Valley Stream Teachers’ Association
The Valley Stream Teachers’ Association (VSTA), is the elected exclusive bargaining agent for all full and part-time teachers, educational office staff, teaching assistants, registered nurses, full-time teacher aides and high school security aides within the Valley Stream school system.
Valley Stream School Districts
The Valley Stream school system is comprised of a high school district, called the Valley Stream Central High School District, and three separate component elementary school districts – Union Free School District Thirteen, Union Free School District Twenty-Four and Union Free School District Thirty. Each of these districts has its own board of education, superintendent of schools, budget and staff.
The teaching staffs from Central High School, Memorial Junior High School, North High School, South High School, Union Free School District Thirteen, Union Free School District Twenty-Four and Union Free School District Thirty account for seven units of the VSTA, while all the office staff in the four districts make up and eighth unit, the teaching assistants make up the ninth, registered nurses make up the tenth, full-time teacher aides make up the eleventh, and security aides in the high school district make up the twelfth.
VSTA officers are elected once every three years as required by the constitution. The VSTA has a president, three-vice presidents and a secretary-treasurer, each elected by secret ballot by the entire membership of the union. The president is responsible for the overall operation of the Valley Stream Teachers’ Association and is assisted by three vice-presidents in carrying out organizational policy and management. The secretary-treasurer is primarily responsible for record keeping and accounting and not only submits monthly and yearly financial statements to the Executive Committee but files all appropriate reports to the Internal Revenue Service.
In addition to the four chief officers of the VSTA, there are eleven Unit Leaders, each directly responsible to his or her own constituency and each is elected solely by that constituency. Thus the members of each secondary school building and the members of all four elementary districts elect their own Unit Leader, the office staff members of all four districts combine to elect their Unit Leader, the teaching assistants combine to elect their Unit Leader, the registered nurses combine to elect theirs, full-time aides theirs, and high school district security aides elect theirs.
Executive Committee (President’s Advisory)
Once a year each unit elects a Unit Leader who, in addition to providing services to the members of the Unit, becomes a member of the VSTA Executive Committee. The Five Chief officers of the VSTA are Executive Committee Members as well. This Executive Committee primarily functions as an advisory body for the VSTA Executive Council and meets at the VSTA office on the first Thursday of each month.
In addition to electing a Unit Leader, each Unit elects a number of delegates once each year, proportionate to its membership strength as prescribed in the VSTA Constitution, to a central ruling body called the Executive Board. These delegates, together with the Unit Leaders and chief officers of the VSTA, review, discuss, debate, set policy and recommend action (when necessary) on any issue of concern to the general membership. This board, chaired by the President of the VSTA, meets the second Thursday of the month at Memorial Junior High School at 3:45 p.m. Meetings are always open to any member who wishes to attend, but only delegates may vote.
The VSTA maintains certain standing committees such as for negotiations, budgeting and elections. Each unit submits a representative to the VSTA Negotiations Committee. The Negotiations Committee is responsible for negotiating our contracts with the four boards of education. The Finance Committee prepares an annual budget for the operation of the union and recommends dues (subject to approval by the Executive Board.) Additionally, an outside independent certified Public Accountant firm conducts an annual report of the union’s financial records. The Election Committee oversees all elections and membership referenda. The Political Action Committee conducts an annual VOTE/COPE drive and coordinates other necessary activities related to political activity. (Other committees are formed by the VSTA Executive Board on an as-needed basis.)