To members of the Lexington community,
We are writing on behalf of more than 1,100 members of the Lexington Education Association (LEA), the largest labor union in town, which represents the schools’ teachers, nurses, counselors, social workers, speech pathologists, occupational therapists, paraeducators (classroom aides), clerical staff, lunch and recess support staff, technology workers, and so many others.
We are so glad that a new contract for our licensed educators was ratified by both our members and the Lexington School Committee! We want to thank you, the parents and caregivers, the students, the Town Meeting members, the horn honkers, the social media like-ers and everyone who provided incredible support during our recent contract campaign. We are very excited for this agreement, which we believe will help attract and retain diverse, highly qualified educators to continue providing the education that Lexington residents and your children rightfully expect and deserve.
Looking forward, over the next year or so, we will be negotiating three separate contracts for clerical workers, paraeducators, and technology workers. Members of these LEA units are professionals who provide essential services that support the needs of our students and the operation of our schools. Unfortunately, many members of these units work in positions that do not include health care benefits or sufficient wages to reasonably live on. We have employees in these units who experience homelessness, who utilize food banks in order to make ends meet, and who struggle every day to juggle multiple low-wage jobs.
As the Town develops the next budget, we urge you to reach out to your Select Board, to your School Committee, and to your Town Meeting members to ensure that the budget priorities be written to not only include beautiful new buildings, but also to meet funding priorities so that Lexington is a great place to work for all the employees who fill the town’s buildings with vital services. We applaud the Town’s focus on sustainability in infrastructure, and we also urge you to remind your elected leaders to consider sustainability in human capital.
Thank you, and in solidarity,
Members of the LEA’s Executive Board