Mayor Bill Finch told reporters earlier this year that Superintendent Paul Vallas has “never seen a contract as bad as this.”
Believe it or not, Vallas may be on to something…
I’m not quite sure what part of the contract he was referring to; however, after reviewing the contract myself, I noticed a few lines that should definitely be scraped.
No, I’m not talking about the usual sticking points: higher pay, sick days and pensions.
I’m referring to a provision in the current BEA contract that uses the term “Mentally Retarded” when referring to intellectually disabled children.
Yes, that’s right! The term “Mentally Retarded” is still being used to describe children in a contract that was written only three years ago.
“2. Teachers of Trainable Mentally Retarded Children and Physically Handicapped Children who functioned as such in the Bridgeport School System as of June 30, 1974 shall continue to receive $300.00 in addition to their regular salaries. Teachers hired into such positions subsequent to June 30, 1975 shall not receive such $300
3. Teachers of Educable Mentally Retarded Children who functioned as such in Bridgeport School System as of June 30, 1974 shall continue to receive $200 in addition to their regular salaries. Teachers hired into such position subsequent to June 30, 1974 shall not receive such $200.”
[Bridgeport Board of Education BEA Contract, 12/21/2010 ]
Talk about antiquated!
Why does the contract use such outdated and offensive language? And, while we’re on the subject, why are only certain teachers getting extra pay? It doesn’t seem fair.
New teachers in Bridgeport only make about $42,428 to start. That’s $1,000 less than the state average and a few thousand less than the surrounding districts. [Conncan.org, Teacher Contract Database, 10/04/2013]
I’m certainly not for taking money away from anyone, but I don’t see why new teachers serving the same population of students don’t get the extra $200-$300 bump in pay.
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