CTA President denounces billionaire Eli Broad’s scheme to move half the students in LA Unified into unregulated charters

CTA President Eric Heins

CTA President Eric Heins addresses crowd at protest where he denounced billionaire Eli Broad’s scheme to move half the students in Los Angeles Unified School district into unregulated charters.

CTA President Eric Heins joined UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl, CFT President Josh Pechthalt and dozens of teachers, parents, and students this morning for a protest and news conference denouncing billionaire Eli Broad’s recently unveiled scheme to move half the students in Los Angeles Unified School district into unregulated charters run by private management companies. Broad has set an eight year timeline for the raid on LAUSD and has begun enlisting other wealthy allies like the Walton (Walmart) Foundation to help fund the multibillion dollar effort. 

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CTA Files Charge Against San Lorenzo District For Union Interference Amid Contract Showdown

San Lorenzo

Educators hold protest rally on Oct. 20 amid bargaining showdown in San Lorenzo

Amid an ongoing bargaining showdown over fair salaries for the low-paid educators here, CTA has filed an unfair labor practice charge against the San Lorenzo Unified School District for interfering with a peaceful lunch hour union meeting at a high school and trying to have a union organizer escorted off campus by three Alameda County sheriff’s deputies.

Meanwhile, a second, separate incident added insult to injury, educators say, when the school board refused to allow a high school student who supports teachers to speak at a packed public meeting – the board adjourned the public comment portion of the meeting instead, but the student delivered his speech anyway. Both incidents occurred Tuesday, Oct. 20, the same day that more than 600 teachers, students and parents held a protest rally at the district’s offices against the disrespect shown by the school board and Superintendent Fred Brill at the bargaining table.

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San Ysidro Educators Call Strike

Teachers of the San Ysidro School District will officially strike this week in protest of the planned imposition of a 6.5% pay cut, among the county’s worst health benefits, and a present lack of respect by SYSD officials. The San Ysidro Education Association (SYEA) received notification from the school district’s attorney that the SYSD will meet in special session either Tuesday or Wednesday, to impose provisions of the contract in dispute. SYEA’s Executive Board voted to call the strike unless a settlement is reached with the district beforehand. Issues include the district’s determination to cut salaries across the board using dubious and inaccurate projections that even the state-appointed fact-finder admitted has been an ongoing practice of the District.

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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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