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Posts from the ‘CEA Messages’ Category

Legislators Need to Hear from Teachers on Classroom Safety Bill

An important bill that would improve classroom safety and school climate is facing a deadline for action in the Appropriations Committee.

Please urge your legislators to act and make our classrooms safe places to learn and teach.

Click here to contact your legislators if they serve on the Appropriations Committee.

Click here to send a message to any legislator.

 

Support Stop & Shop Workers

31,000 workers at Stop & Shops across Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island have gone on strike.

Management at Stop & Shop presented their “final offer” to their workers, which included significant cuts to healthcare, massive increases (over 100% in some cases) to workers’ health care premiums, and replacing wage increases with so-called bonuses. All in all, this represents a massive step backwards with many workers facing reduced weekly earnings if they agreed to their “final offer”.

On top of this, Stop & Shop’s parent company reported over $2 billion in profits last year. This is not the time to ask for concessions. Rather, this is a time to invest in the workers who have made Stop & Shop so successful and profitable. Read more

Tell Your Legislators: No Cost Shift

A proposal before the legislature would shift a portion of the state’s teacher pension system costs onto cities and towns. If this plan were to pass, cities and towns would be left with less funding for schools, and teachers’ future salaries and health benefits would be negatively impacted.

Contact your legislators today and urge them to STOP the proposal to shift the state’s responsibility for teacher retirement to our towns.

Under this proposal (Sec. 6 of House Bill 7150), most towns would be responsible for 25 percent of the “normal” retirement costs (i.e. annual retirement costs excluding unfunded liabilities). Towns with higher average pensionable salaries would contribute more, and the 25 least wealthy municipalities would contribute five percent of their associated normal cost.

Click here to see your town. Read more

Co-Building Reps Work Together to Represent Members

Lori Woodruff and Donna Bosworth, building reps at the Academy for International Studies Elementary Magnet School in Danbury.

“Teachers become teachers because we want to help kids,” says Danbury building rep Lori Woodruff. “It’s the same with our union—we are here to help each other. As teachers, when we’re involved with the union we can do more to help one another.”

Woodruff, a fourth grade teacher, shares her building rep responsibilities at Danbury’s Academy for International Studies Elementary Magnet School with art teacher Donna Bosworth—an arrangement the two say serves them and their members well.

“We can finish each other’s sentences,” says Woodruff. “When we have our 10-minute meetings I’m good at pulling people back to the agenda, and Donna’s really good at explaining in-depth items.” Read more

New CEA Ad Campaign Spotlights Strength of Diversity in Our Public Schools

The TV, radio, and online ads underscore the vital role of teachers in our public schools. The ads remind the public that teachers welcome students from every background and help them learn, grow...

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Spreading the Word About Reading

Why is reading so fundamental to children’s success in school? How does the Connecticut Education Foundation’s (CEF) second annual Reading Bus Tour promote literacy in Northeastern Connecticut? CEF President and CEA Vice President Tom Nicholas discussed these questions and more this morning on Channel 8’s Good Morning Connecticut show.

 

Statement from CEA President Jeff Leake on Governor Lamont’s Budget Address

CEA supports sensible ways of assisting the state in its efforts to make up for decades of underfunding teachers’ retirement, including the governor and treasurer’s plan to smooth out the state’s payments to the fund over a longer period of time and lower the investment earning assumption to a more realistic rate. Teachers have consistently paid their fair share into the fund—while the state has not—and teachers had their payments increase nearly 20 percent last year.

However, we oppose any teacher retirement cost shift that transfers millions in costs from the state to our cities and towns, putting additional financial strain on taxpayers and pressure on already tight school budgets. The plan to shift the cost of teacher retirement contributions onto our cities and towns didn’t sit well with Connecticut taxpayers, legislators, and municipalities in 2017—because it placed additional financial burdens on cities and towns and property owners—and it doesn’t sit well with them today. Read more

Lamont: ‘We Have the Greatest Teachers in the World’

During his State of the State Address kicking off the 2019 legislative session today Governor Ned Lamont received a standing ovation when he praised teachers.

“We have the greatest teachers in the world,” Lamont said. “We ought to tell them that. Thank you for what you do, teachers.”

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Happy Holidays, From CEA

CEA Vice President Tom Nicholas, CEA President Jeff Leake, and all of us at CEA wish you a joyous holiday season and a happy new year.

DeVos’ School Safety Plan Ignores Schools’ Real Needs

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ Federal Commission on School Safety was supposed to address gun violence in our schools and recommend ways schools can keep students safe. Instead, the commission yesterday released a report that recommends pressuring educators to possess dangerous firearms in our schools and stripping students’ of civil rights protections, which seek to prevent racial disparities in student discipline.

While the report does not require educators to be armed, it encourages schools “to seriously consider partnering with local law enforcement in the training and arming of school personnel.”

“Connecticut teachers do not want to be armed,” said CEA President Jeff Leake. “Stockpiling guns will not make our schools safer—violence begets violence.” Read more