2. Click on View Your Retirement Progress Reports.
3. Click on the Employer Details for each year that you have been with CAVA.
7) If you were on the union organizing committee or believe you may have been discriminated against for union activity, please let the organizing committee know. Please save any evidence you have that you were involved with the union.
As professional educators, we believe our co-workers should not have to go through this period of anxiety each year. We look forward to bargaining a union contract that has employment protections, so our hard working colleagues cannot be let go without cause. Year to year contracts and arbitrary employment decisions harm our school, our students and our profession.
Education dollars should be invested in our classrooms, not sent out of state to fund exorbitant executive salaries
How much better off would our students be if class sizes were smaller, we had less teacher turnover, and CAVA teachers had time to focus more on instruction than on our ever-changing and expanding administrative responsibilities?
CAVA generally receives the same ADA as traditional brick and mortar schools in California. This is more than enough public money to reduce class sizes and allow teachers to spend more time focused on instruction. Unfortunately, too large a share of those resources (money that comes from California tax payer pockets) are shipped out of state each year to K-12 for curriculum, technology, and management services.
A surprising amount goes to subsidize K-12 executive salaries that are off the charts. Recently, the Center for Media and Democracy came out with a report that identified ex-K12 CEO Ron Packard as the “country’s highest paid teacher.” Though calling Packard a “teacher” is debatable, the report’s numbers are important to read:
“Packard made more than $19 million in compensation between 2009 and 2013, despite the alarming fact that only 28 percent of K12 Inc. cyber schools met state standards in 2010-2011, compared to 52 percent of public schools. Center for Media and Democracy estimates that K12 Inc. makes 86 percent of its revenue from the taxpayers.”(http://www.prwatch.org/news/2014/02/12393/new-report-exposes-america%E2%80%99s-highest-paid-government-workers)
When our workload increases, our students receive less attention. Additionally, our hard working CAVA colleagues have compensation packages that are approximately half of what surrounding district teachers make. The work stress combined with low compensation means high turnover—a problem that creates further instability in the classroom.
In this context, it’s hard to imagine how K12 can justify having paid Packard such an exorbitant sum of money. Shouldn’t our public resources be focused on the classroom, not used to pad K-12 executive salaries?
By organizing our union at CAVA, we will help CAVA/K-12 reprioritize and focus resources were they are needed- in the classroom.
We need your input!
Make sure to fill out the bargaining survey to help identify our priorities for how resources should best be used (let us know if you need to be added to the mailing list to receive surveys). Please check back here frequently for updates about our union organizing.
Our first survey went out this morning, so please check your personal email address. If you did not receive one, or would like to be added to our mailing list please let us know: email@example.com
Please take a moment to complete the survey as this will guide our conversations for bargaining preparations. Thanks for your input!
Last week we reported that administration took the first step towards following California law and posted the required notice announcing our request for union recognition. This week it looks like they are trying to take a different path. Rather than respecting our right to unionize, they may be trying to use legal maneuvers to try and delay our efforts to organize. In a recent letter from their notoriously anti-union and anti-educator law firm, they have suggested that CAVA should be considered 11 different schools that are totally independent (even though we all have the same management structure, policies and procedures, teach the same students, and so on). Furthermore, they have indicated that they should be considered a private company. This latter point runs contrary to CAVA’s entire revenue model which is dependent on public funding and we are concerned could potentially endanger their standing with the state of California.
We are not surprised that CAVA is trying to delay the process and expected they would likely try both of these tactics. We do however believe they should act responsibly, respect teachers’ right to organize, and avoid endangering our students and our school. In the meantime we will continue to build our union and get ready to make the changes that are needed at our school.
If you have any questions about these latest developments, be sure to contact our committee and keep checking our website for further updates.
While we realize there might be a bit of survey fatigue among our colleagues this season, we feel it is important to gain broad-based input from as many teachers as possible as we prepare for the bargaining phase. Our initial survey will come out soon, and all CAVA teachers will be invited to participate. If you know someone who does not get the link please have them send us their personal email address.
Survey questions are created by a team of organizing committee members from K-8, High School, and Special Education with the hope that they will generate valid and valued responses from all segments of our teaching staff. We hope to hear back from every teacher – both those who participated in the signature drive and those who did not. All teacher feedback will be considered as we move forward.
Check your e-mail in-box this week for an invitation to complete this survey. (Please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your contacts to make sure our e-mails stay out of your spam folder.) Our initial survey will come out this week. We will have additional surveys, meetings, and other ways to contribute your input during the months ahead. We look forward to seeing what you have to say!
Some of our colleagues have asked whether we should still sign our employment contracts now that we are unionizing. The answer is yes, we should. Now that we have decided to unionize, we are preparing to begin the process of negotiating a union contract. However, that process will not start immediately. In the meantime, CAVA administration is obligated to proceed as per their normal procedures. That includes offering us yearly employment contracts. Once we have negotiated and then ratified our union contract, it will supersede our year-to-year contracts. If you have any questions about this part of the process, please feel free to contact an organizing committee member or email us at: email@example.com.
According to California law, when teachers request union recognition, their school administration is supposed to post a specific notice in a public place that acknowledges the teachers’ request. As of May 27, CAVA administration posted the appropriate document. Though the notice itself is not the most interesting reading material, we are pleased our school is following the law. If you are interested in checking it out for yourself, log into Edmodo, look in the staff lounge folders, go to the one titled “Human Resources: Docs”, and it should be the one at the top. It is required to be posted until 6/16/14, so if you look for it after that you may need to ask a committee member for a copy. You can also find it below.
Next steps in the process include the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) verifying our majority support for unionization, and an input process in which everyone will have an opportunity to identify the improvements that are most important for our school!