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Posts from the ‘CEA News’ Category

Nominate a Colleague for CEA’s Human and Civil Rights Awards

Do you know an educator who has demonstrated exceptional commitment to multiculturalism, equal opportunities, LGBTQQI support and awareness, conflict resolution, or other social issues pertinent to students and public education?

Nominate a colleague for one of nine CEA Human and Civil Rights Awards. Now easier than ever, nominations can be made online.

Categories include:

  • Susan B. Anthony—Prudence Crandall Equality Award
  • Mahatma Gandhi—Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Award
  • Katherine Dunham Award
  • Helen Keller—Anne Sullivan Memorial Award
  • John Rogers Memorial Award
  • CEA Award for Leadership in Hispanic Educational and Community Relationships
  • CEA Humanitarian Award for Leadership in Recent Immigrant Educational and Community Relationships
  • Harvey Milk—Sylvia Rivera Award for Challenging Discrimination Related to Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation
  • CEA Presidential Award—Henry Barnard Memorial Award

Click here for guidelines, award criteria, and online nomination forms. 

The deadline for nominations is February 1, 2019.

The awards will be presented during an inspiring dinner at CEA’s Summer Leadership Conference in August.

Labor’s Statements on Fiscal Stability Commission’s 2.0 Recommendations

Connecticut State CapitolThe Connecticut AFL-CIO, Connecticut Education Association, AFSCME Council 4, and AFT Connecticut made the following statements in response to the Commission on Fiscal Stability and Economic Growth’s 2.0 recommendations:

Salvatore Luciano, Executive Vice President of the Connecticut AFL-CIO:

“Christmas appears to have come early for the richest 1% in Connecticut. At least, that’s what the ‘Yacht Club Commission’ was hoping for when they released their latest plan that will almost exclusively benefit corporate CEOs and wealthy corporations.
Read more

CEA and Education Stakeholders Well Represented on Governor-Elect’s Policy Committees

A standing-room only crowd of nearly 500 people gathered this morning at Eastern Connecticut State University, eager to help shape the future of their state.

Governor-elect Ned Lamont addresses the nearly 500 people gathered for a policy summit at Eastern Connecticut State University today.

“Look at this crowd. You believe in the state of Connecticut,” Governor-elect Ned Lamont told the people assembled, many of whom are serving on 15 transition policy committees for his administration, which met for the first time today.
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Teddy Bears on Ice Benefit Connecticut Students

When the Bridgeport Sound Tigers hockey team scored their first goal of the night Friday, amid the usual cheers of the hometown crowd, hundreds of teddy bears rained down onto the ice. The Sound Tigers have sponsored teddy bear tosses in the past, but this year, for the first time, the bears are going to children sponsored through the CEF Holiday Bear Project.

“It was a lot of fun. Fans were excited about the bear toss,” said CEA Vice President Tom Nicholas, who serves as president of the Connecticut Education Foundation (CEF).

Even though the Sound Tigers ended up losing 3-2 to the Hartford Wolf Pack, the teddy bear toss warmed fans’ hearts.

“We’re very grateful that the Sound Tigers are donating the more than 300 bears they received to our Holiday Bear project,” Nicholas said. Some fans brought new teddy bears they had purchased elsewhere, and others bought bears at the game.

Nicholas had a booth at the game and explained to fans that the Holiday Bear project delivers gifts and holiday cheer to Connecticut’s neediest children—students who have been nominated by teachers aware of their families’ needs.

There’s still time to sponsor a child. Find out how you can help by purchasing gifts or sending in a monetary donation.

Find Out How You Can Help a Child This Holiday Season

Many families across the state are facing unexpected hardships, but you can make a difference this holiday season by sponsoring a child through the Holiday Bear Project.

Watch the message below to find out why CEA Vice President and CEF President Tom Nicholas urges you to consider sponsoring a child.

Holiday Bear—a project of the Connecticut Education Foundation (CEF), CEA’s charitable arm—helps brighten the holidays for needy children who have been nominated by their teachers.

Gifts and donations must be received by Friday, November 30, at CEA’s offices in Hartford or at CEA UniServ offices for distribution before the holidays.

Click here for more information, or contact Mary-Pat Soucy at

ACES Building Rep Goes the Distance to Communicate With Members

“I’ve always been a big advocate for educators,” says ACES teacher Salman Hamid—and now he’s formally representing teachers in his union as a building rep.

Building reps are often a teacher’s first point of contact when questions arise—ranging from practical matters to sensitive subjects. They are their colleagues’ contract enforcer, organizer, and spokesperson.

The Wintergreen Interdistrict Magnet School sixth grade teacher tells his fellow educators, “It’s absolutely key we get involved in our union and become active and proactive. Decisions made at the local, state, and national can have a big impact on our classrooms, our salaries, and our retirement.” Read more

CEA and iHeartRadio Team Up for a Brighter Holiday for Children

Vice President Tom Nicholas took to the airwaves to let listeners across the state know about the 20th annual Holiday Bear project, which brings holiday cheer to hundreds of Connecticut children in need.

CEA Vice President Tom Nicholas with iHeartRadio’s Renee DiNino.

In an interview with iHeartRadio’s Renee DiNino, Nicholas urged Connecticut residents to sponsor one of 100 public school students across the state, from pre-K through 12th grade, who have been nominated by their teachers to receive holiday gifts (such as books, toys, or gift certificates) and essentials (such as coats and hats). Families of these students are facing financial hardships that will make it difficult to afford holiday gifts this year. Read more

Celebrating American Education Week

AEW 2018 FBFrom that first tentative day of preschool to mortar boards soaring through the air at high school graduation, teachers play a crucial role in their students’ lives. You provide a safe, welcoming space for children as they learn about themselves and the world around them.

Thanks to your dedication, students learn not only about parts of speech, atoms, prime numbers, and the American Revolution, but about what it means to be part of a Democracy, how to care for one another, and how to make valuable contributions to their community. Read more

Teachers Play Key Role in Electing Pro-Education Candidates


For pro-education candidates, Connecticut’s midterm elections were a victory, and teachers helped provide the decisive votes.

“Our teachers came out in force, and they came armed with information about who supports them,” said CEA President Jeff Leake. “The report card was an important new tool for our members. It helped ensure that teachers were knowledgeable going into the voting booth, and it held candidates accountable.”

For the first time, information on key votes was compiled by CEA in a comprehensive report card that gave each candidate a score. The report card, which evaluated candidates’ positions and voting records on everything from school funding to classroom safety and teacher pensions, was viewed on CEA’s website nearly 75,000 times. Read more

Hayes Is in the House

“This history teacher is making history,” 2016 National Teacher of the Year Jahana Hayes told her supporters at a victory celebration in Waterbury last night. “I am honored to be your next congresswoman.”

Five months after announcing her candidacy, former Waterbury teacher Jahana Hayes won her bid for Connecticut’s Fifth Congressional District seat—defeating opponent Manny Santos by a margin of 148,000 to 116,000 votes. She will be the first African American woman to represent Connecticut in Congress.

“Your vote is your voice, and you used your vote and you used your voice to vote for me,” Hayes said, thanking supporters. “We need somebody in Congress who is us, who understands us, who understands what we’re going through.” Read more