Collective Bargaining In Public Schools

Decent Essays
In this time of increased expectations and decreased funding, schools are under fire more than ever to produce results. In an effort to produce these results, schools are being asked to examine all of their practices and to revamp the system. Certainly, as part of this exploration process, teachers’ unions and the system for collective bargaining has undergone intense scrutiny. What use to be considered the standard for teachers, joining the union, has now become more of a choice and in some districts an unavailable option. In contradiction, some other districts have move to a non-right-to-work policy where teachers are required to join the union, although most allow for teachers to opt out of the union’s political agenda. In…show more content…
There are pieces of the contract (teacher compensation, evaluation structures, benefits, transfer and dismissal policies, etc.), but they are not in a collective bargaining agreement. Platte River Academy, a charter school within the district and my current place of employment, has at will contracts. Each year, every employee is offered or denied a new contract. While there is an established protocol for bonuses based on performance, there is no tenure or guaranteed longevity. Our renewal is based on performance, accountability, and best practices. For the purposes of this assignment, I read and studied the Collective Bargaining Agreement from Littleton Public Schools, our neighboring district. The assistant principal that I worked with on this assignment indicated that her overall opinion of teacher associations and unions was not favorable. She is concerned that at times the the results of the collective bargaining process are too often incompatible with providing a high-quality, rigorous, best practice education for all students. She is concerned that longevity can be honored over creativity, knowledge, and skill. In collaboration with her thoughts, the publication on revamping collective bargaining also found that the agreements…show more content…
2). Overall, the Collective Bargaining Agreement for Arapahoe County- Littleton Schools for the years of August 2015 to July 2018 is comprehensive and effective. The publications readability, clarity and usability are effective. The order in which it is laid out makes sense, and the sections pertinent to a given situation are easy to locate and access. While some of the language is written in legalese, a detailed description is also included in each article which allows for clarity. There are also public documents that further explain each area available to the public on the Littleton Public Schools (LPS) website. As in most agreements, both parties have to compromise on some points. As to who benefits the most, it depends on the article, interpretation, and situation. An outlined chart below has been provided for each section to indicate the favored party based on my mentor’s and my opinion. I have also included the thought on the language form the management’s perspective as they are the ones have to legally abide by this
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