The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, October 10, 2003


CCHS teachers pressure contract talks

According to a press release sent by the Concord-Carlisle Teachers Association (CCTA) to local and Boston newspapers last Friday, the the faculty of Concord-Carlisle High School unanimously voted to hold up two required documents for the reaccreditation of the school by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). This action was taken to put pressure on contract negotiations between the CCTA and the Concord-Carlisle Regional School Committee (RSC), which appear to have reached an impasse.

The press release reads, in part:

"The teachers, who are working without a contract, withheld approval of the School Resources and the Leadership and Organization reports.

"According to Mr. Kevin Harding, the Co-Chair of the NEASC Steering Committee, 'Each committee report is a collaborative effort of parents, students, and teachers and consequently provides balanced and realistic perspective on the educational excellence evident here at the high school. The NEASC Committee report on Leadership and Organization cited the four-class teaching load and the 90:1 student-teacher ratio as one of the high school's strengths.'

"Mr. Andrei Joseph, President of the CCTA, said, 'The teachers, parents, and students who worked so hard to prepare these reports noted the wonderful educational opportunities for students at CCHS. But without a contract settlement that protects the learning environment at CCHS, there is no guarantee that these opportunities will continue.' "

RSC responds

RSC Chair Michael Fitzgerald would not comment on the press release except to read the following statement, prepared by the RSC:

"Any action taken by the CCTA that would in any way impede the process by which the high school maintains accreditation is counterproductive, does not adhere to the values of promoting and fostering student achievement, and will not serve to advance any position at the bargaining table. The RSC continues to adhere to the jointly agreed-upon route about not negotiating the contract in the public arena, and therefore will not comment further on this matter."

The NEASC is one of six regional accrediting associations. Every ten years, the association visits a member school to evaluate its performance relative to its stated mission, goals, and standards. The NEASC has scheduled a visit to CCHS for March, 2004. Without timely approval of the committee reports by the faculty, that visit may be delayed.

2003 The Carlisle Mosquito