Teachers Union to Vote on New Contact With Philly Schools

Photo | Jeff Fusco

It’s been four years since the Philadelphia School District and its teachers’ union have agreed on a contract – and five years since teachers have received a raise.

That could end tonight. The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers will vote on a new contract with the district – and they’re expected to approve it.  Read more »

Teachers to Fly Angry Banner Over NFL Draft

Photo illustration by Joe Trinacria.

Photo illustration by Joe Trinacria.

After going 1,300-plus days without a new contract – and still counting – many Philadelphia teachers are pissed. So pissed that some of them raised money to hire a pilot to fly their message of displeasure over the Parkway before tonight’s NFL Draft without remorse for how bad of a look it will be for the city.

“You know what, it will be an embarrassment,” George Bezanis, the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers’ building rep for Central High School and the man behind the airplane banner, told Philly Mag. “But what should be an embarrassment is how the city is neglecting its teachers.” Read more »

Teachers’ Union Head Rejects District’s $100M Contract Offer

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Photo | Jeff Fusco

The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers has reportedly rejected a $100 million contract offer from the School District of Philadelphia.

The Inquirer reports that PFT president Jerry Jordan won’t take the contract to his membership. The PFT says the deal doesn’t include retroactive pay or cost-of-living adjustments. Philadelphia teachers have been without a contract since August 2013 — a total of 1,187 days.

As a result of not having a contract, district teachers have not received raises in four years. The contract offer, per the report, would not retroactively move teachers up in “steps” that guarantee teachers higher pay. It would not give teachers increases for earning advanced degrees — instead using $32 million in bonus pay to help fill positions at difficult-to-staff schools. Read more »

Will Supreme Court Break the Power of Philly’s Municipal Unions?

The U.S. Supreme Court | Shutterstock.com

The U.S. Supreme Court | Shutterstock.com

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday heard a case that could undermine the power of Philadephia’s powerful municipal unions.

The case, Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, doesn’t directly involve Philadelphia. But the issue it decides — whether civic unions that serve the School District of Philadelphia, City Hall and other public institutions can force non-members to pay union dues as a “fair share” of the benefits they receive from union activity — could have a big impact here.

“All of the unions in the city of Philadelphia, certainly the school district, and the commonwealth of Pennsylvania, have negotiated fair share agreements. So if the court were to overrule that decision, it would have very serious consequences for all local unions, including the uniformed services,” attorney Elaine Williams told KYW. Read more »

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