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NFT to Hold Election for Leadership Positions

The Neshaminy Federation of Teachers will have two options for their president.

Come Thursday, April 26, members of the Neshaminy Federation of Teachers will be given the chance to change their current leadership for the next two years or continue onward with Louise Boyd as their president.

The Candidates
Running against Boyd is Chuck Deal, who teaches various business courses at Neshaminy High School. 

This won't be Deal's first time running for a leadership position within the NFT. He ran for a vice president position in their last elections two years ago, but failed to get elected.

"I felt that there were some things that could be done differently or better," Deal said of his decision to run for VP two years ago, adding that he though had he been elected he might have been able to "influence the way things were being done back then."

His potential influence, he said, would have come from his 26 years of experience in the private industry doing sales and marketing for AT&T. Deal said that part of his time in the private industry was spent negotiating contracts, which AT&T trained him to do.

"I think it’s time for a change from top to bottom," Deal said of his decision to run for president.

"I believe that I can negotiation a fair reasonable contract with the Neshaminy School District," he stated.

Boyd, who is in her 10th year as union president, also said that if she is re-elected that her main goal is to get a "fair contract for the membership."

"When these negotiations started, I made a commitment to the members that I would see it it through," she said, adding that her goal is to also continue to work with and for the union members. 

Though Deal's top priority would be to settle the current contract impasse, if he is elected he said that he would like to "restore some unity within the teaching staff," which he said is split right now.

Deal also wants to do some healing with the community.

"It’s been a very contentious couple of years," he said, continuing that Neshaminy really needs to "get the community to view teachers differently than they do now."

"We’re not the enemy," is the message Deal would want to spread through the community about teachers.

Ritchie Webb Weighs In
School board President Ritchie Webb stressed that a "change in direction would be good for the NFT" and that, not just the school board, but "everyone would benefit" from new union leadership.

"I don’t believe that the current leaders, the current negotiators, have a true understanding of the what the district is up against," Webb stated.

According to Webb, "someone that would have more of a business understanding would be a plus" for the NFT.

"I don’t think Louise understands the district’s financial situations," Webb said, adding that he would rather negotiate with someone else.

"She thinks that district should borrow money, raise taxes and give the NFT everything they want," he continued.

"Hopefully we could find someone that would be more realistic."

Is Change a Good Thing?
Deal echoed some of Webb's statements in that new union leadership would be beneficial in ending the impasse.

He said that he believes that the union leadership has worked hard and has spent a lot of time working for union causes in the district, but they have not been successful.

"I think we need different people with different views, different perspectives in order to achieve a new contract," he said. 

Deal also said that he does not see the impasse as an "insolvable problem."

"Given a game change with new players, that the board will sit down and negotiate with a new team," he stated.

However, Boyd does not think that new union leadership is the key to solving the contract impasse.

"My feeling is that the way to end this end this contract impasse is to really negotiate," she said.

"The only way to end this impasse is for the school board to actually want to settle it," Boyd stating, reiterating that the union has moved toward the middle several times.

Here is a complete list of NFT members running for leadership positions, which was provided to Patch by former school board member William O'Connor:

President:
Louise Boyd
Chuck Deal

Vice President (five to be elected):
Joe Bodri
Mary Cwiklinski
Jeff Dunkley
Jared Katz
Jason Leigh
Paul Notwick
Joe Pimble
Ann Schmidt

Treasurer:
Peggy Gale
Marian Reed

Recording Secretary:
Kerry Hammon

feasterville resident April 26, 2012 at 03:24 PM
Karina, indeed you are not informed. I have spent time reading the budget that is available for the Neshaminy district. I do not want to see programs cut nor do I want my taxes to increase. Look around at the other school districts. Times are tough. Taxpayer's can not shoulder another increase. We all had to adjust to these economic times. Ms. Boyd seems like a lose cannon. The way she speaks and conducts herself seems inappropriate and by no means professional. Listen to her interviews. Hopefully, when the NFT votes for new officers, they will keep in mind our children. The children are the ones suffering. Look how the test scores have plummeted. No back to school nights, no teacher/parent meetings. Tenure is another joke. The reason, I assume, you chose this profession of teaching is that you enjoy doing your job and help the children. Ms. Boyd on several occasions has broadcast her dismay of working under such terrible conditions. Well, if your not happy, why not leave. I appreciate the teachers who do a service to their profession. They do not have a voice because it is and will always be suppressed by the bullying few.
feasterville resident April 26, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Karina, look at the latest headline. Our district is looking at a $14 million deficit. This via superintendent. He is already suggesting program cuts. How is that deficit going to decrease? Increased taxes? Program cuts? Not to mention the NFT unwilling to accept the school boards offer. LOOK AT THE NUMBERS. Once again, who is going to be affected?
Neshaminy School District Tax Payer April 26, 2012 at 07:22 PM
No one is even talking about how much our taxes are going to go up across the entire state of Pennsylvania with the idiot Politicians that promised the PA state workers (Teacher Unions included) that they have a guaranteed rate of return on their Pensions of 8-8.5%! This is ludicrous! Most of us tax payers have to pay into their 401k’s and takes their own risks base on how aggressive they want to be. There are no safety nets for any of us. When the economy started taking a dive, most of us lost a great deal of money on our 401k’s. Not the PA State Workers (Teachers Unions included), they have a guaranteed return! If this sounds all too familiar, it is. Remember General Motors. Back in 2008, GM had over 450,000 Retired UAW workers that were receiving FULL healthcare benefits that were costing GM over $6 Billion a year. No companies can sustain this enormous cost, especially Neshaminy School District, which isn’t a company like GM, that can sell more vehicles to gain more profits. GM’s working UAW workers pensions also helped to almost bankrupt them and without the help of our Federal Government, they would have.
Neshaminy School District Tax Payer April 26, 2012 at 07:22 PM
The escalating costs for the Neshaminy Teachers that are receiving the guaranteed rate of return on their Pensions and the Retired Neshaminy Teachers that are receiving FULL Healthcare benefits are paid for by Neshaminy School District Tax Payers and they are NOT going to bailed out by the Federal Government or even State Government when we can no longer afford to cover our own healthcare costs, which the majority of us already pay towards out of our own pockets (plus we must pay for ALL of the Teachers – currently working and RETIRED as well). This has to be STOPPED!
robert April 27, 2012 at 03:12 PM
The Kool Aide....that the AFL-CIO has brewed for you via the NFT has really taken it's toll on your ability to reason. This has nothing to do with wages, and benefits....it never did... It is about the language, and more specifically.. the Union domination, and gatekeeper to cirriculum, and board advisors of said cirriculum....The AFL-CIO, under this administration has become the chief enforcement arm for the "new agenda"...they could care less if the credentials of this district plummett...they will suck the PAC money dry, then move on leaving Neshaminy in a shambles...IT is not about education, children, community, or anything else, but, control...propaganda, and money....Remember....Socialism is great, until you run out of other peoples money to spend.....(margaret thatcher)

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