At the present time, there is a debate as to what should be done about the compensation and insurance benefits for our teachers. It’s a shame it went to impasse because this is a no-brainer.
If our school system exits to educate our children and grandchildren to prepare them to be successful in an occupation or in preparation for further education, it can only be done one way — have the finest, most dedicated teachers that money can buy. That can only occur if we treat them with utmost respect, compensate them fairly and handle their healthcare needs adequately. I would suggest that a mediator was prudent enough to realize that all they are asking for is enough to meet their needs. Why then the big deal?
Apparently, the administration is concerned that we won’t have adequate reserves if we meet their needs. I would suggest that the board is the governance group in the district. Demonstrate the leadership and instruct administration to get on with it and meet the teachers needs. If they contend there’s not enough funding, then change priorities and spend less on some of the less important projects administration is spending on.
We the People in Manatee County provide in excess of $600,000,000.00 a year to run the school system. That equates to between $12,000-$13,000 per student and that’s more than adequate. I would suggest that if the board and administration can’t figure it out, appoint a private-public collaborative alliance task force. It will take only one meeting to get this one resolved.
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Richard T. Conard