Oakland Diocese

After 15 years as an art teacher at St. Joseph Elementary School, Annie Heller was considering retirement to take care of an aging parent. But new contract language that seeks to dictate the private conduct of teachers in all of the schools operated by the Catholic Church’s Oakland diocese sealed her decision to move on.

Alameda’s Catholic school teachers are signing contracts containing controversial new language requiring their private behavior to model and promote Catholic teachings.

Oakland Diocese spokesman Mike Brown said that teachers at all of the diocese’s schools signed the new contract, except for three from Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland. Teachers at all of the diocese’s schools, who sign a contract annually, received their 2014-15 contract in mid-April and were given until May 9 to sign.

“We hope that those who didn’t sign did so completely informed as to the Bishop’s meaning and intent,” Brown said.