A discussion of positive case notification practices and at-home testing practices.
A discussion of the way the most recent snow day was handled for clerical staff.
A follow-up to the first discussion of the meeting.
Heather provides an overview of different Zoom events offered by the MTA over the next month.
A discussion of how the NASE scholarship will be funded.
Sara presents the results from the JFK climate survey.
SVAHS and NPS negotiations teams discuss positions and processes.
Andrea Egitto, Heather Brown, Sharon Carlson, Carl Mead, Sara Churchill-Winsor, Karen Schiaffo, Kate Fontaine, Kara Sheridan, Paula Rigano-Murray, Erica Lamanna, Sarah Nowak, Ellen Brown, Daria Steward, Alex Peterson, Kristen Picard, Erica Caron, Mareatha Wallace, Michael Stavely-Hale, Laura St. Pierre, Vanessa Coates-Cooney, Kira Henninger, Jeromie Whalen, Jonah Dratfield, Sara Simmons, Leslie Skantz-Hodgson, Eva Rocheleau, Tammy Cook, Abel Millet, Brian Bagdon
Note: Remarks attributed to meeting participants are approximations, not quotations.
Andrea calls the meeting to order at 4:01.
FIRST TOPIC: covid practices
I would like to bring up the possibility of reducing nurses’ workload. I was thinking that maybe we could send home a letter when there’s a positive case in a classroom kind of like we do for lice. I know contact tracing will be stopping soon.
Yes, I did hear that we were going to stop contact tracing due to home testing. The superintendent said there would be a plan in place so that we can come back from February break.
I know there was worry about HIPAA violations.
But we already do it with strep and lice. Why is this different?
It’s not going to completely stop. We will still have notifications.
Heather, why don’t we add that to our list of things to bring to the Superintendent for clarification.
How is this system supposed to work with the home tests? If I don’t get it, I imagine it’s hard for families.
The reason for rapid tests is to improve access. If a child has symptoms, you can test before they come back into the classrooms. It’s really not for close contacts.
Could you, Karen, create a letter along those lines for membership? To make it easier for everyone to understand?
I’ve got one that I’ve been using, and I’ve distributed it to nurses in other buildings to see if they could pass it along. I’ll share it with you all in case you haven’t received it.
NEXT TOPIC: clerical snow days
In the past, clerical’s been told if a snow day’s really bad we don’t have to be there. This time, we were told that wasn’t the case. And then by the time we got to the school, the buildings were closed. And we were told NASE said that we could not work from home. There was some very unclear communication.
To clarify, NASE would never say you can’t work from home. We just want everyone in a unit to get the same opportunity.
To blame NASE on what’s a management decision, that’s frustrating, and it’s not true.
To offer one member of a unit one thing and deny that opportunity to another, that’s direct dealing, and it’s against the law.
Plus, if they’re going to go back against past practice, they can’t do that. They have to negotiate that.
This has happened in the past where we have to come in and just move our cars over and over so they can plow.
I know unit B has had the same problem before.
We’ll have to keep that in mind for negotiations.
It is already in the unit B contract, and it should be in the others.
I will say the message that buildings would be closed including to custodial didn’t come until 9am, but there should have been more opportunity to get the word out.
NEXT TOPIC: secretary’s report
to accept the secretary’s report as emailed.
Entertained by Andrea.
Moved by Sharon.
Seconded by Kira.
Amendment suggested by Andrea.
Moved as amended by Sharon.
Seconded as amended by Kira.
NEXT TOPIC: treasurer’s report
We’ve collected in dues, all three ways, 184,521.84.
119,428.57 of that goes to MTA/NEA.
That leaves us with 10,345.92 as our budget.
We’ve paid approximately half of our payroll at this time.
Expenses, we’ve paid 12,000 in payroll taxes.
Then 66 dollars in ink.
522.50 for the new members social.
And 325 for arbitration.
What’s not on there is that we still have about 41,000 dollars, so if we have to absorb the cost of the scholarship, we should be able to.
Karen asks clarification regarding new members social.
to accept the treasurer’s report.
Entertained by Andrea.
Moved by Carl.
Seconded by Kira.
NEXT TOPIC: follow-up to covid practices
The superintendent just sent an email that lists the days you’re supposed to test with the at-home kits.
NEXT TOPIC: MTA winter events
Zoom meetings for MTA’s winter skills events. I’ve highlighted these:
how to advocate for antiracist education, a legal toolkit
contract negotiation workshop
community partnership in action
bylaws and best practices for local committees and boards
Some of these MTA folx are skilled and good at these conventions and events.
They’re all free. Just click the Zoom link.
We actually presented at the negotiation workshop a few years ago.
And if you’re going to attend, it would be great if you could report back at our March meeting, help spread the knowledge and info.
I think Paula has more of these posted in her report that are more specifically for ESPs.
I attended the antiracist one when they were able to host it at UMass, and it felt very useful. If it’s the same, it’s very good.
We’ve also been talking about doing some sort of Delegates Training with Jason. It’s been a while since we’ve done one of those.
I’ve already been in touch with Jason. It’s in the works.
Do you have to be a delegate, or can any NASE member attend these?
Any member can attend. And you may be able to receive PDPs.
NEXT TOPIC: scholarship funding
Suzanne is on the scholarship committee for NHS. We have five $500 scholarships, four for NHS, one for SVAHS.
In the past, we’ve talked about trying to raise that money because we didn’t feel it was sustainable to spend that money ourselves.
I know the fundraising takes a lot of effort.
Are we feeling like we can sustain this amount every year?
I remember we had people donating a little bit at a time at events in the past.
My first local that I was in, we assessed $10 per member, and then everyone had paid the same amount.
And I think people would rather spend $10 than do the fundraiser.
Yeah, that’s something we should talk about when it comes to our budget and annual meeting.
NEXT TOPIC: JFK climate survey
We did a survey two years ago – that’s where we got the questions from, same questions as before.
All the questions we used were multiple choice questions except for the last one where people could elaborate on their responses, where we got pages and pages.
First bunch of pages of this summary are just about the breakdown of demographics.
Then into the questions. High levels of disagreement when it comes to feelings of safety and response to disrespect. High levels of dissatisfaction.
How many staff members are at JFK? 80 people had access and about 60 took the survey.
More than three-quarters of the respondents were teachers of one kind or another. No custodial or cafeteria. I think no clerical.
We reached out, but we couldn’t get everyone to take it.
Beyond all the questions, we’ve taken the narrative comments and organized it into different sections.
Andrea, would you drop this summary into the chat when we’re done? It’s good to look at all these answers.
The only part of this that was difficult was being able to put concerns into a format that made sense.
Reading all the comments through might not be productive, but if something has five bullets, there’s something that needs to be addressed there.
With communication and transparency, I had to leave some out because the text was getting so small.
We included staff-to-staff problems because we didn’t want to come off as only a matter of being anti-admin.
With these ones about leaving JFK or leaving teaching in general, I want to remind you that this was what came out of a prompt that was just “Please elaborate,” or something like that.
And we ended with some hopeful notes of solidarity.
We met with Des and the other administrators. We went over the results on the teacher work day. We were going to go over it at the faculty meeting, but
Thank you, Sara, from various people, for all the work that went into this.
NEXT TOPIC: negotiations update
I know SVAHS got together their initial positions.
Yes, we’re meeting with management on the tenth, so we’ll have more to report after Thursday.
Plus, we just had a faculty meeting where we’ve heard a lot lately about how much our students need right now.
And we’ve also presented our initial proposal to the NPS. We’re meeting tomorrow, and we’ve just gotten two MoAs passed: the science of reading and the covid pay for nurses. And the visitor MoA, that’s been ratified too.
Remember, there is always the Northampton Employee Assistance program. If you need something, they may be able to provide some of that.
Andrea will send out a link to the negotiations meeting after the meeting, sending it to delegates so they can distribute it as necessary.
Moved by Sharon.
Seconded by Kira.
Meeting adjourns 5:23 pm.