Bargaining Brief, October 11th, 2023

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Hello Educators,

PAT began the day by confirming in person that yesterday we filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the state labor board regarding the District’s notice of their intention to refuse to bargain with us on several important issues.  We also contend that some of the issues they identified are in fact mandatory subjects of bargaining under state law.  We hope for a quick legal ruling from the State, but in the meantime we continue to urge District management to bargain with us on all of our proposals, as the law allows them to do.

Earlier in the week, we met with management to ask questions about apparent discrepancies in the District’s finances.  With assistance from professional financial analysts, we questioned management’s budget reports.  Management was unable to answer those questions satisfactorily, and the meeting ended with a promise they would get back to us with answers.  We learned nothing from the meeting to change our belief that the District can afford to pay fair COLA’s, provide workload relief, and invest in the things needed to improve health and safety in our schools.   

We spent significant time today explaining to management how they can provide more planning time, sharing how our proposed minimum planning minutes could actually be achieved even with current schedules for elementary and middle schools. 

PAT provided amended supposals for the Mandated versions of the Early Childhood Educators, Special Education and Article 8 (Workload). Unfortunately, these supposals included the removal of tentatively agreed upon contract language in order to adhere to the District’s demands. However, the good news is all of our proposals remain fully intact in our student-centered package.  We urge district management to consider this package and quickly settle this contract.  

In light of the fact that yet another bargaining session has come and gone with no movement of any kind from management, and only one scheduled meeting remaining on the calendar, we encourage you to vote yes to authorize our bargaining team to call for a strike. Your building’s Reps and/or CAT leads will bring ballots to your school site. You can vote between next Monday-Thursday. 

We are going to win!

In Solidarity,

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

Ryan Olds, OEA Staff
Angela Bonilla, President
Portland Association of Teachers