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By Julian Peeples

In an emotional address, CTA President E. Toby Boyd delivered his final report to CTA State Council of Education, before leaving office in late-June. Here are 10 takeaways from his speech:

  1. Graduation Day: “I feel like a senior in high school about to graduate, like the class president who has the honor of delivering remarks reflecting on how far we’ve come together and the lifetime of opportunities that lies ahead for each one of us.”


  1. Thank You, Gavin: “Despite a more than $30 billion revenue shortfall, Newsom has made good on his promise to protect education funding in this budget. The May Budget Revise reflects our values and maintains a commitment to students, from TK-through community colleges, regardless of race, zip codes, or backgrounds.”

  1. Record Funding for Our Students: “The governor’s revised budget continues record funding for Pre-K and T-K, special education, after-school programs, art and music, higher education and Community Schools. Make no mistake, Community Schools would not be the priority it is for California if CTA hadn’t made it so.”


  1. Challenges on the Horizon: “The current revenue shortfalls may be a warning of things to come, and we must remember that Proposition 55 will expire in 2030. We will need to extend it and ensure that the state’s wealthiest continue to pay their fair share. California children deserve to be among the top five states in that nation in per-pupil funding.”


  1. The Power of Shared Leadership:Community schools focus on shared leadership. That’s educators, students, families and communities as equal partners in deciding what’s best for their public schools.”

  1. Winning Common Good in Oakland: “CTA members across the state are organizing and walking the walk when it comes to Community Schools. This past Monday morning, Oakland Education Association ended a seven-day strike that focused, in part, on Community Schools. OEA members went on strike in support of “common good” goals that were equally as important as bread and butter compensation issues, such as the 15.5% salary increase that will help Oakland attract and keep quality teachers. So, huge round of congratulations to OEA.”


  1. We Kept Our Schools Safe: “As union members, each of us is part of something far bigger than ourselves. We’re far more powerful and we can accomplish so much more together. We proved that even through an unforeseen and devastating worldwide pandemic, we can succeed … I’ll never adequately express how proud I am, and how grateful I am to each of you, and to CTA members all over the state. We did our best. We kept children safe. We kept educators safe. We kept our schools safe. And our communities safe. And I’m never going to apologize for that!”

  1. Fighting for Justice: “It has been an absolute joy for me to see how deeply racial and social justice issues have become the norm in so many CTA local chapters and classrooms. CTA members made immigrant rights and the plight of Dreamers a priority. You fought back against the Trump Administration’s anti-immigrant rhetoric and actions. You’ve stood up for the rights of LGBTQ+ students and colleagues. You’ve stood up to the homophobic and transphobic attitudes that has been driving some terrible laws and policies in other states such as Florida. You’ve made it clear that there is no place for Anti-Asian hate or violence. You have fought back against antisemitism. You spoke out against gun violence and the mass shootings that have become too routine in our communities and schools. And you’ve shown that Black Lives Matter.”


  1. Bargaining for Better: “Many of our chapters are actively working on antiracism at structural and institutional levels, and ensuring that local policies help reverse the centuries and decades of systems and structures that have harmed students of color and left them and their families behind. The fact that these issues are being addressed through collective bargaining, strikes, protests and other actions is proof that racial and social justice issues CAN be addressed and won through our strength as a union.”

  1. Thank you, CTA: “Thank you all for allowing me to spend the past four years in this brave space with you. Thank you for working side by side. Thank you for entrusting me. Thank you for the work I know you will carry on well into the future. You’re a fantastic body of educators and activists; the future of public education is in good hands. We are CTA.”

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