I hope that your summer recess is off to a good start. We, at the RTA, will be addressing several important matters and will occasionally email you to keep you informed.
– Sticking with our union. Many of you have received an email from an anti-union and anti-public education operator urging you to help them undermine your union. What is troubling to us is that these emails are through your RCSD email addresses. I have already notified the District and they are investigating whether someone at the District has shared your RCSD email address. If so, that is definitely inappropriate and perhaps illegal. Expect more such attacks on us. But I remain confident that Rochester teachers value their union and will not be fooled by those who are determined to destroy our solidarity and collective strength.
– Paid Family Leave. We are continuing our efforts to secure this important benefit for our members. In a couple weeks, we will resume negotiations with the District so that this provision could be effective as soon as possible. While there are no guarantees that the District will agree, we can guarantee that we will continue to press for this important priority. We will keep you informed about the progress of our efforts on your behalf.
– APPR. We may have an opportunity this summer to negotiate with the District some changes in the APPR that would substantially reduce student testing, eliminate individual Students Learning Objectives (SLOs), and make other improvements to this “junk science” of teacher evaluation. The RTA Representative Assembly, in a straw poll, already gave us a green light to move in that direction. As soon as we know more about the prospects of achieving this, we will reach out to you for your input and collective wisdom, as well.
Please forgive this brief intrusion into your well-earned vacation. Enjoy the summer.
Adam Urbanski, RTA President