Answering The Call!

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2 Replies to “Answering The Call!”

  1. Andy –

    Wondering what you think about the latest news from LA at the intersection of charters and teachers’ unions:

    The Accelerated School charter teachers seek representation by UTLA
    First time that employees of a Los Angeles start-up charter school are seeking union representation.

    February 5, 2009 – United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) announced today that it has filed papers with the Public Employees Relations Board (PERB) to represent teachers, counselors and other certificated employees of The Accelerated School (TAS) after teachers approached the union requesting representation. PERB will now process the papers to certify UTLA as the exclusive bargaining representative for the purposes of negotiating a contract and representing TAS employees.

    Teachers supported the move by an overwhelming majority and cited participation in the educational decision making process, improved classroom conditions both for teachers and students, job security and fair compensation as the main reasons for approaching UTLA.

    “We believe that representation by UTLA will give protections to teachers that will allow them to stand up for students and their families, give a genuine voice to teachers, and will allow teachers to contribute to curriculum and professional development,” said A.J. Duffy, president of United Teachers Los Angeles.

    TAS consists of grades pre K-12 at one campus, and a dual-language school for grades K-6, the Accelerated Charter Elementary School (ACES), at a separate location nearby. Approximately 70 teachers, counselors, etc. are employed by the schools.

    This step is a breakthrough for UTLA in union organizing and for teachers in L.A. employed by charter schools. This filing is part of UTLA’s willingness to provide representation for all teachers in Los Angeles schools, including those employed by start-up charters, and is another example of UTLA taking a lead role in education reform.

    See also,0,4416099.story

  2. The irony in this situation is that TAS board member Lowell Billings brought in his San Diego political pal Patrick Judd to run TAS in a rigid, top-down fashion. Patrick Judd has for many years professed his opposition to unions, but in the case of the Accelerated School he seems to have accomplished the exact opposite of what he intended: he aggravated employees so much that he motivated them to organize.

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