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Teachers Make Addressing Student Poverty a Priority

Connecticut's 2015 Teacher of the Year and East Hartford educator Cara Quinn told CEA RA delegates

Connecticut’s 2015 Teacher of the Year and East Hartford educator Cara Quinn told CEA RA delegates, “Unless we address the root causes of poverty, the most well-intentioned reform efforts will fall short.”

Family stress and poverty rank highest as barriers to students’ academic success according to a new survey of the 2015 State Teachers of the Year — and Connecticut educators agree. After listening to Connecticut’s Teacher of the Year Cara Quinn give a compelling speech about poverty’s effect on her East Hartford students, CEA member delegates to the Representative Assembly last weekend unanimously passed a New Business item to investigate the impact poverty has on student learning.

The New Business item states:

CEA shall create a Task Force to investigate current research on the impact poverty has on student learning, examine legislation and existing programs that work to diminish the negative impact poverty has on student learning and to examine ways from existing research and programs, to reduce poverty in our society. The Task Force shall present a complete report on its work, with recommendations, to the next RA.

“As teachers we are the champions of equity and justice,” Quinn said. “Rigorous standards, accountability and ensuring that every child has a high quality teacher are all imperative to the success of our schools. However, unless we address the root causes of poverty, the most well-intentioned reform efforts will fall short and we will continue to spin our wheels.”

Watch Quinn give an eloquent case for why we all must do more to address student poverty.

 

You can do your part today to help end childhood poverty by supporting and getting the word out about Red Nose Day — a campaign dedicated to raising money for children and young people living in poverty. Click here for more information.

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