Teachers strike in Souderton District

Full story: The Morning Call

Souderton Area High School student Bianca Cavacini was not in school Tuesday because of a teachers strike but she was at school anyway.

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Souderton Mom

Doylestown, PA

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#126
Sep 16, 2008
 
SPOILED ROTTEN TEACHERS wrote:
And another thing...I am married to someone who works in the district - and what has "leaked out" is 100% true! Teachers had the news vans there from day 1 -- make everyone think they are so unfortunate! The school district had every right to post salaries and numbers in the paper! If the "news" is good for one side, it is fair for the other too!
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you....finally someone that is telling the truth! I know a teacher in the district as well and they are lying to the parents!!
carbuncle

Roselle Park, NJ

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#127
Sep 16, 2008
 
SPOILED ROTTEN TEACHERS wrote:
And another thing...I am married to someone who works in the district - and what has "leaked out" is 100% true! Teachers had the news vans there from day 1 -- make everyone think they are so unfortunate! The school district had every right to post salaries and numbers in the paper! If the "news" is good for one side, it is fair for the other too!
I don't know about that SRT. If I were to believe that the teachers called the news vans, I'd be tempted to believe the one about the teachers being told to leave the designer clothes, shoes, handbags, along with jewelery at home. And to try and drive an older vehicle when they showed up on the picket lines.
Souderton Mom

Doylestown, PA

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#128
Sep 16, 2008
 
I totally believe they called the news. I don't doubt that some of them did "dress down" for the picket line. They want a hefty raise so why not look like they need it?
Michelle

United States

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#129
Sep 16, 2008
 
Carbuncle wrote:
<quoted text>

Some of you maroons just make it too easy.
...I think he means "macaroons." ;b
Anonymous

United States

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#130
Sep 16, 2008
 
That's SOP for a picket line.
carbuncle wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't know about that SRT. If I were to believe that the teachers called the news vans, I'd be tempted to believe the one about the teachers being told to leave the designer clothes, shoes, handbags, along with jewelery at home. And to try and drive an older vehicle when they showed up on the picket lines.
Michelle

United States

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#131
Sep 16, 2008
 
LV reader wrote:
<quoted text>
Please reference a web site that details the union request.
The school board has posted their position. I tried to find a union explanation of why 8.2% per year is reasonable but all I find is the union claim that they aren't going to negotiate in the press.
I have yet to hear a solid reason for an 8.2% increase...All interesting excuses, but hardly justification for a pay increase.
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The Truth about Percentages - 9/15/08
( http://saea.info/ )


There have been many questions and reactions from the public about the statistic that the board keeps quoting, that "SAEA is asking for teachers to receive an 8% raise." We feel it is important to address this misleading information once and for all. This quote has been taken out of context and is being used in an incorrect way by the media and school board.

First and foremost, this statistic does not mean that each teacher in SASD will receive that percentage. This number refers to the increase to the overall salary schedule budget. SAEA is committed to fixing our salary schedule so that the lower end of the salary scale becomes competitive with those of surrounding school districts. This means that the 201 teachers at the top of the scale that Jeffery Sultanik refers to in his 9/12 North Penn Reporter interview would only receive cost of living increases in order to help balance the salaries of younger teachers. We want to remain competitive; we must stem the flow of teachers out of our school district. However, the school board continues to ignore the problem, only offering 2.5% which will maintain Souderton as the lowest paid in Montgomery County.

... We accept that there will be a compromise between the two numbers, and we have undergone several revisions in an effort to find a compromise. The board has not. The constant citation of this number by the school board is being used to justify its own intransigence and hide the fact that they have not made any movement on the salary item since Labor Day negotiations.
carbuncle

Roselle Park, NJ

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#132
Sep 16, 2008
 
Souderton Mom wrote:
I totally believe they called the news. I don't doubt that some of them did "dress down" for the picket line. They want a hefty raise so why not look like they need it?
I think for full effect they need get some old appliance boxes and live in the Souderton park until they get what they want.
Hank

Allentown, PA

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#133
Sep 16, 2008
 
If I were on the Board and the union came in with the outlandish sarary demands they've made, I too would have said it would be prudent to investigate day care early because it doesn't look like the union is willing to be reasonable. Negotiating is one thing, but anyone with negotiating experience knows that starting with ridiculous demands is completely counterproductive to a successful negotiation.

The Board was not elected to get a contract at all costs, it was elected to provide a good balance between education and cost control. And I noticed that you correctly did not say the Board was "paid" to do their job, since they are volunteer. The only ones being paid to do a job are the teachers, and they have "elected" not to do it!
accountability wrote:
Well, you said you couldn't find a job teaching. There are a lot of teaching jobs out there. If you didn't make it through the interview process before and the board is going to replace the teachers with anyone, I'm guessing you could get a job now. You should examine the whole situation. You would find out the salaries they are concerned about are the starting teachers and those with some years experience. NOT the ones at the top, nor are they all looking for an 8% raise. I think it was the board members who set up the daycare weeks before school was to start so you cannot blame the teachers for that. No other board in SASD history has EVER set up daycare weeks before the starting of school. In the past, they negotiated and got the job done, which is what they are elected to do. BTW, I hope you don't pass your bitterness on to your children. It isn't the teachers' fault you did not get a teaching job. If you feel you were more than capable, maybe you should blame the administration for that. As for this strike, there is plenty of blame to go around and it doesn't fall to the teachers.
Michelle

United States

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#134
Sep 16, 2008
 
David wrote:
A lot of people on this planet are money hungry. usually the ones that are making high incomes. my thought is if you would just stop spending your money on such stupid sh*t you would not need such a high salary. DUH!
I teach in this district and you're right, we keep spending our money on stupid sh*t, like tissues for the classroom, pencils for kids who never have them, posters to decorate our walls, bulletin board decorations, CD/DVD players, binders (that work), pencil sharpeners, treats and incentives for student rewards... NONE of these things get supplied to teachers at Souderton and I don't see the parents sending them in. So, yeah, we care and we do buy a lot of stupid sh*t.
Teacher 2 Teacher

United States

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#135
Sep 16, 2008
 
210 Days wrote:
<quoted text>
We already figured this out, you work 210 days a year for an average of 1680 hours a year. The normal real world job works 2080 hrs a year. Translation - you work 400 hrs less, which is 10 weeks or roughly 2.5 months.
And everyone works more than 40 hrs a week. I get paid for 40 but realistically put in 50 sometimes more and I certainly don't have the luxury of 'planning periods' or monitoring study halls.
Do any other teachers out there get sick of hearing non-teachers mention "planning periods?" Think about it, people. Prep periods are where we work. It's a different kind of work than when our 110 students are with us (secondary); it's grading their assessments, organizing materials for the lesson, making copies, answering phonecalls and emails, and much more. To give us only 40 minutes to handle our preparation is a joke in itself, but it's a start. Prep period is work, just like the work you do to perform your tasks. What do think we do during prep, get a pedicure?
Hank

Allentown, PA

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#136
Sep 16, 2008
 
This is another attempt to confuse and deflect by the union.

Do you know what "This number refers to the increase to the overall salary schedule budget" means? It means that the overall amount of money spent for teacher salaries will go up by the percentage the Board has said, and the average salary increase will also be that same percentage. Sure, some will get a smaller percent but some will also get more. This is how any salary adjustment pool works. 8.2% is still an outlandish increase for the pool.
Michelle wrote:
<quoted text>
----------
The Truth about Percentages - 9/15/08
( http://saea.info/ )
There have been many questions and reactions from the public about the statistic that the board keeps quoting, that "SAEA is asking for teachers to receive an 8% raise." We feel it is important to address this misleading information once and for all. This quote has been taken out of context and is being used in an incorrect way by the media and school board.
First and foremost, this statistic does not mean that each teacher in SASD will receive that percentage. This number refers to the increase to the overall salary schedule budget. SAEA is committed to fixing our salary schedule so that the lower end of the salary scale becomes competitive with those of surrounding school districts. This means that the 201 teachers at the top of the scale that Jeffery Sultanik refers to in his 9/12 North Penn Reporter interview would only receive cost of living increases in order to help balance the salaries of younger teachers. We want to remain competitive; we must stem the flow of teachers out of our school district. However, the school board continues to ignore the problem, only offering 2.5% which will maintain Souderton as the lowest paid in Montgomery County.
... We accept that there will be a compromise between the two numbers, and we have undergone several revisions in an effort to find a compromise. The board has not. The constant citation of this number by the school board is being used to justify its own intransigence and hide the fact that they have not made any movement on the salary item since Labor Day negotiations.
accountability

Bear, DE

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#137
Sep 16, 2008
 
Hank, It's interesting you talk about the daycare situation. Prudent to schedule it? The real issue is that the school board, elected officials, that so graciously give of their time for no pay DID NOT DO the job we elected them to do for the last 8 or so months. We all knew that THREE contracts were coming due June 30, 2008. In other years, the board members did the job they were elected to do and this has not been an issue for over 20 years now. It's not only the teachers that this board did NOT settle with, it is our secretaries and support staff. The support staff are those who work with our special ed kids and help in numerous capacities around our schools every day. All of these people are invaluable to the education of all of our children.
And as for negotiating? You talk as if I know nothing about it. I know that both sides start with numbers and then both discuss and move from there. It isn't anything new in any school district. I've seen it happen while my children attended these schools. It should not have been held up all these months, so that now in Sept. our schools are not in session. I'm sorry but it is the way it works for now. The broken system is not going to be fixed this month. So, again I say, the school board did not do the job that should have been done months ago, without the PR firm, without Mr. Sultanik and without your security. Why didn't they negotiate THREE contracts? They KNEW it was coming. Are they planning to trash all the secretaries and support staff in the next few months? Are they going to tear the rest of what's left of us apart by "negotiating with them" and turning the community against them too? So they too can be slandered and called names? These negotiations WERE PART OF THE JOB. Say what you want, this community elected incompetents to do this job and it will be remembered in elections. Everyone needs to be held accountable and get the job done.
Tom

Woodstown, NJ

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#138
Sep 16, 2008
 
Noone in the real world gets a prep period to do their job. Teacher-to-teacher and Michelle may have a tough time cutting it in the "real world".
Hank

Allentown, PA

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#139
Sep 16, 2008
 
I say again: the Board's job is not to get a contract at any cost. The union has made completely outlandish demands for salary increases. Just because the Board has not caved to those demands does not mean the Board is not doing its job; in fact it may mean just the opposite. Proposing 8.2% annual average for 4 years is just crazy, greedy, and irresponsible. No wonder the negotiations haven't gone well.
accountability wrote:
Hank, It's interesting you talk about the daycare situation. Prudent to schedule it? The real issue is that the school board, elected officials, that so graciously give of their time for no pay DID NOT DO the job we elected them to do for the last 8 or so months. We all knew that THREE contracts were coming due June 30, 2008. In other years, the board members did the job they were elected to do and this has not been an issue for over 20 years now. It's not only the teachers that this board did NOT settle with, it is our secretaries and support staff. The support staff are those who work with our special ed kids and help in numerous capacities around our schools every day. All of these people are invaluable to the education of all of our children.
And as for negotiating? You talk as if I know nothing about it. I know that both sides start with numbers and then both discuss and move from there. It isn't anything new in any school district. I've seen it happen while my children attended these schools. It should not have been held up all these months, so that now in Sept. our schools are not in session. I'm sorry but it is the way it works for now. The broken system is not going to be fixed this month. So, again I say, the school board did not do the job that should have been done months ago, without the **** firm, without Mr. Sultanik and without your security. Why didn't they negotiate THREE contracts? They KNEW it was coming. Are they planning to trash all the secretaries and support staff in the next few months? Are they going to tear the rest of what's left of us apart by "negotiating with them" and turning the community against them too? So they too can be slandered and called names? These negotiations WERE PART OF THE JOB. Say what you want, this community elected incompetents to do this job and it will be remembered in elections. Everyone needs to be held accountable and get the job done.
fun facts

Telford, PA

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#140
Sep 16, 2008
 
SPOILED ROTTEN TEACHERS wrote:
As a taxpayer in the Souderton Area school district, I am on my last nerve with this strike. I was a teacher for 3 years before moving to PA -- and NOT BEING ABLE to find a teaching job. I moved onto something else because there were no jobs to be had. These teachers are SO SPOILED!! The ones who are complaining are making $89,000 a year -- plus health benefits, plus an incredible pension! I am sorry, but what other job pays 8% increases a year?? SPOILED, SPOILED, SPOILED! They are lucky to have the good paying jobs they have! I already sent in my resume and told them I would be happy to have a job if the teachers didn't want theirs! It is just ridiculous that they use our kids as pawns just to get what they want! This strike has not only cost me about $200 in wages for days I couldn't get childcare -- but also another $700 for the days I could get childcare -- for 3 weeks!! Sorry, but teachers, you lost a heck of alot of credibility with this one!
I hope Souderton has the good sense never to hire you. I'm sure they want teachers at each end of the pay scale who support one another. Since you were in education you should appreciate how long it takes to get to that $89,000. Are you sure you couldn't "find" a job? Or maybe, just maybe, you weren't that great of a candidate.
accountability

Bear, DE

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#141
Sep 16, 2008
 
Hank, they aren't asking for 8.2 per year. Don't you understand negotiations? Both groups start somewhere and then they meet in between. Who said get a contract at any cost? Did anyone say cave? I said NEGOTIATE. Both sides should be held accountable to negotiate. It MUST be done, that is how the system works. No one here created it, it's the way it is. So, get to the room, negotiate, and start school. It is part of their job and I still maintain if the board had started early, beginning of the year, we would not be in this mess.
Yea Right

Bangor, PA

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#142
Sep 16, 2008
 
WOW... I would be ashamed to show my face if I made that kind of money with summers off and had the nerve to say "Give me more!"
Hank

Allentown, PA

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#143
Sep 17, 2008
 
Yes, they are asking 8.2, their own statements confirm it. Yes, I understand negotiations extremely well and I know that when one party comes in with unprecedented and outlandish demands, the other party inevitably either walks away or digs in. It makes for a very difficult negotiation and is amateurish.

Negotiating is not as simple as "throw out a high offer then meet in the middle".
accountability wrote:
Hank, they aren't asking for 8.2 per year. Don't you understand negotiations? Both groups start somewhere and then they meet in between. Who said get a contract at any cost? Did anyone say cave? I said NEGOTIATE. Both sides should be held accountable to negotiate. It MUST be done, that is how the system works. No one here created it, it's the way it is. So, get to the room, negotiate, and start school. It is part of their job and I still maintain if the board had started early, beginning of the year, we would not be in this mess.
Mike

Hinsdale, IL

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#144
Sep 17, 2008
 
Take all books and shove them up any teachers' aszhole
Mike

Hinsdale, IL

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#145
Sep 17, 2008
 
Pol Pot had the right idea. Bye bitch.
fun facts wrote:
<quoted text>
I hope Souderton has the good sense never to hire you. I'm sure they want teachers at each end of the pay scale who support one another. Since you were in education you should appreciate how long it takes to get to that $89,000. Are you sure you couldn't "find" a job? Or maybe, just maybe, you weren't that great of a candidate.

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