July 23, 2013
Greetings! Welcome you back to the new school year. I hope you had a restful summer. Mine has been busy between transitioning into the new position and the NEA Representative Assembly. I’m currently in San Jose at the CTA training for new local presidents. It’s been odd not preparing for students.
Brand’s Budget Priorities Survey
Throughout the day yesterday, I received emails regarding a video you were shown on Monday and questions about some sort of budget survey. After reviewing the “Welcome Back” video posted on the district website, I have quite a few concerns. My most immediate concern is the issue of the survey. While being presented as your input to help “determine priorities” for the organization, I believe the survey to be little more than a smoke screen. If you read the Bargaining Update from last Friday, you can see how Dr. Brand has clear District priorities already. If you haven’t seen it, take a look; it’s eye opening.
I can guarantee you that the results of any survey will only be used against our bargaining team. More seriously, it is a violation of Public Employee Relations Board (PERB) rules governing how bargaining takes place between employer and employees through their elected union representatives. Therefore, I urge you not to participate in this survey.
Please read Friday’s Bargaining Update, take a look at the District’s proposal, and you tell me how much you think Dr. Brand is demonstrating that he’s a part of team.
Below, you will see the message I sent Dr. Brand regarding this issue. Again, I strongly urge you NOT to participate in the District’s survey.
The following is the message I sent Dr. Brand this morning:
After reviewing the “Welcome back” video where you announced a survey that would be used to “determine priorities” I must remind you that we are in bargaining right now and this will be considered direct negotiations with members and a violation of PERB rules. Presumably the survey results will have a bearing in budgeting priorities for the district and therefore would affect bargaining. Therefore, I strongly suggest that you not send out the survey.
These are the types of actions that absent prior dialog with union leadership deepen the atmosphere of distrust we want to overcome. As you state in the video, “It’s one thing to say you’re a team, and another to demonstrate it.”