T/E TEACHERS WILLING TO HELP CREATE A FINANCIAL BRIDGE TO THE FUTURE
The teaching professionals of the Tredyffrin Easttown Education Association believe we are partners with the community, parents, School Board, and administration of the Tredyffrin Easttown School District. We are jointly vested in providing the best possible education for our students, and share the responsibility to create sustainable solutions to ensure the financial health and academic excellence of our schools.
To that end, TEEA voluntarily froze our salaries this year, resulting in almost $1 million in payroll savings. Few Pennsylvania teachers, less than one quarter, took this action. In addition, the District reduced its professional staff by almost 10% over the past three years. As a result, we now teach more classes and more students, a continuing source of savings to the District totaling $6 million in salary and benefits to date. While doing more with less, your teachers remain committed to the students of T/E and have consistently provided a superior, award-winning educational experience.
Our current teacher contract ends on June 30th. Recognizing the difficult financial situation facing the District, TEEA prepared and offered an extremely reasonable solution. We remain willing to meaningfully discuss this offer further.
Unfortunately, School Board members are not present at the negotiations table, and its representatives have been unwilling to discuss our offers. We believe this is a lost opportunity for the Board to work directly with their professional staff to produce creative solutions to our financial situation. Worse, the School Board is preparing a vote to allow the demotion of our most experienced and well-educated teachers. The demotions proposed by the Board would reduce these teachers from full-time to half-time status.
In practical terms, these teachers – who form the foundation of our educational program and have committed their lives to the education of T/E children – would be forced to seek employment elsewhere.
At the same time, the Board has made assumptions about our future financial condition based upon many worst-case scenarios. They assume no future revenue growth, continued real estate decline, and continued lack of state and federal funding. These assumptions ignore significant increases the district made to its reserve fund in the past year. A more reasonable projection would account for an improving employment rate in Chester County, a real estate market that is beginning to rebound, and other indications of improving economic conditions.
In lieu of demotions, the Board should return to the bargaining table and join with us to help develop solutions to our financial issues while preserving the excellent educational program that we have all worked so hard to create.
Please make your voice heard at this Monday’s School Board meeting.
Without you these assets to our community will be lost for good.
The meeting is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
T/E School District Administration Offices
West Valley Business Center
940 West Valley Road
Suite 1700, Wayne, PA
Meeting Room 200