SB Myths: We don't measure teacher's effectiveness

Moderator: The Merrimack Volunteer Moderators

Postby Ken Coleman » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:07 am

Dennis Posted

I find it interesting that over the past 21 years that I have lived in town, I can not recall ever hearing about a strike or even any disharmony.


What a bunch of nonsense!

Let me get this straight, when we have had contracts turned down and or 0 raises for the teachers (Both happened at least 2 times in the 90's) the problem is that our teachers did not do something like the did in Nashua? And this shows a problem between the school board and the union?

In other words in your opinion if our teachers act improperly it is wrong and if they do not, there must be something wrong!

Ken Coleman
Ken Coleman
 
Posts: 1146
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2002 8:49 am

Postby Dennis King » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:10 am

Ken Coleman wrote:Dennis,

You can spill all the hatred toward me you want, it still does not change the fact that STATE LAW says that a public employees contract remains in full force until a successor contract is put into place. I could not change that, Emily and Rose can not change that, and Dan and Jen could not change that. ONLY a change in state law can affect this.

Ken Coleman

BTW I have testified in Concord asking for some of these changes. What have your candidates done in this regard?



Ken, I do not hate you but do recognise this tactic. Somehow you just don't like to be questioned on anything you do. If you control the pursestrings of all the taxpayers in town fro 10 years, you should be willing to take some critisim and not call it "hate"

If we have to negotiate with teachers as a union, well school can always start a month late if it means finally getting some fiscal control over the runaway costs in this town. So we have to cancel winter and spring recess and maybe end later in June, if we finally got a contract we could live with, I would be willing to do that. If I was sitting on the board, the teachers would know that from the start and we can then negotiate a better deal. No 3/4 million increase, 80/20 healthcare, higher co pays and a 3 percent cap on raises. I think that is fair and worth fighting for.

That is the big difference between us Ken, I beleive you need to be willing to work hard for the taxpayers while being fair to the teachers; you seem to be working hard for the teachers while being unfair to the taxpayers.

See the difference?

From what I see of Rose and Emily, they are more alligned with your perspective. I did not think Rose would ever go this route given her statements but I did hope Emily would be different. She had the chance to speak out and show she was but all I saw was candidate speak that said really nothing, I suspect she feels she has the election in the bag and she is probably right; most people hear what they want and she is very good at saying what appears to be in line with those desires, all in all, a great politician but I was hoping for more and maybe she will surprise me in the next couple of days.

Time for a change
User avatar
Dennis King
 
Posts: 2032
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:37 am

Postby Confucius » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:11 am

Dennis King wrote:I agree Confucious, Maybe that is what needs to happen. If Emily was so shocked, why did she not simply say the article was advisory and she had already considered this positions after lengthy meetings and therefore she would vote to return the 3/4 of a million to the tax payers, if she said that, I would be supporting her as it is clear she has a lot of experience.

Oh Brian, I though you were nuetral, guess not.

I find it interesting that over the past 21 years that I have lived in town, I can not recall ever hearing about a strike or even any disharmony.

I think the whole SB/union interactions have been much too coordinated and maybe that is why we find ourselves in such a predicament with our taxes.

time for new leadership, vote for Jen and Dan


I actually understand why Emily wouldn't shoot from the hip and say she'd give the money back.

That horrid DS abomination is part of our political process. The views of a segment of the populace are represented there. Part of the populace added money back into the budget. I supposed Emily could have looked like a buffoon and stood up in the DS and scolded the folks taking part in the process and making changes, but she didn't do that thankfully. In her typical measured fashion, she dutifully agreed to reexamine the budget as requested at the DS.

Do I think adding the money back in was a good idea? Absolutely not. Do I hope all or most of it gets back to the taxpayers? Absolutely. I expect that allowed to do so, Emily and the current school board members will arrive at the same conclusion after the respectful (of the DS) reexamination of the budget.

Only a very tactless town politician would get up mid-DS and make shoot-from-the-hip pronouncements about the very work happening at the DS. I fear that Dan D and Jenn T would act just this way.
My font > yours.
Confucius
 
Posts: 315
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2004 7:23 pm

Postby Dennis King » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:17 am

Confucius wrote:
Dennis King wrote:I agree Confucious, Maybe that is what needs to happen. If Emily was so shocked, why did she not simply say the article was advisory and she had already considered this positions after lengthy meetings and therefore she would vote to return the 3/4 of a million to the tax payers, if she said that, I would be supporting her as it is clear she has a lot of experience.

Oh Brian, I though you were nuetral, guess not.

I find it interesting that over the past 21 years that I have lived in town, I can not recall ever hearing about a strike or even any disharmony.

I think the whole SB/union interactions have been much too coordinated and maybe that is why we find ourselves in such a predicament with our taxes.

time for new leadership, vote for Jen and Dan


I actually understand why Emily wouldn't shoot from the hip and say she'd give the money back.

That horrid DS abomination is part of our political process. The views of a segment of the populace are represented there. Part of the populace added money back into the budget. I supposed Emily could have looked like a buffoon and stood up in the DS and scolded the folks taking part in the process and making changes, but she didn't do that thankfully. In her typical measured fashion, she dutifully agreed to reexamine the budget as requested at the DS.

Do I think adding the money back in was a good idea? Absolutely not. Do I hope all or most of it gets back to the taxpayers? Absolutely. I expect that allowed to do so, Emily and the current school board members will arrive at the same conclusion after the respectful (of the DS) reexamination of the budget.

Only a very tactless town politician would get up mid-DS and make shoot-from-the-hip pronouncements about the very work happening at the DS. I fear that Dan D and Jenn T would act just this way.


I was referring to her comments in the telegraph and the journal, this is well past the DS and would show she reviewed it again and came to the same conclusion. That is leadership. Too bad the Exchange club cancelled the meeting, I showed up both nights, I really wanted to ask this question to ALL the candidates.
User avatar
Dennis King
 
Posts: 2032
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:37 am

Postby Dennis King » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:19 am

Ken Coleman wrote:Dennis Posted

I find it interesting that over the past 21 years that I have lived in town, I can not recall ever hearing about a strike or even any disharmony.


What a bunch of nonsense!

Let me get this straight, when we have had contracts turned down and or 0 raises for the teachers (Both happened at least 2 times in the 90's) the problem is that our teachers did not do something like the did in Nashua? And this shows a problem between the school board and the union?

In other words in your opinion if our teachers act improperly it is wrong and if they do not, there must be something wrong!

Ken Coleman


I guess that explains your giving them a whopping 21% raise over 3 years! Wow, sign me up for that!, it is just not flying buddy, and the biggest cost, medical/dental, is still not under control!
User avatar
Dennis King
 
Posts: 2032
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:37 am

Postby GregRS » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:24 am

Dennis King wrote:
Ken Coleman wrote:Dennis,

You can spill all the hatred toward me you want, it still does not change the fact that STATE LAW says that a public employees contract remains in full force until a successor contract is put into place. I could not change that, Emily and Rose can not change that, and Dan and Jen could not change that. ONLY a change in state law can affect this.

Ken Coleman

BTW I have testified in Concord asking for some of these changes. What have your candidates done in this regard?



Ken, I do not hate you but do recognise this tactic. Somehow you just don't like to be questioned on anything you do. If you control the pursestrings of all the taxpayers in town fro 10 years, you should be willing to take some critisim and not call it "hate"

If we have to negotiate with teachers as a union, well school can always start a month late if it means finally getting some fiscal control over the runaway costs in this town. So we have to cancel winter and spring recess and maybe end later in June, if we finally got a contract we could live with, I would be willing to do that. If I was sitting on the board, the teachers would know that from the start and we can then negotiate a better deal. No 3/4 million increase, 80/20 healthcare, higher co pays and a 3 percent cap on raises. I think that is fair and worth fighting for.

That is the big difference between us Ken, I beleive you need to be willing to work hard for the taxpayers while being fair to the teachers; you seem to be working hard for the teachers while being unfair to the taxpayers.

See the difference?

From what I see of Rose and Emily, they are more alligned with your perspective. I did not think Rose would ever go this route given her statements but I did hope Emily would be different. She had the chance to speak out and show she was but all I saw was candidate speak that said really nothing, I suspect she feels she has the election in the bag and she is probably right; most people hear what they want and she is very good at saying what appears to be in line with those desires, all in all, a great politician but I was hoping for more and maybe she will surprise me in the next couple of days.

Time for a change


Clearly, you're not paying attention to the SB. Rose has been working proactively on the healthcare issues. The most recent adjustments to the healthcare contract saves the district hundreds of thousands of dollars. If that's not sticking up for the taxpayer, I don't know what is.

As for your 80/20, most companies offer choices, some more expensive than others. This is no different with school districts. Our district currently has 3 offerings with up to 30% contributions by the employee and is based on varying amounts of healthcare coverage. This plan saves the district more than your 80/20 plan would.

3% raises? Show me where we are giving every teacher at least a 3% raise next year. It doesn't work that way.
GregRS
 
Posts: 361
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2004 2:30 pm

Rose and Emily

Postby Brian McCarthy » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:36 am

I will be voting for people who I feel will listen to me when I have
a concern, even when it is a concern that they do not agree with. I will
be applying that same rationale to all other people up for election.

Rose and Emily will be getting my vote for school board.

My post had to do with working with unions and the reality of that
situation.

Brian

Dennis King wrote:I agree Confucious, Maybe that is what needs to happen. If Emily was so shocked, why did she not simply say the article was advisory and she had already considered this positions after lengthy meetings and therefore she would vote to return the 3/4 of a million to the tax payers, if she said that, I would be supporting her as it is clear she has a lot of experience.

Oh Brian, I though you were nuetral, guess not.

I find it interesting that over the past 21 years that I have lived in town, I can not recall ever hearing about a strike or even any disharmony.

I think the whole SB/union interactions have been much too coordinated and maybe that is why we find ourselves in such a predicament with our taxes.

time for new leadership, vote for Jen and Dan
Brian McCarthy
 
Posts: 1347
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2002 8:12 am
Location: Merrimack, NH

Postby RD » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:39 am

GregRS wrote:Clearly, you're not paying attention to the SB. Rose has been working proactively on the healthcare issues. The most recent adjustments to the healthcare contract saves the district hundreds of thousands of dollars. If that's not sticking up for the taxpayer, I don't know what is.

Exactly. Those who are supporting Mr. Dwyer and Ms. Twardosky don't seem to have a clue about what the SB does and is doing; and that includes those two candidates themselves!
RD
 
Posts: 5689
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2004 3:49 pm

Postby Ken Coleman » Fri Apr 06, 2007 10:53 am

Dennis,

Yous till don't get it. Start school 3 months late?, it does not matter becuase the teachers old contract continues to be in effect into a new one is put into place. NOTHING any school board member can do changes this.

Ken Coleman
Ken Coleman
 
Posts: 1146
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2002 8:49 am

Postby Gina Rosati » Fri Apr 06, 2007 1:43 pm

Dennis King wrote:

I had one question to ask the candidates: Would they return the 3/4 of a million to the tax payers, in essence stand by the budget apporved by the SB and BC?

In reading the paper, I see Emily was "shocked", but in a careful read of the quotes, no where does it say she would stick with the original budget.

I think this election is key, we need people who will stick to the original budget and who will negotiate from a positon of strength.



Dennis, why don't you log onto merrimackvotes.org and see for yourself ... Rose and Emily both tell you that they will vote "yes" on Article 9, and they also say the following:

Emily: "If this article fails and the default budget is enacted, the School Board has the discretion to spend an amount that is roughly $800,000 over the budget approved by the School District Budget Committee and $100,000 over the budget as amended at the Deliberative Session. While the operating budget as it appears in this article asks the School Board to consider adding personnel, enacting the default asks the School Board to reconsider all areas of the budget. The budget that was presented by your School board to the School Budget Committee was the result of hundreds of hours of research, inquiry, preparation, compromise and discussion by members of the School Board. The result was recommended to the voters at Deliberative Session with a 5-0-0 vote and indicated confidence in a budget that kept an eye on the bottom line without compromising the quality of education programming in Merrimack."

Rose: "I stand by the original budget as proposed by the school board and school budget committee. It was a budget that was well designed and worked to address rising costs while maintaining a quality educational environment. With the amendment, the budget now represents additional funds that may be used at the discretion of the board; however, it is my feeling that we should use those funds only if it provides value-added components to the students' educational experience. I will not support spending the additional funds for the sake of spending. Though the goal of the amendment was to restore all teacher positions that were marked for removal in the original budget, I will not support restoring teaching positions that were eliminated due to declining enrollment."

Welll, there you have it. They both plan to stick with the original budget. But don't take my word for it. Check merrimackvotes.org for yourself. It shows you where Rose and Emily stand on every issue. They have no secrets from the people of Merrimack. They posted their views on a well-publicized website for all to see. I would love to see/hear what Jen and Dan have to say. Dennis, you are good friends with Jen. Why hasn't she responded :?:
Gina Rosati
 
Posts: 75
Joined: Sat Jul 01, 2006 2:50 pm

Postby andysinnh » Fri Apr 06, 2007 2:27 pm

And, Dennis, the one thing we've discussed in the past is - what if the voters vote "YES" to the asst principal at MES? Do you just tell folks that the "will of the people" be damned and ignore them? I'd love to hear Jen and Dan's response to that question - and it was queued up for me to ask at candidates night - along with several others that would have left no doubt as to who had done their homework and who hadn't.

Fresh blood? Not this blood, not this time....

andy
Andy Schneider
andysinnh
 
Posts: 2361
Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2006 12:04 am
Location: Woodward Rd

Postby Dennis King » Fri Apr 06, 2007 3:35 pm

Ken Coleman wrote:Dennis,

Yous till don't get it. Start school 3 months late?, it does not matter becuase the teachers old contract continues to be in effect into a new one is put into place. NOTHING any school board member can do changes this.

Ken Coleman


Ken, I may be slow but are you saying we would have to pay stricking teachers based on the just expired contract? That does not make sense to me. The only leverage we have is the fact that most people (including the hard working taxpayers in this town), can only survive for a few weeks without pay. If the teachers were not getting their checks (because they were on strike), they would get their union benefits but each day would get harder and as time went on, they would be more inclined to come to a compromise more in line with what the taxpayers can afford. I would estimate 3-5 weeks, not 3 months.

I can't beleive you pay people who are on strike, that makes no sense.

If that was the case, then I would understand why the union has walked all over this town; tell me that is not so, it makes no sense at all.

How would people get paid for not working? I think you meant that the old contract stays in effect until a new one is made. As a former Hospital Administrator, that makes sense to me and they can stay flat line for as long as they want until we can come to an accord.

Like I said, it all comes down to who's interest is the priority


Gina, I read the links on their pages and nothing said anything about keeping the budget as is, I will check out the link. I recall hearing Rose in a school board meeting saying she was open to adding some positions/ I do see that Rose and Emily do their homework and that is why it was so important to hear what their positon was on this, I will check this site as nothing I have seen to date addressed the issue.

I really wished we had the debates, I wanted to hear the clear answer to this as well as to determine the substance each candidate was willing to bring. I am very busy these days but I will have to call each one to determine just where they stand
Dennis
User avatar
Dennis King
 
Posts: 2032
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2003 10:37 am

Postby JMac1000 » Fri Apr 06, 2007 5:45 pm

Dennis.

I do agree with you that the next union contract is going to have to be negotiated very carefully, and I think Healthcare costs need to be addressed head on. I have heard of instances in the past, several years back, where the Union could have accepted a change in providers, and it would have saved the district into the millions per year, with no change in the level of benefits. From, what I recall, the Union refused. I was appalled by this, as an employee in the Private Sector, I would certainly understand a move to another provider to save money.... Everything should be on the table, including looking at the contribution percentages, and if area communities pay a higher percentage of contributions for healthcare, this should be looked at very closely.

I would happen to disagree with you about the 21% raise. I am not appalled by that, and here is why. First of all, this does happen in the Private sector. For example, a number of years back, earlier in my career, and in a prior job, my salary was well below others in my group. This was recognized, and I recieved a raise of that amount, 21% in one year alone. If area communities are paying significantly higher salaries, our teachers are going to apply for those positions in other districts. There are significant costs to backfill these positions, from adverstising, and resources spent looking for qualified teachers. I think the district should do its best to pay wages and benefits on a par, or equal to area communities, within reason. At the end of the day, you have to look out for "joe taxpayer too". I understand that, and that has to enter into the equation. It is those individuals that can strike the right balance between looking out for Joe Taxpayer, and a high quality education, gets my vote.
Last edited by JMac1000 on Fri Apr 06, 2007 5:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.
JMac1000
 
Posts: 2030
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2003 10:21 pm

Postby Wayne » Fri Apr 06, 2007 5:53 pm

Boy, I come home from work, check out the forum, and find out I missed a ton of fun. :cry:

I just would like to comment that I certainly prefer a town where there is relative harmony, to one where our best employees are disgruntled and can't wait to find a job elsewhere and get out of town. I think we have some great teachers, and statistics seem to indicate the pay scale is competitive but not outlandish. The SB should always negotiate with the taxpayers in mind, but negotiating is a two-way street. Teachers deserve a fair deal, and I want them to be happy working here.

As for the money put back into the budget by the DS, it would be totally irresponsible for Emily Coburn not to at least consider restoring some of the positions. Leadership means listening to students, parents and teachers. The interested voters spoke, and now it's a leader's job to give their desires a fair hearing. Doing what you want to do without taking any input, and despite what anybody else thinks, is not leadership.
Wayne
 
Posts: 2866
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2002 8:47 am
Location: Merrimack

Postby Ken Coleman » Fri Apr 06, 2007 7:36 pm

Dennis posted

Ken, I may be slow but are you saying we would have to pay striking teachers based on the just expired contract? That does not make sense to me. The only leverage we have is the fact that most people (including the hard working taxpayers in this town), can only survive for a few weeks without pay. If the teachers were not getting their checks (because they were on strike), they would get their union benefits but each day would get harder and as time went on, they would be more inclined to come to a compromise more in line with what the taxpayers can afford. I would estimate 3-5 weeks, not 3 months.


I will try one more time. The teachers would not need to strike because they would still have a contract. Their contract continues until a new one is put into place.

The last couple of contracts have only had the smallest of net raises (under 2%) when the health care concession was taken into account. If a proposed contract offers even less in total they have no reason to accept it as they can continue with the current contract.

Furthermore, even the large raises you talk about 7 years ago were supported by over 70% of the voters! The voters must approve every contract and every dollar spent on the new contract is posted on the warrant.

Ken Coleman
Ken Coleman
 
Posts: 1146
Joined: Fri Nov 22, 2002 8:49 am

PreviousNext

Return to School Topics

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron