Thursday, August 04, 2005

The letter that I didn't need to get.

Let me preface this by saying that I love teaching. I love being in the classroom, I love my colleague's that I work with, and I love the profession that I'm in. In fact, I'm getting that giddy feeling of next year already! I've got new ideas to try, old ones to make better, and I'm tearing out articles out of Time and Newsweek as we speak (Robert Samuelson-Newsweek, excellent source). If we could only be paid a decent wage and not have to deal with crap outside of the classroom, my job would be perfect.

Instead, I get this letter from the Ukiah School District Health Committee. I'll give the gist, followed by a translation:

As you know, health care costs, and especially medical costs, continue to rise dramatically nationwide

-As you know, our health care plan doesn't cover simple items such as birth control, acid reflux medicine, and most lab testing. We negotiated this deal, but we didn't realize that the cost would rise. We also didn't take into account other districts plans (my wife's, which covers all of the above as well).

Through proactive management....the increases in our health plan costs have consistently been below the national average.

-While our health care program doesn't cover shit, we think that it is fair that you haven't had a raise in four years, and still pay over $200 a month in coverage.

unfortunately.....the costs rose dramatically this year. As a result, the employee health plan fee will be increasing for 2005-06.

-While we did negotiate a 1% raise for next year, and we still realize that the plan covers shit, we are going to keep the status quo and screw our members out of their hard earned work.

The Health Committee will be setting the fee next month, and is considering any and all options to keep the fee increase to a minimum.

-Except the option of opting out of the program entirely. We at Ukiah Unified believe that our employees should be forced to pay into the health care coverage and have no option of leaving the plan, EVEN IF BOTH MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY WORK WITHIN THE DISTRICT. Being married is no excuse, you BOTH must pay the same amount.

However, you should be expecting to see the fee increase above the 2002-2004 levels of $2,000 a year ($200 per month for 10 months)

-We don't feel it necessary that we look for better plans (like my wife has at her school, 20 minutes up the road). We would rather you pay more to have less.

Thank you in advance for your consideration of these changes, and for your continuing efforts to keep our plan costs low.

-We have one of the worst health care plans in the county, and you get to pay into it. Have a good teaching year.

Someone should get sued for incompetence. Seriously, on top of UTA dues, CTA dues, and NEA dues, I get to pay into a health care plan that almost never covers thinks I need????? Simple things like birth control?!?!!?

New teachers......whatever you do, get supplemental health insurance.

I love my job, but this blog is about teaching realities. This is one that needs fixing, now.
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