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Posts from the ‘Politics’ Category

Legislators Fail Students and Teachers on Classroom Safety, Supports for At-Risk Students

Fail to override (002)

Legislators failed to protect students and teachers—and lost the best chance Connecticut has had to increase classroom safety for all students and reduce discriminatory discipline for students of color and special education students—when they failed today to override Governor Malloy’s veto of the classroom safety bill.

“It is truly disheartening that legislators and the governor denied protections for the safety of students and teachers, and proactive supports to help students who cause physical injury to others,” said CEA President Sheila Cohen. “The only way to end the school-to-prison pipeline is to take actions that hold administrators accountable for ensuring that students receive the resources they need. We are disappointed that legislators, who passed this bill with overwhelming bipartisan support, failed to override the governor’s veto and enact this bill into law.”

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Heartless Assault on Immigrants Must Stop

The following op-ed by CEA President Sheila Cohen was published by CTNewsJunkie today.

Border crisis FBWe’ve all seen the heartbreaking scenes of parents being arrested along our country’s southern border as their sobbing and traumatized children are stripped from their mothers’ protective arms and taken away by border patrol agents. These children were sent to detention facilities that look like prisons, complete with chain-link fencing and locked gates.

Aptly described as “government-sanctioned child abuse,” these actions cause severe, irreparable harm to children. This is not a political issue. This is a moral crisis. This is cruel and inhumane treatment. This is not the America I know—the land of the free and the home of the brave. This undermines the values of our diverse and welcoming nation. It destroys the fabric of our democracy and tarnishes our nation’s legacy of freedom and justice for all. Read more

Legislators Need to Hear from You

Thanks to the many teachers who reached out and shared their stories with lawmakers, the House and Senate overwhelmingly passed SB 453, An Act Concerning Classroom Safety and Disruptive Behavior.

Unfortunately, the fight is not over. Governor Malloy has vetoed the bill, based on false information and a misrepresentation of the facts.

Your legislators need to hear from you—especially if they have not heard from you yet. This is our last chance to persuade lawmakers to override the governor’s veto. Without your calls to action, this bill will die, and students will lose the best chance they had to get the help they need before it’s too late.

Help set the record straight. Give your legislators the facts and ask for their support in overriding the governor’s veto.

CLICK HERE to contact your legislators one last time on this important issue.

CLICK HERE to contact legislative leaders.

CEA Running Radio Ad Urging Veto Override

CEA is urging legislators, who overwhelmingly supported and passed An Act Concerning Classroom Safety and Disruptive Student Behavior, to override the governor’s veto.

Without an override, Governor Malloy’s veto ensures that more youth will wind up in the criminal justice system rather than having their problems and needs addressed in a proactive manner.

Listen to a CEA radio ad now on the air.

 

And then contact your legislators and urge them to override the veto to ensure safe classrooms for all students and teachers.

Visit cea.org/overrideveto for more information.

Contact Your Legislators Today: Urge Them to Override the Governor’s Veto

Please contact your legislators and urge them to override the governor’s veto of SB 453, An Act Concerning Classroom Safety and Disruptive Behavior, now called Public Act 18-89.

The bill

  • Enhances classroom safety for all students and teachers
  • Provides appropriate support, not punitive discipline, for students who harm others
  • Reduces discriminatory discipline and discourages the school-to-prison pipeline
  • Complies with and does not preempt the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)

Click here to contact your legislators right now.

Watch how Manchester Education Association President Kate Dias explained to Channel 30 why students and teachers need SB 453.

Governor’s Veto Denies Support for Classroom Safety and Resources for Students in Need

iStock-Hartford-Capitol-Summer thinWith the swipe of his pen, Governor Malloy vetoed the best chance Connecticut has had to end the school-to-prison pipeline and reduce discriminatory discipline for students of color and special education students.

Public Act 18-89, which passed the legislature with overwhelming bipartisan support, would have helped ensure a safe classroom environment for all students and educators. It would have required that students who cause physical injury to others receive appropriate counseling and services rather than being ignored or disciplined in a discriminatory way, which occurs too often at present.

CEA is urging legislators, who overwhelmingly supported and passed the bill, to override the governor’s veto. Without an override, Governor Malloy’s veto ensures that more youth will wind up in the criminal justice system rather than having their problems and needs addressed in a proactive manner. Read more

Pressure from Superintendents May Lead Governor to Veto Aggressive Student Behavior Bill

Governor Malloy is deciding whether to sign or veto Senate Bill 453 An Act Concerning Classroom Safety and Disruptive Behavior, now called Public Act 18-89, and unfortunately, some superintendents are lobbying him to veto it.

The bill helps stem the tide of student assaults by making classrooms safer and providing appropriate supports and interventions to disruptive students.

CEA leadership met with the Governor’s staff to explain the bill, which

  •         Reduces discriminatory discipline
  •         Emphasizes supports and assistance to students in need
  •         Provides special education students with greater protections than currently exist

We need every teacher to reach out to the Governor asking him to sign Public Act 18-89.

CLICK HERE to send a message to Governor Malloy, or call him at (860) 566-4840.

Act Now: Tell Legislators to Rollback the 1% Teacher Tax

It’s time to roll back the 1 percent teacher tax increase.

The legislature is currently considering action on a budget bill, and we have two weeks left in the legislative session to fight for a roll back of the teacher tax from 7 to 6 percent.

Now is the time to call your legislators and ask them to pass HB 5430, An Act Concerning Teachers’ Retirement Commission Contributions.

Because of the many emails and phone calls legislators received from teachers, HB 5430 was passed out of committee. We must keep the pressure up.

Rolling back this unfair increase will require votes in the House and the Senate before midnight May 9. Your legislators and legislative leaders need to hear from you in order to make this happen.

Click here to email your legislators and tell them to roll back the teacher tax and pass HB 5430.

Click here to email legislative leaders and urge them to call for a vote on HB 5430.

CEA on Radio: Legislators Must Act to End Assaults by Students

CEA’s Robyn Kaplan-Cho and Manchester Education Association President Kate Dias appeared on Mornings With Ray Dunaway today to talk about classroom safety and disruptive student behavior.

As surprising as it may sound, students biting, kicking, throwing furniture, and hurting other students and teachers has become common in schools across Connecticut, CEA Program Development Specialist Robyn Kaplan-Cho told WTIC’s Ray Dunaway during an appearance on his radio show this morning.

“Teachers are basically expected to take care of every possible societal ill while also making sure these kids are learning. And the schools are not equipped for it, there aren’t the resources for it, and the level of administrative and parental support in many cases is not what it needs to be,” said Kaplan-Cho. Read more

Teachers Urge Legislators to Roll Back Unfair Teacher Payroll Tax

CEA Executive Director Donald Williams urged legislators to pass a bill that would roll back the unfair increase in the teacher payroll tax.

The increased pension contribution for teachers that legislators passed last year without so much as a public hearing is causing financial hardship for CEA members. The payroll tax increase, combined with increases in healthcare costs, furlough days, and little or no wage increases mean that many Connecticut teachers are taking home less pay this year than they did last year.

CEA Executive Director Donald Williams today told the legislature’s Finance Committee that “teachers were singled out for the largest per capita tax increase—an average of about $700 per teacher. The dollars collected by the state were not used to offset the state’s unfunded liability in the teacher retirement fund, but rather were used to reduce the state’s contribution to the fund.” Read more