State reps. urge teacher contract resolution

June 22, 2012
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Several local elected officials, including state Reps. Jeffrey Sánchez, Russell Holmes and Liz Malia, have signed on to a letter sent to Boston Public Schools (BPS) and the Boston Teachers Union (BTU) saying they are “disappointed” an agreement has not been reached in contract negotiations.

The letter, which was dated June 6, calls for the two sides to come to a swift resolution that increases student success and improves teacher effectiveness. The negotiations recently went to a mediator.

“I signed on to urge the powers-that-be to sit down and work this out,” said Malia.

The representative said she found it encouraging that the two sides are sitting down with a mediator, but added, “It is a complex issue.”

BPS spokesperson Matt Wilder said BPS has received the letter and, “We don’t necessarily disagree [with it]. We want a swift resolution to the contract.”

Wilder said BPS has offered a competitive pay package, but BTU wants a $116 million pay increase that doesn’t give BPS students any more time in school and is not affordable.

“Their numbers consistently overstate reality,” responded Richard Stutman, president of BTU.

He added later, “We frankly have no confidence in their mathematical abilities. Thank God our teachers do a better job than their budget office.”

Stutman did say BTU is in full agreement with the letter from the local officials.

 

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