MontClairVoyant: What Happens to a Raise Deferred? Does it Dry Up Like a Raise in the Sun?

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DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Last week, you criticized Central Office for the indefensible delay in raises for teachers and other Montclair Education Association members — months after the MEA and school district signed a new contract. Could you be more specific?

Sincerely,
Invisible Increases

I’m already only one person, so how could I be more specific? Become a half person? Then the height on my driver’s license would be out of date and I’d have to get a new license at a crowded MVC office.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Whatever. I mean, is the interim superintendent to blame? The “permanent” superintendent who resigned recently? The personnel manager? Business administrator? Current or previous Board of Education members? All of the above?

Sincerely,
Salary Gallery

Lots of direct or indirect blame to go around. I also blame four of these five cartoon characters: Bart Simpson, Deputy Dawg, Dora the Explorer, Wile E. Coyote, and Chickaletta of “PAW Patrol.”

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
I just KNOW Dora is innocent! Anyway, the BOE met last night, October 2, and the STILL-unresolved salary snafu came up again in a number of public comments. Thoughts?

Sincerely,
Talk About Pay Not Going Away

It was particularly poignant to hear parents discuss how teachers care so much for our kids yet the district failed those educators. To paraphrase Langston Hughes: What happens to a raise deferred? Does it dry up like a raise in the sun?

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
At the meeting, the interim superintendent introduced a new interim director of personnel and said the district is trying to fix the pay problem as quickly as possible but couldn’t specify a date when things will be made right.

Sincerely,
Dee Bacle

Not even October 33rd?

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
One heartening aspect of the meeting was a great presentation on the Montclair Achievement Program for special-needs students at Bullock School. Comment?

Sincerely,
Washington Street Feat

Hearing parents describe how their kids were transformed by that program was incredibly moving. That MAP is positive, even as another MAP (Morass About Pay) is not.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Changing the subject, which group with many Montclair members deserves a shout-out now that Upper Montclair’s congresswoman Mikie Sherrill has rightly decided to consider impeaching Trump?

Sincerely,
Corruption and Obstruction

NJ 11th for Change, whose hard work helped scare the Trump-supporting Rodney Frelinghuysen into not seeking reelection. If Rodney still held the seat Sherrill now holds during this fall’s impeachment process, “The Sound of Silence” would be wafting from his office voicemail system.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
But progressive congressional women of color such as Maxine Waters and Rashida Tlaib led the way in calling for impeachment months ago, right?

Sincerely,
Life of Pi(oneers)

Very true, and they’re not getting enough credit. Which reminds me that if Dora had nothing to do with Montclair’s SalaryGate, her credit card needs to be returned.

DEAR MONTCLAIRVOYANT,
Speaking of “The Sound of Silence,” why so little reaction from the county Freeholders to sharp public criticism of the cruel immigrant jail the county still runs in return for millions in federal ICE money?

Sincerely,
Devil’s Bargain

Plenty of that criticism was heard when the Freeholders met in Montclair last month. But look at the bright side: The next time Studio Playhouse stages “The Wizard of Oz,” we have several candidates for the Cowardly Lion role.

Dave Astor, author, is the MontClairVoyant. His opinions about politics and local events are strictly his own and do not represent or reflect the views of Baristanet.

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