Thursday, May 08, 2008

St. Louis Gets State's First Unionized Charter, Gets Branded Self Interested

The Construction Careers Center in St. Louis will become Missouri’s first unionized charter school says the St. Louis American. The school will be unionized by AFT. The 32 charter school employees who will be represented by AFT St. Louis are the teachers, teacher assistants and secretarial-clerical staff.

This is great news, becasue it's an opportunity to work together to keep learning conditions strong and focus on instructional leadership right? Maybe...

Mike Meehan, a social studies teacher in the school gets the first quote in the article. It starts off right, but digresses into the usual grievances that no one outside of school staff wants to hear about, becasue most people aren't represented by unions and don't get the same benefits.

First the good part from Mike: "We’re thrilled that we are now represented by a union. This will be good for teachers and other staff, and good for students.”

Now the bad part from Mike, paraphrased by the reporter who clearly is looking to reduce the usefulness of a union into a list of self-interested bullet points: "[Mike] said the employees are concerned about such issues as the need for a salary schedule that includes extra pay for extra work, job security, an enforced discipline policy, and smaller class sizes."

Detractors love this kind of stuff.


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