Ollective Bargaining and School Finance

Comprehensive Exam Question
Collective Bargaining School Finance by J. Townley
Question Part A:
What is the Rodda Act?
Passed in 1975, the Educational Employment Relations Act (EERA)  also known as the Rodda Act guarantees public school employees the right to bargain with the district regarding salary and other employment-related issues.
Each contract is negotiated separately with the respective units negotiating team. All agreements must be ratified by the employee association before going to the Board of Education for adoption.
The district has contracts with six employee bargaining units (AASD, OSS, OTBS, PARA, POA and SDEA). Each unit develops a contract proposal which is presented to the districts Labor Relations Department. Negotiating sessions begin with the exchange of proposals and counterproposals and continue until an agreement is reached.
If a contract is ratified for more than one year, it is customary to include a provision for reopening negotiations on specific items. Typically, such items include salary, benefits, and one or two additional items to be selected by each party.
The Rodda Act binds negotiating parties to certain behaviors and time lines. Both parties must bargain in good faith, meaning both sides must be willing to discuss all issues and to make proposals and counterproposals in an effort to reach agreement. Even if the process seems cumbersome, each party must participate; failing to do so would sacrifice that partys rights under the Rodda Act.
Question part B:
What is my understanding of contract negotiations as it involves the Rodda Act (do a summary of the Rodda Act) through collective bargaining? This Act gave teachers and employees the right to bargain with the employer. Ask myself what are those areas (wages, benefits and working conditions) this started in 1975 (when teachers and employees started off with a few things with in scope. Working conditions are the ones that expanded over the years. This Act gave employees the right

Question part C:
Must speak about PERB The Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) is the agency established by the Taylor Law to administer that Law. The agency is comprised of a three member board that adjudicates and establishes public policy concerning public sector labor relations issues; attorneys for the board; administrative law judges that hear claims of improper practices; mediators that assist public employers and employee organizations in contract negotiations; administrative and support staff that ensure services are delivered to the public sector labor relations community

Question part D:

 Within scope the range of subjects negotiated between school districts and employee organizations during the collective bargaining process. Scope includes matters relating to wages, hours, and working conditions. PERB is responsible for interpreting disputes as to matters that are or are not within scope.

Question part E:
Traditional (positional) vs. Interest Based negotiations
Traditional By focusing on positions, parties in a dispute:
 see only a predetermined way to solve a problem;
 spend time staking and defending extreme positions rather than dealing with the heart of the matter;
 tend to settle with a compromise rather than getting what they really need;
 limit creative options; and
 risk damaging ongoing relationships.

Interest Based In contrast, a discussion that allows for an understanding of interests underlying positions...
 moves people away from contending positions;
 promotes mutual education;
 allows a cooperative atmosphere to develop;
 sets the stage for reframing the issue;
 encourages the generation of multiple options;
 permits the search for a creative solution.

 More collaborative than traditional bargaining
 Each team member is expected to contribute in some fashion in the sessions
 Training for both sides is available
 Facilitators from management and union help facilitate the bargaining sessions
 Work together to find creative solutions to issues

Traditional (positional) vs. InterestBased negotiations
 Cost  usually shared between the parties, pay for the facilitators instead of the chief negotiator (not a costly process)
 Time  more time might be spent with IBB, but it is more productive
 Relationships  It is important for the superintendent to develop relationships with the staff and union. IBB definitely is a better way to do so than traditional bargaining

Question part F:

(I). You are now the administrator what are your responsibilities for contract management?

The contract is an agreement between teacher and employers. & As principal it is not my job to make it change it or interpret it. It is only my job to enforce the contract.

As a principal know the contract and just enforce it not interpret the contract.
The contract between the teachers and the district is the Bossand its the principals job to see that the teachers are sticking to the contract. It is when the principal attempts to interpret the contract that things can get sticky. For example, our contract states that teachers are to dress Professionallybut does not define what Professional dressentails. Any principal who attempts to enforce this by making teachers where ties, long dresses or even closed toed shoes could be heading into quite a battle. Therefore, most principals do not enforce dress codes.
Question part G: What is  grievance a violence of the contract
Key points
” Grievances are concerns, problems or complaints that employees raise with their employers
” Where possible employees should aim to settle grievances informally with their line manager
” Grievance procedures are used by employers to deal formally with employees grievances
” Grievance procedures allow employers to deal with grievances fairly, consistently and speedily
” Employers must have procedures available to employees so that their grievances can be properly considered
” The compensation given by employment tribunals can be adjusted by usually between 10-50 per cent if the employer or employee fails to follow the statutory grievance procedure
What is a grievance?

Anybody working in an organization may, at some time, have problems or concerns about their work, working conditions or relationships with colleagues that they wish to talk about with management. They want the grievance to be addressed, and if possible, resolved. It is also clearly in managements interests to resolve problems before they can develop into major difficulties for all concerned.
Issues that may cause grievances include:

terms and conditions of employment
health and safety
work relations
bullying and harassment
new working practices
working environment
organizational change
equal opportunities.
Grievances may occur at all levels, and the Code, and associated good practice, applies equally to management and employees.
Why have a procedure?

If a grievance cannot be settled informally or a formal approach is preferable, the employee should raise it formally with management.
Employees must complete step 1 of the statutory procedure if they wish subsequently to use the grievance as the basis of an application to an employment tribunal.
Step 1 Informal discussion

The employee informs the employer of their grievance in writing.

Step 2 Put it in writing. Begins a formal process

The employer invites the employee to a meeting to discuss the grievance where the right to be accompanied will apply. The employer notifies the employee in writing of the decision and notifies of the right to appeal.

Step 3 District Office

The employee informs the employer if they wish to appeal. The employer must invite them to a meeting and following the meeting inform the employee of the final decision. (Employees must