Boston Teacher Contract Negotiations At Impasse

BOSTON — After nearly two years of stalled contract negotiations, Boston teachers and school officials will ask a state mediator to step in and help break the impasse.

The school district and teachers union have agreed on a new system for assigning teachers to schools, but those policies cannot go into effect until the two sides iron out other differences over salary increases, teacher evaluations and compensation for a longer school day.

On Tuesday, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino criticized the Boston Teachers Union for failing to accept a new contract.

“Unfortunately, we must start planning for next year with the old process in place,” Menino said. “A process that puts teachers with mismatched skills in mismatched classrooms. That’s wrong.”

BTU President Richard Stutman says the talks would be more productive if Boston Public Schools Superintendent Carol Johnson were present.

Johnson joined WBUR’s Morning Edition to discuss the contract dispute. She says she meets with Stutman once a month and that it is “disingenuous” for him to imply that negotiations would have gone differently otherwise.

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  • Anonymous

    Incentive money in education is insulting, and “in your face” disrespectful, to every teacher who doesn’t get it; it sets up adversarial collaborative communities within a school. The BTU represents teachers and, as a teacher in a BPS turnaround school, I say NO to incentives!  If BPS wants that $9 million dollar federal grant, (which has nothing to do with the extra 30 minutes) set it up another way.  Previously, in the Boston Public Schools we had a system where all BPS schools, that made improvements, were awarded a flat sum of money.  All teachers at the school came together and decided what to spend it on.  One year my school spent our award on desperately need overhead projectors and another year on computers for the library, another year on sports uniforms and choir robes.  It was a worthy endeavor and everyone in the school community was united in meeting the schools goals.  “The children” were the ultimate beneficiaries.  On the teacher level, our principal would quietly give a teacher a class set of markers or a “Cram Globe” for doing extra things and going the extra mile, it was a token of appreciation and acknowledgement.  I am sure that our parents, and teachers, would prefer this model of incentive.

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