Culver City Observer -

Dear Editor


September 5, 2013

Should we support union endorsements?

Is anyone surprised by the candidates the Culver City Federation of Teachers and the Assn. of Classified Employees are supporting?

True to form the CCUSD unions once again back the newest candidates who know the least about the district finances and operations. We already knew Karlo would be a favorite (he and Nancy cannot vote NO on anything the Union supports). The bulletin announcing the selection states: ”The union slate is a progressive, student-centered, pro-union, multi-ethnic group.“ Focus here on “pro-union” versus pro-teacher.

We all know the purpose of the unions, rightfully, is to vigorously advocate for the wages, benefits and working conditions of its members. And we all know, our CCUSD staff (yes…everyone) are woefully under-compensated as compared to any neighboring or similar district. Worrisome, however, would be a School Board so beholding to its unions that the children are no longer the focus. Isn’t there a conflict of interest inherent here?

Our unions under the leadership of David Mielke has for over a dozen years wrapped itself in the cloak of “best for the students” as it’s mantra, yet fails to fully support it’s newest teachers with its skewered annual raises (oops… don’t call it a raise, it is a negotiated step and column increase).

It is unfortunate so many of our wonderful teachers do not step up and engage their own union, but the same can be said of our parents of whom merely 15% typically vote in school board elections. Over 90% of our school district budget goes to wages and benefits…does anyone wonder how that can be? Does anyone wonder why our facilities are in disarray? Does anyone believe supporting the union slate (watch as Karlo’s Democratic Club endorses the same slate) will be beneficial for our students and schools over these next four years?

Our board is dysfunctional now … let’s not have it mirror the Sacramento legislature (the only body that makes Congress look good).

Alan Elmont

Culver City


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