Open Letter to Our Union
Susan Notes: The union response so far is The way to influence the direction of your union is through our elected representative body--the ATF Federation Representative Council. Any ATF Fed Rep can bring forth a motion that is then debated and voted upon by the council.
Stay tuned. I don't think these very abused Albuquerque teachers will go away.
T-shirts and arm bands to develop community awareness of reform policy impacts on our profession, schools, and children
Newsletters to our families about increased mandated testing, resources spent on school and teacher grading, and the effects of testing on our children
Organized protests/rallies in our school communities before and after the duty day
Training and education to families about opting out of mandated testing as well as test boycotts
Dear Union Leaders,
It was invigorating to be among hundreds protesting corporate education reform this Tuesday, October 22nd. In just one night, we collected over 200 signatures on the letter below. We didn't need to close schools for a strike and no one went to jail. We are urging you as our union leaders to continue actions which will inform and support our teachers, students, parents, and communities on the issues facing education today.
Thank you for your consideration and thoughtfulness in reading the letter below that was made with input from the following educators. We look forward to your response.
Mary Lee Anderson, Montezuma ES
Clayton Beverly, Wherry ES
Francesca Blueher, Montezuma ES
Cass Clowry-Baillio, Bellehaven ES
Linnea Montoya, Montezuma ES
Michelle Perez, Montezuma ES
Cindy Romero, Georgia O'Keeffe ES
Elaine Romero, Wherry ES
Amanda Short, Montezuma ES
David Wilson, Zia ES
Open Letter to Our Union
We are educators and union members responding to the letter from Ellen Bernstein dated October 14, 2013 which detailed action steps in voicing objections to PED teacher evaluations. We look forward to expressing our deep concerns about school grades, teacher evaluation based on test scores, and increased resources that go to high stakes tests by letters to legislators, as well as to fellow educators, students, and school communities. Our group would also like ATF and NM-AFT to consider actions beyond letter writing which are proposed below. For example, many of us participated in the October 22 protest, initiated by Kathy Korte, because this was our first local opportunity to speak out about corporate education reform. However, we feel strongly that rallies and other actions against education reforms should be initiated and organized by our union.
Some action steps we have discussed are:
In addition, we urge our union to be more focused on social justice for our children, schools, and communities. Here are a few ideas from educators about what we as a union can do, or investigate, so that we can attain a more democratic public education.
Mandated Standardized Assessments
Explore and communicate the consequences of high-stakes, standardized assessments on school communities, teacher evaluations, and, most importantly, on our children.
Inform parents of the APS, "NM State Assessment Parent Exemption Form 2013-2014" for opting out of high stakes testing.
Reevaluate AFT's recommendation of a "One-Year Moratorium" on CCSS testing. This simply delays the inappropriate, destructive, mandated high-stakes assessments.
Research the resources spent by New Mexico for teacher evaluation as well as money spent on the contract with Teachscape.
Investigate the consequences to complying with ONLY the mandated portions of the Teachscape evaluation system.
Organize a committee that researches IF there is a teacher evaluation system based on student test scores that can actually enhance and enrich the profession of teaching.
How can we use our precious resources to have true professional development that enhances teacher learning while promoting a rich, robust, diverse curriculum?
What are the possibilities of our state NOT participating in the upcoming PARCC assessments?
Can we develop a greater awareness in our state of the organizations and businesses that created, promoted, and are currently benefiting from the CCSS?
We urgently ask our union's guidance and leadership to form strong school-based committees in order to effectively reject harmful educational policies, rebuild our schools, and most importantly, pave the way for a robust, rich, democratic education for our children.
INDEX OF YAHOO, GOOD NEWS!