Topic: Membership

Take a Stand Against the Fixation on High-Stakes Testing: Sign the AFT Petition!

On June 19 the Texas House Public Education Committee heard from parents, students, teachers, and university experts calling for fundamental reform of our state’s test-driven accountability system (see June 19 Texas AFT Legislative Hotline). Now, on the national level, the American Federation of Teachers is providing you with a chance to take a stand against the fixation on low-quality, high-stakes...

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Dallas teacher honored as “Champion of Justice”

Hotline readers may recall an incident in January in which a Dallas ISD teacher was yanked from his classroom and put on leave after sending a critical e-mail to one of the district's school board members. A news conference and letter campaign from our local affiliate, Alliance-AFT, helped get Drake reinstated. Now the American Federation of Teachers has the story...

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Texas Senate Committee Will Study Online Higher Education and More

On June 20 the Senate Higher Education Committee will hear testimony on three issue areas, leading off with “the effectiveness of online learning and online coursework for underprepared students” as well as the cost and funding of online higher education. From there the committee will move on to a look at the effectiveness of delivery of developmental education programs “and...

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Support Paycheck Fairness for Women

AFT President Randi Weingarten on May 31 called on leaders in Congress and on the presidential campaign trail to support the Paycheck Fairness Act. This vital legislation, which could be voted on by the U.S. Senate as early as next week, will address the continuing pay gap between men and women in the workplace. She also called out GOP presidential...

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Romney Attacks Public Education, Teachers; AFT Responds

American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten was quick to respond to an attack on public education this week by presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. She writes: “He unveiled his proposals today and offered them up on a platter of rehashed rhetoric, failed initiatives, and the promotion of division over cooperation. “Instead of committing to ensure quality public education...

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Don’t Let Kids in Texas Go Hungry This Summer

Millions of kids rely on free or reduced-price school lunches during the school year, but when schools are closed for the summer, only a small percentage of them still get those meals. (See Texas AFT’s previous Hotline item on this topic for state-level details.) You can help ensure that no child goes hungry in the summer. AFT is working with...

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State Senate Education Panel Hears About Teacher Evaluation and Improvement

A May 18 hearing of the Senate Education Committee covered a lot of ground in just a few hours of testimony on teacher preparation, induction and mentoring, recruitment, evaluation, professional development, compensation, and retention.  Some testimony as well as comments and questions from senators foreshadowed policy debates to come next year. State commissioner of higher education Raymund Paredes cited international...

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Higher Education: “Soaring Rhetoric, Skyrocketing Costs”

Texas AFT members are intimately familiar with the adverse effect on educational opportunity of the soaring cost of a college education. We know how serious the problem has become, whether as borrowers ourselves to cover our own college costs, as family members scrambling to help the next generation earn a college degree, or as educators watching our students and their...

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Fight in Congress for Affordable College Loans Continues

The minority party in the U.S. Senate has turned use of the filibuster, a formerly extraordinary weapon requiring 60 votes to advance legislation, into a routine matter, causing gridlock on many bills that have majority support in the Senate and supermajority support from the American public. The latest casualty, at least for the moment, appears to be a student-loan bill...

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Doubling Student-Loan Rates, Hindering College Access: Have Your Say

College students are graduating in a rising sea of debt, with interest rates for federal student loans set to double from 3.4 to 6.8 percent on July 1 if no action is taken by Congress. The effect will be felt beyond current students and those about to enter college. It also will hurt families struggling to find a way to...

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Fair Work for Fair Pay: Aldine AFT Wins Advocacy Award

Congratulations to Aldine AFT for winning the national AFT Paraprofessionals and School-Related Personnel (PSRP) Union Workplace Advocacy Award. Our affiliate for Aldine ISD in the Houston area was presented the honor at the AFT PSRP Conference in Washington, D.C., on April 22, for its "Fair Work for Fair Pay" campaign. The campaign highlighted the story of Gloria Zavala, a custodian...

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Last Chance to Vote on Everyday Heroes

Voting ends this Sunday (April 29) at midnight for the 2012 AFT Everyday Heroes. The semifinalists were chosen from hundreds of AFT members who were nominated because they make a difference every day in the lives of their students or patients, or in the community at large. Semifinalists for the award have been chosen from each AFT division–representing teachers, paraprofessionals...

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