Brothers and Sisters,

This is a time when we really need to stick together – all of us. We have gone to mediation and it did not work well. Even the mediator did not see any resolutions at this time. So we will go back to the table and work with the Board when they are ready to see what we can accomplish. We have indeed made significant steps toward finding great solutions, but when we really looked at the effect it would have on you and your families, we simply could not agree to their offers. We countered with offers that they would not agree to as well. The most difficult part was not being able to share details with you because of confidentiality in closed bargaining.

As the Board has officially declared impasse, that confidentiality is no longer in place. They are looking to convince you that their proposals are great, but when we really dig into the numbers and the effects they will have on you, it is very disappointing. We are aware of the spin the Board will put on their proposals. Do not be fooled by the rhetoric being served.

Reach out to your city representatives – the Board of School Committee and the Board of Mayor and Aldermen. Reach out to your neighbors and friends in the city and ask them to attend the Board meetings. Attend the Mayor’s Community Hours. It is the public that needs to understand what we do for their children.

Reach out to us. Stop the rumor mill in its tracks. Going after each other from within is caustic. Let’s not add stress to ourselves about things for which we can find answers easily. We have always been transparent about what we are doing.

Help us to find education friendly candidates for upcoming elections. The Boards need people who are invested in education and moving Manchester forward.

In Solidarity,

Sue