Right, so then the union just does the opposite and asks for way more than they realistically hope to get. Thus making the negotiation process even longer to reach the final objective.<quoted text>
I completely disagree. This approach will work IF the unions are willing to negotiate in good faith. The idea is that you go in with a draconian position. Something so strict and tough that even if you get 1/2, you'll still save a lot of $$$.
Tell the teachers that they have to contribute 75% of their pension or 401(k) benefit. Settle for 25%(about what the private sector pays).
Tell them they have to pay 100% of their benefits- then settle for 20%(less than the average private sector employee).
Tell them they have to report in for summer duty all summer long. Settle for an extra 2-3 weeks of work per year or eliminate tenure.
The idea is to establish a better negotiation point AND to remind the unions that their members keep their jobs, benefits, and summers at our discretion. They work for US. We do not work for them. If they don't like it- no one is forcing them to keep a teaching job or stay in the district. There are plenty of young, fresh grads that have more up-to-date training ready to take their places (and might I add- cheaper too)
Instead how about the both negotiate in good faith and come forward with reasonable requests. The distance to travel to meet in the middle is a lot shorter, cheaper and agreeable to both sides.
You seem to think that the administration holds all the power. That's not the case. You obviously work in a non-union job.
I agree the company/school should be able to tell employees this is what you get take it or move on. It just doesn't work that way with a unionized labor force. I don't think you understand that. The school is not able to just force their will on a unionized labor force. It will result in lengthy and costly grievance and arbitration processes which will result in at least some union victories and cost more money.
Union breaking is no easy task.