Tell Us Your Thoughts on B-REA Negotiations
Discussions are continuing in our story about Tuesday's board of ed meeting.
Some are concerned that raising salaries will increase taxes; others feel the teachers are not receiving their due.
But whatever way you feel about the current fight between the board of education and the Bridgewater-Raritan Education Association, the one thing that is clear is that everyone has an opinion.
And after hundreds of teachers showed up at Tuesday's board of education meeting to discuss the hours they put in to do whatever they can for the students, the vote became split between understanding the plight of the school staff and still feeling they are already getting enough.
In fact, in our informal poll, with 396 votes cast as of 11 p.m. Thursday, 136 people [34 percent] are more sympathetic to the teachers, and 260 [65 percent] still feel the same about the negotiations.
Comments from readers about the issue of the negotiations have continued to fill our story about Tuesday's meeting, with some believing that the teachers have to understand taxpayers cannot afford to pay any more money toward salaries, and others believing there is already plenty in the budget to make it work.
"The only additional thing I'd like to add to this conversation is that people always talk about how well-paid teachers are, and how 'rich' our benefits are, yet, when asked if they would rather switch jobs with me they always balk," said reader "NJ Teacher." "The only reason I can imagine this occurs is because deep down they know that teachers aren't overpaid, and that their 'rich' benefits are part of their remuneration."
"I believe that teachers and administration need to take a long and hard look at things," added reader "Mr. Had Enough." "If the teachers can't get a raise, administrators should not either. Your benefits are better than the private sector hands down, even at 10 percent cost base. I haven't seen a raise in years and bonus ... they were the first thing to get cut during the economic downturn and amazingly not restored four years later."
And for some, they are sad to see the changes in the relationship between the board of education and the B-REA.
"It took me a few minutes to read the reports of what the BOE is doing in B-R to realize that the harmony and teamwork many of us worked for decades to cultivate has eroded drastically," said reader Ken Villani. "Sad. So sad."
"I am truly amazed by the negative attitudes and comments that have been launched at the educators here in Bridgewater," said reader Fred H. "First and foremost, these are the people that educate our children, recognize their potential, open their minds, make them feel good about themselves and lead them to knowledge and understanding so they realize that they can become whatever they want later in life."
But we don't want the conversation to end here. The negotiations are continuing, and teachers are expected to show up for the two upcoming board of education meetings in May with continued intent to speak out about the state of the negotiations.
So head on over to the story about the meeting, and let's continue the discussions, and don't forget to let your vote be heard in our poll.