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Upset teachers file complaint on Duval County school survey

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Duval County teachers' union has filed a formal complaint after a recent survey sent to them by the school district.

The eight-question survey was meant to get feedback about academic coaches and interventionists. The Duval Teachers United has two problems with the survey.

First, it says the letter is on behalf of the academic coaches and interventionists, both part of the union, who work in other roles in the school helping teachers and students. Second, it claims there was a breach of relief that was previously agreed upon by the two sides.

Earlier this year, Dr. Nikolai Vitti and the school board debated the idea of how to better use hundreds of academic coaches and interventionists to fight more than 100 teacher vacancies. One option at the time was to create a master teacher who would work both in the classroom and in a role helping teachers and students.

The union says the wording of some of the questions could end up pitting employees against each other and hurting morale. One question in the survey, which was sent to only teachers, asks, “Do you believe the district's investment in coaches is the best use of limited funds?”

READ: See the teachers survey

The union acknowledges the district’s right to survey employees and make decisions, but says this could have been “handled more professionally” if their input was taken.

The second issue the union shas with the survey is that it agreed last school year that DCPS would work with the union to coordinate surveys so multiple weren’t sent at the same time, but that did not happen.

In response to the complaint, Vitti said in a statement : “Our sole purpose is to enhance and hear the voice of teachers in these important decisions that directly affect their work. We will always work collaboratively with DTU through these disagreements.”

READ: The complaint from the Duval Teachers' Union

As part of the survey, it says this is all part of their consideration of positions and the improvements they can make for next school year. So far, there is no word from the district on how they will use the results of this survey now that this complaint has been filed.