Contracts now: Glen Rockers support teachers at BOE meeting


Photo Credit: Caroline Geoghegan

Senior Ariana Dzurenko holds a poster in support of the Glen Rock Teacher’s Association. In preparation for the BOE meeting, this poster was signed by various GRHS students wishing to show their support for their teachers.

by Caroline Geoghegan, Managing Editor

What do we want? According to the roaring crowd surrounding the entrance of Glen Rock High School, contracts. 

Long after the school’s doors closed for the day on October 30th, educators and parents alike lined up to attend that night’s Board of Ed meeting  to stand with the Glen Rock Teacher’s Association in campaigning for a settled teacher’s contract that includes better wages for educators. Before the meeting, a demonstration was held where those in support of the Teacher’s Association rallied for proper contracts for teachers outside of the school. 

Teachers and parents then entered the cafeteria at eight o’clock with signs reading “please support Glen Rock teachers” and “we educate, protect, & guide your children”.

“I think that the biggest issue right now is getting [the teacher’s] pay more comparable to other districts that are also high-achieving in our area. Barbara Kopyta, a Glen Rock resident and former member of the HSA, said. “I think it’s a big issue that we’re losing really great teachers who have been here for years because they’re able to make ends meet by moving to other districts that are paying them more… It all boils down to that: keeping our good teachers here.”

Among the group stood a small cluster of GRHS seniors, arriving after Catherine Merkle made a post asking for student attendance in the Class of 2019 Facebook page. “Take action in your education and come to make a difference in your school,” it reads. “Student attendance will have an impact.”

Photo Credit: Catherine Merkle. 
This post on the Class of 2019 Facebook tells students to support their teachers at the BOE meeting. It was posted on October 25th .

Seniors Madeleine Brennan and Ellen Feuss took advantage of the period of time allotted for the public to voice their opinions. Both planned out statements to read in support of Glen Rock’s teachers.

“It is unfortunate how this contract issue has created what feels like a hostile divide between the students and the teachers, whom we deeply respect. Unfortunate how this is how we’ll remember our senior year of high school. Unfortunate that I am no longer proud of the school that I go to,” Feuss said.

Photo Credit: Caroline Geoghegan
Seniors Riley Coll and Isabelle Vazquez stand in the GRHS Hamilton Lobby before the scheduled BOE meeting. Both are holding signs in support of their teachers.

“I’m a senior at Glen Rock High School. Our teachers make more of an impact on the students than people recognize,” Brennan said. “You cannot say that you put your students first if you put your teachers last. Thank you.”

Senior Catherine Merkle also made an impromptu speech, noting that there was an apparent increase in GR students needing her tutoring services this year when compared to previous years due to the current negotiations over teacher’s contracts. “They should be able to go to their teachers before school like I could,” Merkle said.

Photo Credit: Caroline Geoghegan
Seniors Madeleine Brennan and Madeline Hendl hold posters in support of the GREA.

According to Madeleine Brennan, GRHS seniors are here  “to support the teachers and their fight against the Board of Education to get more funding for all the extra work they do,”

Ellen Feuss added that “…it’s important because it also affects the students… We are the result of every decision that’s made, and we think we should also be listened to just as well as teachers.”