Arizona Education Association


Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 3 of 15

4 ADVOCATE | SPRING 2021 IN SOLIDARITY by Joe omas Joseph H. omas, President Arizona Education Association I t's been a very long year. In the face of an invisible threat, shiing guidelines, and at times a divided community, you showed an unwavering commitment to your students, your colleagues, and your communities. It might not feel like it now, but your dedication and hard work will be remembered – by your students and their parents. When the pandemic began, teachers turned on a dime to become distance educators. Cafeteria workers created take- out and drive-thru options to keep our students—and oen their families—fed. Custodial crews deep cleaned classrooms and school sites daily. We found ways to adapt our work as best we could by solving problems together. We were trusted to find and implement solutions then, and we need to be trusted to do so again as we move into planning for the '21-22 school year. With the release of the COVID-19 vaccine and schools returning to some form of in-person instruction the question now confronting us is what will teaching and learning look like moving forward. e voices and experiences of educators will be critical in these discussions that will directly impact your working conditions. We cannot sit back and wait for so-called reformers to act; we must ensure we have a seat at the table when the planning is happening at the state, district, and building levels. We've earned it, and we must take this opportunity to be the architects of any new design of our schools and the systems within them. When a crisis subsides, there is too oen a desire to fall back into old habits and practices. But we have learned much about the barriers some of our students have to their learning and the resources that would better serve them. We owe it to our students and ourselves to reflect on these experiences as they have given us a peak into our students' lives in a personal way. Before we start shaping a new future, educators must be given time to debrief this past year, collaborate with colleagues to learn from their experiences, and develop best practices. It was our creativity and resilience that brought us this far. ere is no reason to diminish that or treat our work as if it never happened. Reflecting on the past year honors the hard work we put into educating during the crisis and honors those who did that work. ese are lessons that should not be forgotten or gone to waste. AEA OFFICERS Joe omas President Marisol Garcia Vice President Angela Philpot Treasurer AEA STAFF Sheryl Mathis Interim Executive Director Sheenae Shannon Editor Roxanne Rash Graphic Design Advertising e AEA Advocate is published by the Arizona Education Association, 345 East Palm Lane, Phoenix, Arizona 85004-1532. Phone: 602- 264-1774 or 800-352-5411 Fax: 602-240-6887. Email: AEA's website may be found at Permission to reprint any material originating with this publication is granted provided that credit is given to the AEA Advocate. e AEA Advocate (ISSN 0194-8849) is published in Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer for $3.50 per year by the Arizona Education Association, 345 East Palm Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85004-1532. Periodicals postage paid at Phoenix, Arizona. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the AEA Advocate, 345 East Palm Lane, Phoenix, AZ 85004-1532. Moving? Please let us know before you go. Simply clip your mailing label from the back of the Advocate and send it along with your new address to: AEA Advocate 345 East Palm Lane Phoenix, Arizona 85004-1532

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Arizona Education Association - Spring_2021