Catholic teachers picket for raises
Tuesday, October 20th, 2009
Camden County Catholic School teachers are on the picket line following failed negotiations with the Camden Diocese. High school teachers at three schools: Camden Catholic High School in Cherry Hill, Holly Spirit High School in Absecon, and Paul the Sixth High School in Haddonfield began the work stopage Monday.
The schools remain open, with subs, temps, and administrators teaching as many classes as they can. An adjusted schedule has 9th and 10th graders coming to school one day and 11th and 12th graders reporting on alternate days.
The sticking point centers around salary increases. Teachers are scheduled to get raises for the next two years, but they want to further increase those percentages. Camden Diocese spokesman Andrew Walton says the diocese would be sending the wrong message if it increased raises.
Walton: Folks are dealing with pay freezes, job losses, and in light of these economic circumstances, I think we can see how unreasonable the demands are of union leadership in this circumstance.
A spokesman for the teachers says the contract they've put forward reflects fair wage increases that are in line with salaries nationally.