Chants of “fund our future” reverberated throughout the Commonwealth last Thursday as more than 3,000 MTA members and other education supporters descended on the State House — and hundreds more rallied on the steps of Springfield City Hall and in the center of Pittsfield — to stand up for the public schools and colleges our students and communities deserve.
It was a raucous and colorful scene as we paraded around the State House. As we marched along Joy Street, you could indeed feel the joy of the crowd. Many thanks to all of you who turned out for these events, battling rush hour traffic, wearing red Fund Our Future T-shirts and letting your legislators know that the time to act is NOW.
May 16 was a big day in support of our education funding bills, but it was far from the end of the process. The Promise Act and the Cherish Act are still in their respective committees, and the state budget is still being debated. Information will follow soon about next steps in the Fund Our Future campaign.
Continue to Support Public Higher Education Students
One of the actions last Thursday was the start of a State House sit-in by a group of public higher education students who are demanding more state funding for our colleges and universities and a debt-free future for students. They are planning to remain in the State House all week, sitting in front of the offices of legislative leaders.
They are gaining some traction, but need support. The most important way to support them is to show up at the State House and join them, even if just for an hour. For updates and information on other ways you can help, go here.
Calling All Troublemakers
You may think the school year is almost over, but now is a good time for members to go back to school — Troublemakers School, that is. Sponsored by Labor Notes, where former MTA President Barbara Madeloni now works, this conference on June 1 includes union skill-building workshops and strategy discussions among union members. Troublemakers School will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Worcester State University. Register now!
Honor MTA’s Human and Civil Rights Awardees
Three Massachusetts educators will be honored at this year’s MTA Human and Civil Rights Awards Dinner on June 14 in Westborough. Receiving the Kathleen Roberts Creative Leadership Award are Robin Mallory, a Dracut music teacher, and Elizabeth Travis, a culinary arts instructional aide at Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School. Audrey Murph-Brown, a social worker for the Springfield Public Schools, is the recipient of this year’s Louise Gaskins Lifetime Civil Rights Award. Go here for more information and to register.