The teachers' union & the school board met today with the state mediator for a whopping HOUR, and of course got nothing accomplished, other than agreeing to call it quits after 60 minutes and neither side budging from their positions. Natalie made an elephant on paper, traced over her drawing with glue and sprinkled colored sand on it. She also ate lunch, played in the gym and when I came to pick her up was deeply involved with building blocks. It's all well and good, and she certainly enjoys those activities, but I had hoped that she'd have gotten to meet her teacher and talked about her classroom and her classmates by now. The date of September 24th is when the teachers must return to the classroom in order to get 180 days of school in by June 30th. Naturally, September 24th is the day that I have to pull Natalie out of school for the entire day for a dentist appointment in the morning and a cardiology appiontment in the afternoon. I had scheduled both appointments months ago, with the expectation that she would have had 3 1/2 weeks of school under her belt by then, but it's looking and sounding more and more like she's going to miss the first day of school, again. Heaven help me if I hear one utterance from the school or the teacher about the importance of instruction time and it being vital to the success of the student. Wouldn't that just take the cake? Ha!
Apparently, another sore spot in all this hullabaloo is over the medical coverage for the employees of the teachers' union. Their benefits have been suspended for the moment and they now have coverage under COBRA (which requires paying out of pocket for coverage). The rumor mill is hard at work, churning out all sorts of baloney and blurbs of questionable material. I heard one today, that a teacher's child was turned away at the ER over lack of health insurance. I take into question whether or not this a true account. I mean, every hospital I've been in recently (particularly our local hospital, Garrett & I spent 4 days there last month) has big signs up in the ER saying that people will not be turned away or treated based on their ability to pay. That's a law, if I recall correctly. Particuarly in an ER, where the goal of the doctors and nurses there is to stabilize, treat & release or admit, patients. In any case, typically, when one quits their job, or is fired, or in this instance, stops working because of a strike, they lose their benefits and that's that. I mean, that's what happens in the real world anyway. But out in the real world, people aren't demanding 8% raises and asking to contribute less towards their health plans either.