Congratulations on finishing this school year in a strong way!! Our students have benefitted from your expertise and training. I hope you have time to fit in relaxation and fun this summer.
School will start for the ’18-’19 school year on August 31 for us, with set-up day on September 4. Students will start September 5, along with orientation and assessment for Kindergarten on September 5-7. All students will be in school on September 10. Although I certainly understand the conveniences of having a longer weekend and students starting on Tuesday, this was a well thought out decision with input from the Executive Board, NEA-NH leadership, and members. My job is to defend the contract and to make sure it is enforced.
You have received a communication from us regarding the plan for next year. We will work to the contract. This is a proven method to bring more clarity to what we do and what we have to do it with. It is often more difficult for us than for anybody else in this type of movement, but its effect is big. I also understand that your conscience tells you to do otherwise. I think any educator would feel this way. The argument is that this is supposed to be about the students. Yes, I do feel that is an accurate statement, but isn’t it about us too? Isn’t it about time we say it is about us too? We are educators who have families, pets, and community activities like the rest of the community. We need to be able to support our lives, along with supporting the lives of our students and their families. You all know a teacher who is on the steps in our salary schedule. Do you realize that this will be the 4th time in 6 years they have had their steps frozen? They will have to teach 19 years in Manchester to reach the top of the scale. They will have lost upwards of $135,000 in salary by then, not including the loss from interest that could have been gained. They will have lost being on the top step for three years prior to retiring, making their retirement lower than those already at the top step. We are fighting for those taking the place of those who are ready to retire in the next 10 years. We are fighting for their lives and their careers, their rights and working conditions. We are fighting for educators to have the respect they deserve. This is not negative- what is negative is the way educators will be treated later, and making your family suffer. Our campaign is a positive one. We want to give the public a true idea about who is helping their child become a productive adult.