New School Year, New Opportunities for Organizing
As you have prepared for the return of students and the promise of the new school year, we here at the MTA have been taking in all we heard from you last year, following up on new business items and readying ourselves to support you in organizing locals, growing alliances within your communities and reclaiming our voices and power. While all of those Facebook posts of teachers and students starting the school year make me miss the classroom, I am just as excited by the energy and enthusiasm I am feeling from members about joining together for our students, our union and our communities. Here are some ways to get started.
Welcome Back Video
Click here to see a "welcome back" video message that outlines some of the organizing activities you can take part in. It's less than five minutes long - honest.
Telephone Town Hall on Revenue Campaign Set for Thursday
Don't forget to call in to our telephone town hall at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 3, to learn more about the proposed constitutional amendment to raise revenues for education. Fun fact: If a person's taxable income is $1,000,001 (that is, one dollar over the million-dollar threshold), how much more in taxes would he or she pay under this plan? Four cents. Plan to ask questions and share your views on this call.
Conference Support Offered
The MTA is committed to developing leaders, diversifying its active membership and taking up the struggle for racial justice. You can be a part of this work. Funds are available to subsidize members who want to attend one of the conferences listed below. For more information or an application for support, please contact Ari Mercado in the Division of Governance and Administration by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
2015 NEA Minority Leadership Training (MLT) and Women's Leadership Training (WLT) Conference, Oct. 23-25, New Orleans
2015 National Race Amity Conference, Nov. 19-21, Quincy
2016 NEA National Leadership Summit, Feb. 26-28, Dallas
Support Educator Representation on the BESE
Click here to support our bill to add two educators - one recommended by the MTA and the other by AFT Massachusetts - to the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. Then share the link. We have one more week to gather signatures.
The Truth about Charter Schools in New Orleans
After U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan called Hurricane Katrina "the best thing that happened to the education system in New Orleans," the charter profiteers moved in, making New Orleans the country's first virtually all-charter urban district. While mainstream media are touting the success of New Orleans charters, read the real story about how racism, hyper-controlling charters and Teach For America have unraveled public education in New Orleans.
Save the Date: Bargaining Summit on Oct. 3
Mark your calendars and start putting a team together from your local to attend an MTA Bargaining Summit on Oct. 3. Collective bargaining is the basis of our strength as a union. Learn more about how to use bargaining effectively to improve teaching and learning conditions in our schools. Invitations are going out this week.
I am so looking forward to working with you in the year ahead. In solidarity, and in anticipation of many great things ahead,