Safety Quality Equity
ONE JOB ONE EDUCATOR
Read the full article here
...Currently Specialists are getting a raw deal, as you know, because you are living this reality. TPS did not fix our deployments in the fall as we hoped, because they mandated a COVID hiring freeze. And as a result, the district and principals continue to make it more and more complex.
So be it, it is a history making pandemic.
BUT The issue is, long before the pandemic hiring freeze, open positions, made by folks leaving Tacoma, retring or dying, have not been filled. Remaining jobs just get bigger. WHY IS THIS?
It is all about the budget.
And RED ALERT! The budgeting process for the next two years has begun. It is happening now.
Principals will be having their district FTE meetings in the next 2 weeks. Please discuss with your building admin what the specialist FTE should be in your buildings.
Here is what you need to know:
There is an innovator article that was posted on the HUB January 27 that explains that the 2 year budget planning process. Watch the 9 minute video that explains Budget by Priority. It is eye opening.
To sum up:
TPS has a process of allocating every dollar spent which requires that each dollar be attached to a proposal. Everything must be tied to student outcomes. They began to roll out this method in 2014.
No one has been formally advocating or proposing on our behalf of our subjects for the last two cycles and the results are obvious. We have had a substantial loss in positions in all 3 specialist areas. Meanwhile other positions, such as building coaches, instructional facilitators and K-3 support have been growing.
Because there is no TEA MOU to guide TPS to fund our positions, we have to do it ourselves.
In other words, without contract language, we have to inspire those in charge to fund our subject areas.
Specialists must get the district’s attention, regardless of how TEA feels about it.
Our collective actions last summer made a difference, so we can be inspired our future actions will make a difference as well.
We all have to start writing and asking who is in charge of our funding.
Who do we write? Everyone. Including members of the public.
I have written a number of letters over the last two years and have never had someone tell me about this budget by priority issue from CAB. I have been repeatedly told that specialists are not in my department. I do not think we are in anyone’s department. We are simply a means to fulfill that pesky prep time mandate. But we know how important we are to students, so we must now engage in becoming someone’s budget priority proposal. We must demand it.
The budget process focuses on student outcome. Meditate on why you do what you do and what it does for students, and share that. We must find people who will testify on our subject area’s behalf.
Do remember-even though this year is this crazy ass pandemic year, we cannot take our eyes off the prize of what must be restored when we go back to regular instruction someday. There is a very real and present danger that we could be further marginalized. There is NO ONE out there to fight on our behalf. IT HAS TO BE US.