TEACHERS PROTEST FURLOUGHS: Would shorten school year by five days

There are 10 comments on the Monterey County Herald story from May 18, 2010, titled TEACHERS PROTEST FURLOUGHS: Would shorten school year by five days. In it, Monterey County Herald reports that:

Shannon Goddard, left, fifth-grade teacher at Prunedale Elementary School, pickets with other teachers at the North Monterey County Unified Schhol District offices in Moss Landing on Monday.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Monterey County Herald.


Salinas, CA

#2 May 18, 2010
In resolving problems there has to be trust and mutual respect. All parties must be truthful in their efforts to resolve the problem. In the May 14, 2010 document given to North Monterey County Unified School District (NMCUSD) students to take home, it states in part:

“Since over 90% of our Budget directly relates to salaries and health and welfare benefits for out employees, we are required to negotiate with our employee unions/organizations in order to significantly reduce the expenditures in the our Budget.

The District has successfully bargained five furlough days for 2009-2010 with our classified employees (secretaries, custodians, bus drivers, teacher’s aides, etc.). The Administrators have also agreed to five or more furlough days for this school year.”

Anyone reading the above would have to think to themselves that teachers are a bunch of money grubbing people without giving a damn about the students or anyone else.

However, did the superintendent purposely neglect to clarify and inform the reader that the classified employee’s bargained agreement was CONTINGENT upon the Teacher’s Union agreeing to a five-day furlough? Is NMCUSD intentionally misleading readers?

Of course teachers will not to be intimidated. When those in power, threaten, lie, and do whatever they need to accomplish their goals, those affected rebel – wouldn’t you? When you can’t get justice in house, you seek justice elsewhere - hence, the protest.

Salinas, CA

#3 May 18, 2010
ADDENDUM to my comment above:“The District has been bargaining with the teacher’s union since last September and has not reached an agreement with respect to furlough days."

Marina, CA

#4 May 18, 2010
Why should we feel sorry for them when I told a teach at North Monterey County that I was lay off and could not afford to waste gas. It seems now the shoe is on the other foot and we are suppose to have empathy. Why? The teacher that spoke to me had none. It seems what goes around always seems to come around.

Watsonville, CA

#5 May 18, 2010
They can go work elsewhere if they don't like it.

United States

#6 May 18, 2010
I think if they were one of the many teachers in California that received a pink slip this year, they would not feel the same!! losing 5 days or there job??
Alice Soliven

Sacramento, CA

#7 May 18, 2010
Times are tough for everyone. Lopping off school days at the end of the academic year, with LESS THAN3848 A TWO WEEK NOTICE, is not a solution to poor budget planning. EVERYONE loses in this scenario!

United States

#8 May 18, 2010
While these teachers pull in their pay checks over the summer, FOR NOT WORKING, have them look for another job. Then when they can't find one to replace the one they have, AT THE SAME PAY SCALE, then what? You are lucky you have a job to discuss.
Greedy whiners. Shut up or go home.

United States

#9 May 18, 2010
HUH: a point to clarify...the summer pay is money they have withheld during the year and then paid to them in the summer. So they get no money for "not working" in the summer.
That being said, as a spouse of a teacher in this district, I think that many teachers are whiners who have been poorly led by their union. They were told of these issues months ago, but the union has not brought this to the attention of the members well at all. So, this should not have come as a surprise to anyone. Other staff and admin already stepped to the plate and did what needed to be done.
Ellen Phillips

Seaside, CA

#10 May 19, 2010
I LOVE when people post un-educated comments and NOT their name. This is to you, HUH, and all you other nameless, ignorant voices. As mentioned above...teachers do NOT get paid for the summer they have it withheld...get your facts straight.

Do you have ANY idea what teachers go through? They get to work BEFORE school hours and stay late...all of which is on their OWN time. Local schools have had budgets cut so badly that a lot of teachers spend their OWN money on school supplies so the children will not be without. They spend their entire day doing the most IMPORTANT thing I can imagine: EDUCATING OUR FUTURE!! And this is how we think they should be re-paid? By taking away THEIR hard earned money? Not to mention that is a week of instruction and lessons that these children would have been missing out on.

It is sickening to me that the first thing to get cut is something in education when that is THE MOST important thing we should be focusing on. And you not only AGREE...you actually find fault with these people? The people we, society as a whole, entrust not only with educating our children, but spending more time with them in one day than their parents do? Helping them learn real life lessons about how to deal with their friends, conflict, etc.....SHAPING THEM INTO WELL ROUNDED HUMANS?! If you have children: I pray they listen to their underpaid teacher and not YOU!!
Sara Ratliff

Lincoln, CA

#11 May 19, 2010
Very well said Ellen!
As a wife to an awesome teacher and sister to three amazing teachers who have dedicated their lives to their students, I have to say that it sickens me to read some of the comments here.
My husband, sisters and brother not only have a bachelor degree but some hold masters as well. They have hours upon hours of training, certifications and continuing education. They work a FULL eight hour work day most days longer. Not to mention the “after hours” coaching/tutoring/mentoring that they volunteer their time. They didn’t make the choice to become teachers so they could be rich; they made the choice to become teachers so they can make a difference and make a living doing it. I don’t think that they should have to sacrifice financially because of that choice.
I don’t hold a degree and am not a teacher, but I do know that my family is a hard working, dedicated family of teachers who genuinely care about their kids and their well being. I know that their jobs are more that what the title holds and are worth far more than they are currently being paid. I know that it takes a special person to make a teacher and to anyone who thinks that they could do a better job controlling a class size of 30-50 plus students, keep them interested, motivated and quiet all while educating them should be a substitute for a day.
I personally thank all the hard working teachers who are shaping our kids (including my own) to be “well rounded humans” as Ellen so eloquently put it.

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