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Yes, Money Matters

As every teacher knows, the last thing students need is less education funding. Yet, as hard as it is to believe, the perception that education funding makes little or no difference in student success persists.

These are beliefs, says Bruce D. Baker, professor of education at Rutgers University in New Jersey, that are based on outdated and faulty research. Baker is the author of a report from the Learning Policy Institute (LPI) that confirms what educators know to be true — students benefit from more school funding.

“While money alone is not the answer to all educational ills,” Baker writes in the report, “more equitable and adequate allocation of financial inputs to schooling provides a necessary underlying condition for improving the equity and adequacy of outcomes.”

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Teachers Rally for One of Their Own

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At a rally this weekend, Jahana Hayes thanks teachers and other union members for their support. For more rally photos, visit CEA’s Flickr page.

Chanting “Labor is your neighbor,” dozens of union members—including fellow educators—gathered on the Meriden town green Saturday to show their support for teacher-turned-Congressional-candidate Jahana Hayes. Hayes is vying for the House seat in Connecticut’s 5th Congressional District.

A former Waterbury educator and Connecticut Teacher of the Year, Hayes was named National Teacher of the Year in 2016 and spent the following year traveling across the country, advocating on behalf of public education, and listening to educators, administrators, community leaders, and others about issues that impact students, families, and communities.

“Jahana is a strong champion and advocate for Connecticut students and teachers,” said CEA President Jeff Leake. “She has overcome numerous challenges and has taken every opportunity to improve her own life and the lives of others. She is exactly the type of person we need fighting for all of us in Congress.” Read more

9 Ways to Stretch Your Back-to-School Budget

Shopping for all the things you need to get back to school—books, supplies, clothes and more—can put a serious dent in your budget. For the 2015-2016 school year, educators spent an average of $487 on out-of-pocket classroom supplies, according to a survey of K-12 teachers conducted by SheerID in partnership with Agile Education Marketing.

It pays to look for deals, coupons, special offers and tools that help you trim the cost of shopping a little—or a lot.

Try these 9 tips to get you back to school without blowing your budget! Read more

Teachers Support Teacher Running for Congress

“Jahana Hayes is someone who is not just pro-teacher but has a hands-on understanding of what goes into our profession, the things we need to be successful, and the challenges we face. She has the ability to be really advantageous for us,” says Zach Blain, an East Haddam teacher and the president of his local association.

Blain was among a group of CEA members learning about political activism and organizing at CEA’s Summer Conference this year. The group learned the ins and outs of advocating for pro-public education candidates when they went door knocking for Hayes, a former CEA member and the 2016 National Teacher of the Year. CEA has endorsed Hayes, who is running for Congress in Connecticut’s Fifth Congressional District.

Summer Conference attendees Fairfield teacher Marion Richards, Portland teacher Jerome Manning, Glastonbury teacher Miles Lubben, and CREC teacher Jesecia Miller visited CEA members who live in Cheshire this week to get the word out about Jahana Hayes, the Waterbury teacher and 2016 National Teacher of the Year who is running for Congress.

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How to Enjoy Great Museums for Free

A great museum can offer insight into life in the past, let you view famous works of art or explain the inner workings of everything from a space shuttle to a dinosaur. Visiting a museum is part of the fun of traveling, whether it is a destination in itself (such as the Smithsonian Institution or the Metropolitan Museum of Art) or a lesser-known find (such as the John Michael Kohler Arts Center in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, or the Mütter Museum of medical history in Philadelphia).

Some museums, such as The British Museum in London and the 19 that make up the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., are always free, while others have a pay-what-you-wish policy that lets you set your budget.

But many museums charge admission fees. Although the average U.S. museum admission fee is just $7, according to the U.S. Embassy, it’s not unusual for popular museums to charge $15 or $20 for adults. If you want to bring the whole family with you, that can really add up. Read more

CEA Summer Conference, Day Two: The Deep Dive

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Trumbull Education Association President John Mastroianni and Tolland teacher Tiffany Reynolds exchange ideas at CEA’s Summer Conference.

Energy levels remain high on day two of CEA’s Summer Conference, where hundreds of teachers have reconvened in Cromwell for intensive training, networking, and the sharing of ideas, concerns, and best practices.

“This is my second time attending,” says Tolland teacher Tiffany Reynolds. “The first time was last year, as an emerging leader. Since then, I’ve worked on two grievances, and I’m here to learn how to do that more effectively so that I can be the best advocate for my colleagues.” Read more

New CEA President Kicks Off Summer Conference

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CEA President Jeff Leake welcomes more than 300 teachers to this year’s Summer Conference.

Newly elected CEA President Jeff Leake welcomed more than 300 Connecticut teachers to CEA’s annual Summer Conference in Cromwell, featuring workshops for educators at every stage of their career looking to strengthen their profession and their collective voice.

Showing archived photos and footage of the 1978 Bridgeport Teachers Strike, including recollections of those who were jailed for speaking up for their rights, Leake thanked teachers for “understanding the importance of standing together as a union and working hard to make sure that every teacher and student has the resources they need to be successful.”

Once again, he added, “We face those whose intent is also to break this union. We must confront them and defeat their decades-long campaign to destroy public education, collective bargaining, and even the middle class. We must stand strong against the millionaires and billionaires who see education as a giant pool for profit. We must not let our voices be diminished. Read more

August Deals and Discounts from NEA Member Benefits

There may only be a few weeks of summer left, but that leaves plenty of time for vacation and some back to school shopping. Don’t forget to check out the discounts available to NEA members through NEA member benefits!

NEA Click & Save “Buy-lights” for August 2018

NEA Click & Save, the online discount buying service for NEA members, highlights select retailers and merchants each month. Check out these featured “Buy-lights” for August!* Read more

Help Shape the Future of Your Union: Get Involved With a CEA Committee or Commission

CEA members from around the state gather in Hartford for a committee meeting.

Members’ involvement and input are vitally important to the daily activities of CEA. As a member of a CEA commission or committee, you can share your ideas, work with other members from around the state, and help shape the Association for years to come.

Below is a listing of CEA commissions and committees with which you can participate.  If you are interested in serving, please complete this online formRead more

New CEA Treasurer Elected

Waterbury teacher Kevin Egan was elected CEA treasurer at yesterday’s Board of Directors meeting.

The CEA Board of Directors last night elected Waterbury teacher Kevin Egan to the office of CEA treasurer. Egan, the president of the Waterbury Teachers Association, says he is committed to exercising the fiduciary responsibilities of the position with the highest standards of care and restraint.

As CEA enters a new era in the history of labor organizing, Egan says he will do his utmost to ensure that the Association continues to “maintain diligent management of the funds that our member teachers from all over Connecticut faithfully contribute to CEA every year.” Read more