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Rally, Rally, Rally!

posted Apr 20, 2012, 2:56 PM by Ronna Van Veghel   [ updated Apr 20, 2012, 3:20 PM ]


Reform Alert

There are only two and a half weeks left for legislators to work on getting education reform done right.

REFORM ALERT – Rally, Rally, Rally

1) We Need YOU —Attend a Rally – Stand up for education.

2) Fighting Back Education Foes – Top education official tied to private equity firm.

3) Teachers Support Parts of Substitute SB #24 – Get the facts on the bill.

 

1)    We Need YOU - Attend a Rally – Stand up for education- Make your voice heard.

We Need YOU!  Now more than ever it’s critical for teachers to make their voices heard. 

The vital debate over the best way to improve education in Connecticut continues with closed-door meetings on SB 24 and the substitute bill going on among the governor’s staff, the education commissioner’s staff, and legislative leadership. At this point, anything can come out of these negotiations—and all your hard work can be wiped out.

Sign up today and join your colleagues at CEA sponsored rallies at the State Capitol on Tuesday, April 24 and Wednesday, April 25. Let legislators hear your concerns about education reform.

Bus transportation is available from cities and towns across the state.

Sign up at cea.org, under upcoming events, or log in here to participate, and stand up for children, teachers, and public education.

 

2)    Fighting Back Education Foes – Top education official tied to private equity firm.

Of course we know that private corporations, CEO’s, and hedge fund managers have been trying to take over public education. An article in today’s CT Post newspaper sheds more light on who is really behind the push to reform education in Connecticut – tying a top education official to a private equity firm. And there’s a second article - The Corporate State of Mind – Malloy Administration Ducks Connecticut’s Bidding Laws.

The governor reportedly will stop at nothing to advance his agenda, including holding numerous closed-door meetings with legislators and with municipal officials about school funding being at risk.

We know that tenure, collective bargaining, and tying a yet unknown evaluation system to salary, certification, and employment are still on the table for the governor and his allies.

It is IMPERATIVE that CEA members continue to ADVOCATE for students and the teaching profession. Make those calls. Send those emails. Write those letters. And of course, attend a RALLY to show our strength.

Contact your legislators using the link and phone numbers below, and tell them a better way to improve education starts by listening to teachers. Now is also the time to set up back home meetings with your legislators, or call and invite them to meet you at the rally in Hartford.

www.cga.ct.gov/asp/menu/CGAFindLeg.asp  

Senate Democrats 1-800-842-1420               Senate Republicans  1-800-842-1421
House Democrats 1-800-842-1902                House Republicans  1-800-842-1423

 

3)    Teachers support parts of Substitute SB #24specifically elements that do the following:

  • Restore collective bargaining to enhance teaching and learning conditions.
  • Decouple evaluation, certification, and salary schedules.
  • Improve the teacher evaluation system by ensuring that evaluation plans will include collaboration, professional development supports to continually improve teaching, and the validation of a new rating system.
  • Enhance teacher standards by recognizing and requiring a master’s degree for the professional certificate.
  • Create a new distinguished educator designation.
  • Provide funding for needy districts for wrap-around services (social-emotional supports, family support, and physical health and wellness) and family resource centers.
  • Create 1,000 new pre-K slots.

Substitute SB #24 can be improved with the following actions:

·         Elevate the teaching profession by instituting a fair, streamlined teacher dismissal process with just cause, due process, and a final and binding hearing—one afforded other employees in the public sector.

·         Eliminate any reference to “money follows the child” funding, since cash-starved schools cannot afford to lose resources.

·         Require accountability and certification for superintendents.

·         Ensure that charter schools serve the same academically diverse student populations as public schools.

·         Encourage more parental and community involvement in schools.

·         Add more literacy programs in schools.


Together we can get education reform done right.

Thank you for all your efforts.

 

Phil Apruzzese                                    Mary Loftus Levine
CEA President                                    CEA Executive Director

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