The following is a press release:
The Blue Hills Education Association is charging the School Committee with bad faith bargaining, after failing to meet a June 12 deadline to settle their contract.
The charge, filed with the state Department of Labor Relations, follows more than 16 months of contract negotiations with the School Committee.
During that time, the School Committee has presented a list of harsh and extreme proposals that have raised serious concerns among the Blue Hills teachers and in the community, according to Brian Gearty, president of the Blue Hills Education Association.
A state-appointed mediator scheduled a session for Wednesday, June 13, and asked BHEA members to extend their initial June 12 deadline for one more day.
“Throughout this process, we, the Blue Hills teachers, have been patient and reasonable,” said Gearty. “Our objective remains the same – to reach a fair contract settlement. We decided to extend the deadline based on the mediator’s request, but our goal remains unchanged – to negotiate a fair contract that will allow us to continue to do the good work that we are doing with our students every day in our classrooms and our shops.”
Teachers have been picketing every morning before school. Parents, alumni and residents of the nine towns that send students to Blue Hills have been urging the School Committee and superintendent to settle a fair deal. The members of the Massachusetts Nurses Association have also called upon the school committee to negotiate a fair contract with the Blue Hills teachers.
The Blue Hills Education Association represents close to 90 teachers and counselors who work at the Blue Hills Regional Technical High School. They have been working without a contract for the entire 2011-12 school year. Students from nine communities, including Avon, Braintree, Canton, Dedham, Holbrook, Milton, Norwood, Randolph and Westwood, attend the school.