Elections and activism took center stage at today’s CEA-Retired meeting at the Aqua Turf Club in Southington, where members voted for leaders to represent them and learned more about federal and state policy issues facing educators.
At today’s meeting, CEA-Retired members elected Mary-Beth Lang as treasurer, Bill Murray as president, Gloria Brown as vice president, and Karen DiMenna as secretary.
CEA-Retired members elected William Murray, currently CEA-Retired vice president, president. He succeeds Gloria Brown who was unable to run again due to term limits. Brown was voted in as CEA-Retired vice president, Karen DiMenna will serve as secretary for another three years, and Mary-Beth Lang was elected treasurer. Read more
Members of the CEA-Retired Legislative Advisory Council prepare to meet with their elected officials at Retired Teachers Lobby Day.
In an overwhelming turnout for Retired Teachers Lobby Day, hundreds of former Connecticut educators gathered at the Legislative Office Building this morning to meet with their elected officials about issues critical to public education and the teaching profession. Among the biggest of these are funding teacher pensions and avoiding a proposed cost shift.
“We must avoid any shift of the state’s responsibility to fund teacher pensions onto cities and towns,” said CEA-Retired member and legislative co-chair Karen O’Connell—a move she cautions could impact education budgets, and in turn, students and teachers. The Finance, Revenue, and Bonding Committee is expected to vote on the issue by the end of the week.
O’Connell and legislative co-chair Myles Cohen said that Retired Teachers Lobby Day—a joint effort of CEA-Retired, the Association of Retired Teachers of Connecticut (ARTC), and AFT Connecticut—brings longtime educators and legislators face to face to discuss issues ranging from adequate funding of teachers’ retirement and healthcare benefits to the resources necessary to support public education. Read more
CEA Retired President Gloria Brown told retired teachers, “This is an extremely important election.”
“Today is a very special day—not only because we’re here together in an air conditioned space instead of in a hot and humid classroom,” CEA President Jeff Leake told members of CEA-Retired, who had gathered for their annual fall conference on an especially hot and stifling September 6. “Today is a particularly special day for us to commemorate because, 40 years ago on the first day of school, only 36 of Bridgeport’s 1,247 teachers showed up for work.”
Leake continued, “Let us remember today what those striking Bridgeport teachers did for this union and teachers across the state. They stood strong, supported by our members from across the state. They were stronger together, and they did not give up.” Read more
A change to the retired teachers’ health insurance program that was adopted by the State Teachers’ Retirement Board (TRB) this month will impact retired teachers and spouses who are on—or will soon be on—the TRB’s Medicare supplement (65 and older) plan.
The new base plan will actually have a lower premium ($134 per person, per month) and it will be a Medicare Advantage plan through Anthem. The TRB will continue to offer the current Stirling plan, but it will be a buy-up, at $259 per person, per month, for the full package that includes drugs, dental, vision, and hearing coverage. Read more
CEA-Retired Legislative Committee Co-Chairs Myles Cohen and Karen O’Connell.
“I find it’s important to stay involved in our Association and pay it forward,” said John Battista, one of nearly 200 retired Connecticut educators who converged on the Legislative Office Building this week for Retired Teachers Lobby Day. The event, a joint effort of CEA-Retired, the Association of Retired Teachers of Connecticut (ARTC), and AFT Connecticut, brought longtime educators and their elected officials face to face to discuss issues important to both retired and active teachers.
Battista, a former physical education teacher in Westbrook, said, “I wasn’t an advocate early in my career, but over time I developed a passion for the issues critical to active and retired teachers. Teachers are the most important part of our economy. I want to see our profession lifted up to where it should be. ” Read more
CEA-Retired President Gloria Brown.
The nearly 200 retired teachers gathered this morning for the CEA-Retired Fall Issues Conference were reminded of why they went into teaching and everything they love about it still.
“We will always care about public education,” said CEA-Retired President Gloria Brown. “Our organization provides many opportunities for retired members to continue to be active in public education.”
CEA-Retired President Gloria Brown told retirees at a fall conference today, “Teachers are lifelong learners.”
Expand your Horizons: Learn more. Travel more. Volunteer more. That was the theme of today’s CEA-Retired Fall Issues Conference at the Aqua Turf in Southington. More than 200 CEA-R members learned about new programs that can help them remain active, continue learning, and make a difference.
“Teachers are lifelong learners, and today’s conference introduced retired teachers to a number of different organizations that can help make a difference in their lives and allow them to remain intellectually stimulated and socially involved,” said CEA-R President Gloria Brown.
Many retired teachers search for opportunities for intellectual development, cultural stimulation, and social interaction, and in Connecticut there are many opportunities for retirees to do just that. Read more
CEA-Retired member Karen O’Connell talked with State Representative Jeffrey Currey about the problems with SBAC.
While many of their former colleagues were busy in the classroom today, retired teachers did their part to improve education in Connecticut by talking with their elected representatives at the State Capitol. More than 80 retired teachers — members of CEA-Retired, AFT Connecticut, and the Association of Retired Teachers of Connecticut — sought out their legislators to discuss issues important to students and teachers.
CEA-Retired member and former East Hartford teacher Karen O’Connell met with her state representative, Jeffrey Currey, and talked with him about several issues including the problems with SBAC testing. “I told him the tests are developmentally inappropriate and urged him to amend bill 1095 to ensure less testing and more learning,” O’Connell said. She told Currey that progress monitoring tests offer a better picture of children’s progress than the SBAC tests do.
O’Connell said Currey had many questions about SBAC and expressed concerns about the instructional time that is lost during the two weeks of testing. Read more
CEA-Retired members listen to speakers at en educational session during last year’s Retired Teachers Lobby Day.
All CEA-Retired members are invited to join hundreds of their retired colleagues at the Retired Teachers Lobby Day at the State Capitol in Hartford on April 29. CEA-Retired members will be joined by their retired colleagues from AFT Connecticut and the Association of Retired Teachers of Connecticut to meet face-to-face with legislators and speak about issues of importance to retirees and active teachers.
“Last year, more than 30 CEA-R members participated in the lobby day event and made a real difference in getting important legislation passed exempting a portion of teacher pensions from state income tax,” said CEA-R President Gloria Brown. “This year, we hope more members will join us and help get our message out to legislators.”
The agenda includes an educational session starting at 10 a.m., followed by one-on-one meetings with legislators. The day will conclude with a luncheon meeting where retirees will hear directly from more than a dozen legislators.
CEA-Retired members can contact their county representative if they would like to attend.
“You’ve made a difference in the lives of so many children,” CEA President Sheila Cohen told more than 100 retirees at the CEA Retired Annual Spring Meeting at the Aqua Turf...