Mediation and Legal Updates

Mediation Update

Unite Summit and SPS met Wednesday with our PERB appointed mediator. The mediator emphasized that they are neutral and impartial and their job is to encourage both parties to make movement in their proposals. We are hopeful that in this next step in bargaining, we will make significant progress with SPS in creating an agreement.

It is important that we demonstrate to Summit that teachers are united behind the core goals of our contract — reducing teacher turnover, increasing teacher voice, and increasing supports for our students (read our full explanation of all our goals here). To show your support, please wear your Unite Summit t-shirt during our next mediation session on Tuesday September 21. If you need a shirt, please ask your site rep!

Legal Update

You may have seen two notices from the Public Employment Relations Board that Summit emailed and posted at our schools a few weeks ago.

These are the result of decisions concerning two Unfair Labor Practices (ULPs) our union filed.

One ULP was about Summit’s conduct when we filed to form our union back in 2019. The judge found that Summit admin failed to provide our union with basic information we requested (like a list of employees and basic job descriptions). Their delay/refusal to give us the requested information violated our rights. The judge ordered Summit to stop failing to provide our union with necessary information and stop interfering with and denying our rights to represent our members. You can read the judge’s full ruling here.

The second ULP was about a threat Summit made to close Rainier. Teachers were told that they needed to stop organizing for changes at their school or that it would close, even though Summit admin was already planning on closing the school. The judge found that this threat was illegal and violated our rights. You can read the judge’s full ruling here.

Our students and faculty deserve schools that are held to high standards – this includes Summit Home Office following the law. These decisions are a positive step forward in holding Summit accountable for its actions. Ultimately, our best avenue for holding Summit accountable is through a strong first union contract that addresses the core needs of our students and teachers.

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