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Citizens for Limited Taxation

Framingham Teachers Association (Er! Union) (FTA) Contract Notes

(get actual contract in PDF )

We all know about the great benefits of Framingham teachers.

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Agreement between the Framingham School Committee and the Framingham Teachers Association
The teacher's union contract for the period of September 1, 2000 through August 31, 2003 consists of 53 articles across a 62 page document. Obviously, this is only a small fraction of their benefits.

The similar contract for the period of September 1, 2004 through August 31, 2007 consists of 54 articles across a 64 page document.  One can see the inevitable contract creep.

Union officials are zealots, by the nature of their job which is simply to get the best pay and benefits for their members.  They will not show any level of compassion for the taxpayers and they will relentlessly attempt to increase taxes, because, according to a famous bank robber named Willie Sutton, "that's where the money is"Nothing is left to chance.

The pay structure certainly makes no attempt to recruit, reward or retain the most essential or effective teachers.  A teacher is rewarded simply on experience (length of service) and graduate credits, neither of which is a meaningful predictor of quality.

Does it really make sense to have kindergarten teachers being paid over $55,000.  This is an academic entry level job.  The highest paid kindergarten teacher makes $70,136 for a 9 month year. Sweet! The same applies to BLOCKS.

There is nothing in the contract on the issue of academic performance of students.  The union simply does not concern itself with that issue.

Grievance Procedures
  • Grievances can be resolved in only five (5) not so easy escalating levels, each level taking taking 7-10 working days.  Each level generates an increasing amount of paperwork. By the time we are at level 5, we're talking a paper blizzard or confetti storm.
Article XXIX:A Death in the Family
  • Full time employees shall be allowed five consecutive days absence with pay for a death in the immediate family.  The immediate family is defined to include mother, father, sister, brother, child, spouse, mother-in-law, father-in-law, grandparent, grandchild, niece, nephew, significant other, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, aunt and uncle, step-parents, step-siblings, and in the case of gay/lesbian parents, their partner, partner's parents and children.

    There is no stipulation of any close relationship between the teacher and the deceased.  It merely itemizes those individuals who will give you five days off if they die before the teacher retires. It could be a hated nephew who once tried to burn the teacher's house down and we've all heard all the mother-in-law jokes.

    I wonder if death of uncles, aunts, nieces, nephews conveniently occur on Fridays and the funeral is near Disney World or Accapulco.

    Like me, you may suspect that this could add up to a lot of time off over a 30 year career. As tough as it is to fire teachers, most have very long careers. The aunts and uncles were added in the most recent contract.

    If the bird flu ever breaks out, there will be a big rush to take death leaves. So much for bird flu planning.

Strikes, work stoppage, slowdowns
  • The association agrees that it will not cause, condone, sanction, or take part in any strike, walkout, slowdown, or work stoppage within the Framingham School System.

  • The association and its members, individually and collectively, agree that if there is a violation of this clause, that is, an active participation or involvement in any such strike, slowdown or stoppage, any or all teachers violating this clause will, at the discretion of the committee, be subject to disciplinary action, including discharge or suspension, and the only question that will be subject to the grievance and arbitration procedure is that of participation or involvement as described above.

I would add a clause to this article that states that the entire contract is void if a strike occurs, and all school employees take an immediate 10 percent cut in pay.

Department Heads
  • The Department Heads shall have certain periods free of other assignments based on the number of teachers in their departments as follows:

    1-8 teachers three periods for department duties
    9-15 teachers four periods for department duties
    16 or more teachers five periods for department duties

    Given that there are only five periods per day, how many department heads do we have?  This seems to be a cushy job.

  • Clerical asistants will be furnished consistent with budgetary consideration.
Article XXVIII Use of School Buildings and Equipment
  • Upon making arrangements with the Director of Buildings and Grounds, the Association will have the right to use school buildings without cost at reasonable times for meetings

  • Use of school facilities and equipment for Association use shall be freely granted within reasonable limits.  The cost of any materials used will be borne by the Association.

    Combine this with Article XXVII, part 10 which states:

    At least two (2) typewriters and one (1) duplicating machine will be available in each school and will be maintained in operating condition.

    Does this include usage to fight for overrides?

Extra Curricular Positions
Extra curricular positions for this contract pay between $700 and $8,181 (head football coach) depending on positions.  Curiously enough, web masters only get about a $1,000.
Other Benefits
  • Three personal days per calendar year without a stated reason shall be allowed to each teacher for a situation which arises and cannot be handled outside of the school day.

  • An indefinite number of sick days may be accumulated.  Annual amounts offered are 12-14 days depending on how long they've been entrenched in the school system.

    This is way beyond what most private companies have.

  • After five (5) years of continuous employment, a teacher may be granted an unpaid leave of absence for up to one year for health reasons.

    What is a health reason?

  • Maternity leave is 8 consecutive weeks.

  • Any employee who adopts a child shall be granted an unpaid leave of absence from employment for up to eight weeks.

  • Subject to certain minor conditions, an amount equal to one hundred dollars ($100) times the number of full years of his/her continuous service will be paid to a teacher who retires in the summer months. (Orderly retirement clause).

  • Teachers who have served in Framingham for fifteen (15) or more years will be entitled to a buy back of unused sick leave upon retirement.

  • For every sick day beyond one hundred (100), the teacher will be paid the amount of sixty ($60) for each unused sick day up to a maximum of fifty (50) days.

  • Teachers at elementary schools will be guaranteed one hundred and eighty (180) minutes per week of preparation time.

  • All teachers will receive sixteen ($16) for each preparation period missed because of the unavailability of a substitute so long as the administration has been notified of the absence of the teacher.

  • For middle and high school teachers, time spent travelling between buildings by teachers who have a split building schedule shall be counted as a duty period.

  • Each teacher will be given a duty-free lunch period of thirty (30) minutes.

  • When practical and possible, each school will have well-lighted and clean restrooms for the teachers.

  • When practical and possible, each school will have a separate, private dining area for the exclusive use of the professional staff.

  • When practical and possible, each school will have duplicating machines which are maintained in operating condition.

  • At high school graduation a place of prominence will be reserved for teachers.

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2000 - 2001 School Year
The school year is only 9 months of the year.
Step Bachelors Masters M+15 M+30 M+45 M+60 DOC
1 $30,015 $32,245 $33,360 $34,475 $35,590 $36,704 $37,820
2 $31,516 $33,857 $35,028 $36,198 $37,369 $38,540 $39,711
3 $33,092 $35,550 $36,779 $38,008 $39,238 $40,467 $41,695
4 $34,747 $37,328 $38,619 $39,909 $41,200 $42,490 $43,780
5 $36,484 $39,195 $40,446 $41,905 $43,260 $44,614 $45,970
6 $38,308 $41,195 $42,577 $44,000 $45,422 $46,845 $48,268
7 $40,244 $43,212 $44,706 $46,200 $47,693 $49,188 $50,681
8 $42,235 $45,373 $46,941 $48,510 $50,079 $51,647 $53,216
9 $44,347 $48,095 $49,288 $50,936 $52,583 $54,230 $55,876
10 $46,564 $50,740 $51,752 $53,482 $55,211 $56,940 $58,670
11 $48,892 $54,038 $55,041 $56,156 $57,971 $59,787 $61,603
12 $51,281 $55,911 $56,918 $57,933 $59,750 $60,992 $62,380
SM $52,781 $57,411 $58,418 $59,433 $61,250 $62,492 $63,880

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2006 - 2007 School Year
The school year is only 9 months of the year.
Step Bachelors Masters M+15 M+30 M+45 M+60 DOC
3 $39,814 $42,740 $44,202 $45,665 $47,130 $48,950 $50,054
4 $41,783 $44,857 $46,392 $47,928 $49,464 $51,001 $52,537
5 $43,849 $47,077 $48,568 $50,303 $51,917 $53,529 $55,143
6 $46,021 $49,458 $51,105 $52,796 $54,489 $56,185 $57,878
7 $48,302 $51,858 $53,638 $55,416 $57,194 $58,972 $60,748
8 $50,697 $54,432 $56,298 $58,165 $69,035 $61,889 $63,767
9 $53,210 $57,672 $59,092 $61,053 $63,014 $64,975 $66,934
10 $55,850 $60,820 $62,026 $64,082 $66,143 $68,202 $70,260
11 $58,621 $64,746 $65,941 $67,266 $69,429 $71,590 $73,748
12 $61,462 $66,976 $68,176 $69,384 $71,545 $73,025 $74,676
SM $62,962 $68,486 $69,676 $70,884 $73,045 $74,525 $76,176

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FTA Contract Article Synopsis
Article Description
I Recognition
II Negotiation Procedure
III Grievance Procedure
IV Salaries
V Acknowledgement of Application
VI Teacher Emplyment
VII Teacher Assignment
VIII Orientation of New Teachers
IX Teacher Evaluation
X Transfers, Reduction in Force, and Recall
XI Class Size
XII Non-Teaching/Additional Responsibilities/Duties
XIII Vacancies in positions
XIV Workload
XV Lunchbreak
XVI Workers Compensation
XVII High School Graduation
XVIII Protection
XVX Communication
XX Teachers Supply Request (see Article LIV)
XXI No Strike
XXII Positions in Summer School, Evening School, and Under Federal Programs
XXIII Department Heads
XXIV Athletic Coaches
XXV Specialists and Special Programs
XXVI Faculty Advisor Committees
XXVII Teacher Facilities
XXVIII Use of School Facilities
XXIX Temporary Leaves of Absenses
XXX Sick Leave
XXXI Extended Leaves of Absence
XXXII Sabbatical Leaves
XXXIII Maternity Leave of Absence
XXXIV Adoption
XXXV In-Service Programs
XXXVI Summer School
XXXVII Curriculum Revision
XXXVIII Instructional & Professional Development Committee
XXXVIX Administration-School Committee Assocation Conferences
XL Middlesex County Teachers Convention
XLI Professional Day
XLII Dues Deduction
XLIII School Committee Rigths
XLIV Waiver Provisions
XLV Duration
XLVI President of Framingham Teachers Association
XLVII Teacher Information
XLVIII Agency Service Fee
XLIX Jury Duty Pay
L Orderly Retirement Incentive Plan
LI Employer Contributions to Benefit Plans
LII Sick Leave Buyback
LIII Tuition Rimbursement
LIV Classroom Supplies (new article)

Send comments to: hjw2001@gmail.com