After some revisions, proposed contract still concerns Catholic teachers union 

Despite a recent concession to remove the term "minister" from a new contract for teachers at four archdiocesan high schools in the Bay Area, including two in San Francisco, some educators continue to oppose other proposed contract language.

Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone said last month that he is looking into language that satisfies both the Archdiocese of San Francisco, which is reaffirming that teachers publicly and professionally align with the Catholic mission, and teachers worried that the term "minister" could potentially strip them of their legal rights.

But the San Francisco Archdiocesan Federation of Teachers Local 2240 contend there is additional wording in the contract that could still expose employees to workplace rules that are not covered by labor law, said Michael Vezzali, chairman of the English department at Archbishop Riordan High and the union's treasurer.

"We still have concerns about some of the nuanced language in there and other words that might be used synonymously that would have the same effect on the contract," Vezzali said.

Cordileone also announced late last month that he is establishing a committee of theology teachers to add explanations, clarifications and material on Catholic school teachings to be included in the faculty handbook, which was proposed in early February along with the new contract.

The City's highest Catholic official has come under fire from some legislators and educators since introducing the contract and handbook, which Catholic leaders have emphasized simply clarify existing expectations that Catholic educators maintain Catholic teachings publicly and in the classroom.

About The Author

Laura Dudnick

Laura Dudnick, a Bay Area native, covers education and planning for The San Francisco Examiner. She previously worked as a senior local editor for, and as the San Mateo County bureau reporter and weekend editor for Bay City News Service.
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