NEARI’s John Leidecker Rallies the Troops Against the South Kingstown School Committee … and South Kingstown Children
The following e-mail was sent out recently, presumably to all members of the NEARI.
Background: South Kingstown’s teacher contract expires at the end of August. Daniel Kinder, referenced in the e-mail, is the attorney advising the South Kingstown School Committee. Here is what the School Committee said recently about negotiations between the town and the NEA-SK. You will also glean from the e-mail that the NEA-SK filed a complaint against the SK SC with the State Labor Board, accusing the Committee of bargaining in bad faith and “surface bargaining”.
Bigger picture, the NEARI (which incorporates the word “education” in its name) is fighting, in South Kingstown and around the state, the shift away from seniority authorized by Education Commissioner Deborah Gist. Why? How exactly does the hiring and retention of teachers basis seniority rather than merit ensure that students receive a good education?
Dan Kinder is at it again and we need your help.
Here is the background:
The South Kingstown School Committee has refused to bargain with the teachers over seniority, transfer, assignment, layoff and recall. This, after the teachers agreed to significant concessions. We have filed an unfair labor practice charge for bad faith bargaining and surface
This past Wednesday, Dan Kinder filed a complaint for Declaratory Judgment before Judge Savage. The complaint, in short, asks the judge to declare that Title 16 (Education law) supersedes Title 28 (Collective Bargaining). If we lose that, we will no longer be able to bargain seniority, transfer, assignment, layoff and recall.
These same questions are pending before other bodies at the moment. The Providence Teachers Union has asked the Board of Regents to respond to the Commissioner’s statements on seniority. And, again, we have the bargaining issue before the Labor Board.
Kinder failed to include the Labor Board as a party in the complaint, despite specifically requesting a ruling that would end the Board’s authority. Judge Savage said she would not set a briefing schedule unless all the parties were before her. We are supposed to be back in her court this coming Thursday.
The link is to CitizenSpeak and we are trying to pressure the SK School Committee to withdraw the suit. Your help is greatly appreciated. I’m copying this to our Sisters and Brothers at the RIFTHP, since it is of obvious significance to them.
Here’s the link:
Assistant Executive Director