Meeting to feature impressive agenda
Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and a former governor of West Virginia, will provide the keynote address at MTA’s 168th Annual Meeting of Delegates. The Meeting of Delegates will run from Friday, May 10, to Saturday, May 11, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. Wise will address delegates on Friday. A question-and-answer session will follow.
Under Wise’s stewardship, the alliance has built a reputation as a respected authority on high school policy. The alliance advocates for reform in America’s secondary education system and works to ensure that all students graduate from high school prepared either for college or a career.
In 2010, Wise co-chaired the Digital Learning Council, and he currently chairs the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. As governor of West Virginia from 2001 to 2005, Wise fought for and signed legislation to fund a scholarship program known as PROMISE, which has helped thousands of West Virginia high school graduates continue their education. He also helped establish a character education curriculum in the state’s schools.
In 2001, Wise championed salary bonuses for teachers who achieved national board certification. The proposal passed, and the rate of national certification in West Virginia has tripled.
MTA President Paul Toner said Wise’s stewardship of the Alliance for Excellent Education and his close attention to issues affecting secondary schools set him apart.
“Governor Wise understands how great schools with motivated staff and Meeting to feature impressive agenda forward-looking curricula produce the next generation of adults. In fact, he wrote the book on it,” Toner said.
Wise is the author of “Raising the Grade: How High School Reform Can Save Our Youth and Our Nation,” which chronicles the costly neglect of secondary education in the United States and the challenges facing students as technology and postsecondary requirements rise dramatically.
Wise “tells real-world stories of high schools, writing eloquently about the nearly six million students at risk of dropping out,” said Toner, “but he also tells stories of success and explains ways of getting there.’’
The 2013 Annual Meeting will also feature numerous other speakers, along with award presentations, contests for elective positions and action on the association budget, dues, proposed bylaws and resolutions, and new business items.
An MTA Friend of Education Award will be given to Paul Reville, who recently completed nearly five years as the Massachusetts secretary of education. As Governor Deval Patrick’s top education advisor, Reville established the Executive Office of Education.
His stewardship extended from early education to K-12 and higher education in the state with the nation’s highest student achievement. Reville has played a leading role on matters ranging from securing billions of dollars for increased investment in local school funding through the Education Reform Act of 1993 to supporting efforts to improve labormanagement relationships in education in his practice and as secretary of education.
Since stepping down from his post in January, Reville has returned to the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He has been a faculty member at Harvard since 1997 and served as the director of the Education Policy and Management Program.
The MTA Friend of Labor Award will be given to Massachusetts state Senator Ken Donnelly (D-Arlington). As a senator, Donnelly, a former union firefighter in Lexington, has focused, among other things, on protecting public employee pensions, municipal health care and collective bargaining, as well as improving “middle-skills” training for jobs in expanding sectors of the Massachusetts economy such as advanced manufacturing, clean energy and health care.
Kathleen Turner, the 2013 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, will also address the Annual Meeting on Saturday morning.
Turner decided in eighth grade that she wanted to be a French teacher. “I did not become a teacher — I am a teacher,” Turner said when she was named Teacher of the Year.
As a teacher at Sharon High School, she regularly takes students to Paris during spring break and has established an exchange program with a school in Rouen, France. Chuck Fazzio, president of the Sharon Teachers Association, has called Turner “the very best and brightest of what we all are.”
The Annual Meeting will be called to order at 12:30 p.m. on May 10. That day’s session will include leadership reports delivered by Toner, MTA Vice President Tim Sullivan and Executive Director- Treasurer Ann Clarke. A report on the Public Relations/Organizing Campaign will be delivered by Sullivan.
Saturday’s call to order at 9 a.m. will precede the presentation of awards and other business, including voting to fill vacancies on the Executive Committee, the Board of Directors and the Retired Members Committee.
The MTA’s proposed operating budget of $42,542,090 for fiscal 2013- 2014 will be presented and voted on. The Advisory Budget Committee, the Executive Committee and the Board of Directors have proposed annual dues of $456 for full-time active members, a $6 increase over last year. Dues for secretaries, clerks and custodians would be $274, while dues for aides, food service personnel and other education support professionals would be $137.
In addition, a proposed $30 dues assessment related to the PR/Organizing budget will be addressed. The amount is unchanged from last year.