February 11, 2015
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It literally took me :)

fifteen seconds to

submit my response

to our representatives!

Save Our Schools NJ

YOU DECIDE!

Will our children be forced to take high-stakes standardized tests for another decade?

Will our public schools lose more funding and more instructional time to such tests?

Will our children’s days be filled with test preparation instead of creativity and real learning?

Will the public school curriculum continue to be narrowed?

Will teachers be forced to spend more time teaching to tests that determine if they may keep their jobs and if schools may stay open?

►►►Please click HERE to take action!◄◄◄


Right now, the US Congress is deciding the future of high-stakes standardized testing for the next decade or longer.

Please ask your US Representative and Senators to:
1) End the punitive sanctions currently associated with high-stakes standardized tests

Stop defunding and closing public schools & firing teachers based on standardized test scores!

2) End the annual standardized testing that is consuming our children’s education

Return to testing once in elementary, middle and high school, as was the case before 2001. Thank you for all you do to protect our children and our public schools!

If you are not receiving our alerts already, sign up here for future Save Our Schools NJ alerts

February 3, 2015
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Negotiations Update: February 3, 2015

BOE INFO

SEA INFO

“We worked hard to resolve”

“We met on 8 separate occasions”

  • We are not aware of any time the Superintendent and Business Administrator attended negotiations or were present to answer questions that could expedite the process.
  • Most sessions-time were used by BOE for their private caucusing- the SEA did their homework- the BOE was less prepared.
  • We met 9 times -most meetings less than an hour

The SEA refused to negotiate in summer

“The board thought that this offer was fair and reasonable.”

  • Board said at June 9th negotiation meeting: “We won’t go above 2%.” Over 3 years-2%, 2%, 2% vs. state avg. of 2.5%.
  • The last negotiation, June 18th, SEA tried to cont. negotiation on other issues –the board said there’s no point if we would not accept their numbers -their offer remained the same (6% total over 3 years) -impasse was declared at this meeting

“The board never proposed the longevity increment be abolished for existing staff members, only new hires.”

  • Over the last decade, the BOE has proposed numerous changes that limit longevity pay: freezing the amount, changing “longevity” to “Years of Service Award”, disqualifying time not worked in Somerville. Now all new employees would be ineligible under new contract. This sets up unequal and divided treatment of employees.

The SEA rejected settlement offer (post mediation) 

“The board hopes to responsibly and sensibly resolve the collective bargaining agreement issues and will continue to work toward this goal.”

  • Counter proposals are not rejections
  • BOE sent 5-pt. proposal on 1/13
  • SEA countered with 6-pt. proposal on 1/15 (accepted some proposals and offered counter proposals for others)
  • Our proposal asks the BOE to cont. negotiation -so far they are unwilling.

Superintendent stated no cuts to arts and music programs

  • Proposed SMS schedule has drastic cuts to both

SEA STATEMENT: While our members’ salaries have been frozen for three years, our pay scale has dropped each year, nearing the bottom of the county. The average gross salary fell $2,391.82 dollars in the last year alone when steps were “frozen.”  The real issue is getting our dynamic, younger staff to stay: the board’s tactics demonstrate indifference, not “fair and reasonable.”

January 18, 2015
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Update 2015

1) All SEA members, please join us at the Board of Education meeting on Tuesday night starting at 7:00pm.

2) Our January SEA rep council meeting will be taking place at the Somerset County Education Association office.  We will be conducting our usual rep council meeting.  We’ll also be providing any updates and clarifications on negotiations.

3) The SCEA office is located at 1140 rt 22 east.  From SHS to the SCEA office is approximately a one-mile trip down rt 22 east.

December 17, 2014
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S-2265/A-3487 Quarterly Pension Bill

Call your Senators today and tell them:

  • Last June, the Senate voted 36-3 to pass S-2265, which would require the state to make quarterly pension payments.
  • We need that kind of bipartisan support again this Thursday.
  • Please support this fiscally responsible bill and vote YES.  It will save the State and taxpayers money while securing the retirement system.
  • And, please urge your colleagues to do the same.
  • Thank you!

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LEGISLATIVE DISTRICTS:

By Map: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/districts/njmap210.html

By Number: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/districts/districtnumbers.asp#16

 

December 9, 2014
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Readington Twp. teachers protest contract by leaving as a group; photos

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In an effort to prod the district into settling on a new contract, teachers at all four district schools left at their contracted time this afternoon, Dec. 4.

At dismissal time, a small crowd of parents sporting “I support Readington teachers” buttons showed their support for teachers leaving at Three Bridges School and Holland Brook School. Teachers left as a group at their contracted time of 3:05 p.m. at Three Bridges School, while those at Holland Brook School left at their contracted time of around 3:45 p.m.

See More Photos

December 9, 2014
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Second mediation for Readington teachers’ contract scheduled

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“Mediation sessions for a new contract between the Readington teachers’ union and Board of Education continue, though a settlement with the administrators’ union has been reached.

Parents and students showed up in support of the teachers at all four district schools before classes started this morning, Dec. 2. They plan to do the same thing on Thursday Dec. 4, at all three schools beginning at 2:15 p.m., and at the board meeting on Dec. 9.

Though not on strike, teachers are entering and leaving each school at the exact time the expired contract they’re working under specifies. In an email to the Hunterdon County Democrat, Chip Shepherd of Readington, a science teacher at Readington Middle School, expressed outrage at the board’s request for staff to “work more and longer days without offering an increase in salary” and limit teachers’ use of personal and bereavement days.

“They also want to reduce the amount of time in school that teachers have to prepare for class and thereby increase the amount of time we teach,” he said. “That may cause a reduction in the number of teachers and perhaps an increase in class size.”

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