Legislation

Pico Rivera Educator Receives NEA Social Justice Activist Award

CTA congratulates Pico Rivera Educator Jose Lara for being awarded the first-ever NEA Social Justice Activist Award today at the #‎NEARA15in Orlando.

Lara is a social studies teacher at Santee Education Complex High School in Los Angeles, recognized for his work in educational justice.

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Educators Want the Confederate Battle Flag Barred from Public Schools and Public Places

Delegates spent more than 90 minutes on Saturday discussing New Business Item 11 that directs the NEA to support, in ways it finds appropriate and effective, efforts to remove the confederate battle flag from public schools and public places.

“Removing the confederate flag from our public schools is just one of the many steps we must take to address the institutional racism that continues to exist across our nation. The flag, instead, belongs in history books and museums,” said CTA President Eric C. Heins. “There is no place in our schools and communities for objects that hurt and divide rather than promote unity and growth as a society. We have made some progress, but the shootings in Charleston remind us of the work we have to do as a nation. Approval of this motion is just one step.”

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Educators from Across the Nation Commit to Fighting Racism in Light of Recent Shootings in North Carolina Church

(Photo above) More than 8,000 educators attending the National Education Association (NEA) Representative Assembly (RA) in Orlando, Florida, convened for its 153rd annual meeting Friday immediately taking time to honor the victims gunned down in a Charleston, South Carolina Church June 17.

After a touching tribute to the victims, RA delegates adopted a motion that redoubles the NEA’s efforts to fight institutional racism.

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Charter Educators, State Council Committees Lobby for More School Accountability

(Photo above from left) Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) and Jeff Johnston, an area high school teacher and vice chair of CTA State Council Negotiations Committee, discuss some of the key elements of CTA co-sponsored bills that would make charter schools more accountable to the public.

Educators working for the California Virtual Academy (CAVA), a statewide charter school, and members of several key CTA State Council committees were meeting with lawmakers in the state Capitol Tuesday afternoon in support of a package of bills aimed to increase accountability and transparency at charter schools and to ensure that their focus is on students, not profit.

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U.S. High Court to Consider Fair Share Lawsuit Next Session

Sally Fields in her role of Norma Rae makes it clear that without unions, working women and men have no voices. (Image used with permission.)

On Tuesday morning, the U.S. Supreme Court announced it has agreed to hear the Friedrichs vs. CTA case during its next session, which means the court could issue a decision in June 2016.

The lawsuit addresses two issues: does the First Amendment prohibit fair share fees in the public sector; and, second, may a union use an opt-out procedure to collect fair share fees.

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NEA and CTA Laud Friday's High Court Ruling Preventing States from Barring Same Gender Marriages

(Photo above) NEA President Lily Eskelsen García is praising the U.S. Supreme Court ruling. NEA and 22 state affiliates were part of a labor coalition that filed amicus briefs in support of the efforts to protect the rights of same gender couples to marry. CTA President Eric C. Heins has also praised the ruling in his contacts with the media.

Forty-eight years after it struck down state laws barring inter-racial marriage, the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday handed down an equally important decision, one that allows persons of the same gender to wed and invalidates state laws barring such marriages.

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CTA Officers Lead 1,000 Delegates to NEA RA

(Photo above) Billed as the “World’s largest Democratic Deliberative Assembly,” the annual NEA Representative Assembly brings together more than 8,000 elected educator-policymakers. Last year, delegates met in Denver. This year, they will assemble in Orlando, FL beginning in the last week of June.

Led by its newly elected team of officers, about 1,000 CTA members will be heading to the 94th annual National Education Association’s Representative Assembly in Orlando, FL this week.

CTA President Eric Heins, an elementary teacher, Vice President Theresa Montaño, a community college professor, and Secretary-Treasurer David Goldberg, an elementary teacher, will lead this year’s delegation.

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CTA and Coalition-backed Measure Would Close Tax Loopholes to Provide $9B for Public Services

(Photo above) Due to loopholes in Proposition 13, corporate owned commercial property has escaped its fair share of taxes. Those loopholes are costing California families and public services more than $9 billion annually.

A coalition of working families, lawmakers, students, CTA and other labor unions is backing SCA 5, a constitutional amendment that would close loopholes allowing corporations to avoid paying some $9 billion annually, their share of the costs of running the state and covering the costs of schools, law enforcement, healthcare, and other vital services.

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Lawmakers to Review Three CTA-cosponsored Charter School Accountability Bills on July 1

(Photo above) At a news conference last week at the state Capitol, Assembly Member Roger Hernandez (at podium) and charter school parents and teachers spelled out how a lack of transparency and a for-profit motive are harming students at a statewide charter school, the California Virtual Academy). They urged lawmakers to approve measures designed to increase charter school accountability.

Three CTA-cosponsored measures to increase charter school accountability and transparency are scheduled for hearings in two legislative committees on Wednesday, July 1.

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Assembly Member, Parents and Virtual Educators Charge: For-profit Charters are Failing Students, Violating Law

(Photo above) Flanked by educators, including educators teaching at California Virtual Academies (CAVA), CAVA parents and students, Assembly Member Roger Hernandez (D-West Covina) during a Thursday morning news conference slams the for-profit charter company for putting corporate interests above those of students and teachers.

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