Here's their rationale from the article:
"But teachers say McKinsey has a history of recommending tactics the union opposes, including privatizing schools — putting a private organization or company in charge of public schools, something that's happened in a handful of other U.S. cities."
"In school systems across the country, the firm has recommended "empowering"principals to be leaders at their schools and greater use of charter schools. In a 2006 review of Ohio's schools, the firm recommended tying student performance to teacher pay — a method Seattle's union opposes."
One of nine recommendations McKinsey made this fall to Minneapolis Public Schools is that the district "set clear expectations for all staff, reward successes, and develop or remove low performers."
"That kind of language worries union leaders, who question McKinsey's objectivity. "There is a lack of trust that McKinsey will actually come to a conclusion different from it had prior to interviewing our members," Kimball wrote in a letter to teachers."
I don't know how much reviewing the SEA did; I'd hope it was a lot. If McKinsey comes in with a set idea of how to handle teachers and teaching issues, it would be troublesome. Every district is different.
Another issue raised from the article:
"We have to establish a completely different relationship with a completely different downtown [administration]," said SEA Vice President Olga Addae. "And we are talking about a superintendent who is not well-versed in contract language."
Kimball said Goodloe-Johnson started at a time when teachers are under pressure and frustrated by their many responsibilities. She said there are many young and idealistic teachers in the district who have strong political views opposing privatizing schools. The superintendent will have to understand that environment.
Goodloe-Johnson moved to Seattle from Charleston, S.C., where there was no teachers union. She said she meets with the Seattle union regularly and stressed that she wants to support teachers."
This point is worth considering. Dr. G-J didn't deal with a teachers' union in S.C. because it's a right-to-work state. Is she going to need a learning curve on this issue?
"The resolution passed Monday said: "The members of the Seattle Education Association will view any consultation with McKinsey and Company as a serious, but unintentional error which impinges on good faith bargaining."
Wendy Kimball, SEA president, said she would sit in on the meetings but not participate. (By the way, she's one of the calmest people I've ever met and seems well suited for this job.)
The strategic plan is to be combined with the reviews of curriculum, special ed, etc. and should be complete by Feb./March.
So a new assignment plan and a new strategic plan, one by May and one by March? That's a lot of overhaul in a short period of time. The devil is in the details (or the implementation).