A few commenters seem to think I work in a teacher's paradise. While my school site is well run, my district is not. I just checked my union's web site and, lo and behold, we've reached a contract settlement. Here's how bad things are:
1) Secondary school student contacts go from 165/day (33/class average) to 178/day. They drop to 175 for 2006-2007, and back to 165 after that. It's still *entirely* too many students in a class. There was nothing in the contract about the 20:1 class-size reduction in grades K-3; perhaps that's not a contract issue, but merely a management issue.
2) There will be a one-year freeze in "step" advancement. If this year you get paid for having 5 years of teaching service, next year you'll also get paid for 5 years of teaching service. The year after that you'll be jumped up to 7, but with no retroactive pay.
But the good news? We'll only be contractually required to be at school 15 minutes before the start of the school day instead of 30! As if that matters at all.