Eye on Education


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What's Inside Your Teacher's Contract


The collective bargaining agreements, or contracts, between teacher unions and school districts can cover everything from salaries, healthcare benefits, layoff procedures and working hours to classroom temperature, class sizes, copy room facilities and dress codes.

The contracts also illustrate other areas of concern to both teachers and school boards, such as whether teachers can donate sick days to colleagues, are eligible to receive performance pay or can be forced to change student grades.

Latest Posts

Talks Stalled and Tensions High Over Controversial Contract Proposal

Negotiations between the Reynoldsburg Teachers Association (REA) and Reynoldsburg City Schools surrounding a proposal that would dramatically change the district’s pay and benefits policies are on hold until August. The proposal first drew widespread attention in May as a bold move to place greater responsibility on teachers for student performance. On July 26th, as teachers [...]

California Tenure Ruling Not Really Applicable In Ohio

This week’s court ruling in California declaring that state’s system of tenure in public schools unconstitutional has fueled speculation that similar actions will be pursued in other states.  But there’s a lot of doubt whether Ohio would be one of them. The group that challenged the law complained that granting tenure essentially guaranteeing a job [...]

Catholic Diocese Bans Teachers From Publicly Contradicting Church Views

Glen Van Etten / Flickr The Catholic Diocese of Cleveland has joined its counterpart in Cincinnati in requiring its elementary school teachers to sign contracts with expanded morality clauses. Diocesan spokesman Robert Tayek says the new contracts are simply more specific on what the church considers to be moral behavior. The clause’s ban includes publicly [...]

Schools Use Coin Toss to Decide Who Gets Laid Off

South Africa v Sri Lanka - Fifth One Day International

Duif du Toit / Gallo Images/Getty Images Heads you stay, tails you go. In making decisions about who gets laid off, it’s common for Ohio school union contracts to call for a coin toss. We first heard about this from the Buckeye Institute, which reports that the union contract for Westerville aides, secretaries and study [...]

Why Fresh Starts Matter in Negotiating Teachers’ Contracts

Walknboston / Flickr One of the big things that the Cleveland Teachers Union doesn’t like about a package of legislative changes that Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson wants state lawmakers to make is a “fresh-start” provision. That provision would require the union and district to start with a clean slate in the next round of contract [...]

SB 5 or No, Seniority is Out of Teacher Layoff Decisions

V. Becker / Flickr During the campaign over collective bargaining law Senate Bill 5, polls foretold the law’s eventual repeal by voters. But even as nearly 60 percent of voters said they didn’t like SB 5, a sizable minority of Ohioans – around 40 percent – said they liked one part of it: The idea of eliminating [...]

Join a Live Webchat with Midwest Teachers Today

Changing Gears reporter Dan Bobkoff wanted to know “what it’s like to be a teacher today.” So he sat down and talked with three generations: One teacher near retirement, a teacher in the middle of her career and a college freshman who had both of the others as teachers and is now thinking of becoming [...]

How Cold Can an Ohio Classroom Get?

Natalia Kolesnikova / AFP/Getty Images When I was a kid, we walked to school through 10-foot snowdrifts and sat in unheated classrooms with freezing wind whipping through cracks in the log cabin walls. And we learned, dammit. But kids these days: Turn off the heat for a single day and you’ll never hear the end [...]

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