Union News: Thousands Cheer On Educators at Boston Pride Parade

Union News: Thousands Cheer On Educators at Boston Pride Parade

pride parade 2024Greetings,

This past Saturday, two important events overlapped. Dozens of members gathered to march in the annual Pride march in Boston. As we have said before, and will remind you all before next year’s march: there are few moments you experience such appreciation and gratitude for your work as an educator as when you walk in the Boston Pride march and thousands cheer for the work you do and the support you give to every student for being exactly who they are.

At the same time, the MTA worked hand in hand with our union siblings in the Boston Teachers Union to host a community schools summit. The model of community schools – truly democratizing our public schools and organizing them around addressing the basic needs of families and students outside of the school walls – has been taking hold across the country. Many of you have won elements of community schools, such as hosting a health clinic or a food pantry in the school.  This is important and we need to document all of these efforts.

But “full-service community schools” – truly democratic schools oriented around community needs – remain a goal, and a keystone of building liberatory public schools. 

MTA Events, Opportunities and Solidarity Actions

EMAC Juneteenth Celebration

When: Wednesday, June 19, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Where: Edwards House, 1 Badger Road, Framingham

Join MTA’s Ethnic Minority Affairs Committee in celebrating the 3rd Annual Juneteenth Celebration. You can expect to eat delicious food, play an assortment of games and have fun with engaging activities and “edutaining” live performances. Come and support Black-owned vendors and connect with friends, family and colleagues. The theme, "Freedom to Be, Freedom to Learn," will be our focus as we come together to commemorate the historic occasion of Juneteenth, a day that symbolizes freedom, unity and resilience. This event is free for our members and their guests. Learn more and register here.

MTA Summer Conference

When: July 28-31
Where: UMass Amherst

There's only one month left for free, early-bird registration for Summer Conference. After July 11, UMass will charge all new registrants $40 in addition to the cost of housing and meals. Don't miss out on the dozens of workshops, refreshed social events, group activities and more. Learn more and register. Tonight is the LAST Student Loan Webinar Before June 30 Consolidation Deadline

This is your last chance to attend an MTA Benefits webinar and learn about the one-time account adjustment, which will help borrowers count more of their past repayment periods toward forgiveness. The deadline to consolidate has been extended to Sunday, June 30, so you must act quickly in order to take advantage of this benefit.

Savi, the student loan benefit offered by MTA Benefits in partnership with NEA Member Benefits, is hosting a workshop for Massachusetts and Connecticut members on Wednesday, June 12, at 6 p.m. Register now.

Women2Women Leadership Program – Deadline this Friday! 

When: July 23 to August 1
Where: Emerson College, Boston
Deadline: Application is due Friday, June 14

The Women2Women America 2024 International Leadership Program is hosting participants this year at Emerson College. The program offers female students, aged 15 to 19, tools and opportunities to become influential leaders in their communities and beyond. Students will have the opportunity to learn about the current status of women and girls around the world, as well as the social and economic progress that is possible when women and girls have the opportunity to participate fully in every aspect of society.

The MTA will select six students from those who have applied and will pay for the full program fee, which includes lodging, all meals, conference materials, and conference-related activities. Students must check the box indicating that they are submitting the application as part of a scholarship and complete the accompanying essay. Learn more and apply here. Women's Institute For Leadership Development WILD is a grassroots women's organization that empowers women to become more effective leaders and organizers in the Massachusetts labor movement. Join their one-day Summer Institute on June 29 by registering here. For on-site child care, register by today, June 12. Scholarship Deadline this Week! Nature School for Teachers Where and when: Lincoln July 23-26, Attleboro Aug. 6-9

Mass Audubon offers these opportunities to get outdoors, connect with fellow educators, and immerse K-8 teachers in inquiry-based science at two of their wildlife sanctuaries. The MTA Training & Professional Learning Division offers a limited number of scholarships for this program. Apply for a scholarship by June 15. Climate Change Funding – Learn More Through the federal Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), massive amounts of new funding is available to help schools defray the cost of clean energy equipment that can promote health, sustainability and efficiency. Funding is available until at least 2032, and there are no limits on the amount of money requested, or how often a school can apply. Examples of eligible technology include ground-source heat pumps, solar power, energy storage, electric school buses and charging equipment.

For more information about the federal program, including examples of how schools have used IRA funds, please click here.

Climate Resilient Schools Webinar

When: Thursday, June 27 at 4 p.m.
Where: Virtual

MTA educators are welcome to attend a virtual meeting of the Climate Resilient Schools campaign. Educators will learn how schools can make the transition to clean energy and save money by tapping into these powerful federal tax credits, and discuss how to build the financial case for your district. Register here.

Political Education 

As public sector workers, we are not subject to National Labor Relations Board rulings. But all of our private sector union siblings are, and it shapes workplaces and union organizing across the country. Our fates as unions are tied to those of unions subject to the NLRB’s decisions.

Please watch this webinar about the many positive changes that have taken place at the NLRB under the current administration and board leadership and staff, and consider how they are transforming workplace organizing. And, as always, check out the good work of the Economic Policy Institute, which is hosting the webinar at epi.org.

In solidarity,

Max and Deb