Gradebook podcast: Teachers are being ‘voluntold’ to do extra? Are schools taking advantage of them?

The Hillsborough County Classroom Teachers Association says ‘yes.’
Teachers and Hillsborough County School District officials at contract negotiations on May 23, 2018. For the union: Cherie Miller, Stephanie Baxter-Jenkins, Jean Clements, Lindsesy Blankenbaker. [MARLENE SOKOL | Times]
Teachers and Hillsborough County School District officials at contract negotiations on May 23, 2018. For the union: Cherie Miller, Stephanie Baxter-Jenkins, Jean Clements, Lindsesy Blankenbaker. [MARLENE SOKOL | Times]
Published August 22

Teachers have contracts with their school districts for a reason. The agreements detail what their employers can expect of them, and what they're required to do. But what about when a principal 'suggests' that something more needs to get done, and requests volunteers?

There's no mandate to do the work, but the pressure certainly exists, along with the message, ignore at your own risk. At least, that's what Hillsborough County Classroom Teachers Association leaders are contending as they negotiate this year's employment deal with the nation's eighth largest public school system.

Reporter Marlene Sokol discusses the union’s concerns with organizer Lindsey Blankenbaker, who worked as a high school social studies teacher before joining the HCCTA staff.

“Go out and watch teachers leaving at the end of the day,” Blankenbaker says. “I’ll challenge you to find someone who’s not walking out with a tote bag or a rolling cart full of papers to grade, or materials to work on.”

RELATED: It’s the beginning of the end of Hillsborough teacher “pay bands.”

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