Minneapolis school board

warning: Parameter 2 to onepixelout_swftools_flashvars() expected to be a reference, value given in /home/langmul/public_html/includes/module.inc on line 476.

The Way Forward for Public Education, Part 2

On-air date: 
Mon, 10/27/2014
Listen to or download this episode here: 

You are missing some Flash content that should appear here! Perhaps your browser cannot display it, or maybe it did not initialize correctly.

With the elections only a week away, Minneapolis voters will choose the candidates they wish to represent them on the Minneapolis school board.

Last week, at-large candidate Don Samuels and education policy fellow Michael Diedrich joined TruthtoTell to discuss promising approaches to creating schools that work for all our kids.  This week, join co-hosts Siobhan Kierens and Tom O’Connell as we continue that discussion with at-large school board candidates Iris Altamirano and Ira Jourdain.

Support TruthToTell by donating whatever you can afford here: DONATE NOW.


TruthToTell, Mon. Jan 30@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS (cont’d) & GRAD ASSISTANT UNIONIZING–KFAI 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org

 

Remember – call and join the conversation – 612-341-0980 – or Tweet us @TTTAndyDriscoll or post on TruthToTell’s Facebook page.

HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

TruthToTell, Mon. Jan 30@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS (cont’d) & GRAD ASSISTANT UNIONIZING–KFAI 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org


We return to the subject of teacher contract issues in Minneapolis after running out of time last week…if ever sufficient time is possible. And we talk with Grad Assistant organizers at the UofM trying to unionize their colleagues.

As we said last time, all school districts in the state of Minnesota – have been negotiating their teachers’ contracts over the last many months, some arriving at agreement well before some others. St. Paul in the throes of its negotiations. Minneapolis Schoolsconcluded theirs last Fall.

Core Minnesota city schools, especially Minneapolis and St. Paul – contain more kids of color than white students in their classrooms – and have been shown among the worst in the nation for their achievement gaps – that scholastic chasm separating white children from kids of color, especially Black, Latino and Native children.

Teacher-bashing seems to come easy for some who see their organizing efforts as a threat to the notion that teachers should do only what they’re told to do and should be subject to parental and administrative overlords. But, what role can and do teachers also play in keep the gap alive? As we said last week, many parents, advocates and educators cite the clear disparity in the color of students and the person teaching them.

Change ain’t easy – for people or groups of them. Organizations who have maintained insider relationships long enough usually want no other stakeholders involved in their “business,” and suggest such public decision should remain private.

Last time, we included representatives from the Minneapolis teachers union – the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers – the long-standing bargaining unit for those standing in front of our kids. This week, those reps found themselves forced to withdraw by personal circumstances, so we’re bringing back the critics and hope to clarify their positions. Those stakeholder groups - like Action for Equity and Put Kids First Minneapolis started attending the meetings and, in no uncertain terms insisted that, as progressives who support collective bargaining and closing the gaps. In coalition with others, and calling it "Contract for Student Achievement," they advanced five key ideas for last Fall’s bargaining. They, and their ideas for reforms, ran into a brick wall, essentially dismissed as interlopers with no business being part of the process. We talk with our returning advocates.

In Segment Two, we learn about the effort to organize University of Minnesota Graduate Assistants into a UAW local (GSWU/UAW). Grad Assistants are those research and teaching aides who do much of the work collecting and imparting knowledge to undergraduates and other graduate students while administrating classes and compiling data for professors and instructors as they work their own way toward masters degrees and PhD.

Why organizing efforts in general always seem to bang heads with highly resistant administrations seems so strange. Here’s a thought: ask General Motors or Ford and other large corporations if they would really want their unions to go away – and you will hear a whispered, “Hell, no”. Such bargaining units are critical to the bottom line because they keep workers in line. And yet – almost no cooperation melts away in the initial stage establishing a local.

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis teacher negotiations and hear from grad students about their work to essentially herd the cats of academia – the often ego-driven ranks of deans and professors and administrators and their graduate assistants.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

SARA NELSON – Teaching Assistant, Geography, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW Grad Student local

SCOTT THALLER – Research Assistant, Physics, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW Grad Student local

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

TruthToTell, Mon., Jan 23@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS: Who Should Have a Say in What? - AUDIO IS HERE

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis bargaining process and let St. Paul’s Chief Negotiator explain where the laws and contract terms diverge.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

LOUISE SUNDIN – Past President, Minneapolis Federation of Teachers (MFT);

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

JAY RITTERSON – retired Minneapolis School teacher; President, Committee of Thirteen (MFT Pension PAC)Professional Development Trainer Consultant

TIM CASKEY – Chief Negotiator/Director of Human Resources, St. Paul Schools

TruthToTell, Mon. Jan 30@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS (cont’d) & GRAD ASSISTANT UNIONIZING–KFAI 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org

 

Remember – call and join the conversation – 612-341-0980 – or Tweet us @TTTAndyDriscoll or post on TruthToTell’s Facebook page.

HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

TruthToTell, Mon. Jan 30@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS (cont’d) & GRAD ASSISTANT UNIONIZING–KFAI 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org


We return to the subject of teacher contract issues in Minneapolis after running out of time last week…if ever sufficient time is possible. And we talk with Grad Assistant organizers at the UofM trying to unionize their colleagues.

As we said last time, all school districts in the state of Minnesota – have been negotiating their teachers’ contracts over the last many months, some arriving at agreement well before some others. St. Paul in the throes of its negotiations. Minneapolis Schoolsconcluded theirs last Fall.

Core Minnesota city schools, especially Minneapolis and St. Paul – contain more kids of color than white students in their classrooms – and have been shown among the worst in the nation for their achievement gaps – that scholastic chasm separating white children from kids of color, especially Black, Latino and Native children.

Teacher-bashing seems to come easy for some who see their organizing efforts as a threat to the notion that teachers should do only what they’re told to do and should be subject to parental and administrative overlords. But, what role can and do teachers also play in keep the gap alive? As we said last week, many parents, advocates and educators cite the clear disparity in the color of students and the person teaching them.

Change ain’t easy – for people or groups of them. Organizations who have maintained insider relationships long enough usually want no other stakeholders involved in their “business,” and suggest such public decision should remain private.

Last time, we included representatives from the Minneapolis teachers union – the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers – the long-standing bargaining unit for those standing in front of our kids. This week, those reps found themselves forced to withdraw by personal circumstances, so we’re bringing back the critics and hope to clarify their positions. Those stakeholder groups - like Action for Equity and Put Kids First Minneapolis started attending the meetings and, in no uncertain terms insisted that, as progressives who support collective bargaining and closing the gaps. In coalition with others, and calling it "Contract for Student Achievement," they advanced five key ideas for last Fall’s bargaining. They, and their ideas for reforms, ran into a brick wall, essentially dismissed as interlopers with no business being part of the process. We talk with our returning advocates.

In Segment Two, we learn about the effort to organize University of Minnesota Graduate Assistants into a UAW local (GSWU/UAW). Grad Assistants are those research and teaching aides who do much of the work collecting and imparting knowledge to undergraduates and other graduate students while administrating classes and compiling data for professors and instructors as they work their own way toward masters degrees and PhD.

Why organizing efforts in general always seem to bang heads with highly resistant administrations seems so strange. Here’s a thought: ask General Motors or Ford and other large corporations if they would really want their unions to go away – and you will hear a whispered, “Hell, no”. Such bargaining units are critical to the bottom line because they keep workers in line. And yet – almost no cooperation melts away in the initial stage establishing a local.

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis teacher negotiations and hear from grad students about their work to essentially herd the cats of academia – the often ego-driven ranks of deans and professors and administrators and their graduate assistants.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

SARA NELSON – Teaching Assistant, Geography, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW Grad Student local

SCOTT THALLER – Research Assistant, Physics, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW Grad Student local

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

TruthToTell, Mon., Jan 23@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS: Who Should Have a Say in What? - AUDIO IS HERE

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis bargaining process and let St. Paul’s Chief Negotiator explain where the laws and contract terms diverge.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

LOUISE SUNDIN – Past President, Minneapolis Federation of Teachers (MFT);

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

JAY RITTERSON – retired Minneapolis School teacher; President, Committee of Thirteen (MFT Pension PAC)Professional Development Trainer Consultant

TIM CASKEY – Chief Negotiator/Director of Human Resources, St. Paul Schools

TruthToTell, Mon. Jan 30@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS(cont’d) & GRAD ASSISTANT UNIONIZING–LISTEN/DOWNLOAD BELOW

On-air date: 
Mon, 01/30/2012

HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We return to the subject of teacher contract issues in Minneapolis after running out of time last week…if ever sufficient time is possible. And we talk with Grad Assistant organizers at the UofM trying to unionize their colleagues.

As we said last time, all school districts in the state of Minnesota – have been negotiating their teachers’ contracts over the last many months, some arriving at agreement well before some others. St. Paul in the throes of its negotiations. Minneapolis Schools concluded theirs last Fall.

Core Minnesota city schools, especially Minneapolis and St. Paul – contain more kids of color than white students in their classrooms – and have been shown among the worst in the nation for their achievement gaps – that scholastic chasm separating white children from kids of color, especially Black, Latino and Native children.

Teacher-bashing seems to come easy for some who see their organizing efforts as a threat to the notion that teachers should do only what they’re told to do and should be subject to parental and administrative overlords. But, what role can and do teachers also play in keep the gap alive? As we said last week, many parents, advocates and educators cite the clear disparity in the color of students and the person teaching them.

Change ain’t easy – for people or groups of them. Organizations who have maintained insider relationships long enough usually want no other stakeholders involved in their “business,” and suggest such public decision should remain private.

Last time, we included representatives from the Minneapolis teachers union – the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers – the long-standing bargaining unit for those standing in front of our kids. This week, those reps found themselves forced to withdraw by personal circumstances, so we’re bringing back the critics and hope to clarify their positions. Those stakeholder groups - like Action for Equity and Put Kids First Minneapolis started attending the meetings and, in no uncertain terms insisted that, as progressives who support collective bargaining and closing the gaps. In coalition with others, and calling it "Contract for Student Achievement," they advanced five key ideas for last Fall’s bargaining. They, and their ideas for reforms, ran into a brick wall, essentially dismissed as interlopers with no business being part of the process. We talk with our returning advocates.

In Segment Two, we learn about the effort to organize University of Minnesota Graduate Assistants into a UAW local (GSWU/UAW). Grad Assistants are those research and teaching aides who do much of the work collecting and imparting knowledge to undergraduates and other graduate students while administrating classes and compiling data for professors and instructors as they work their own way toward masters degrees and PhD.

Why organizing efforts in general always seem to bang heads with highly resistant administrations seems so strange. Here’s a thought: ask General Motors or Ford and other large corporations if they would really want their unions to go away – and you will hear a whispered, “Hell, no”. Such bargaining units are critical to the bottom line because they keep workers in line. And yet – almost no cooperation melts away in the initial stage establishing a local.

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis teacher negotiations and hear from grad students about their work to essentially herd the cats of academia – the often ego-driven ranks of deans and professors and administrators and their graduate assistants.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

SARA NELSON – Teaching Assistant, Geography, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW Grad Student local

SCOTT THALLER – Research Assistant, Physics, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW Grad Student local


57:49 minutes (52.93 MB)

TruthToTell, Mon. Jan 30@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS (cont’d) & GRAD ASSISTANT UNIONIZING–KFAI 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org

On-air date: 
Mon, 01/30/2012

Remember – call and join the conversation – 612-341-0980 – or Tweet us @TTTAndyDriscoll or post onTruthToTell’s Facebook page.

HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We return to the subject of teacher contract issues in Minneapolis after running out of time last week…if ever sufficient time is possible. And we talk with Grad Assistant organizers at the UofM trying to unionize their colleagues.

As we said last time, all school districts in the state of Minnesota – have been negotiating their teachers’ contracts over the last many months, some arriving at agreement well before some others. St. Paul in the throes of its negotiations. Minneapolis Schools concluded theirs last Fall.

Core Minnesota city schools, especially Minneapolis and St. Paul – contain more kids of color than white students in their classrooms – and have been shown among the worst in the nation for their achievement gaps – that scholastic chasm separating white children from kids of color, especially Black, Latino and Native children.

Teacher-bashing seems to come easy for some who see their organizing efforts as a threat to the notion that teachers should do only what they’re told to do and should be subject to parental and administrative overlords. But, what role can and do teachers also play in keep the gap alive? As we said last week, many parents, advocates and educators cite the clear disparity in the color of students and the person teaching them.

Change ain’t easy – for people or groups of them. Organizations who have maintained insider relationships long enough usually want no other stakeholders involved in their “business,” and suggest such public decision should remain private.

Last time, we included representatives from the Minneapolis teachers union – the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers – the long-standing bargaining unit for those standing in front of our kids. This week, those reps found themselves forced to withdraw by personal circumstances, so we’re bringing back the critics and hope to clarify their positions. Those stakeholder groups - like Action for Equity and Put Kids First Minneapolis started attending the meetings and, in no uncertain terms insisted that, as progressives who support collective bargaining and closing the gaps. In coalition with others, and calling it "The Contract for Student Achievement," they advanced five key ideas for last Fall’s bargaining. They, and their ideas for reforms, ran into a brick wall, essentially dismissed as interlopers with no business being part of the process. We talk with our returning advocates.

In Segment Two, we learn about the effort to organize University of Minnesota Graduate Assistants into a UAW local (GSWU/UAW). Grad Assistants are those research and teaching aides who do much of the work collecting and imparting knowledge to undergraduates while administrating classes and compiling data for professors and instructors as they work their own way toward masters degrees and PhD.

Why organizing efforts in general always seem to bang heads with highly resistant administrations seems so strange. Here’s a thought: ask General Motors or Ford and other large corporations if they would really want their unions to go away – and you will hear a whispered, “Hell, no”. Such bargaining units are critical to the bottom line because they keep workers in line. And yet – almost no cooperation melts away in the initial stage establishing a local.

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis teacher negotiations and hear from grad students about their work to essentially herd the cats of academia – the often ego-driven ranks of deans and professors and administrators and their graduate assistants.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity;
and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

SARA NELSON – Teaching Assistant, Geography, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW local (GSWU/UAW)

SCOTT THALLER – Research Assistant, Physics, UofM – Spokesperson, UAW local (GSWU/UAW)


0:50 minutes (1.52 MB)

TruthToTell, Mon., Jan 23@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS: Who Should Have a Say in What? - KFAI FM 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org

Remember – call and join the conversation – 612-341-0980 – or Tweet us @TTTAndyDriscoll or post onTruthToTell’s Facebook page.

HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

TruthToTell, Mon., Jan 23@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS: Who Should Have a Say in What? - KFAI FM 90.3/106.7/KFAI.org

The cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul – as all districts in the state of Minnesota – have been negotiating their teachers’ contracts over the last many months, some arriving at agreement well before some others. St. Paul in the throes of its negotiations. Minneapolis concluded theirs last Fall.

Reams of data have now shown that the core cities, especially the Minneapolis District – with more kids of color than white students filling their classrooms – remain among the worst in the nation for their achievement gaps – that chasm separating white children from kids of color, especially Black, Latino and Native children. Some Minnesota citizens would see this as another sign that children of color cannot, somehow, learn, because – well, because they’re not white.

Others know better. But this sense of white supremacy can have devastating effects on those children as their mentors try hard to move the State Legislature toward funding the closing of such gaps, but them widening when efforts fail. Lawmakers have done little to adequately finance education or its funding mechanisms while insisting that all education decisions are so local that they can do little to even up the disparities, especially in districts where the gaps are so blatant, they can’t be assigned anywhere but to a persistent race and class bias at almost every level. Poverty is not an uncontrollable element of society. It’s a reason, not an excuse.

What roles do our teachers play in maintaining this gap? Many parents, advocates and educators cite the clear disparity in the color of students and the person teaching them. Many also say that the system of teacher seniority, or tenure, is archaic as the sole determinant for decisions affecting who gets which classrooms where and who gets laid off first if the crunches come – as they most certainly have. Older teachers may be the best. But they may not be, and the system, for the most part, cannot take reality that into consideration in its hiring or firing decisions.

Change comes hard for most people, not least for organizations who have maintained insider relationships long enough not to want other stakeholders involved in their “business.”

The Minneapolis Federation of Teachers – the city’s teachers union is no exception, certainly. As the long-standing bargaining unit for all those who earn their livings at the front of all classrooms in the city’s school district, it, like all others of its kind, want very few changes – aside from a few harmless tweaks – not only to the way they’ve represented those teachers and maintained their contract provisions, but also to the very act of negotiating what is clearly a public document. Anyone outside the union and the district’s negotiating team and, finally the School Board, they say, is a non-expert, no matter whom the outsiders represent, and should have no say in contract terms.

Those groups, like Action for Equity and Put Kids First, both insisting they are strong progressive, even DFL, parents and citizens who support collective bargaining, tried putting several ideas on the negotiation table for last Fall’s bargaining, and generally hit a stone wall, essentially dismissed as interlopers with no business being part of the process.

In St. Paul, the School District is currently in negotiation with its teachers’ union – the St. Paul Federation of Teachers, whose President, Mary Cathryn Ricker, has been our guest a couple of times. That union group has, for the first time in Minnesota, it is said, asked for a provision casting classroom sizes in concrete – specific sizes for specific grades – right in the contract, which would essentially nullify what has thus far been an entirely administrative function.

How much of an uproar is this causing? We’ll try for some answers to that question.

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis bargaining process and let St. Paul’s Chief Negotiator explain where the laws and contract terms diverge.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

TIM CASKEY – Chief Negotiator/Director of Human Resources, St. Paul Schools

INVITED, but declining to appear: 
LYNN NORDGREN – President, Minneapolis Federation of Teachers

INVITED, but unable to appear: 
JEAN O’CONNELL, Chair, St. Paul School Board

TruthToTell, Mon., Jan 23@9AM: TEACHER CONTRACTS: Who Should Have a Say in What?-AUDIO IS UP BELOW

On-air date: 
Mon, 01/23/2012

HELP US BRING YOU THESE IMPORTANT DISCUSSIONS OF COMMUNITY INTEREST – PLEASE DONATE HERE!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul – as all districts in the state of Minnesota – have been negotiating their teachers’ contracts over the last many months, some arriving at agreement well before some others. St. Paul in the throes of its negotiations. Minneapolis concluded theirs last Fall.

Reams of data have now shown that the core cities, especially the Minneapolis District – with more kids of color than white students filling their classrooms – remain among the worst in the nation for their achievement gaps – that chasm separating white children from kids of color, especially Black, Latino and Native children. Some Minnesota citizens would see this as another sign that children of color cannot, somehow, learn, because – well, because they’re not white.

Others know better. But this sense of white supremacy can have devastating effects on those children as their mentors try hard to move the State Legislature toward funding the closing of such gaps, but them widening when efforts fail. Lawmakers have done little to adequately finance education or its funding mechanisms while insisting that all education decisions are so local that they can do little to even up the disparities, especially in districts where the gaps are so blatant, they can’t be assigned anywhere but to a persistent race and class bias at almost every level. Poverty is not an uncontrollable element of society. It’s a reason, not an excuse.

What roles do our teachers play in maintaining this gap? Many parents, advocates and educators cite the clear disparity in the color of students and the person teaching them. Many also say that the system of teacher seniority, or tenure, is archaic as the sole determinant for decisions affecting who gets which classrooms where and who gets laid off first if the crunches come – as they most certainly have. Older teachers may be the best. But they may not be, and the system, for the most part, cannot take reality that into consideration in its hiring or firing decisions.

Change comes hard for most people, not least for organizations who have maintained insider relationships long enough not to want other stakeholders involved in their “business.”

The Minneapolis Federation of Teachers (MFT) – the city’s teachers union is no exception, certainly. As the long-standing bargaining unit for all those who earn their livings at the front of all classrooms in the city’s school district, it, like all others of its kind, want very few changes – aside from a few harmless tweaks – not only to the way they’ve represented those teachers and maintained their contract provisions, but also to the very act of negotiating what is clearly a public document. Anyone outside the union and the district’s negotiating team and, finally the School Board, they say, is a non-expert, no matter whom the outsiders represent, and should have no say in contract terms.

Those groups, like Action for Equity and Put Kids First Minneapolisboth insisting they are strong progressive, even DFL, parents and citizens who support collective bargaining, tried putting several ideas on the negotiation table for last Fall’s bargaining, and generally hit a stone wall, essentially dismissed as interlopers with no business being part of the process.

In St. Paul, the School District is currently in negotiation with its teachers’ union – the St. Paul Federation of Teachers, whose President, Mary Cathryn Ricker, has been our guest a couple of times. That union group has, for the first time in Minnesota, it is said, asked for a provision casting classroom sizes in concrete – specific sizes for specific grades – right in the contract, which would essentially nullify what has thus far been an entirely administrative function.

How much of an uproar is this causing? We’ll try for some answers to that question.

Join TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL and MICHELLE ALIMORADI as we give some vent to and ask some key questions of critics of the Minneapolis bargaining process and let St. Paul’s Chief Negotiator explain where the laws and contract terms diverge.

GUESTS:

LYNNELL MICKELSEN – Co-Founder of Put Kids First Minneapolis and one of the authors of the Contract for Student Achievement

LOUISE SUNDIN – Past President, Minneapolis Federation of Teachers (MFT)

CHRIS STEWART – former Minneapolis School Board Member; CEO, Action for Equity; and Co-Chair, Education Work Group of the African-American Leadership Forum

JAY RITTERSON – retired Minneapolis School teacher; President, Committee of Thirteen (MFT Pension PAC)Professional Development Trainer Consultant

TIM CASKEY – Chief Negotiator/Director of Human Resources, St. Paul Schools

[audio-player]
53:38 minutes (0 bytes)

TTT MON. Aug 9: PRIMARY FOCUS 2010: At-Large Minneapolis School Board Seats-KFAI FM 90.3, 106.7, or Streamed @KFAI.org

S THERE A MORE THANKLESS JOB than sitting on a local board of education? Worse – an urban school board, with its multiple issues of funding, student achievement, teacher contracts, charter schools, parent involvement – or lack of it, volatile management and lingering desegregation requirements? It’s powers are limited, the compensation meager, the polarization inevitable.

  Illustration by http://www.illustrationgames.com)" target="_blank">Paulo Jimenez

This year will be first for a new Minneapolis Board of Education configuration passed in 2008 requiring nine instead of seven members, six of which are district-based, the other three at-largeTTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL hosts a conversation among the six most viable of the ten on the ballot.

GUESTS: (in alphabetical order):

• CHANDA SMITH BAKER

• REBECCA GAGNON

• STEVEN LASLEY

• RICHARD MAMMEN

• MOHAMUD NOOR

• THEARTRICE (T.) WILLIAMS

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PODCAST HERE: TTT MON. Aug 2: PRIMARY FOCUS 2010: Primary Contenders for Ramsey County District Judge

GET PODCAST: PRIMARY FOCUS 2010: At-Large Minneapolis School Board Seats

On-air date: 
Mon, 08/09/2010

IS THERE A MORE THANKLESS JOB than sitting on a local board of education? Worse – an urban school board, with its multiple issues of funding, student achievement, teacher contracts, charter schools, parent involvement – or lack of it, volatile management and lingering desegregation requirements? It’s powers are limited, the compensation meager, the polarization inevitable.

Despite the ever-pressing – and for many, seemingly irresolvable – burdens school board members face day in and day out, despite the rapid burnout rate of board members, the refusal by teachers’ unions to back beleaguered incumbents – parents, education activists,  and just plain concerned citizens continue to jump into the fray – perhaps believing that they will be the ones to make the difference between failure and success.

[Illustration by Paulo Jimenez (http://www.illustrationgames.com)

This year will be first for a new Minneapolis Board of Education configuration passed in 2008 requiring nine instead of seven members, six of which are district-based, the other three at-large. Too few candidates filed for of the District seats to need primaries; but ten candidates filed for the two at-large positions. (Shirlynn LaChapelle is not campaigning.) (Listen online by clicking on the KFAI logo in the right-hand column.)

TTT’s ANDY DRISCOLL hosts a conversation among the six most viable of the ten on the ballot:(in alphabetical order):

• CHANDA SMITH BAKER

• REBECCA GAGNON

• STEVEN LASLEY

• RICHARD MAMMEN

• MOHAMUD NOOR

• THEARTRICE (T.) WILLIAMS


58:50 minutes (26.94 MB)