California Educator

May 2011

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STATE OF EMERGENCY Visit for additional content Watch State of Emergency roll out The actions throughout California fell into distinct categories: legislative, every parent, appreciation and allies, revenue, and not business as usual (LEARN). There were gains in every category throughout the state. Below are some highlights. ‘L’ is for Legislative Fontana and Chaffey teachers association members pro- tested budget cuts at state Sen. Bob Dutton’s office in Rancho Cucamonga. They met with Sen. Dutton’s regional director to discuss budget cuts. On May 11, hundreds of CTA members packed a hearing of the Senate Education Committee and testified one after another against legislation that would have harmed teachers. Ironically, this took place on Day of the Teacher before a resolution was read in that committee to honor educators. The two anti-teacher bills that were introduced were SB 266 by Bob Dutton (R-Rancho Cu- camonga), which would have allowed districts to hire laid-off teachers as substitutes at a lower per diem rate; and SB 355 by Bob Huff (R-Diamond Bar), which would allow districts to use teacher evaluations to replace seniority and transfer rights. While the bills are dead for this legislative year, they could be resurrect- ed for 2012. Another bill, SB 871 by Sharon Runner (R-Antelope Valley), that would have mandated “no teacher raises if the school year is shortened” was pulled from the calendar beforehand. ‘E’ is for Every Parent At Audubon Elementary School in Foster City, there were nine empty chairs lined up in front of the principal’s office all during the State of Emergency week as part of an awareness campaign to reach par- ents. These chairs were a poignant reminder of the nine Audubon school employees who could be gone next year — victims of state budget cuts that are reducing the staffs of thousands of California public schools suffering layoffs. Empty chairs for teachers, administrators and education support professionals who could lose their jobs were also in front of every school in the San Mateo-Foster City School District. In Walnut Creek there was a news conference on Main Street in front of City Hall on May 10, with a community coalition of parents, teachers, firefighters and East Bay education leaders. Speakers sound- ed the alarm about dire state cuts being a Main Street issue. Members from the Fullerton aBove: CTA members pack a hearing of the Senate Education Committee in the Capitol and help defeat three bad bills. Members of the Fontana Teachers Association hold lawn chats with signs that say, “Ask me! I’m a teacher!” to engage parents in a discussion about schools. 16 California Educator | MAY 2011 Secondary Teachers Organization, Fullerton Elementary Teachers Association, Buena Park Teachers Association, Brea Olinda Teachers Association and La Habra Educa- tion Association took part in a “grade-in” Tuesday, May 10, at the Brea Mall to help members of the public better understand the scope of their out-of-class responsibilities and to give them a focal point to discuss the state budget education shortfall with area citizens. L E aBove: Members of the San Mateo Elementary Teachers Association put empty chairs outside of every school in the district representing staff who will lose their jobs due to budget cuts. Teachers hold a grade-in at the Brea Mall. Attendees at a news conference on Main Street, Walnut Creek.

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