CTA is moving into the next phase of its strategic planning process, and you’re invited to participate.
Begun last August, the process helps CTA build a long-term plan for CTA that engages all members and staff, embraces new ideas, sets priorities, focuses organizational resources, and builds the CTA we want for our future.
After months of talking with and listening to CTA members and staff, eight key areas are emerging as the focus for a strategic plan to lead CTA through the next three to five years (see sidebar).
To identify these eight key areas, CTA reached out to members in different ways: two member surveys, including an online survey that was open to all members, retired members and student members; discussions at CTA conferences, State Council meetings, Service Center Council meetings and local chapter meetings; and one-on-one interviews.
The 55-member Strategic Planning Group also reviewed CTA’s current practices and structures and talked to parents, education partners, community groups, state labor unions and business groups.
Committee members learned much during the research process.
“As an organization, we are doing many things right, but there is more that we can and should do to make CTA even better,” says Christal Watts, Vallejo Education Association.
“I learned that CTA takes the democratic process seriously,” says Kei Swensen, Oakland Education Association. “A motion made at State Council officially began this process, and no matter how difficult it may be to analyze, criticize, or make changes to our current structures or practices, our leadership is committed to providing the space and time in seeing it through.”
“The goal, in my mind, is to have active, engaged, members,” says Jesse Aguilar, Kern High School Teachers Association. What does active engagement mean? “CTA provides a lot of services, like an insurance company. Members pay dues, CTA comes in and fixes a problem, then goes away. CTA is its members. We want members engaged in setting goals and reaching common goals.”
“I learned how little we know about our Native American/Alaska Native population,” says Mary Levi, Upland Teachers Association, noting that both internal and external scans showed few native educators while the last census showed California has a significant number of native students in public schools. “If reports are correct and we have so few educators in our schools, we have a lot of work to do. If our native educators are just not speaking up, then we need to empower their voices.”
Bill Wertz, who represents California Associate Staff (a CTA employees union), says the general public polling results “surprised me in the overwhelming support that is out there for teachers, and for students to achieve.”
“The process is moving forward, but we are all actively seeking to check our assumptions and make sure that our interpretation of the data is on track,” says Chuck King, California Staff Organization (a CTA employees union). “Personally, I’m reminded that there are very smart people at every level who are committed to the CTA mission.”
The results of member input will be shared at upcoming meetings, online and in future print and electronic publications. You are invited and encouraged to hear and participate in discussions.
See www.cta.org/strategicplan for more.