NTA Response to Liam Hurley's Email: Time Sensitive!
I'm sure you have seen the email that Assistant Superintendent Liam Hurley just sent in which he reiterates that posting signs in school windows is a violation of school policy. That's a pretty big stretch of the legal imagination! The policy concerns "commercial, recreational, or political solicitations." Our signs, and your posting of them in your windows, is not "political solicitation." Posting signs is union advocacy. It is your expression of union solidarity with Newton families in opposition to ALL the cuts--including the many harmful cuts that remain in the budget the School Committee voted for last night. And your right to this "concerted union activity" is supported by Massachusetts General Law. If NPS attempts to discipline anyone in violation of that law, you will have the full support of the NTA and the MTA! And these cuts are wrong. Not fully funding the schools is wrong. For the School Committee and the Central Administration to acquiesce to a backroom deal and vote on a school budget that leaves so many cuts in place is wrong. Possibly putting your supervisors in the position of having to direct you to take down the signs is wrong! We must stand up together to protect our rights as union members, and to protect our schools. Please, do not be intimated: Post the signs in your windows; post the signs in your cars. Post the signs! We've got your backs! One final word: I really believed that we--the school committee and central administration--were all together in this cause. Yet here, instead, on this issue of "school policy," they demonstrate their resolve. It seems they would prefer the headline in the Globe and on NBC news to be "500 Newton Teachers Disciplined for Displaying 'Fund the Schools' Signs in School Windows," rather than "Newton School Committee Rejects Budget Proposal Because Remaining Cuts Are Too Harmful." In solidarity,
Mike Zilles, President
Newton Teachers Association