New Jersey Governor Chris Christie Tells It Like It Is: Teachers Unions Are the Real Bullies, Waging the Politics of Raw Power
|Christie speaks in Washington DC, calling Newark schools 'absolutely disgraceful'|
• The School Board has full accountability for the solvency of the district and must take whatever action is necessary to meet its legal responsibilities and protect the students and taxpayers.
A Word About Strikes — An
By: Ron Bennett
Copyright © 2010 School Services of California, Inc.
For Publication Date: May 2010
Over the past few weeks, we have seen media attention drawn toward the collective bargaining process, particularly when there has been a unilateral contract imposition by management or a strike by labor. In my opinion, we are likely to see a few—maybe quite a few—similar situations evolving over the next several months. I would like to offer some opinions on how to think about these situations and how to either avoid them or handle them appropriately.
Radio Commentators John & Ken:
• Interview CUSD Trustee Ken Lopez-Maddox
• Analyze the Reform Board's Great Victory
Union leaders last night finally gave up their unreasonable demand that the contract cuts imposed by the Reform Board would expire automatically on a date certain. Unfortunately, they only did so after 2,200 teachers union members had abandoned their students and walked out on strike for three school days. Congratulations to the Reform Board for this great victory and for standing up for the students, parents and taxpayers of CUSD!
JOHN & KEN ANNOUNCE THAT TEACHERS UNION CAPITULATED -- STRIKE OVER! With Nation Watching, Reform Board Scores Huge Victory for the Students and Taxpayers.
"So the ten percent decrease sticks for the next three years and it's unlikely they're going to get any of the money back, which means the class sizes will remain the same, no teachers will be laid off … But what really matters is that logic won, mathematics won … what we kept saying all last week or two, 'When you're out of money, you're out of money,' and finally the union had to accept that."
"It did show you what the teachers are about, though. You've got to keep repeating this to the end of time. Teachers, when they're in their union, when their in their union context, are not nice. They don't love kids, they don't care about the kids. They love themselves, they love their money and they love their benefits. They love their union group think. There are very few rebels in the union … very few. Eighty-seven percent of the teachers voted to strike. Eighty-seven percent gave the middle finger to the students for three days. And so eventually they settled for what? For exactly the deal they had … a 10% cut."
-- John & Ken, KFI AM-640, April 27, 2010
• OC Register Condemns Unions' Demands for Tax Increases!
• CUSD Reform Trustees Reject Union’s Unsustainable Demands!
• Voters Must SAY NO to the union’s selfish political agenda!
First, in the middle of the nation’s worst economic crisis since the great depression, with the State of California buckling under the weight of unprecedented budget deficits that have crippled the ability of local cities and school districts to provide basic services to their constituents, 2,200 Teachers Union members in Capistrano Unified abandoned their students and walked out on strike…
NOW, the Teachers Union and other public employee unions are marching on Sacramento demanding that legislators increase your taxes!
Union Marchers Demand 40 Billion in Tax Increases!
The public employee-union backed marchers arrived at the Capitol this week after 48 days on the road from Bakersfield, and Thursday presented lawmakers with their state budget recommendations -- $40 billion in tax increases.
READ the Sacramento Bee News Report
• Radio Commentators Bill Handel and John & Ken All Get It!
• CUSD Union Strike Is Just Politics
• Ground Zero for national campaign by Unions to grab more money, power and influence -- at the expense of the taxpayers!
John & Ken Interview our Chairman, Tony Beall, Committee to Reform CUSD -- April 23, 2010
This strike is not about the union contract. It is all about politics -- the union's desire to take over control of the board in November. The California Teachers Union has made CUSD a test case -- ground zero for the future of California. If the union loses here in CUSD again, they know other districts from across California and beyond will follow the lead of the Reform Trustees in CUSD. That is why the union has brought in the big guns from the CTA. That is why the union has for the past two years commenced a multi-pronged attack against the Reform Board. The union is:
1. Backing an initiative for the Nov 2010 ballot to take 6 of 7 votes away from every CUSD voter;
2. Backing the unjust recall campaign to remove two Reform Trustees;
3. Preparing to run a slate of five pro-union candidates in the November election; and
4. Striking in the middle of the current school year to further destabilize the district and cause "organized chaos" in an effort to turn voters against the Board.
CUSD Superintendent: Saddened That Planned Student Walk Out Is Based on Misperceptions and Misinformation
Contrary to union claims, Superintendent also confirms Reform Board's decision regarding CUEA negotiations substantially compromised its original pre-impasse proposal with fact finder's recommendation.
Letter to Parents re Planned K - 12 Student Walk Out
By Dr. Roberta Mahler, Interim Superintendent, CUSD
During the last week you may have read one or more e-mails advocating for a "K - 12 Student Walk-out" to take place on April 13 as a symbolic gesture of support for the teachers' union position regarding labor negotiations. It is of significant concern to hear that students would be held out of school on a regularly scheduled and staffed school day in order to address adult issues. Read More...
• Class Sizes Will NOT Be Increased
• Dozens of Teachers' Jobs Saved
• But Union Leader Threatens to Strike
Your Elected Reform Trustees:
• Were Forced to Cut $25 Million from Last Year's Budget
• Must Cut $34 Million More This Year
• Voted to Save Dozens of Teachers' Jobs
• Voted to Preserve Smallest Possible Class Sizes
• Are Now Threatening to Strike
• Want Board to Lay Off Hundreds of Young, Talented, Energetic Teachers
• Want Board to Increase Class Sizes
• Want to Preserve Higher Salaries/Benefits for Most Senior Members at the Expense of the Students, Young Teachers and Taxpayers of CUSD!
LOOK: Photo of Teachers Union Pres. Vicki Soderberg
who wants more money for her most senior members…
...even if it hurts our children and younger teachers!
Capistrano Unified School Board is facing a crisis.
They are being forced to cut $34 million from the
2010-2011 budget...which is especially painful
because the Board members were forced to cut $25
million from this year’s budget.
Our school district was ill-prepared to deal with the State’s current budget crisis because former Superintendent James Fleming (now indicted for multiple felonies and awaiting trial) and his seven “old guard” trustees had engaged in years of gross fiscal mismanagement (e.g. massive deficit spending on an annual basis, failure to maintain adequate reserves, construction of a luxurious $52 million Administration Building).
Teacher total compensation in Capistrano is among the highest compared to other unified school districts in Orange County
• A teacher’s career earnings are much higher in Capistrano Unified
By CUSD FACT CHECKS, Information on Issues Relating to Labor Negotiations and District Finances
The best way to evaluate the competitiveness of Capistrano Unified School District is to calculate employees’ total compensation. Salaries alone don’t give a true comparison. Health benefits are a crucial element of the total compensation package for any employee. Some school districts have higher salaries, but make their employees pay more out-of-pocket costs for their health benefits. When you add salary and benefits together, CUSD ranks among the top in total compensation among unified school districts in Orange County. Capistrano ranks well above the regional and statewide averages in total compensation according to the most recent data available from the state.
The minimum teacher salary in Capistrano is $48,899. The maximum teacher salary is $98,931. An average teacher salary is $81,845. These figures do not include health benefits or any stipends/extra duty pay teachers often receive for being coaches, mentors, or handling special assignments.
At $61,773 in total compensation, beginning teachers in CUSD are the 3rd highest paid among unified districts in Orange County. Mid-career teachers earn $86,350 and are the 5th highest paid. Veteran teachers at the top of the pay scale are the 4th highest paid earning $109,905 including benefits for their 185-day work year.
See CUSD FACT CHECKS Fact Sheet comparing total compensation, health benefits and lifetime earnings of CUSD teachers to other Orange County school districts.
Below are the documented CUSD/CUEA contract settlement amounts over 9 of the past 10 years (information for the 2004-05 contract was not available) pursuant to which CUSD teachers received aggregate raises of 32.5%. In accordance with the teachers’ salary schedule:
• Every July, each teacher gets a "step raise" of 3.5% every year for 11 years and then every 5 years until 23 years of service, and then raises if negotiated (COLA); and
• As each teacher gains education credits, he/she gets "column raises" until a masters degree is earned. Read More...
WARNING: Public Employee Unions Have Commenced A Multi-Pronged Attack Against the C.U.S.D. Board Members
Tony Beall delivered this inspiring speech to the OC Republican Party Central Committee on February 15, 2010, warning that powerful union leaders from across the state and nation had commenced an orchestrated, multi-pronged attack on the seven conservative Republicans serving on the CUSD Board of Trustees.
Thank you Chairman Baugh. I greatly appreciate your strong leadership and the opportunity to address the Central Committee tonight. Last month, you spoke eloquently about the many abuses we have seen with public employee unions throughout our nation and state. You spoke of the need for our country to engage in a Second American Revolution to combat the insatiable and unsustainable union appetite for scarce taxpayer dollars. I agree with you 100%. Tonight, I’m here to ring alarm bells. I’m here to tell you that one of the great battles of this Second American Revolution has already begun – right here in our own backyard.
Powerful union leaders have commenced an orchestrated, multi-pronged attack on the seven republicans serving on the CUSD Board of Trustees (each of whom was endorsed by the OC GOP).
Let me provide a bit of background. Read More...
• What Parents Need to Understand About the CUSD Budget Cuts and Collective Bargaining
An open letter to the community from CUSD parent and child advocate Dawn Urbanek
As a parent of a student in CUSD, who has attended most of the CUSD Board Meetings and Budget Workshops over the past two years, I felt compelled to write this letter. Not every parent has time to attend meetings and workshops. Those of us who do need to start sharing our knowledge with other parents to truly reflect what we as parents feel “is in the best interest of our children.”
I was really angry, and disgusted, to see teachers at my child’s school standing outside the campus Friday morning… wearing black… handing out flyers. The flyers were asking parents to contact Ellen Addonizio, the President of the Capistrano School Board, and tell her to start working with teachers during contract negotiations in a "reasonable and responsible way.".
What happened Friday was a staged event by the CUEA (Capistrano Unified Education Association) -- the teachers union. Read More...
Albert Shanker, former AFT President
Next time you hear that tired old union baloney about putting “Kids First,” remember what the late Albert Shanker, former American Federation of Teachers president, once said:
“When school kids start paying union dues, that’s when I’ll start representing the interests of school children.” Albert Shanker, The OC Register
This helps to explain the “Kids First” hypocrisy we continue to experience from union leaders, including those at CUSD, where many of their own rank and file have been influenced to ignore or deny the truth about dishonest special interest union politics.
Thanks for the brutal honesty, Albert. You’re a peach. We couldn’t have said it better.