JeffCO Public Schools officials call cops on veteran teachers during new teacher orientation

“We recognize that we’re in some different times in Jefferson County right now.” – Jefferson County Superintendent Dan McMinimee

JeffCO Public Schools officials call cops on veteran teachers during new teacher orientation

A handful of Jefferson County’s veteran public school teachers met outside Green Mountain High School today to welcome incoming teachers at the district’s induction day – a new employee training. The long-timers handed out flyers inviting the newbies to an afternoon get-together put on by the Jefferson County Education Association, the teacher’s union.

First, security showed up and told the veteran teachers to get off the premises. When they didn’t, the police arrived and threatened to arrest the teachers for trespassing on school grounds. Eventually, the district’s lawyer came out and negotiated with the union a small piece of school property the teachers were confined to.

“They don’t want teachers talking to teachers, I guess,” said Scott Kwasny, the communications and field operations director of the JCEA.

Superintendent Dan McMinimee’s explanation of the incident to The Colorado Independent: “I don’t know if it was the teachers union or any of that. There was a group of people at Green Mountain High School this morning who were confused about where they could be on our campus handing things out.”

Apparently, McMinimee didn’t recognize that the “confused” people were his longstanding employees.

“Pieces of paper is what I understood they were handing out,” he said. What was on those pieces of paper, he did not know.

In past years, the JCEA has presented workshops and provided lunch during the district’s induction day. But this year, with a voter recall of three school board members in the works, contract negotiations underway and rumblings about a potential strike, relationships between the district and the union have broken down.

Kwasny said this year the JCEA was no longer welcome to provide lunch at the event and that the union’s workshops were cancelled.

As McMinimee tells it, the union was welcome to the event and had a table just like Kaiser Permanente and a credit union.  “They were treated just like any other group that was going to work with our teachers,” he said.

Except that staff from Kaiser Permanente and the credit union weren’t threatened with arrest.

Kwasny said the outreach was “about veteran teachers welcoming new teachers to the district and building community, which is critical to our schools’ culture and the success of students at Jeffco. My question to the district would be why do they want to ban teachers from talking to and welcoming their new colleagues.”

“We recognize that we’re in some different times in Jefferson County right now,” McMinimee answered. “And we want to make sure our teachers have a focus on working with students that very first day of school.”

 

Photo courtesy of Scott Kwasny

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About the Author

Kyle Harris

Always reading. Always writing. Always looking for stories.
@kyle_a_harris | kyle@coloradoindependent.com

6 Comments

  1. J on said:

    I must have missed the part where the admin or district personnel went out to amicably solve the situation. Oh wait…

    School security, then police, then a lawyer?

    ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

  2. Charter Fan on said:

    Regrettably, the days of settling anything amicably with JeffCo Teachers Union are long long in the past. They declared war, sponsored the recall, and are spreading vicious lies.

    Also, author Kyle, were the kaiser permanente personnel and others out in front of the school, or at the table they were given? Right. At their table. Not the same as the union shills.

  3. Will Morrison on said:

    Jefferson county is a travesty in this state, and not just in it’s schools. it’s courts are a collossal joke as well. Much more of an extortion racke than courts. To find that their schools are just as bad off is no real surprise. Apparently the county is fun by fools and crooks.

    So just WTF is going on here? The teachers are there for what is essentially orientation WHERE THEY WORK, and the administration comes out with cops to tell them to get lost? Seems to me that the administration has lost what FEW brains it MIGHT have once had. This is disgusting and just plain ridiculous. I think if I worked there, I would quit. This does NOT look good for ANY working conditions, and this looks like nothing but heavy handed authoritarians acting like just what they are. SCUM.

    Fire these administrators. They are clearly into their own power FAR more than they care about educatiing children. There is NO excuse for this kind of behavior. This state NEEDS to do better. If we have to clean out the whole blasted county of it’s workers and hire those who CAN do the job, I see no problem with that. The kids NEED us to do better.

    This is shameful.

  4. Funny Face on said:

    Big deal. A group was handing out flyers. Regardless of which group it is pro union; anti-union blah blah blah isn’t it just a flyer? I get flyers in my mail and handed to me all the time trying to sell me all sorts of crap. Sometimes I buy it. Most of the time I don’t. We should all just be happy that new teachers were hired and that there are good souls out there who still want to teach our children; including accurate US History.

  5. Harvey Sachs on said:

    I look forward to the recall and getting a JeffCo School board that is NOT off the wall nutty and political as the current board is!

    Time for McMinimee to go!

  6. Pingback: Ed is Watching » Union Complaints Obscure Need for Fair, Level Playing Field

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