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By Julian Peeples

CTA President E. Toby Boyd delivered a powerful report to CTA State Council of Education this morning. Here are 13 takeaways from that speech:


  1. Justice for Tyre Nichols: “I know we are trying to understand the brutal and painful video released last night of police beating and killing another Black man, Tyre Nichols. The pain, fear, anger –it’s exhausting. We have to make room to support each other with care, compassion and strength. Let’s keep each other united and determined for justice. We cannot be silent.”


  1. Finishing Strong: “This is the homestretch of my presidency but the opportunities and challenges we face will continue well on into the future. I am very optimistic about how CTA will create and seize opportunities, and how we’ll meet any challenges that come our way. And I have no intention of slowing down over the next five months.”


  1. Our Union is Here: “California weather has not been kind this month. Our thoughts are with CTA members, students, and families who’ve been impacted. I want to remind you that CTA has a Disaster Relief Fund to provide fast and meaningful assistance to members who have suffered losses due to the storms and flooding.”


  1. Together, We Grieve: “We’ve seen another rash of mass shootings this past week in nearby Monterey Park, in Half Moon Bay and in Oakland. Our thoughts are with all the victims and their families. We cannot and will not accept gun violence as normal. We must continue to demand that lawmakers rise to the challenge to keep our schools, colleges and communities safe from such absolute and tragic senselessness.”


  1. We Are One: “CTA stands strong with the AAPI community whose Lunar New Year celebration was devastated by the dance studio shooting last Saturday.”


  1. Thank you, Gavin: “Despite a $22.5 billion dollar deficit, the governor has made good on his ongoing commitment to public education and health care. His proposal is another record-setting year for public education funding in California. The plan includes a public education Cost of Living Adjustment of 8.13 percent.”


  1. Investing in Students: “Per-pupil spending next school year would hit about $22,000 per pupil. If you need a little context for that figure, just 12 years ago we were at $7,000 per pupil. We’ve tripled per pupil funding in a little more than a decade. Your advocacy – our constant, collective advocacy and hard work has made a difference!”


  1. When We Win, Students Win: “I haven’t seen many of you since the November election, and I think we need to take a moment to celebrate. CTA had a clean sweep with the statewide races and initiatives. And I know many of you led successful school board campaigns. Congratulations to all of you who were able to elect supportive board members or defeat extremist candidates.”


  1. The Power of Us: “We helped re-elect Gavin Newsom and Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond, setting the stage for the good education budget news and for continued support of students and educators. It’s what happens when educators, parents and families come together – we make things happen!


  1. Readying for Battles Ahead: “One thing about California, after one election, there’s always another one right around the corner. There will be a March presidential primary election in 2024 and several initiatives have already been filed. Our work, our fight and our advocacy continues, and getting ready for 2024 is going to start soon.”


  1. Planting Seeds for Future Educators: “Think about why you got into teaching or into any other aspect of the education profession? When were those seeds planted? What made that decision for you? We can and should be planting those seeds with our own students now. We need to inspire young people to come into this profession, and then make sure they have the tools, respect and support they need once they get here.”


  1. Organizing for Community Schools: “Educators are organizing and working with parents and community members to build the schools that students need to succeed. Community schools ensure that students in high poverty communities have access to a wide range of academic, health, and social services that support student learning. Community schools prioritize the whole child. Community Schools are democracy in action!”


  1. Walking the Walk for Equity and Justice: “This month, we celebrated Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. King knew that true progress comes with struggle. He understood our collective power. He once said, ‘We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back.’ I know CTA is a living example of those words. We keep marching forward for our students and for each other. We walk the walk to lift up and protect public education. We walk the walk for equity and social justice. And we never, ever, turn back.”


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