Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Thank you!

Massachusetts voters love their public schools. We love working in them -- thanks for defeating Question 2.  Wareham said "no" to question 2 by a 58-42% margin. Thank you!

Friday, October 21, 2016

Visibility canceled

Update: the Vikings football game was cancelled, so No on 2 sign-holding is cancelled -- thanks to everyone who showed up. The event will be rescheduled.

Friday, October 7, 2016

The facts behind the letter...

A frustrated charter school lobbyist mailed a letter to the Courier this week filled with misinformation, after learning that Wareham is one of over 165 school committees opposing Question 2. In contrast to his pitch, here are some facts:

*Charter schools are publicly funded, but are not public. Yes, they serve the public, like a bank or insurance company. Their budgets include public subsidies, as Towneplace Suites does. However, it is not accurate to state that charters are public when they spend money with little public oversight, no public accountability, and when they select their student body by omission.

*Charter schools trigger a tiny, temporary bump in a narrow type of public school funding in some communities. These bridging payments underfunded by the state last a year. The long-term result is less funding for public education. When a house burns down, the insurance check may increase the owner's bank account. That doesn't make it a good way to plan a budget.

*Charter schools claim that more choice is always an improvement. However, they have not offered any new ideas in 7 years, according to the Department of Education, and oppose requirements that they hire qualified teachers or educate all students in a community. It does the children of Wareham and Massachusetts no service to allow a "choice" of an inferior education, with taxpayers footing the bill.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Full context: THe Wareham Courier article

A selected portion of an answer I gave to a media member was published in the recent Wareham Courier. I am providing the full question and answer here to restore the context that was taken out in the article. I do knot know why the journalist chose to cut out any mention of administration responsibility for discipline.

"What instructions/training or provided by Wareham Public Schools to assist teachers in enforcing discipline among students?"

I'm surprised to receive this question, as this is the administration's determination of policy and procedure. However, I can say that the Wareham Public Schools are expected to operate according to the discipline code explained in each school's handbook, and enacted by the School Committee. At the secondary level, teachers have the right to assign detentions and in-classroom consequences to maintain discipline in class so all students can learn; at the elementary level, detentions can be assigned only by administrators. Educators may not assign in-school or out-of-school suspensions, or Friday after-school detention. Educators also may write discipline referrals, and administration is expected to assign consequences according to the discipline code. In urgent situations, educators are to try to reach an administrator for help. During those times no administrator is available

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Statement regarding June 8 letter

The Wareham Education Association would clarify that the leadership of the association did not author the letter discussed at the June 8 School Committee meeting. Members of the Association may have been involved with its authorship, but the concept and text were never subject to discussion or vote by the Board of the WEA. That should not be interpreted as disagreement with its contents or concerns. Rather, any educator willing to stand up for a smart and safe learning environment for Wareham's children should be commended. The Association does reiterate that it will sign any letter to the School Committee or community.


Speaking personally, I wrote this statement is just to make clear that this particular letter was not a WEA missive.  I am not seeking to undermine or contradict the issues raised in the letter, but do not want any confusion on who wrote it.

Friday, April 29, 2016

May 20 Retirement Dinner

The annual WEA Retirement Dinner honors our members retiring this year:

Anne Marie Brooks
Sue Cistoldi
Heidi Simms DiGiovanni
Chris Quimby
Sherri Williams

Tickets include hors d'ouevres and a dinner. See a building representative for a ticket. $20. Tickets are limited.

Monday, March 21, 2016

School Committee candidates on the record

In early March, the two candidates for Wareham School Committee received a questionnaire from our WEA, along with a self-addressed stamped envelope. They were also directed to a link on the WEA website where they could download the questionnaire electronically and return it by email.

As of the deadline of March 20, only one candidate had responded. The WEA thanks Mary Morgan for her responses, and here answers can be found using the link above.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Results of March board meeting

On the March 7 board meeting, the WEA board voted to:
*Set as its position to advocate for a health care premium holiday for those who paid into the Wareham Health Care Trust Fund as the method of returning the fund surplus to members;
*Send to Wareham School Committee candidates a questionnaire, whose answers will be published on the WEA website on March 21.
*Set Wareham's representatives to the Annual Meeting those members who sought to attend as elicited in the website and newsletter. As there were fewer interested than spots available, those six were elected.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Seniority Lists Released

Click the link above to check your seniority on the draft lists, released this week.  Any challenges must be issued by March 1.  Explanations are available on a page linked from the contracts & info page.

It is the responsibility of the member to do the following:
  1. Check that your seniority is correct on the Unit A or Unit C list.
  2. File any challenge in writing by March 1.

Grade 8

WEA members working with eighth graders were polled this week on the idea of issuing a statement on the proposed move of eighth grade to the high school. Ballots were anonymous. Seven voted to take a position against the idea, five to come out in favor, and three voted to issue no statement. As there was no option that earned a majority, the WEA will not take a position on this proposal, though the results are being released in the interests of transparency.