Arizona Education Association

Winter 2017

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8 ADVOCATE | WINTER 2017 at the capitol 2018 Legislative and Policy Agenda Goals 1. Advance sound education policy supporting high standards for teaching and learning and ensuring access to a high- quality education for all Arizona students. Commit to the recruitment and retention of professionally certified, highly-effective educators for all classrooms. 2. Restore necessary funding for public education and fully invest in the future of Arizona's children. 3. Advocate for fairness and respect of public education and all public education employees. 4. Protect and strengthen a fair and secure retirement system for current, retired and future school employees. Quality Teaching and Learning AEA advocates for policies that: • Promote a statewide systemic approach to quality teaching and learning including: highly-effective teacher preparation programs and certification; professional development; mentoring and induction; career development pathways; and compensation structures. • Promote equity and excellence for all students by providing flexibility in the Structured English Immersion (SEI) models for English Language Learners (ELL), including replacement of the SEI four-hour model with a research-based language development curriculum. Provide funding to meet the needs of all ELL students and content educators. • Remove high-stakes consequences tied to mandated assessment data, including: Local Education Agency (LEA), school, and individual ratings of effectiveness (i.e., A-F accountability system and results-based funding); evaluations; compensation structures; and personnel decisions. • Support legislation affirming instruction as the primary duty of teachers. • Recognize teachers as professionals and ensure them the autonomy to deliver a flexible curriculum and make classroom-based decisions to meet the needs of their students. Public Education Funding AEA advocates for policies that: • Prevent the Arizona Legislature and Governor from diverting revenue away from public schools through tax cuts, tax credits and vouchers (i.e., empowerment scholarship accounts and student tuition organizations). • Provide immediate and significant public education funding (FY2019) focused on equity and closing the opportunity gap for all students to meet the needs of our public schools in Arizona as follows: a. Attract and retain a workforce of professionally certified teachers with competitive compensation and support. b. Provide critical resources for classrooms such as support services, supplies, updated textbooks, and technology. c. Fund school building maintenance and repairs to give students safe, clean and functional places to learn. • Identify mid-term and long-term funding sources and revenue streams for Arizona public schools. • Invest in school readiness via early childhood and Pre-Kindergarten through Third Grade educational programs, including state-funded full day kindergarten. • Provide career and technical education funding to assist students in preparing to enter the workforce. Fair Employment Rights AEA advocates for policies that: • Strengthen teacher employment rights relating to contract dates, Reduction In Force (RIF) process, salaries, nonrenewal notices and association work. • Establish due process rights for education support professionals (classified employees). • Provide for fair and relevant evaluation systems that: a. include educator input and a clear appeal process; b. support professional development and growth; c. promote quality teaching and learning; and d. use various data points that reflect the course of instruction. Retirement System AEA advocates for policies that: • Sustain and protect a Defined Benefit plan for public employees. The 2018 AEA Legislative and Policy Agenda is approved by the AEA Board of Directors It is based on the public policy statements in the AEA Legislative Platform adopted by the 2017 AEA Delegate Assembly. Get the latest from the AEA Lobbyist on changes to education policy and funding and receive alerts to take action on legislation that impacts Arizona's students and public school employees. Visit SUBSCRIBE TO THE AEA LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

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