Union

Ernesto Cortes, Jr: "Education is cultivating curiosity"

Ernesto CortesInternationally recognized organizer and trainer Ernesto Cortes, Jr. spoke with education leaders and CTA staff in San Diego and Riverside Counties last week.

Among several themes, Ernesto emphasized that we all must push back against those who are driving high-stakes testing schemes that damage a child's ability to think both critically and creatively. He also encouraged us to constantly reinforce our ranks with new leaders and ideas to ensure member relevance. Doing so will give our members the space to be real educators who will create a shared community vision that makes educators and education support personnel creators of education, rather than being consumers of corporate-driven education "reforms". 

Ernesto first began his career in 1974 with the creation of the Communities Organized for Public Service (COPS) Program, which now has affiliations in 10 states. He has also successfully helped create over 30 broad-based community organizations in the US and United Kingdom.

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State Schools Chief Tom Torlakson Releases Statement on Vergara Lawsuit

"We do not fault doctors when the emergency room is full. We do not criticize the firefighter whose supply of water runs dry. Yet while we crowd our classrooms and fail to properly equip them with adequate resources, those who filed and support this case shamelessly seek to blame teachers who step forward every day to make a difference for our children."

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Seven California educators win $2,000 and $5,000 grants from The NEA Foundation

The NEA Foundation

Seven CTA members have received grants from the NEA Foundation! Learn about the programs and activities that netted your colleagues from Merced, Concord, Huntington Beach and Fremont $2,000 and $5,000 grants.

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NEA President-Elect Lily Eskelsen García Tours California

NEA President Dennis Van Roekel and NEA President-Elect Lily Eskelsen García

Van Roekel Lily Eskelsen GarciaNEA's new top leader-elect, Lily Eskelsen García, is touring California where she is meeting with educators, CTA leaders and State Superintendent Tom Torlakson.

On her "Back to School" tour, Eskelsen García is focusing on Great Public Schools for All, toxic testing, teacher-led change and the student loan crisis.

More on the tour.

 

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California Educators Call for Duncan Resignation

Because of his ongoing lack of leadership and advocacy on what is really needed to help our schools succeed, the California delegation to the NEA Representative Assembly has submitted a New Business Item calling for Duncan's resignation

His department's failed education agenda has focused on more high-stakes testing, grading and pitting public school children against each other based on test scores, and for continuing to promote policies and decisions that undermine public schools and colleges, the teaching profession, education professionals and education unions.

Teachers are not the problem. Teachers are part of the solution. And it’s time we have a Secretary of Education who understands and believes that.

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Guest Blogger: Jacquella (Angel) Payne describes a "Call to Action"

Denver Convention CenterWhat Does a Call to Action Look Like? A call to action looks like NEA's annual Representative Assembly where more than 8,000 educators from 51 states show up to take action on behalf of students across the country.  A group of dedicated people who were willing to drop everything and converge on Denver, Colorado, which is where the RA is taking place this year.  Willing to stand in long lines while waiting to get checked into their hotels.  Willing to miss spending the 4th of July with their family and friends.

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Guest Blogger: Corey Penrose reflects on anti-union Supreme Court decision

The news finally pushed to my phone on the bus to the airport. News I was dreading. The Harris v. Quinn decision, the potential destruction of advocacy, one more cut into the flesh of a proud and noble profession.

In my imagination I wondered: What would the RA look like if, as politico.com predicted, the Supreme Court would use the nuclear option and decimate the funding of CTA?

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Guest Blogger: Gretel Liana Rodriguez describes her experiences as a novice NEA RA attendee

Gretel Liane Rodriguez This is my third NEA Representative Assembly, and I am as excited to be here as if it were my first! My first RA was in Washington, D.C., and I think that is the best place to attend the RA for the first time. I traveled all alone and didn’t know anyone that year. I have seven friends traveling with me this year, and I am rooming with two of them. I had to beg to find a roommate my first year. Luckily, a veteran took me under her wing. 

There is one true fact about the RA: Everyone is so friendly and kind to “newbies.” You feel loved and cared for – so Shout Out if you are new so that others can help you.

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Harris V Quinn Decision Silences Workers' Voices

This morning, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Harris v. Quinn along the narrow scope of the original case. In the 5-4 decision, the high court ruled that eight Illinois home health-care workers cannot be required to contribute union bargaining fees.

Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote for the majority: "Because of Abood's questionable foundations ... we refuse to extend Abood to the new situation now before us," Alito wrote. "If we allowed Abood to be extended to those who are not full-fledged public employees, it would be hard to see just where to draw the line, and we therefore confine Abood's reach to full-fledged state employees."

While NEA and CTA narrowly escaped the loss of fair share fees, other cases are in the pipeline to strip unions of rights set forth in Abood. There are corporate forces behind efforts across the country taking aim at the rights and power of middle class families. While they have money, we have the spirit and the numbers. We will not give up fighting for the rights of our members, their families, and our middle class brothers and sisters, and for a fair economy that works for all of us.

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North Hollywood Educator To Receive National Recognition

Mel HouseMel House, a physical education educator at Rio Vista Elementary School in North Hollywood, CA, will receive the 2015 California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence, one of public education’s most prestigious awards.

House is among 39 public educators who will be honored at the NEA Foundation’s Salute to Excellence in Education Gala to be held in Washington, DC on February 13, 2015. One of public education’s most anticipated events, the gala attracts more than 850 of the nation’s leaders from public education, philanthropy, and the private sector.

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Every child deserves a chance to learn and no child succeeds alone.

© 1999- California Teachers Association