Impasse

Negotiations between TAAAC and the Board did not produce a tentative agreement on Friday, June 5th. There is one proposal pending for which TAAAC is awaiting a Board response. If the response is satisfactory to the team, there will be one or two less items in the impasse packet. A declaration of impasse will still be sought and almost certainly granted. As of Friday’s session, impasse is no longer a probability. It is a certainty. We expect a response on the pending issue shortly after the June 17th BOE meeting, when it will have its first opportunity to consider it. It regards the restoration of 12-month schedules for 210-day employees and department chairpersons conducting observations.

THE ITEMS DESTINED FOR IMPASSE REGARD THE FOLLOWING:
  • Granting additional experience credit to new hires
  • Annual nature of step increases
  • Salary
  • Procedures for resignation
  • Elementary planning time
  • Number of days in the work year
  • Procedures for suspending or dismissing a certificated educator
  • Department chairs conducting observation
  • Restoration of pupil services persons to their former 12-month status
  • Extra-curricular stipends

The County Council will strike its budget on June 12th and the BOE will have to reconcile its budget on June 17th. In that same meeting, the BOE will adopt terms and conditions of employment for bargaining units, including ours, that have failed to reach a tentative agreement. If the BOE unilaterally imposes new and different terms and conditions of employment before there is a declaration of impasse, TAAAC will file the appropriate unfair labor practice complaint to the Public School Labor Relations Board.

TAAAC’s Board of Directors meets tomorrow evening, and may be asking members for some organized action during the impasse. The BOE has apparently decided to simply TAKE whatever it could not buy or fairly negotiate. We should not sit by silently.

TO TIENET USERS: THE FOLLOWING EMAIL WAS FORWARDED TO THE TAAAC REGARDING DUTIES FOR SPECIAL EDUCATORS WITHOUT MENTION OF COMPENSATION:

As we begin our closeout of the 2013-14 school year, you are urged to review your annual and triennial due dates for compliance. Please make necessary arrangements to wrap up all remaining IEP meetings during these final weeks while 10-month staff is still available. Make sure that all students have current IEP’s to begin the next school year.

AACPS has a responsibility to provide FAPE for all students. Therefore, timelines do not stop at the end of the contracted school year. Remember that the special education process, for any student, must be completed within timeline. If a parent requests testing during these final weeks of school, the team may not postpone the process until the following school year; an IEP A must be scheduled as soon as possible. The timeline for the IEP A process begins with that parent request.

Due to current budgetary restrictions, the option of central office support or the hiring of school-based staff during the summer months may not be supported. In the event meetings must be held beyond the contracted school year, arrangements must be made at the building level for staff to attend. Meetings cannot be postponed or delayed due to summer staffing issues. All federal timeline requirements must be met.

While there is no dispute that federal guidelines must be met, the obligation belongs to your employer, the AACPS, not to any individual employee. It certainly does not relieve the employer from paying the employee for the work done. Further, any 10-month employee who is required to come into work on a non-duty day should expect to be paid at an hourly rate appropriate to annual salary. Here is how our collective bargaining agreement approaches the topic.

ARTICLE 3T. COMPENSATION FOR SUMMER HEARINGS/COURT CASES

10-month Unit I members who are required at the request of the school system to serve as witnesses at school related Special Education hearings or school related court cases between the end of one ten (10) month work year and the beginning of another will be paid an hourly rate computed from the Unit I member’s actual per diem rate in effect at the time of the hearing or court case with a minimum of three (3) hours applied. Unit I Members shall be reimbursed at the rate included in this negotiated agreement for authorized travel relating to their attendance at such hearing(s) or court case(s).

Even though an IEP may not constitute a “hearing” the same approach should be demanded by 10-month employees who are required to come in and provide services to the employer on non-duty days. There is even some question as to whether you can be required to come in on non-duty days. If/When that happens and there are questions, please contact the TAAAC office for guidance.