Students claim teachers without contracts won’t write college recommendations

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Some students at Nutley High School say their teachers are refusing to write college recommendation letters due to ongoing contract negotiations with the district.

Teachers have been without a contract since July 2018. The vice president of the Education Association of Nutley says this is the longest teachers have gone without a contract.

Writing college recommendations for students is encouraged, but not a requirement of the job. Some students voiced their concerns at a school board meeting on Monday.

“Personally I have always seen letters of recommendation as something special and something I look forward to asking my teachers for since I was a freshman,” said one student. “For this experience to be almost ruined by economic negotiations is very disappointing."

The students urged school board members to find a middle ground with teachers.

The Education Association thanked the students for their comments.

“They have expressed support for their teachers and we do appreciate that,” says Association VP Michael Stoffers.

But Stoffers also added withholding college recommendations is not OK.

"We are not condoning this. We have expressed to our members that this is something they should be doing for students. Our job is to help students whenever we can and that is one of our responsibilities,” he says.

Stoffers says that there are not currently any plans to for the teachers to go on strike.

The Nutley school superintendent did not return calls for comment.

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