BCPS, TABCO resolve grievance over teachers’ workloads
Wednesday, 03 September 2014 13:07
 by Nicole Rodman

    A grievance filed by county teachers last fall has been resolved.
    Officials from Baltimore County Public Schools (BCPS) and the Teachers Association of Baltimore County (TABCO)
announced the resolution on Aug. 22.
    TABCO filed the grievance last November, complaining of excessive workloads and inadequate preparation for new curricula.
    “Teachers have always had an unbelievable workload,” TABCO president Abby Beytin said at the time.
    “With the advent of new assessment tests, new teacher evaluations, new curriculum plans in place, the new Common Core standards to learn ... it’s a ‘perfect storm,’ Everything came together at once.”
   
In its grievance, TABCO alleged that teachers were not adequately trained or prepared in advance of the new Common Core educational standards going into effect last year.
    Teachers complained that new curricula were still being written just weeks before they were to be introduced to students, leaving teachers little time to prepare.
    Teachers also expressed concern over a new teacher evaluation system and the possibility of being evaluated while still getting used to a brand new curriculum.
    According to Beytin, BCPS has addressed many of TABCO’s concerns.
    The school system agreed to provide teachers with curriculum materials by June 1 — a promise that was kept.
    Beytin noted that BCPS also agreed that “new and significantly revised curriculum” — including the new kindergarten English language curriculum —  would be piloted in some schools and not used in teacher evaluations.
    “This does not mean that everything is perfect and that there may not be other issues that will need to be addressed,” Beytin indicated, “but as far as our specific grievance is concerned, it has been resolved.”
    In a statement, BCPS superintendent Dr. S. Dallas Dance called teachers “the heart of this school system.”
    “It was important for us to work with TABCO to ensure that teachers can instruct and support our students at a maximum level of effectiveness,” he said.
    “TABCO and BCPS are united in wanting the best for our teachers and students and working together to move this school system from good to great.”