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Poll: Do Negotiations Affect the Students?

Do they affect the learning environment?

The and the board of education have been locked in negotiations since the contract expired in June 2011, and now they are going into fact finding after mediation failed to bring about a new contract.

But is all this affecting the students themselves as they continue to attend school every day?

Teachers have said they are trying not to speak to students about the contract issue because it is inappropriate to do so. When students ask about their Friday morning walkouts—where teachers remain outside their buildings until the moment their most recent contract requires them to walk inside, and they do not stay past their contracted hours—they just simply say they are waiting until it is time to go inside because of their contracts.

But they do not discuss the specifics of the negotiations.

And many teachers have said they are just trying to do the best they can for the students.

What do you think, Bridgewater? Take our poll and let us know if you think the negotiations are affecting students, and tell us in the comments exactly what you think!

Mike April 05, 2012 at 01:11 AM
Where's Ronald Reagan when you need him? Perhaps Santorum can summon the Almighty to raise Ronnie from the dead so he could fire 'em all and hire desperate recent college grads at $12/hr with no benefits and make 'em "1099" employees. Those who wear black do so to show solidarity. The biggest issue is that there's been no contract for almost a year. "Working to contract" means just what it says: doing what's required by contract. That said, MOST teachers would never say no to a senior who needs a letter of recommendation for college (some teachers write many and spend many hours of their OWN time to do so) or to the second grader who's struggling who wants extra help after school. Few know about stuff like that; they just know what NJ 101.5 echoes (literally and figuratively). As far as who's hurting in town, compare the student parking lot to the teacher parking lot. Many 17- and 18-yr-olds in this town are doing quite a bit better than adult educators who work for a living.
Mike April 05, 2012 at 03:49 AM
My sources (students and adults in different schools) all tell me the impact is minimal. One intermediate school student told me "Yeah, they have meetings on Fridays. Not sure what that's about." I think older kids should know that teachers are working without a contract and their congregating before school and wearing black are forms of solidarity in what they believe - and leave it at that. It's a living civics lesson; when the axe came out two years ago and over 70 positions were cut, several students spoke at BoE meetings. This type of young adult will ask questions - teachers need to be cautious in how they respond (e.g., explain facts).
Chuck knows stuff April 05, 2012 at 11:44 PM
Translation: You feel uncomfortable around teachers because you are sending your kids to the people who you decry on comment sections such as this. If you really care about your kids you should be doing everything in your power to make sure that the best people are on the job, how do you do that in this free market economy you ask bridgewater mom? Oh that is easy, make salaries attractive enough to encourage the best people take the job.
Chuck knows stuff April 05, 2012 at 11:47 PM
Zombie Reagan 2012
Fred April 09, 2012 at 01:17 PM
Chuck, Continually raising salaries does not automaticly convert to a better education for our children. Quite frankly the best teachers are not always the highest paid. I agree with Fred#2, lets convert to a merit based pay system where raises are based on preformance. I have been in Bwtr for a long time & have seen my school taxes skyrocket, yet the quality of education in the town has diminished. Let's also remember that it is the taxpayers that foot the bill here and this econony does not support a 8+% raise over 3 years regardless of how the union negotiated salary guide splits it up.

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