Does it matter to you when school begins in the fall? How about when and how long winter or spring break is? And, how about when the school year ends? Have you thought about how many days you work for your annual salary, or how many hours make up your school day? In members’ responses to many years of MTI bargaining surveys, all of these factors are “very important” to those in MTI’s various bargaining units.
It was MTI’s case in 1966 which gave teacher unions an equal voice on all of the above topics. Ruling for MTI, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that the school calendar is a mandatory subject of bargaining, meaning that a school district in Wisconsin must negotiate with the Union to determine each of the factors described above. Unfortunately, Governor Walker’s Act 10 in effect overturned the Supreme Court’s ruling because Act 10 removed workers’ rights to collectively bargain.
Impact? Act 10 enables a school board without a good conscience to engage in mischief or abuse of all MTI-represented staff, especially teachers, because teachers are paid an annual salary not on an hourly basis.
So far, the Board of Education has continued to negotiate the school calendar with MTI. In 2012’s negotiations, the calendar was agreed upon through the 2013-14 school year. MTI is fighting to overturn Act 10 and to restore the Union’s right to negotiate over the school calendar.