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Teachers Moved by Student, Parent Support

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T/E teachers, counselors, and nurses offer our deepest thanks to the T/E community: to parents who work as partners with us in the education of their children—and of course, to our students, whose recent demonstration of support touched and inspired us.

Your heartfelt support reminds us of why we love to come to work each day.

Thank you.

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See related Main Line News articles to learn more:

“Parents and Students Speak Out Against School District’s Demotion Scheme” and “Devon Man Stuns T/E School Board with Check.”

Teachers Ask Community to Voice Concerns at School Board Meeting

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To our friends and neighbors,

The demotion of T/E teachers at all grade levels is a very real possibility. As reported last week in Main Line News (“Tough Budget Strategies” and “Strings In; PhDs May Be Out”), the district suggested that it could demote teachers by “select[ing] the highest-paid employees to get the most return.” Another option mentioned was to “demote a whole department” and that the district would simply “fraction along.”

In other words, the district would demote its most experienced and highly educated teachers and replace them with part-time staff.

In addition to demoting teachers, the district is also considering increasing class sizes at the elementary level for next year. We believe that these changes will have a direct impact on the classroom and compromise our educational program.

We ask that you come to Monday’s Board meeting to help protect the quality of education for our students.

This meeting will be the last opportunity the public will have to ask questions and voice its concerns before the Finance Committee determines its recommendation to the full Board;

the last opportunity before the Committee will vote to demote some of the most valuable and the most beloved teachers in our schools—teachers who have made significant contributions to the district at all grade levels, including T/E’s successful AP program;

the last opportunity to urge the Board to work with all stakeholders to find creative solutions to our financial problems instead of making decisions that put our students and teachers at risk.

We understand that tough decisions will have to be made during this economic downturn, and T/E teachers have already indicated our willingness to help. We only ask that the Board come back to the negotiating table to work with teachers in a spirit of cooperation rather than make short-sighted decisions that will have long-term—and possibly irreparable—consequences.

Please help others to stay informed by forwarding this to your neighbors and encouraging them to attend.

The meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. and will be held at the TESD Administration Offices, West Valley Business Center, 940 West Valley Road, Suite 1700.

We hope to see you there.

Sincerely,
Teachers, Counselors, and Nurses of Tredyffrin-Easttown SD

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Please click here to see previous TEEA update.
Stay informed by joining our email list.

Teachers Hope For Open Dialogue, Ask Community to Share Voice

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This Monday April 23rd will be the public’s last opportunity to speak to the Tredyffrin Easttown School Board prior to their vote on a measure to demote many of our most effective T/E teachers.  This demotion measure would force the resignation of many of our most educated teachers and would be a substantial disruption to the T/E educational program.  Instead of threatening to demote teachers, the Board should return to the bargaining table and join with us to develop solutions to our financial problems.  The district has the resources to bridge the gap to the future while these solutions develop.

Questions that must be asked at Monday’s board meeting:

  • Isn’t talent retention paramount for all successful organizations? Does it make sense to demote our most experienced and well-educated teachers who are the foundation of a superior education for our students?
  • Shouldn’t the Board seek solutions that protect our best programs and the highly-experienced teachers who make these programs a success? Shouldn’t cutting these teachers and such programs wait until all other options are exhausted?
  • The reserve fund is 26% of revenue. Other local school districts have fund balances of 8% to 10%. The Pennsylvania School Boards Association recommends a balance no greater than 5%. What should our priority be? Protecting a small portion of the fund balance or preserving our award-winning program and teachers?
  • Why can’t the School Board create a temporary bridge to the future by using some of its reserve to resolve next year’s budget deficit?
  • Should we forecast and make short-term decisions using worst-case scenarios for the next five years when the financial future is uncertain and recovery is gaining momentum?
  • Why are there no Board members at the negotiations table? Wouldn’t we be more likely to come up with creative solutions to our financial problems if the Board was at the table?

We ask these questions because we care about our school district. Many of our teachers have spent their entire adult lives working here. We want the best for our students and our community. And because we are invested in T/E, we think that it is imperative for us all to work together to bridge this financial gap rather than dismantle the school district we know and love.

Please make your voice heard at this Monday’s School Board meeting.

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

Please click here to see previous TEEA update.
Stay informed by joining our email list.

Teachers Willing to help Create a Financial Bridge to the Future

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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

Stay informed by joining our email list.