Tuesday, September 04, 2007

UTA

I did it because I see some changes on the horizon for the school district, and I see very few young teachers doing anything about.

I became a site representative for the Ukiah Teacher's Association, yet again.

I might just be a glutton for punishment, but I see too much coming down the pike to simply sit and wait for stuff to happen without a say. So yesterday afternoon, out of nowhere, I decided to participate in the union.

The meetings still haven't changed much, except that the issues seem to be much more relevant as the times have changed. Now that we are Program Improvement District, the issues of time management and the god awful meetings that are coming will probably be in the debate bin. Highlights from the meeting:

-The group is slimming down bureaucracy, something that I see as beneficial for the overall management of the group. I like that the position is gone, but I don't like the knowledge that went with it, which will be addressed at a later meeting.
-A CTA rep came in and helped offer legislation that was basically a method of pissing people off. I won't get into specifics except to say that unions should not make shows of force in situations that don't need a show of force.
-On the other hand, I found out how much our new superintendent makes. She makes more than our last one, by a lot. And she will get a significant raise next year. And a comparable one the year after that. The district is, in the meantime, in financial straights. I have a shitty computer, I'm missing desks, and we are some of the lowest paid teachers with some of the worst health care in Mendocino County. Fine, I'll eat getting a raise to help the district. A good manager would buck up and do the same.
-We gave members of another school district money when they went on strike. I was not only never notified about this, I never voted on it either. On a sidenote, this was announced right after the CTA rep said "One Person, One Vote". I forgot to mention to the rep that I didn't get to vote on the CTA tax increase either.
-It was a big deal that CTA corporate chief Barbara Kerr retired. Thank you for raising dues and stealing my money without my permission. Don't let the doorknob hit you where the dog should have bit you.

My promise to myself is that I'll stick with the union gig as long as it doesn't impact my teaching. Anything that irritates me too much isn't worth it.
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