Reform Alert

Post date: Mar 15, 2012 12:40:27 PM

Management, business, and charter groups recently claimed to separate the myths from the facts regarding the Governor’s Education Bill #24. However, their claims fall on deaf ears because there are real and dramatic consequences for teachers in the governor’s bill—consequences that we have detailed in these Critical Questions and Answers Regarding the Governor’s Education Bill No. 24.

Michelle Rhee, the divisive former head of the Washington, D.C., School System, has brought her group to our state. Rhee’s Connecticut blitz included a rally in Hartford today. Contrary to its name (StudentsFirst), her group seeks to undermine high-quality public education with the imposition of one-size fits all approaches. Please see this statementreleased to the press by CEA today.

CEA’s new TV ad launches tomorrow. It says that Governor Malloy’s Education Bill #24 does not get reform right. It takes control away from school districts and gives it to the state education commissioner, allows principals to decide which teachers are certified, and siphons tax dollars away from neighborhood schools.

Remember to contact your legislators, especially if they are on the Education Committee, and ask them to eliminate proposals in the Governor’s Education Bill No. 24 that would weaken high-quality education for our students. Please tell them to fix the governor’s bill to:

· Restore collective bargaining rights.

· Separate evaluation from certification and salary schedules.

· Maintain the Master’s Degree for Professional Certificates.

· Restore local control rather than enabling decisions about local schools to be made by one state education commissioner.

· Preserve scarce resources for neighborhood schools instead of diverting tax dollars to charter schools that don’t have the same standards.

If your legislators are not members of the Education Committee, urge them to discuss your concerns with Education Committee members. Contact your state senator and state representative using the link and phone numbers below.

Senate Democrats 1-800-842-1420 Senate Republicans 1-800-842-1421

House Democrats 1-800-842-1902 House Republicans 1-800-842-1423

The governor, business-backed groups, and other privately funded organizations are lobbying legislators to act on their behalf. We, as teachers, need to be persistent and unwavering in our commitment to ensure education reform gets done right.

Finally, we hope you will join us in being heartened that NEA President Dennis Van Roekel is well aware of our legislative challenge here in CT. He already has provided and will continue to provide his tangible and strong support to our efforts.

Phil Apruzzese Mary Loftus Levine

CEA President CEA Executive Director