This blog represents my opinions and my opinions alone, and certainly doesn't represent the collective thoughts of any of the Boards or organizations that I serve on. Unfortunately I make all sorts of miistakes, I'm a picky eater, I can't sing and I just recently found out I have been spelling certain words in my vocabulary wrong my entire life. That being said, I still continue to muddle ever onward. Welcome.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A Personal Message From School Board President Susan Fox:

There have been a few comments/requests related to the Board's decision to withdraw our current draft of a final offer until we have clarification of the new legislation. You should draw no conclusions about what the Board might or might not do regardless of what form pending legislation may take. Quite simply, we need to know what rules/parameters we are dealing with.

In the meantime, I sent personal comments yesterday to a couple dozen or so legislators. I am not authorized to speak for the full Board in this realm, and the full Board cannot issue a statement without a posted public meeting. Therefore, I am speaking, from my physical location in Arizona, only for myself. But for what that's worth, here are my comments to legislators:

Speaking personally as a school board president in a district which does not have a settled contract with our teachers, I urge you to defeat the bill proposed by Governor Walker. The extreme nature of these proposals will damage the working relationships among teachers, administrators, and board members, and thus harm students. Speaking specifically of my own school district, they will undermine current efforts to pursue innovation in which many of our teachers have been engaged. These proposals show no respect for teachers or any other public servants in stripping away long-held rights to bargain. Other than the hearings held on Tuesday, there has been no public, thoughtful communication with stakeholders--no meaningful attempt to gather input-- on these proposals. There has apparently been no thought given to unintended consequences for schools or the economy, many of which will be negative and far reaching.

The fast track movement of this bill shows disdain for the democratic process. Please vote to defeat this bill.

Susan Fox


  1. Thank you for holding off on settling the contract until the new legislation takes effect. This should give the board more leverage to help bring salaries and benefits in line with the new financial realities in WI.

  2. what might those "new financial realities" be?

  3. The realities are that things are getting better and some workers are getting $5,000 bonuses:

    If we want public employees wages to follow private wages, we have to accept paying big raises too. That means big tax increases, but when times are bad we'd get tax decreases. Typically, good times last about twice as long as the bad times, so that would mean twice as many big tax increase years (like $1,000 a year) then decrease years.

    Or we can take the slow and steady approach which we have for years. The downside is we have to keep paying when times are harder in the private sector. But it's far more predictable, easier for the board to budget, and cheaper.