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Editorial: The New Mayor and the Teachers

LA School Report | December 2, 2013



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NY Mayor-elect Bill DiBlasio

NY Mayor-elect Bill DiBlasio

Via The New York Times | Editorial Board

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio will take office facing the need to forge new labor agreements with the unions that represent nearly all of New York City’s 300,000 municipal workers. The largest of these, the United Federation of Teachers, is in a particularly sour mood. Representing 40 percent of the city’s work force, the union has been without a contract since 2009.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed, starting in 2010, that all new union contracts get a three-year freeze in base pay, to be followed by two years of raises at 1.25 percent each. During his campaign, Mr. de Blasio said that a retroactive pay raise — dating back to the expiration of the last contract — would be possible only if offset by cost savings. That’s a good start. But any sort of raise will require concessions in exchange. He will need to press the union to loosen work rules that stifle innovation and favor senior teachers over younger ones who may in fact be more talented. The union must also let go of the unspoken presumption that every teacher is entitled to a job for life.

Read the full editorial here.

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