CTA takes a huge amount of dues yet has created a representation model in which your colleagues, as part of a largely volunteer set of officers, bargaining team members, and shop stewards, do the vast majority of the work for your members. The money you send to CTA goes to pay for a huge, and ever growing, administrative bureaucracy, that apparently leaves no money for professional negotiators and lawyers to handle your disciplinary matters, contract enforcement, and bargaining.
Our Better Model is predicated on your independent teacher association having the freedom to hire, and thus fire, the labor and legal professionals that provide services to them. We do this every day and know what it costs to represent public employees, including teachers. The cost is far less than what CTA charges you because we don’t have the overhead and administrative costs they do, nor the political lobbying expenses they incur. Any extra money that you save (at least 50% of your current dues and maybe as much as 80%) can be returned to the teachers or spent on the services and issue that your local association decides is most important to you.
Currently, as a member of CTA, you must pay whatever CTA and NEA set as their dues. Because CTA is essentially a monopoly when it comes to representing public school teachers in California, the dues have predictably risen higher and higher – without any noticeable increase in services to the members.
The CIT Model returns to the teachers of each district the right to set their own dues.
An independent teachers’ association can set dues comfortably at half of what they are currently paying under the CTA model and still get professional representation in the bargaining process and to cover all contract enforcement and individual disciplinary matters. The professional services can be provided by a law firm such as Goyette & Associates that specializes in representing California public employee associations. These services can be provided to associations with memberships that range from a few dozen teachers to several thousand.
The cost of hiring professionals to handle the core services that the association needs is about 20-40% of the total dues currently being paid. That leaves 10-30% of current dues for the association to use for general administrative costs, other member services and local political action – or whatever the association chooses to do. That still leaves 50% of current dues to be returned to the individual teachers – call it the CTA dividend.
Don’t believe that a labor law firm actually costs less than CTA? It’s true, by a lot! Ask around. Police officers, firefighters, and other public employees pay as much as 80% less than teachers and routinely receive professional labor and legal representation that far outweighs what CTA provides.
The decertification process is simple and can easily be accomplished by any group of teachers who are interested in making it happen. Here are the basic steps:
The First Step: File a Petition
The First step is to file a showing of interest petition that shows at least 30% of your bargaining unit wants to have a decertification election. The petition itself is not complicated and any number of forms will work. Here are 2 examples of petitions that work just fine. * link pending
The timing of the petition is important. The petition must be filed in a twenty-nine day window that is 90 to 120 days prior to the expiration of your MOU. For example, if your CBA (otherwise known as your MOU or Memorandum on Understanding) expires on June 30th, the petition must be filed sometime during the month of March.
The Second Step: The Election
Once the petition has been filed, PERB will review it and contact you regarding scheduling and election. PERB will conduct a ballot election where a simple majority determines the outcome the ballot typically includes the names of both the incumbent union and the new petitioning employee organization.
The Third Step: You’re Up and Running
Since the majority of the teachers in your Association voted to be independent, you are now up and running. Your G&A support team and their lawyers will be there to help you through every step along the way.
If I want to know to know more about the decertification process, where do I look?
Good Question. The whole decertification process is determined by State Law. The Educational Employees Relations Act (EERA) governs employee relations within the public school systems of the State of California. The Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) administers and enforces the EERA including all decertification elections. The EERA is contained in Government Code Section 3544, et al. The PERB website also has a lot of useful information. That website is http://www.perb.ca.gov
How will we know if we are doing it right?
We will be here to help you and advise you through every step of the process. We have successfully decertified dozens of units from large Unions. We won’t leave you to do this on your own. Call us at 888-993-1600 now, to learn how to make a huge difference to the teachers in your district or email us here. But Hurry!… if your contract expires this year or next- timing is critical.