Given MTI’s victory in Circuit Court, wherein Judge Juan Colas found Act 10 unconstitutional, MTI and the District have agreed to commence Contract negotiations (PDF).
Details of this were announced in a joint letter to all District employees last Friday from Superintendent Jen Cheatham and MTI Executive Director John Matthews. Their letter stated that, “… to be successful this year and in the years to come, District employees must have a work environment that is both challenging and rewarding, and one which includes economic and employment security”. Matthews complimented the Superintendent and Board members for their progressive philosophy in recognizing the essentials in positive employment relations.
Contracts existed in all 423 school districts at the time Act 10 was passed in 2011. Currently, workers in only four school districts enjoy the wages, benefits and rights which a Collective Bargaining Agreement provides. The current Contracts for MTI’s five bargaining units expire June 30, 2014.
The State has appealed Judge Colas’ decision. The matter will be heard by the Wisconsin Supreme Court in November or December. In his ruling, Judge Colas stated that Act 10 was passed in a very controversial manner, skipping several steps mandated by legislative rules and Wisconsin law, and that it violated public workers’ Constitutional guarantees of freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, as well as the Constitutional guaranteed Equal Protection Clause.
I wonder what the sentiment across the teacher population might be? Perhaps there have been surveys?