Firing Teachers to Pay Teachers — 3/10-12/2012

Someone implied we only said bad things about RB teachers.  So i came up with this…

Posted: Saturday, March 10, 2012
Article comment by: chris robling

To: “a sampling…”

“we” also said,

“I’d like to propose that we not use posts here, or anywhere else, to make personal statements about individual teachers or their compensation. I believe it does no good, and in fact a considerable amount of harm, to write, ‘Sally Sue teaches algebra for $100,000 per year and in the private sector she’d be lucky to make $50,000.’

“We–-the community, as represented by the District 208 School Board and its employee–asked these teachers to work for us at RB. We offered them the compensation package they currently receive. We are shirking our responsibility if we blame them for accepting something we offered. By attacking compensation, we are really expressing disappointment with the folks we put on the board, and the people they hired to run the school. …”


“As a community we have passed from ‘showing there is a problem’ to ‘finding a solution to the problem.’ Much of the solution resides in the school – teacher relationship. That means our smart play is to strengthen both the board (us) and RBEA (the teachers) to make the extremely difficult choices that will return RBHS to fiscal sustainability. Personal attacks of those not responsible simply do not fit in this picture. ”

but none of this overcomes the fact that the teachers have chosen to make us fire young — or junior — teachers to pay senior teachers. every dollar we cut is to pay teachers in full year five of their five-year, more than seven-percent-per-year raises which followed the “catch-up” contract of ten percent per-year raises for three years. Firing the young or junior is RBEA’s choice, all we do is perform in accordance with the contract.

cheers, c 

So, “Bosco” said:

Posted: Monday, March 12, 2012
Article comment by: Bosco

Wrong, Chris. “Firing the young or junior is RBEA’s choice…” That is YOUR board’s choice. That’s what YOU want, though you try your slick doublespeak to try to appear objective. The SCHOOL BOARD is deciding to fire the young teachers so that they can keep 5,000,000 in their precious ed fund, in case the “tax revenues come in late.” The school board who you actively support is making this choice. The RBEA has no control over staffing. Would you please stop pandering and say what you really mean? No one is buying your marketing campaign of Mr. Independent. 

So, i said this:

Posted: Monday, March 12, 2012
Article comment by: chris robling

Dear Bosco —

Ummm, no.

RBEA could have solved RB’s over-commitment-to- spending crisis by swapping its raises for its roster, which is comprised of the teachers of our kids.

As is its right, it chose not to do so.

Every dollar we cut now is being cut to feed the RBEA CBA contract. Thus, by firing young or “junior” teachers, we have enough money to pay remaining or “senior” teachers. This is a lousy place to be, but it is dictated by RBEA’s steadfast adherence to the contract’s pay scales over choices (the junior teachers) for our kids.

Sounds like you think the District 208 community should spend its meagre fund balance / reserve fund / rainy day fund / call it what you will. That would leave us no protection from the vagaries of the Cook County property tax process. In a pinch, that means selling tax anticipation warrants or working cash bonds. Doing so accelerates our downward fiscal spiral. Debt instruments do not create revenue, they create obligation, commit current spending to capital and interest and thus reduce our ability to make choices about what we want for the students.

As to the “lousy place” in which we find ourselves — please do not forget that had Superintendent Bonnette made serious cuts in the 2010-2011 year budget, we would have far fewer cuts to make today. The problems increase (or compound, if you will) over time. The time to stop spending beyond our means was years ago. Prior boards and superintendents chose not to do so, the current group is choosing to do so. If fiscal strength and sound choices for students mean anything, then they deserve our thanks and praise.

But if you are wedded to the pay scales — not so much. More on RBEA later.


Explore posts in the same categories: Riverside Brookfield High School -- Turnaround

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