you.


19 posted on 08/29/2006 9:44:43 PM PDT by cgk (I don't see myself as a conservative. I see myself as a religious, right-wing, wacko extremist.)
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To: cgk

What if the whole district threatened to homeschool? How effective would a strike be if there were no students left to teach? Then they couldn't blackmail the parents and students.


20 posted on 08/29/2006 9:58:41 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom; letsgonova19087

I second metmom's suggestion in post #20 above. :-)


21 posted on 08/29/2006 10:18:10 PM PDT by Tired of Taxes (That's taxes, not Texas. I have no beef with TX. NJ has the highest property taxes in the nation.)
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To: metmom
What if the whole district threatened to homeschool? How effective would a strike be if there were no students left to teach? Then they couldn't blackmail the parents and students.

Wouldn't that be rich? If only it was possible, and they could really follow through with it. I realize many parents simply don't have that option.

We're planning on homeschooling when we move to PA, even though I read it is one of the toughest states in the nation for Homeschoolers. She's only 4, so I plan on being prepared for the inevitable fights.

22 posted on 08/29/2006 10:24:17 PM PDT by cgk (I don't see myself as a conservative. I see myself as a religious, right-wing, wacko extremist.)
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To: LukeL

The package in my township is nearly the same except for the paid funeral...I don't know anything about that. The difference is that the average salary in our district is roughly $71,000...plus nearly $20,000 in benefits. You can see why people aren't pleased their striking.


23 posted on 08/29/2006 11:12:11 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: metmom

The future plans of a whole grade of graduating seniors depends on this plus the kids behind them.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

I suggest that as many seniors as possible drive right over to the community college and matriculate. They should do this immediately.


24 posted on 08/30/2006 4:07:47 AM PDT by wintertime (Good ideas win! Why? Because people are not stupid)
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To: cgk

Join HSLDA, Home School Legal Defense Association first.

http://www.hslda.org/Default.asp?bhcp=1

It's about $100 a year and they'll provide all legal assistance you need for that fee should you need it, provided you join BEFORE you have trouble. It's not a lot of money and great for peace of mind.

The other option, and I don't know how this works for PA, is to connect with a Christian school that has a homeschool program. With those programes, you are under the direction of the school and meet there once a week for classes like art, gym, etc. but do the teaching yourself at home the other days of the week. That way you're officially registered at school and can avoid the paperwork and coming onto their radar. It works for some.


25 posted on 08/30/2006 4:48:15 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: wintertime; letsgonova19087

Good idea, if there's one nearby. There should be considering the affulence of the suburb mentioned. Some parts of PA are pretty remote, er,... come to think of it, that should be MOST parts.


26 posted on 08/30/2006 4:51:42 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

We're definitely going to join HSLDA. I haven't finished reading through their site yet, but they seem to be a valuable and necessary resource for homeschoolers, no matter what state you live in.

Right now, I'm researching groups in the area. I'd like to "join" other homeschooling families, for support/advice, fun, teaching, etc. I only found one organization on HSLDA, right in the township we're moving to, the Buxmont Christian Education Institute, which seems to serve as something for grades 9-12 (testing, diplomas, etc), so that won't work for awhile!

I ended up searching over at Yahoo groups, and may have found a less formal group of homeschooling families. I won't know until we make the move, and I can meet them.


27 posted on 08/30/2006 8:52:44 AM PDT by cgk (I don't see myself as a conservative. I see myself as a religious, right-wing, wacko extremist.)
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To: letsgonova19087
My teachers are striking.

My Teachers were ugly.

28 posted on 08/30/2006 5:45:37 PM PDT by lowbridge (I want to die peacefully in my sleep like my grandfather. Not screaming, like his passengers.)
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To: letsgonova19087

bump


29 posted on 08/30/2006 5:57:27 PM PDT by VOA
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To: cgk; metmom; VOA; LukeL

just a quick update for anyone who's interested...

the teachers organized a "candlelight vigil" outside of one of the schools to support the union. Roughly 75 people attended. Conspiciously absent, however, were students. Remarkably few students attended, and a significant portion of the attendees were actually former teachers. They arranged for local media to show up. Negotiations are to last through the night, with a final decision to be made sometime tomorrow.

The district sent out a mailing that stated that the *average* total compensation for teachers in our district is a little over $88,000. I'm not an expert, but that sounds like a ton. Is that fair?


30 posted on 08/30/2006 7:55:37 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087
The district sent out a mailing that stated that the *average* total
compensation for teachers in our district is a little over $88,000.


There are science PhDs slaving away day-and-night as labrats for maybe
2-5 years (postdocts) for as little as $25K (and crap benefits).

That just shows you what some smart people will put up with in order to
avoid mixing with the likes of these teacher-union types.
And all the associated Bravo Sierra that clings to public schools these days.

My suggestion: next time there is a candle-light vigil by the unionists...
get LOTS of concerned parents to show up with signs protesting how
the union is obviously "NOT for the children".

Tell the parents to go in disguise so the goons don't mark down
their kids' grades.
31 posted on 08/30/2006 8:21:34 PM PDT by VOA
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To: letsgonova19087
I think that total compensation is supposed to include benefits so it's pretty hard to break down. A lot depends on the cost of living in that area and how that compares to other areas that are similar.

$88,000 TOTAL compensation sounds like a lot but you have to know whether they're including teachers aids and substitute teachers in that figure. That could be to skew the figures down and make it look better. I'd rather know what their take home salary is straight up. Lots of jobs have benefits packages but that isn't what you live on.

Don't forget, too, that that includes all those paid holidays and summer vacations. No other job I know of has that amount of time off. If you figure what they're earning for the hours worked per year, and calculate what an hourly rate would be then you can figure out how much that would be for your average work year of 2000 hours (40 hour week for about 50 weeks). That would give you a comparison to what they're earning per FULL year compared to others who actually have to work those number of hours.

When they start throwing around figures, it's hard to know what exactly is going on. When I got my degree, required reading for one of my courses was a little book that's an easy read called "How to Lie with Statistics" It's an excellent book and shows very clearly how figures can be manipulated to say anything you want. You ought to find yourself a copy and read it. So I'd take anything they tell you with a grain of salt. Whatever they tell you is going to be to make it sound like they're poor impoverished teachers so nobody will object too much to just giving them a reasonable wage to live on. (whine) I'd be skeptical myself.
32 posted on 08/30/2006 8:32:09 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: VOA

We're already on that. The story on the local news just aired...not unexpectantly, it was completely one-sided. Me and several others have already sent off e-mails complaining about the blatant bias in the story and called for a followup that points out the grossly inflated salaries. The union clearly won a PR victory, but hopefully we can make it their last. If anyone wants to volunteer to send off a complaint e-mail to the local network, let me know and I'll provide you with some information.

From everything I've found, it looks like our average is almost double the national average. That's just greed.


33 posted on 08/30/2006 8:32:54 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: LauraleeBraswell

It's tenure in Pa. It's a stupid state law that prohibits districts from replacing striking teachers. That's why we have some of the worst schools and highest paid teachers.


34 posted on 08/30/2006 8:34:15 PM PDT by Tribune7
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To: LauraleeBraswell
Correction:

It' NOT tenure in Pa.

35 posted on 08/30/2006 8:34:48 PM PDT by Tribune7
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To: metmom

According to district materials, the average takehome salary in the district is approx $71,000.


36 posted on 08/30/2006 8:36:20 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087; Owl_Eagle; brityank; Physicist; WhyisaTexasgirlinPA; GOPJ; abner; baseballmom; ...
Pa. Striking Teachers Ping

Check this website (stopteacherstrikes.org)

And be real suspicious of the House Bill pending that will prohibit teacher strikes but give the power to approve raises to state-appointed arbitrators.

37 posted on 08/30/2006 8:37:50 PM PDT by Tribune7
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To: letsgonova19087

Many prayers for your efforts! Don't let the liberals stand in your way! Maybe a petition that can be converted into a giant billboard sign? Live webcam once they do strike? The world is yours, my FRiend! I hope some great FReepers can provide you with better ideas and some assistance!

Good luck!


38 posted on 08/30/2006 8:42:39 PM PDT by getmeouttaPalmBeachCounty_FL ( **Hunter-Tancredo-Weldon-Hayworth 4 President** I get it, Glenn.)
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To: letsgonova19087

Many prayers for your efforts! Don't let the liberals stand in your way! Maybe a petition that can be converted into a giant billboard sign? Live webcam once they do strike? The world is yours, my FRiend! I hope some great FReepers can provide you with better ideas and some assistance!

Good luck!


39 posted on 08/30/2006 8:42:39 PM PDT by getmeouttaPalmBeachCounty_FL ( **Hunter-Tancredo-Weldon-Hayworth 4 President** I get it, Glenn.)
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To: getmeouttaPalmBeachCounty_FL

I've already begun sending around a petition...getting good response. Unfortunatley, it seems like the decision will be made within the next 24hours...I don't think it will work in time.


40 posted on 08/30/2006 8:44:40 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087
Average TAKE HOME is $71,000? Must be nice. That's not what they're actually earning, that's after taxes.

If you consider that average amount of time a school year runs is about 9 months, that's about $100,000 take home for a FULL years worth of work. And many of these teachers get second jobs during the summer.

If they told the actual wages for the year BEFORE taxes, it would be much higher and there would be more objection. They're trying to downplay it by making it sound like less than it is.

And again, you need to know if that includes substitute teachers and teachers aids. Are they considered teachers? Their wages are quite low and would cut into what the average would be if they just considered full time teachers. In our area a substitute teacher earns $60 per day, from 7:30 till about 3. That's about 8 hours so it's little more than $7 per hour. For babysitting, basically.

As you can see, this is a very complicated issue to figure out. They're going to try their hardest to downplay the wages and just how much the increase actually is.

The situation is that basically, the taxpayer is being forced to pay school taxes against his will under the threat of losing his property if he doesn't comply. So the teachers, who are employed by the parents to teach their children, are now demanding more money and blackmailing the parents by threatening to not teach those children. This will put the parents in the position of being forced to pay more taxes out of their hard earned money under the same threat as before. This is one of the reasons parents are objecting. I myself don't like to be forced to support someone at a better standard of living that I'm living at.

Does anybody have any idea what kind of pay increases the teachers have had over the last few years, percentage wise and how that compares to other wage earners and the cost of inflation? I can tell you, what my husband brings home is not significantly more than it was last year and yet oil and gas and utilities have gone way up. We have less expendable income because of the increases in other areas even though he has gotten raises. They just haven't kept up.

41 posted on 08/30/2006 9:01:49 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

Not sure about the aides and substitutes. The information was put out by the district, not by the union, so I think its safe to assume that its reasonably accurate.


42 posted on 08/30/2006 9:21:10 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087

That I don't know about. I'm not sure what kind of difference that would make. At one time, I worked at a place that had a union, so I know a little how both sides can make it sound like they're the party to be pitied. So much depends on your perspective and what you're trying to accomplish. Keep us updated.


43 posted on 08/30/2006 9:53:31 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: Tribune7
And be real suspicious of the House Bill pending that will prohibit teacher strikes but give the power to approve raises to state-appointed arbitrators

Won't make a difference in my school district .. they give the teachers everything .. plus the kitchen sink

I've got the tax bill to prove it

44 posted on 08/30/2006 10:21:11 PM PDT by Mo1 (Bolton- "No one has explained how you negotiate a ceasefire with terrorists")
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To: metmom
What if the whole district threatened to homeschool? How effective would a strike be if there were no students left to teach? Then they couldn't blackmail the parents and students.

I'd love to see it happen, but many parents just do not have the wherewithal. Perhaps school choice and school vouchers would add to the competition and do the trick.

45 posted on 08/31/2006 8:51:35 AM PDT by Temple Owl (Excelsior! Onward and upward.)
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To: letsgonova19087

Where in Pennsylvania do you live? Our legislators are running a bit scared right now because of the "Clean Sweep" movement.
Now is the time for you, your parents and friends to contact your state senator and representative and order them to ban school strikes,


46 posted on 08/31/2006 8:54:48 AM PDT by Temple Owl (Excelsior! Onward and upward.)
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To: Temple Owl

Just outside Philly (Hint: see username)


47 posted on 08/31/2006 9:52:58 AM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: metmom

Quick update-

Strike was declared for Friday, but now we're being told its on hold pending a vote by the teachers to approve a proposal. Most of the teachers I talked to today said that they haven't seen enough of the proposal to decide but truly hope that they can pass it.


48 posted on 09/05/2006 7:04:08 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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To: letsgonova19087

Thanks. Is school going on now anyway?


49 posted on 09/05/2006 9:09:09 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

It is. Last night teachers got a sneak peak at some of the provisions of the proposal, and it didn't seem like they liked what they saw. Classes are going on, but everything is kind of on hold until this is resolved.


50 posted on 09/06/2006 1:27:29 PM PDT by letsgonova19087
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