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True Celebration of Democracy at NEA RA

Connecticut delegates began the first session of business at the 88th NEA RA in San Diego on July 3 by reviewing the RA Today newspaper published daily for NEA delegates.

Connecticut delegates began the first session of business at the 88th NEA RA in San Diego on July 3 by reviewing the RA Today newspaper published daily for NEA delegates.

Even as the country celebrated its independence today, the real show of democracy was happening during the second day of the 88th Representative Assembly as delegates held elections, embraced the promise of equal treatment to all NEA members, and participated in a rousing protest against education budget cuts.

You could feel the energy rise at the July 4th celebration as the NEA Choir sang “Hope for Tomorrow” and the under-30 delegates were invited to come on stage.

“My state was so happy for me when they called us up,” said Betsy Cragg, an under-30 delegate from Greenwich, Connecticut.  “They all pointed at me and said ‘Go, get up there!’”

Tony Mullen -- the National  Teacher of the Year and a Greenwich educator -- briefly spoke to Connecticut delegates at their morning NEA RA caucus on July 4. He will be recognized by NEA and will address all delegates July 5.

Tony Mullen -- the National Teacher of the Year and a Greenwich educator -- briefly spoke to Connecticut delegates at their morning NEA RA caucus on July 4. He will be recognized by NEA and will address all delegates July 5.

This is Betsy’s first NEA RA, but attending two CEA RAs has helped her get ready. She especially likes meeting every morning with her state to discuss the NBIs, amendments, and resolutions before going to the RA hall. “You feel safer to ask questions with just your state colleagues than you do on the floor,” she explained.

So, what did she think about the July 4th celebration commemorating the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth?

“I liked it because it was a chance to have fun on the floor. We work hard at the RA and teachers have another side of us-beyond the business.”

Click “read more…” below for more photos from the CEA delegation.

Avon Education Association delegate Josie Cannella reminds Connecticut delegates at the NEA RA on July 3 of the delegation's postion on a proposed standing rule amendment before they take a vote.

Avon Education Association delegate Josie Cannella reminds Connecticut delegates at the NEA RA on July 3 of the delegation's postion on a proposed standing rule amendment before they take a vote.

New London Eduction Association member Jai Wrighten-Kelly addresses the more than 9,000 NEA delegates to express her views on a proposed standing rule amendent on July 3.

New London Eduction Association member Jai Wrighten-Kelly addresses the more than 9,000 NEA delegates to express her views on a proposed standing rule amendent on July 3.

Greenwich Education Association delegates cheer for their colleague Tony Mullen -- National Techer of the Year -- during his visit with Connecticut delegates on July 4.

Greenwich Education Association delegates cheer for their colleague Tony Mullen -- National Techer of the Year -- during his visit with Connecticut delegates on July 4.

Greenwich Educaiton Association President Cathy Delehanty offers Tony Mullen a warm welcome on July 4 at the Connecticut caucus meeting at the NEA RA in San Diego.

Greenwich Educaiton Association President Cathy Delehanty offers Tony Mullen a warm welcome on July 4 at the Connecticut caucus meeting at the NEA RA in San Diego.

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