Continuing the conversation on the teacher’s contract negotiation.

How long do parents and other residents think these great teachers will stay in Newton when starting salaries for Teachers with a Master’s Degree, and the debt that it required, are lower than many other districts, wage packages continue to be low and teachers are not shown the respect they deserve but are still teaching without a signed contract? Skilled teachers leave Newton regularly.

Why is it OK for Mayor Fuller to issue publicly a letter to the Newton Teachers Association about Contract Negotiations when 1) It isn’t her job as she is just a member of the School Committee- it belongs with the School Committee as a whole or at least it’s Chair, 2) All Collective Bargaining is generally confidential and 3) She tells the teachers that there is fixed amount of money in the budget for education – but she spends substantial public money on projects she wants done.

Why is it OK for our valuable teachers and other public employees to be told basically to “suck it up” and take what they’re offered when there seems to be unlimited public funds available for other things? Or for these same public employees – who are more valuable to Newton than the mayor or the city council – to work without a contract as they are doing now? Or for the city council to vote themselves and the mayor and school committee raises while out teachers work without a contract?

Why is OK for Mayor Fuller and the city council to spend vast sums of public money on

1. no-bid contacts, for contacted services for both the Washington Street Vision Plan and her pet project – a new Whatever Center? Especially when she ignores the recommendations of the contracted services?

2. Attempting to obtain Webster Woods from BC by (friendly) Eminent Domain – meaning, Newton will have to pay fair market value for the property.

3. A new Whatever Center, which was to be a new Senior Center but has morphed into a three story Athletic Center with a full sized gym including retractable bleachers and above it a walking track/a Community Center for all of Newton to use for various things/an indoor-outdoor full-sized pool, when all that was requested was a new Senior Center.

There is no way to know at this point how much the above will cost but it is definitely millions upon millions that was not in this “fixed budget.”

Why is it OK for the mayor to essentially tell the city council how to vote on her pet issues? In the first month of being in office, she decided Newton should be allowed to vote on having marijuana retail stores in Newton and put in her newsletter before the council had voted,  a “Let’s Vote” column. This overstepping by the executive branch has continued throughout her “reign.”

Plainly the above are not OK!!!

Why are we continuing to allow these things to happen?

Do we have no recourse but to vote her out next election season?