Teachers have a lot to say on issues from their pensions to classroom safety this legislative session, which is why local associations around Connecticut are meeting with their legislators and making their voices heard.
Hamden Education Association members including President Diane Marinaro, standing at right, had a number of questions for Rep. Mike D’Agostino, Rep. Josh Elliott, Senate President Pro Tempore Martin Looney, and Senator George Logan.
“Politicians make decisions that affect our students and our profession,” says Hamden Education Association Vice President David Abate. “Sitting back and waiting isn’t a solution. I don’t like politics, but for legislators to know what’s going on in our schools they have to hear from teachers.” Read more
U.S. Congresswoman Jahana Hayes today returned to the school in Waterbury where she taught for fifteen years to highlight legislation she has introduced to keep guns out of classrooms. Joined by students, teachers, parents, and other members of Connecticut’s congressional delegation in front of Kennedy High School, Hayes said she scheduled the event after school, at a school, because, “For far too long, these conversations have been happening without the input of those most directly affected.”
Congresswoman Jahana Hayes stood outside John F. Kennedy High School in Waterbury today with students, teachers, parents, and community members to highlight legislation she has introduced to keep guns out of classrooms.
Hayes recently sponsored a resolution in the House aimed at blocking the use of federal education grants to arm teachers. U.S. Senator Chris Murphy sponsored similar legislation in the Senate. Recommendations by U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos’ School Safety Commission have left the door open for districts to use federal funds to arm teachers, and the Connecticut lawmakers want to ensure taxpayer dollars will never be used for this purpose.
“Teachers should not have to worry about securing a firearm in a school, or being trained to use a firearm in a high-pressure situation,” says Hayes. Read more
CEA sends condolences to the family, friends, and constituents of State Rep. Ezequiel Santiago, who passed away last night. Santiago was a leader in the state’s Latino community. He brought people together around important causes and was a champion of community schools. We will miss his advocacy for and commitment to the people of Bridgeport.
Community schools, minority teacher recruitment and retention, the opportunity gap, and school literacy were just some of the issues members of the legislature’s Education Committee heard public input on today.
CEA members, leaders, and staff testified on a number of bills, ensuring teachers’ perspective was heard.
Teachers, CEA leaders, and staff testified yesterday before the Connecticut General Assembly’s Black and Puerto Rican Caucus on issues critical to teachers this legislative session. These issues included school climate, classroom safety, the persistent shortage of ethnic minority educators, and funding for public schools.
CEA members and staff, including CEA Research and Policy Development Specialist Orlando Rodriguez, CEA Vice President Tom Nicholas, Westport educator Faith Sweeney, community organizer Shamare Holmes Bridgeport teacher Tiffany Ladson-Lang, and Stratford teacher Kristen Record shared CEA priorities with the legislature’s Black and Puerto Rican Caucus yesterday.
“It is vitally important that members of the caucus hear from teachers and get a clearer understanding of what’s happening every day in our schools,” says CEA Director of Government Relations Ray Rossomando. “Teachers came from every corner of the state and stayed late into the evening, on a school night, to testify before their elected officials about what matters most to their students, their profession, and the communities where they teach. That has an impact.” Read more
Many Connecticut children are losing out on learning time when disruptive behavior from another student continually interrupts the school day. Problematic student behavior is a major problem in our schools, but many legislators aren’t aware of what’s happening in your classroom. They need to hear your stories.
On Friday, February 22, the legislature’s Education Committee will be holding a public hearing on legislation that protects students and teachers from dangerous situations in the classroom, and provides support and services for students who act out. Legislators need to hear from you!
Click here to submit written testimony now.
You can submit your story under your own name, or anonymously.
If you are interested in testifying and sharing your story in person with the Education Committee on February 22, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
There’s a crisis of disrupted learning not just in Connecticut, but across the U.S., and the Oregon Education Association today released a report on the conditions students and educators are facing in schools.
Some Oregon teachers talked to a local news station about the disruptions they face daily.
Teachers in Connecticut experience many of these same situations, but legislators are unaware of the severity and pervasiveness of the problem.
Share your own story (anonymously if you so choose) to make legislators aware of the need for action to make classrooms safe for all students and teachers.
To arrange for a teacher-legislator get-together in your district, contact your local association president and CEA’s Chris Donovan or Robyn Kaplan-Cho.