The Blog

Write the Chronicle to Let Readers Know Why Entrepreneur Tuck, the Would-be Superintendent, is Wrong

Marshall Tuck, the entrepreneur who would like to be the state’s education chief, has fired off another attack on our basic rights, rights hit by a recent flawed ruling by a Los Angeles Superior Court judge. The ruling, in Vergara v. State of California, attacks teachers’ job protections, due process, and seniority rights.

 

In an opinion piece that is an insult to all of our highly dedicated colleagues, Tuck praises the bad ruling.

 

Read more »

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.

Read more »

Devastating Cuts Reduced Faculty: Recovery Will Take Time

A new report from the Sacramento Bee based on data from the state credentialing agency paints a stark picture of how years of underfunding have decimated California’s teaching ranks.

The Bee finds that from 2008 to 2013, funding cuts reduced the number of new teachers by more than 40%.   The Bee concludes the layoff had a corollary effect on teacher recruitment by discouraging enrollment in teaching programs in the state by about 41%.

Read more »

Write the Bee to Let Readers Know Rep. Miller is Wrong on Vergara Case

Undeterred by the facts, U.S. Congressman George Miller and an educator coauthor have authored a Sacramento Bee Op-Ed that slams teachers for having due process rights.

The retiring congressman and one Los Angeles Unified School District educator have teamed up to declare that the Vergara v. State of California assault on teachers’ due-process protections is a good thing.

Unlike the congressman, teachers know that these procedures have for more than 80 years protected academic freedom and helped attract and keep highly qualified teachers for our students.

Read more »

Where We Stand: Educators Support Finding Solutions to CalSTRS Unfunded Liability

As the governing board of the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) begins its two-day meeting today, our CTA members will be among those expressing the organization’s ongoing commitment to work with the pension system and other stakeholders to ensure its long-term viability.

A great deal is happening in Sacramento on a key issue affecting the public pension system and its members, the issue of “unfunded liability.”

Read more »

Trial Underway for Meritless Lawsuit Targeting Teachers' Rights

The Vergara trial attacking due process for teachers facing dismissal, seniority/experience-factored layoffs, and the two-year probationary period began in Los Angeles this morning. After plaintiff attorneys opened by previewing a case they claim will show these teacher rights are unconstitutional, attorneys for the State of California, as well as attorneys for intervening parties CTA and CFT laid out strong arguments for why their case would show that the plaintiffs claims are completely without merit, and that these laws actually provide students with a quality, stable teaching force.

Students Matter, the shadowy organization behind this lawsuit, did not let a weak case stop them from pulling out all the stops for a huge noon press conference. Silicon Valley billionaire David Welch and lead attorneys and case plaintiffs all addressed the media, trying to make a case, where, frankly, there is none. Parent Revolution Executive Director Ben Austin was on hand to lend support, showing the connection between some of the same groups of anti-union corporate education "reformers" and this case. Fortunately CFT President Josh Pechthalt and CTA Board members Leslie Littman and Toby Boyd were there to give educators a voice and to tell our side of this story.

Read more »

How well prepared did you feel for your first teaching job?

CTA’s Teacher Evaluation Workgroup is examining the best preparation practices for the next generation of California’s teachers and wants to hear from you. What was training to be a teacher like? How about the early years of your teaching career, did you feel supported? What ideas can you offer as we consider the issues of teacher preparation, early career support and induction, and credentialing processes and policies?

Please take a few minutes to tell us what you think!

Read more »

CTA Members Represented at State Convention

A contingent of our members attended the state Republican Convention in Anaheim Oct. 4-6 and reached out to other delegates on issues of importance to educators, education support professionals, students, and parents. 

They also greeted hundreds of delegates Saturday night at a special reception hosted by the Association.  The new party chairman, former state Senator Jim Brulte, attended the reception and told CTA members there that he welcomed the support the party had received from CTA and other labor unions.

Read more »

San Jose Mayor Carries Out Threat – Files Promised “Pension Reform” Initiative

As San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed promised last week during a presentation to the conservative Hoover Institution think-tank, he and some of his fellow mayors have filed a new “pension reform” measure that threatens to undermine the promise made to firefighters, teachers, police officers, school bus drivers and other public employees by allowing their retirement benefits to be slashed in mid-career.

Mayor Reed and the mayors of San Bernardino, Santa Ana, Anaheim and Pacific Grove say they are aiming to put on the November 2014 ballot a measure that would allow reductions in the pension benefits that current employees would otherwise earn during the balance of their working lives.

Read more »

Capitol News: State Council - Elected Representatives to Deliberate on Legislative Measures

CTA's policymaking body, the State Council of Education, has a lot of work to do when it convenes Friday in Los Angeles. More than 800 representatives, elected by CTA members at the local level, will review more than 100 bills pending in the Assembly or Senate, along width other assignments.

Council members thoroughly analyze the bills before they take a final vote on whether to  support, watch, or oppose measures on issues ranging from education to public retirement systems to human rights.

Typically, CTA legislative advocates identify legislation impacting students, public education, teachers and education support professionals.  Those bills move to specific subject matter Committees of State Council. Those committees, which are composed of members width expertise in an area such as finance or school safety, look at the bills closely. The committees make recommendations that go to the CTA State Legislation Committee. This is the last stop for the measures before heading for consideration by all 800 voting representatives.  The State Legislation Committee reviews the recommendations for several things including their consistency width CTA policy positions.

Ultimately, the recommendations on the measures go before the entire State Council, where voting members have the opportunity to discuss and debate them.  Only then do Council members vote on the positions, establishing the association's official position on the bills.

Among the bills Council committees will be looking at are measures that would streamline the dismissal process, protect the state's crucial class size reduction program, and change the process of funding local schools.

Information about CTA's positions on legislation can be found at CTA Bill Positions on the CTA website.

The site's Progress Report on Legislative Action also provides real-time information about how lawmakers are voting on CTA position bills.

Read more »

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

© 1999- California Teachers Association