Join Your Union

A continued voice for your profession, your students and public education

When you join your colleagues as an MTI member, you are making a decision to join together in solidarity on important issues that impact your profession, our schools, and our students. MTI provides you with a voice in the workplace, with the School Board, and at the State Capitol. Our opponents are highly organized. We need to be as well.

A continued voice in your pay, benefits and working conditions

When you join your colleagues as a union member, you build capacity for continued advocacy for good pay, benefits, and working conditions. Working conditions for educators are learning conditions for students. In response to the bargaining prohibitions under Act 10, MTI worked with MMSD Administration and the Board of Education to establish a new collaborative process for continued employee voice in the development of the Employee Handbook. That collaborative process and produced an Employee Handbook that continues the salary schedules, benefits, and working conditions most critical to employees, while forging acceptable compromises in other areas. Our continued voice in the Handbook process depends on maintaining a strong Union, building effective working relationships with Administration, and electing supportive school board members.

An investment in your financial well-being

When you join your colleagues as an MTI member, you invest in your financial well-being. The financial benefits you receive via the advocacy of MTI in base wage bargaining, in the Employee Handbook process, and in the political arena far exceeds the cost you pay in Union dues. Just one month of employer-paid health insurance premiums exceeds the dues you pay MTI for the entire year. A teacher retiring with TERP benefits receives more economic value from this one benefit alone than they have paid in Union dues over their entire career. A salary schedule with guaranteed “step” increases and additive pay for advanced degrees; paid sick leave and bereavement leave; paid dental, disability, and life insurance; all provide significant financial benefits from continued MTI advocacy.

Representation and legal backing

When you join your colleagues as an MTI member, you have the right to MTI representation in any meeting with management that could lead to potential discipline. MTI members are also entitled to MTI representation in any grievance over violation of the terms of the Employee Handbook. MTI members receive paid legal counsel when necessary for the enforcement of various employment rights such as Workers’ Compensation, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act, and the Family and Medical Leave Act.

Professional support

When you join your colleagues as an MTI member, you receive professional support and assistance from highly trained MTI staff members on issues related to license renewal, maternity/paternity leave, retirement planning, school safety, disability benefits, and many other issues.

My Membership Benefits

When we organize, Members make a difference together

In January 1976 elementary teachers banded together on strike for much needed planning time. Educators marched in the frigid cold weather to raise their collective voices and won! 

In 2002, when Spanish and Hmong-speaking Bilingual Resource Specialists organized around pay equity they started a campaign to be compensated as professionals and won!  

In 2011, when Governor Walker said he would “divide and conquer” public workers and tear away their contract rights and benefits, our Union led the challenge against his efforts. Over a hundred thousand protestors filled the Wisconsin state Capitol in the largest labor demonstration in Wisconsin history.

In 2017, members organized around increasing the minimum hourly wage to $15 per hour for all regular MMSD employees. The same year we campaigned for and won a 10% increase in starting teacher pay to attract the best and brightest educators to MMSD.

On March 13, 2020, Gov. Tony Evers ordered the state Department of Health Services to close all K-12 schools, public and private, as part of the state’s efforts to contain the spread of the coronavirus in Wisconsin. Our school staff and communities, remained focused on providing continuity of learning, and providing meals and other resources to students.

In 2021, we won five days of COVID leave for the 2022-23 School Year. Additionally, members mobilized for school secretaries to be included in the monthly bonuses proposed by Superintendent Jenkins at the November 22, 2021 Board of Education meeting. The COVID-19 pandemic was a challenging and difficult time for everyone. School-based secretaries, in concert with other school-based staff, rose to the various challenges ensuring that families had timely information and that students had the materials they needed to continue learning from home. We kept students and families at the center of everything we do. From testifying at school board meetings, emailing the school board, writing a letter to the Superintendent and collecting signatures, and ORGANIZING with our coworkers – we lifted staff voice on this important issue and won!

In 2022, as part of our Cost of Living and Handbook campaigns, members rallied for MMSD to budget for a 4.7% cost-of-living-adjustment base wage increase and provide a $5 increase for Education Assistants, Security Assistants and Clerical/Technical Staff. On August 29, 2022 the Board of Education (BOE) approved a $2 an hour wage increase for Education Assistants, which is less than the $5 we have been striving for. The BOE held a special meeting on Monday, September 19 to discuss further potential increases. We spoke up at BOE meetings to ensure that all MMSD employees make a livable wage in Madison. Together, we showed that we are united in this campaign and support one another. We won a $5 per hour increase for Education Assistants, Security Assistants and Clerical/Technical Staff. All labor has dignity!

In 2023, our MTI Solidarity Action Committee created a year-long organizing plan to build our capacity for action. In the plan we launched the Schools Madison’s Students Deserve campaign. The campaign included an online petition, pic and quote efforts, rallies and speak outs before the Madison Board of Education, and increased communication around our campaign goals. Through member advocacy and action we achieved the highest cost-of-living base wage adjustment (based by CPI) of 8%.This means that the District agreed to provide a cost-of-living base wage increase of 8% to all teachers and staff. Your activism makes an impact! Together we win!

Great things happen with a strong and united effort through collective action.