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Press Release—January 25, 2012

Press Release—January 25, 2012

On Tuesday, January 24, 2012, the membership of the United Teachers of Northport cast their votes on a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), the results of which sent a clear and resounding message—the teachers, teaching assistants and nurses of the Northport-East Northport UFSD will no longer tolerate the disrespect from the current Board of Education and Administration!

By an approximate two to one margin, the membership rejected the ratification of the MOA. It was evident that after nearly two years at the bargaining table and with
significant movement on the part of the Union, the settlement offered by the District failed to demonstrate true respect for the UTN membership. This disrespect extends well beyond the financial aspect of the agreement.

At the January 9th public meeting of the Board of Education, the eve of our last
negotiation session, the session at which the tentative agreement was reached, a
community member asked if the Board had attended negotiation sessions. President Waldenburg responded that the Board would go to the table when an agreement was close. Just over 12 hours later, an MOA was drafted and not a single Board member was present! Where’s the respect?

Just days before the ratification vote, a well-respected and dedicated faculty member was threatened with potential disciplinary action. That UTN member was not afforded the right to union representation. Where’s the respect? Yet another member who asked to have union representation present at a meeting with administration was told that would be “illegal”. Where’s the respect?

On the eve of the ratification vote, the District “inadvertently” posted a proposed APPR resolution on its website. That resolution included aspects of the plan which require negotiations with the union. Where’s the respect?

The membership of the UTN has spoken. This Memorandum of Agreement is not
acceptable. More importantly, the disrespectful treatment of teachers, teaching
assistants and nurses is not acceptable and will not be tolerated.

It is time that the Board and Administration acknowledge that the environment which they have created is detrimental to the health and well-being of this community! It is time for a real change! It is time that we take back our schools!

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