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Politics prevails again in Niskayuna school district

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Politics prevails again in Niskayuna school district Each year, Niskayuna Teacher’s Association [NTA] invites Board of Education candidates to its Executive Board meeting for a chance to gain its endorsement. However, first-term candidate Rosemarie Jaquith failed to receive an invitation to the May 7 meeting, and the NTA endorsed the other two candidates, including Board of Education president, Deb Oriola, who supported last year’s failed budget and is responsible for a series of other questionable ...

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May 17, 2014
11:48 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

James: Why do school boards come up with these egregious spending increases? Because through history, the odds are that the taxpayers (the ones who vote) have proven that they will have no problem voting themselves a tax increase. The school boards know it and don't need to go any further to control spending. They blame everyone but themselves for why spending must increase, and they get away with it because most people don't challenge their decisions. Those who do are thought of as the perennial complainers and generally ignored. The tax cap is a joke, as is most of the other phony rhetoric from the politicians about school spending and cost to taxpayers. The ones who complain the most are the ones who can least afford the taxes, but are over-ruled by those who don't mind paying the taxes, and by those who just don't care one way or another. The problem will not be addressed until the majority of taxpayers want change. Until then......

May 17, 2014
7:42 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

Anne and Michael, the purpose of a union is to fight for increases in salary and benefits, and for better workplace conditions for its members. That is it.
The Niskayuna Teachers’ Association is a union and has no place endorsing Board of Education candidates. It should not be encouraged to do so.
The Niskayuna Teachers' Association will be negotiating salary and benefit increases with the Board of Education soon.
When persons at the other side of the bargaining table are beholding to a union that endorsed them, their ability to negotiate in good faith for the interests of students and taxpayers is diminished.

May 19, 2014
9:26 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

I fail to see how Deb Oriola voting to table closing a school is a "questionable decision" since the superintendent did not inform the board of a policy that needed to be followed in order to close a school. The superintendent is obligated to do this not the board telling her as per a policy on the books. Litigation would have ensued. Deb Oriola was one of the few board members last year who did not want to extend said Superintendents contract which should have expired June, 2014 instead 4 board members (one of whom was not re elected last year and should not have voted at all) voted to extend the contract until June 2015. Deb O realized the ramifications of closing a school after all. And what about that basketball coach who was not reinstated?? Well, he used questionable language around the children and Deb O as well as 3 other board members did not think it acceptable to him to continue. Go figure! We denounce bullying for children but accept it from the teachers? I don't think so. RPJ felt it acceptable to use Niska Day to further her campaign by riding in a float and handing out frisbees to children who don't even vote.