By the Warrior Weekly Staff
Standing outside each morning holding blue and yellow signs with hopes of reaching an agreement with the School Committee, Andover High teachers have worked tirelessly for the past year and a half to renew their contracts. Despite their efforts, a compromise has yet to be reached. That’s why educators throughout Andover have planned to meet this Thursday, Dec. 1, to vote on whether a “work to rule” policy should be instituted in Andover schools.
After teachers cast their ballots on Thursday, the simply majority will determine whether “work to rule” will be implemented in schools throughout the district. If a simple majority votes in favor of the policy, Andover educators will begin to restrict both the time they spend in school and the time they devote to planning and correcting after the school day is over. For Andover High teachers, this means arriving at school at 7:30 AM and leaving at 2:30 PM. Additionally, teachers will be expected to stop school-related work at the end of the day, leaving it to be completed during planning periods. While these measures are important for teachers to raise awareness about their expired contracts, the implications of “work to rule” do not bode well for students.
Will students be able to get the extra help they need to succeed? Will lessons be as well thought out and in depth if teachers’ planning periods become occupied with other work that used to be completed at home? Will teachers be willing to write recommendations for upperclassmen when they apply to college? These are all questions that need to be carefully considered before the vote on Thursday. If teachers put their needs before those of their students, not only will students suffer from a decline in the quality of their education, but the “work to rule” policy will not reflect well on the Andover community.
As students, we look up to our teachers, we support our teachers, and we want our teachers to be able to educate us to the best of their ability. If the “work to rule” policy is the only way for them to renew their contracts and fulfill their duties as teachers, we hope the attention of the School Committee will be captured and an agreement will quickly be reached.