Bargaining Brief, February 14th, 2023

Hello Educator,

Today your PAT bargaining team met with District administrators. We spent most of the session discussing academic freedom and the impact of testing on instructional time.

As professionals, we know that it’s our job to teach in a way that reaches every student. This is why we’ve fought so hard for our academic freedom, so we can determine the best materials, instructional practices and assessments for our students. 

Unfortunately, as we explained to the District’s team, their rigid implementation of new curricula is making it harder for educators to serve our students, to ensure they can see themselves in the books we read, or to adapt the way students demonstrate understanding. It was disturbing to hear PPS management suggest that adopted texts with racist depictions of different groups can be used as a “learning experience”.

From PPS' Wit and Wisdom Adoption Page
From PPS' Wit and Wisdom Adoption Page

We also stressed how many hours we are losing to unnecessary standardized tests and were surprised to hear District administrators claim that we only spend between 4 to 12 hours a year, on average, administering standardized tests across PPS.

Today’s session made it clear how far apart both sides are at this stage. We highly encourage everyone to tune into our next session, Wednesday February 22, when the District team will be presenting their financial proposals.

You can watch today’s session online and read more about our proposals on the PAT website.

In Solidarity,
Your PAT Bargaining Team
Steve Lancaster, Chair
Francisca Alvarez
Samara Bockelman
Julia Fogg
Thea Keith
Charity Powell

Portland Association of Teachers