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Teacher: Issue 2 not good for students

Published: Tue, October 18, 2011 @ 12:05 a.m.

By David Skolnick



A Boardman High School teacher says the passage of state Issue 2 would adversely impact students.

Dave Pavlansky, the president of the Boardman teachers union, said Monday at the headquarters of We Are Ohio, a statewide organization spearheading opposition to Issue 2, that the bill “silences” the voices of educators about classroom sizes and other issues that impact students.

Pavlansky, an English teacher with 30 years of classroom experience, also said the bill “takes away collective bargaining.”

Mahoning County Republican Party Chairman Mark Munroe said, “That’s not true.”

The bill, if passed, would permit unions to continue negotiating wages, working conditions and hours of work.

The bill would require public employees to pay 10 percent of their retirement pickup and at least 15 percent of their health-insurance premiums.

Most state government employees already pay those amounts. The savings would come from union members on the local level, many who don’t pay those percentages, Munroe said.

The bill creates new rules for what can be negotiated, giving management more control and power.

“There is nothing in Issue 2 that doesn’t permit teachers from discussing anything with school administrators,” Munroe said. “Only health care and retirement [pickups] are off the table as far as negotiations.”

Pavlansky, surrounded by five other Boardman teachers, said his union members approved a three-year contract in June that calls for no increase in base salary and also freezes stop increases for the first two years of the deal. For the previous two years, Boardman teachers received no base-pay increases.

During these five years, the teachers have given back $1.5 million to the district, Pavlansky said.

But Issue 2 goes too far, he said.

The issue would make it easier for school-board members and administrators to fire teachers based on personalities, Pavlansky said.

Approval of Issue 2 “would remove all workplace protections,” he said. “If a teacher speaks up and becomes a squeaky wheel,” it would be easy to get rid of that teacher.

If Issue 2 is approved, it would remove seniority. Munroe said that’s not a bad thing.

“No longer would longevity be the only factor when considering teachers for promotions, layoffs and other issues,” he said. “The basic goal is to give local governments and school districts a better tool to control costs.”


1UnionForever(1470 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

How could having the very best evaluated teachers in the classroom be bad for the students? The teachers don't want to pay their fair share for benefits. Just like when they say that tax levy is "for the kids". It's all about maintaining a high level of pay and benefits for the teachers and nothing about the kids because if it was, having the very best teachers in the classroom regardless of seniority would be their goal.

Support SB5 with your YES vote on Issue 2 and really make Ohio education "for the kids".

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2Education_Voter(1166 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

The job has protections against political cronyism, guys.
We already have school systems that don't use seniority. The process for lay-offs then becomes lay-off the workers without political connections.

That's why there are provisions like seniority. It's not perfect. It's better than what we had without it.

Meanwhile, the teacher in the classroom should have a voice about things like safety and procedures. That voice can be cut off by the SB5 procedures for negotiations.

When the administrators want to stop talking, the negotiations are over. That means that listening to the teachers will just become a formality. The administrators will probably keep their earbuds in.

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3lee(544 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

When did it become OK for the shop floor workers to tell the boss how to run his company.
Teachers work for us not the other way around.

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4glbtactivist(320 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Of course the Republicans are only trying to destroy the last middle class americans. They could care less about what affect it will have on the school children. Kasich is shameless and if Ohioans had any moral backbone they would have already recalled him.

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5Stan(9923 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Taxing you to the limit one more time is the goal . Here is how it works . You get less so that they can get more . Since your wages aren't going up you are paying more and more of your less and less . The answer is in controlling costs to keep taxes low .

SB5 we can live with it .


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62ndamendment(21 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

VOTE YES on Issue 2, I am.....

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7NoBS(2761 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Ah, but sportsfan758 makes $78,425.00 - he doesn't want you to know that.

You people love that Kasich Kool-Aid. Issue 2 will bring back cronyism and favoritism to the public sector. You know how it is in the non-union private sector, where the boss's idiot son-in-law makes twice as much as anyone else, despite doing so little that everyone else has to pull his weight along with their own. And how if you dare to say you think one of the decisions the head brown-nose made was not perfect, you're fired. Why do you want that to return to the public sector? You people yap now about having to know people to get those jobs. If Issue 2 passes, it will be true. If you're connected, you can land one of those jobs, whether you're qualified or not. I guess the Kasich Klan wants that. It's what you're supporting, people!

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8walter_sobchak(2672 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

The system in place for contracts and compensation for public-employee unions is unsustainable. Unfortunately, we may be throwing out the baby with the bath water with SB5, but something has to change. A good solution would be countywide school systems and/or consolidation of districts. You think the teachers are screaming now?

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9republicanRick(1716 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Teachers cannot make more than the taxpayers that pay school taxes. It is that simple.

Teachers better quit crying about how much they "deserve" and learn to live with the new reality.

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10republicanRick(1716 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Cleveland Plain Dealer and Columbus Dispatch, both liberal papers, have just ENDORSED a YES vote on SB5.

They know that things are bad economically in the state and changes HAVE to be made if we are ever going to grow again.

Public unions need to change with the times because the taxpayers are tapped out.

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11pgurney(296 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

I will be voting NO.

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12apollo(1227 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Vote yes on the issue to help reign in spending that is unsustainable. The public sector still feels that it is immune to the realities of the market place. They need to pay higher health care premiums and reduced pensions. If the employer (taxpayers) are feeling the pain, the employees (public employees) also must make sacrifices.

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13Phil_EngAmer(32 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

It’s a little hard to believe that teachers are impartial or objective on this issue given that taken together, the American Federation of Teachers and the National Education Association have been the nation's leading political donors in federal elections over the past two decades, and teachers' unions are either number one or number two in terms of political giving in 60% of US states (http://eng.am/pdU7XL).

However, you get a pretty good picture of what kind of effect such legislation has when you look at Wisconsin, where very similar legislation was put in place. In districts where the new legislation was put in place, districts are turning deficits into surpluses, and as a result are reducing class sizes (http://eng.am/nGSRqB). They’re also ensuring an end to a system that was kicking good new teachers out of the system (http://eng.am/n6Bc6d).

You contrast that with districts in the state that haven’t put the new legislation in place due to previously negotiated union contracts. In such districts you’ve seen mass layoffs due to the unsustainability of the contracts the unions bargain for (http://eng.am/nfGqDq).

Constantly losing teachers seemingly does very little good for students. Should no legislation be adopted in Ohio to reform the unsustainability of the public sector compensation model, we’re likely to see these types of unwelcome consequences pervade throughout the state.

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14AnotherAverageCitizen(1193 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

I agree that ALL public employees should pay more for healthcare and retiement.

However I am SICK of hearing public employess are all freinds and family. WELL DARN IT, so is the private sector. And NO ONE should argue that. Its been who you know, not what you know, in the PRIVATE and PUBLIC sector. Quit your Bi...ing about it.

Teachers work for US, the children, the school and the community. They are well educated and I see no problem with well educated citizens making a livable wage.


Vote NO on issue 2

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15Education_Voter(1166 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

nafstrops post of the Buckeye Institute teachers' salaries proves that collective bargaining does work.
Mr. Pavlansky works in a district with plenty of commercial and industrial property, and high property values. I work in a district with lower property values and a residential community. Although I have worked longer than Mr. Pavlansky, and also have a Masters Degree (and am halfway to a second) I make about $10,000. less.

Obviously during contract talks, we all respond to the communities we live in.

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16Education_Voter(1166 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Common Citizen,
SB5 has nothing to do with "tenure" as you call it, which is actually a continuing contract.
Continuing Contracts are part of another state law, and by the way, require 7 years of experience and a Masters Degree. Before earning a Continuing Contract, teachers can be dismissed for any reason, or no reason. After earning it, teachers may still be dismissed, but the employer must give a reasonable cause, that's all.

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17doubled(210 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Been reading these comments for awhile but first time actually posting. I've noticed that any time an article is about SB5 or anything to do with the public sector, it seems that falconeddy is the first one to post. He appears to always want the public sector employees to lose something .I've also noticed that he never really supports his comments with anything but conclusory assertions that public employees should be treated the same as the private sector, but gives no facts to support that position. He appears to want this parity only for the bad things, not the good things, that come with private sector employment, such as bonuses for being productive, or any other benefit that is earned in the private sector by employees who do their jobs and do them well. One of the first rules of capitalism -and business in general - is that you get what you pay for. I agree that budgets need to be scrutizined, but in the end, the taxpayers who benefit from the services of the police, fire, teachers, water treatment, numerous offices that taxpayers use every day, etc, etc....the taxpayers will ultimately get the services that they are willing to pay for..This does mean that these public employees are holding the taxpayer hostage, it just means that under any reasonable model of business, exactly how long do you beleive well qualified, productive public employees will remain in a job that pays significantly less than the private sector. And under what analysis of human nature could you possibly conclude that a solid public sector employee would not also be a solid private sector employee, and therefore just leave and go earn more money somewhere else?? I've read SB5 and I have to say that from an objective standpoint, it goes quite far in reducing the overall wages and benefits for some fairly critical public employees. I compare it to using a machete to slice a grape. It goes very far indeed, to the point where many public employees, the good ones at least (and there's lots of them) would certainly find it more attractive to simply leave public service and go elsewhere...Falconeddy may find that scenario appealing...as a taxpayer that relies on at least a basic amount of public services, however, I'm not so sure that getting what SB5 is asking for will be such a great thing for the majority of us. So if you want blood from the public employees, vote for SB5, but if you think that perhaps there's a solution that's a little less extreme, vote no and send the lawmakers back to the bargaining table so that reaonable - and sustainable -cuts can be made. I think everyone understands that things need to - and are going to - change regarding public spending, but exactly what kind of change are you getting with SB5 -- and is it the kind you are willing to live with for decades to come. Remember that when the pendulum swings, it swings a sharp blade.

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18gobrowns(19 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Working in backwards order, so please bear with me.

Aztek519: teacher strikes are very infrequent in this area. What seems to the public as a strike over wages & benefits, usually includes much more. However, due to law, negotiations & contracts aren't public record to my knowledge. (this might clear up some minds on the issue)

Walter Sobchack: First off, awesome name! "this isn't nam smokey, there are rules, mark it zero." Countywide school systems make the most sense, but yes teachers would be opposed to this. However, I could imagine the uproar if someone from a more affluent district was forced to send their child to school with someone from a city school.

Dodge 2002: Couldn't agree more, lazy teachers need to go. However, you use too broad of a paintbrush when you say that once tenure is achieved, that most teachers quit working. In any profession, there are ppl who don't do their job, and they should be removed. 95% of teachers or more are awesome, caring & hardworking individuals.

857NafStrops: Get a new argument! teachers only work 9 months Ya, Ya, Ya. The why didn't EVERYBODY become a teacher? Also Mr. Pavlansky has been teaching quite a while to my knowledge, and I am sure that his years of experience & educational levels are comparable to the private sector (actually prolly much lower)

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19gobrowns(19 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

To all the main provisions & points of contention for SB5.
1. "Merit based pay": goal is to promote better performances, & removed ineffective teachers.
Great Idea!, how is it going to be judged? by a state test score?? What happens if a student comes from another district and enters into a freshman level class without the ability to read? (Happened to me last year) Did i deserve less pay cause she failed the state test? (The one's who deserve less are the one's who shuffled her through.) As a content area teacher, with 29 other students in the same class, (including 7 with a reading level at least 3 grades below level) and very little training in literacy education, what can I do? Most people are not aware that this is not the exception of the today's classroom, but the norm. Is it a teacher's fault? partly, However, I firmly believe that the theory on how we educate in this country is flawed, because educators (or shop floor workers as lee called us) are not given input in crafting educational law. Former Gov Strickland proposed a law that would have made Algebra II and physics a requirement for HS graduation. In the same class as the illiterate student, I also had a student who first began dressing themselves in the 8th grade, yet that person is going to pass state tests, Sure!
I am first in line for a merit pay system that is fair & safe.
2. Health care & benefits: Obviously one of the most out of control costs, rising at many times the rate of inflation. I won't even touch this one with a 10 foot pole. I will simply say that when compared to educational levels, and salaries, the health care costs for teachers I believe are fair.

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20gobrowns(19 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

3. Tenure/Classroom sizes/ETC. According to the letter of the law with SB5, the only negotiated items off the table are wages & benefits. However, if the two sides are at an impasse, local governments come in and settle the dispute (as far as I could remember) the full text of SB5, is crazy long! Have arbitrators ruled too aggressively on behalf of unions for raises in the past? ABSOLUTELY! Should "negotiations" be conducted with the decider of conflict having bias? SB5 the way that it is written will have "negotiations" favored towards the administration/BOE side, with no power for recourse over disputed items. (as mediation, arbitration, & strikes currently do)
As a teacher, one of our greatest concerns is the arbitrary removal of a teacher with experience (and a higher salary) for one with less experience & a lower salary. In today's cost cutting days, this is a valid concern, IMHO.

Simply put, I will be voting NO on SB5, because I see it as hurting education, not my pocketbook.

The middle class that has chosen jobs that most would never want to do (cops, teachers, nurses, & firefighters) shouldn't be blamed for runaway government spending, and out of control politicians.

If you keep up on your current events, the same govt in Cbus that is concerned with saving money, just gave themselves raises between 9-18%!!!!!

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21Stan(9923 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Goverment workers are all for themselves . The want the private sector to dig deep once again and relinquish more of their share to them . How much will be enoug for them and how little can you get by on ?

If you support giving up more of your less and less then by all means give them all that they want . SB5 will only allow you to retain what little you have left .


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22doubled(210 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Stan -- You say ..."Goverment workers are all for themselves..."

What planet are you from? It must be a planet where Gov't workers don't provide the citizens with any services...but I guess if you sit around all day in your underwear in front of the computer you don't get out much and you wouldn't need many gov't services. You know, like roads, snow removal, schools, police, fire, safe water to drink, safe food to eat, emergency services, safe buildings to live and work in, etc, etc, etc, etc.

And who, exactly, do you think private businesses are for?? Do you think they exist to advance your personal well-being or your piece of mind?? Or do you think they exist to sell you stuff, get your money, and make a profit??? Yeah, that's what I thought. Get a clue and stop spouting off ridiculous conclusions that have no basis in fact. IF your for SB5 then be specific as to why...otherwise keep your sound bites to yourself, they're not persuasive and after months and months they sort of lose their effect... Ya get it...don't just shout something and run away...such conduct is the province of small children, b/c they don't know any better.

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23doubled(210 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Oh, and Stan -- one more thing...Hulk Hogan's a freaking sissy - your avatar doesn't scare anyone.

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24Stan(9923 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

doubled :

"Stan -- You say ..."Goverment workers are all for themselves..."

Yep, you read right . With stagnating and eroding wages in the private sector the government workers want more of your less and less .

SB5 allows you to live in dignity and feed your family without being taxed to the limit one more time !

SB5, we can live with it !


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25AnotherAverageCitizen(1193 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

"Stan -- You say ..."Goverment workers are all for themselves..."

Well, So are private sector workers and business owners. All the business wants is your money.

If you can read this, THANK A TEACHER

Thank a teacher by Voting NO on issue 2.


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262muchtax(895 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Tenure shoulld be abolished! 3yrs and your protected, how many private sector jobs offer that. 5000 & 6000 dollars a month after 30 hrs when people retire in there 50's is unsustainable.oThe double dipping in the education, fire,police and sheriff departments in a crime against the taxpayers. The DROP program which allowed Jimmy hughes to retire with 500,000 and collect a retirement while he decided whether he wanted to come back and double dip,s or how about dr wendy webs 111,000 lump sump sick time check from town schools after she ran the district into at the worst rating possible. Just a few reasons common sense tells us SB5 is needed!

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272muchtax(895 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

Tenure shoulld be abolished! 3yrs and your protected, how many private sector jobs offer that. 5000 & 6000 dollars a month after 30 hrs when people retire in there 50's is unsustainable. Toe double dipping in the education, fire,police and sheriff departments in a crime against the taxpayers. The DROP program which allowed Jimmy hughes to retire with 500,000 and collect a retirement while he decided whether he wanted to come back and double dip,s or how about dr wendy webs 111,000 lump sump sick time check from town schools after she ran the district into at the worst rating possible. Just a few reasons common sense tells us SB5 is needed!

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28Philo(99 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

If by some stroke of stupidity issue 2 is voted down, I for one will never vote to support another levy or even a renewal. If mass layoffs are the only way to control costs then I say let's start right now. Once enough of these greedy public sector union members are furloughed, common sense might prevail. Vote YES on Issue 2.

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29jasoninohio(119 comments)posted 4 years, 8 months ago

I love it how whenever teachers are threatened with any cuts, they always fall back on the kids. Give me a break. The facts are that education costs are spiraling out of control, but test scores have not improved. Those are facts.

Teachers need to be held accountable for what the kids learn,yet they are not. If kids are failing, it is because the teachers are not teaching. I see so many of these so called 'at-risk' kids go to charter schools and succeed. Why do you think that is? Because at a charter school the teachers know their job is on the line if the kids do not learn.

I second the motion that Philo made, and I will vote down every school levy for the rest of my life if Issue 2 is voted down. It is time for the schools the realize that unions and schools to not have any business being linked!

VOTE YES ON 2!!!!!!!!!

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