Category: Recent News

Invitation to Public Education Summit – August 1

Are you concerned about public education in Wisconsin?  Are you interested in joining a network of teachers, parents, students and advocates committed to fighting for our public schools?  Then please JOIN US at Appleton North High School on August 1, 2018, for our fourth annual ALL-STATE CONVENING of Wisconsin PUBLIC EDUCATION ADVOCATES and SUPPORTERS!

WHAT:  A full day of motivating presentations, action-focused strategy sessions, and informational breakouts led by Wisconsin public education advocates and experts.  Our fourth annual Summer Summit includes all of the following and more:

  • Keynote speaker, Jitu Brown of Journey for Justice
  • A special welcome from Dr. Tony Evers, Superintendent of Public Instruction

To build capacity and expand our network of advocates for public education, MTI will cover registration costs for any MTI member who brings a parent along to the event.  Use the MTI member/guest ticket option.

Click here to register and learn more.

The theme of this year’s summit is VOTE PUBLIC! – an invitation to all supporters of public schools to make public education a focus of all elections – local, state and national.  What does local control really mean to local schools?  What is the role of the public school in our democracy?  How does policy impact our students?  How do we know where candidates stand on education issues?  How do we hold our elected officials accountable once they’re elected?  How can we do all of this as nonpartisan work – especially in a big election year?  Speakers and sessions will address this theme from many angles, with a focus on equity, action, and doing what’s best for our children and our communities.  Sessions are led by state and national education experts, local level organizers, and leaders in education advocacy.

 

Restorative Practices Summer Union Professional Development Opportunity!

Restorative Practices are grounded in a framework that values all members of the school community (students, staff, parents, and community partners) and sees them as partners in creating safe and supportive schools.  This framework includes a variety of practices for supporting the academic and social growth of every student and creating collaborative cultures.

WEAC and the WEA Academy are sponsoring an Introduction to Restorative Practices workshop to be held on Friday, June 29th from 10-2 here at MTI (33 Nob Hill Rd) with our Region 6 brothers and sisters.  Limited spots.  Sign up HERE.  Please share this information and flyer with your staff.

Tentative Agreement on Base Wages

Good news!  Last night, MTI and the MMSD reached tentative agreement on the terms and conditions of the 2018-19 Collective Bargaining Agreements covering all MTI bargaining units.  With our tentative agreement, the District agrees to provide a cost-of-living base wage increase of 2.13% to all MTI-represented employees effective July 1, 2018.

The tentative agreement (and the associated wage increase) cannot take effect until ratified by the Union membership, as well as the BOE.

All members of MTI, ESEA-MTI, and USO-MTI are invited to attend one of two contract ratification meetings scheduled for Wednesday, June 13, at MTI Headquarters (33 Nob Hill Rd) – the first at 3:00pm or the second at 4:30pm.  Your approval is necessary before the bargain is complete.

While we are pleased with the tentative agreement, we also realize that in the weeks ahead, the Board of Education will need to identify the necessary resources within the 2018-19 MMSD budget to fund this settlement.

We encourage all members to watch for MTI updates over the summer, stay engaged in the budget development process, and to be prepared to respond to push for those budget decisions which are best for our schools, students, and staff.

We also need to double-down on our commitment to elect candidates to statewide office this fall who understand the critical funding needs of our public schools.

Tonight we celebrate this settlement.  Tomorrow we get back to work.

Solidarity!

Free Financial Consultations in June, July and August!

Attention MTI Members!

Steve Pike is a retired MTI teacher and current Member Benefits Consultant for WEA Member Benefits.  Steve will be onsite at MTI to meet with staff.

WHAT:  FREE Financial Consultation

WHEN:  

June 18, 19, and 20 (register by clicking on the June link below.)

July 16, 17, 18, and 19 (register by clicking on the July link below)

August 13, 15, 20, 21, 22, and 23 (register by clicking on the August link below)

Sign up here for your June consultation

Sign up here for your July consultation

Sign up here for your August consultation

WHERE:  33 Nob Hill Road, Madison, WI

This is ideal if you are just getting started, have specific questions, or would like a quick check-in.  Because these are held onsite at MTI, it’s a convenient way to meet with someone face-to-face to get some general help or guidance.

Steve can answer your specific questions on a wide range of financial topics such as:

  • Reasons to start a 403(b) or IRA savings account and how to enroll
  • Wisconsin Retirement System basics
  • Retirement Savings strategies; Pre-tax vs. Roth, 403(b) vs. IRA
  • Investment/Account Fees
  • Budgeting
  • Tips for purchasing personal insurance

Some things to bring along to your consultation include:

  • Recent paycheck stub
  • Recent 403(b) and/or IRA account statements
  • WRS statement
  • Other financial information you would like reviewed

Spouses/partners welcome.

Can’t make it to a consultation but want to talk to someone? Sign up for a 30-minute phone consultation and speak to a Retirement and Investment Consultant. Find a time and day that’s convenient for you at www.weabenefits.com/consults.

Want to Build Your Union, Develop Your Organizing Skills and Earn Pay This Summer?

MTI is looking for four (4) motivated and outgoing MTI teacher* members to become part of our 2018 Wisconsin Education Summer Member Organizer Program.

  • It is an 8 week campaign that begins the week of July 8 and ends the week of September 1.
  • The entire campaign begins with a two day training in Milwaukee on July 10 and 11.  Organizers must attend this entire training.
  • During the campaign organizers will put in about 20 hours a week making connections with members and working to meet the goals that were set at the training.
  • Organizers will connect with potential members, engage in membership conversations and help with organizing membership events.
  • During the campaign there will be mandatory weekly check-ins where organizers will meet with the team leader (me) to reflect on progress and plan for next steps.  These check-ins will be scheduled based on organizer availability.
  • Organizers will also help organize and train other members in preparation for Welcome Back events and additional membership events.
  • Organizers are compensated $600/week.  This is the take home pay amount.
  • This is an application and interview process.  Applications are due by June 12th and organizers will be selected by June 15. 
  • Click here for a brochure with more information!
  • Click here for the application!

Contact MTI President Andy Waity (awaity@madisonteachers.org) for more information.

*This program is partially funded by WEAC and the NEA and is, therefore, only open to MTI members in the teacher unit who are also members of WEAC and NEA.

Bargaining Update: MMSD Moves to 1.26%, MTI Still Fighting for 2.13% Cost-of-Living

Negtiators for the MMSD, MTI and the Building Trades Unions met on Wednesday, May 9, to commence bargaining over base-wage increases.

Highlights of the bargain:

  • While initially offering a 0.5% base-wage increase, the District offered a proposal to increase to a 1.26% base-wage increase. 
  • The District also offered a variation of their 1.26% proposal which would modify the structure of the salary schedule by distributing the 1.26% base-wage increase in such a fashion as to apply a lesser percentage to that portion of the schedule where less experienced educators are moving through the schedule steps and a greater percentage to that part of the schedule where more experienced educators do not receive annual step increases.  MTI rejected that proposal.
  • MTI continues to advocate for a 2.13% cost-of-living base-wage increase for all employees.

 

MTI Members and Allies are Encouraged to:

  • Familiarize yourselves with the bargaining issues linked here.
  • Email the BOE (board@madison.k12.wi.us) to shrae your story and advocate for a cost-of-living base-wage increase.
  • Wear red and attend the Regular Board of Education meeting on Monday, May 21, at 6:00pm, in the auditorium of the Doyle Building.

MTI-MMSD Base-wage Bargaining Postponed as Board of Education Ponders Wage Offer

 

District negotiators contacted MTI leadership this afternoon to advise that the District needed to postpone the bargaining session previously scheduled for May 2 (tomorrow) because the Board of Education has not reached consensus on what bargaining authority (i.e. amount of base-wage increase) to grant their negotiators.  The BOE met in closed session for that purpose last night, immediately prior to the Regular BOE meeting attended by hundreds of MTI members, allies, and supporters.  As we have previously reported, District Administration was budgeting for a 0.5% base-wage increase, while MTI intends to bargain for a cost-of-living, 2.13% increase.

The fact that the BOE could not reach consensus on what bargaining authority to provide their negotiation team was likely the result from our escalating advocacy for a cost-of-living base-wage increase for all employees.  The BOE will take the authorization issue up again in closed session on May 7 and we will advise all MTI members once a new bargaining date has been scheduled.

Thanks to all members who “wore red” and packed the Board meeting last night to insist on a cost-of-living base-wage increase for ALL employees.

What can you do?

  • Read this newspaper article on last night’s BOE meeting.
  • Watch this video feed (starting at 20:25) of the public comments at the BOE meeting.
  • Familiarize yourself with the bargaining issues.
  • Contact the BOE in support of a cost-of-living base-wage increase for ALL employees.

 

Solidarity!

MTI is Looking for Member Leaders, Are You Ready to Represent? MTI Teacher Faculty Rep Teams Needed

MTI is a member-led Union built on the core belief that an active and involved membership, led by democratically-elected leaders and supported by highly-qualified staff, can best promote the interests of public education, the education profession, and the members of the Union.

The MTI Faculty Representative is a critical position in fulfilling this mission.  Every school/work location should have a team of MTI Faculty Reps working together to represent their colleagues and build their Union.  Schools and work sites are entitled to one (1) Faculty Rep for every fifteen (15) Union members at the school or worksite.

 

MTI Faculty Reps build solidarity and promote union membership at their work location and work to resolve building-based problems with building principals in a Collborative Problem Solving process encouraged and supported by MTI and the MMSD.  Faculty Reps also serve to unite teachers across the District, bringing the concerns and interests of MTI members at their work location with MTI members district-wide via the MTI Faculty Representative Council, the policy forming body of the MTI teacher unit.

If you are interested in advocating for your profession, building your Union, representing yoru colleagues, and being a part of making positive change, send an email to MTI@madisonteachers.org or contact your Senior MTI Faculty Rep to let them know you would like to be nominated for one of the Faculty Rep positions at your school/work site.

See this link for additional information.

Standing in Solidarity with Striking Teachers – Wearing Red for Public Ed

Teachers in Oklahoma and Kentucky Walk Out: ‘It Really Is a Wildfire.’

West Virginia, Oklahoma, Kentucky, and Arizona teachers and support staff across the nation are “wearing red for public ed,” standing up and walking out for their students and their profession.  Years of austerity budgets, underfunded classrooms, increasing class sizes, stagnant wages, pension attacks, and failed political leadership have fueled the protests.

MTI stands with striking teachers everywhere and anywhere, and has relayed our message of solidarity to the educators in West Virginia, Kentucky, Oklahoma, and Arizona.  Join the #RedforEd movement, wear your MTI Solidarity shirt every Monday, and show your solidarity with your sisters and brothers here and around the country.  If you are in need of an MTI solidarity shirt, click here to order.

Standing Up to Support Our Immigrant Brothers and Sisters

As public school employees, we are advocates for all of our students and their families. Our advocacy extends beyond the school walls and it is imperative that we actively participate in efforts to defend our immigrant students and all undocumented people from the ongoing injustices directed at them through unjust legislation and policy.

Last Tuesday, President Trump announced the elimination of DACA. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program provides renewable permits for nearly 800,000 DREAMers who live, study, and work in the United States – a program that provides opportunities to many of our students and their family members. Instead of offering an immigration process that allows a path to citizenship for DREAMers, Trump continues his crusade against immigrant families. You can show your support with the following:

In addition to these events, each of us can also support our students and families on a personal level as they deal with the uncertainty created by the elimination of DACA. In many cases the public school is the primary place that provides safety, stability and trustworthy information, and we are the professionals who provide guidance and support.    

Solidarity!

Andrew Waity
MTI President

Douglas Keillor
MTI Executive Director