AB 340 is Bad Pension Reform
Chapter Presidents, State Council Members, Service Center Council Chairs:
As you are probably aware, Governor Brown announced his public employee pension reform package Tuesday.
California educators have been working in good faith with the governor and the Legislature to obtain pension solutions that will move our state forward. This plan does not achieve that goal. The reform measures will make it more difficult to recruit and retain experienced teachers, firefighters and public safety officers. Equally concerning is new language we have not previously seen that may impact local school budgets and ultimately Proposition 98 funding.
For these reasons, we have sent a letter to the members of the state Legislature urging them to vote No on AB 340 when it is taken up on the Senate and Assembly floor.
Attached are CTA Quick Points on AB 340, and the letter of opposition to the bill from our Governmental Relations Department. You can also read my statement to the news media.
Lawmakers are scheduled to vote tomorrow. Please email your lawmaker today and tell them to vote NO on AB 340.
Dean E. Vogel
August 23, 2012
CTA Campaign Update for Leaders
Labor Day is just around the corner and it happens to be a great opportunity to remind our local communities of all the great achievements of the working men and women who make California and America great. Over the years, labor unions have led the fight in advancing the rights of all working people. The 40-hour work week, workplace safety protections, child labor laws, establishment of a universal and free public education system -- with each of these milestones, working men and women have been at the forefront of the fight to defend the middle class.
But this Labor Day, the future of workers’ ability to stand up to the powerful corporations, billionaires and big banks that want to erode our rights is under threat. Prop 32, the Special Exemptions Act, was written to limit the voice of working men and women and create special exemptions for corporate special interests, giving the wealthy and well-connected even more political power to write their own set of rules. It would essentially silence our voices and keep us from advocating for our students, just like we’ve been doing for nearly 150 years.
So I encourage you to take a look at our Labor Day No on Prop. 32 Toolkit for ideas on how to spread the word that Prop. 32 is not what it seems.
Dean E. Vogel
Here’s what you can do this week: Talk to at least one family member, friend or co-worker about the importance of voting No on Prop. 32. Check out our tips on starting workplace conversations in the members-only 2012 Campaign Toolkit of our website. It’s easier than you think.
Media highlights of the week:
Proposition 32: A fraud to end all frauds, Los Angeles Times
California’s Prop. 32 would be Citizens United on steroids, The Hill
Editorial: Schools saved only by passing Prop. 30, Long Beach Gazette
Teachers join Governor Brown to support Prop. 30, the Schools & Local Public Safety Protection Act, in Sacramento, San Diego and San Francisco.
Listen to our Radio Ads: Have you heard CTA’s No on 32 radio ads? They’re hard to miss since they are running all over the state for a total of three weeks, in English and Spanish
CTA Campaign Website
Mobile Campaign Website (Use this link from your smartphone)
CTA Facebook Page
CTA Twitter Feed
CTA is supporting a recently amended bill to change the teacher evaluation system in California.
Assembly Bill 5 by Assemblymember Felipe Fuentes of Los Angeles requires the implementation of a comprehensive teacher evaluation system in all school districts by July 1, 2014 that is based on best practices and multiple measures to strengthen the knowledge and skills of teachers to improve student learning. It moves beyond the approach of just using test scores to define educational success.
As you know, the State Council of Education unanimously approved a new CTA Teacher Evaluation Framework at our June meeting. AB 5 is consistent with that Framework and CTA policy, and provides us an opportunity to be proactive in the teacher evaluation debate and in leading our profession.
Final amendments to this bill moved very quickly this week. CTA worked with Assemblyman Fuentes, and after discussing the bill with members of the Teacher Evaluation and Academic Freedom Committee moved to a support position. The bill was voted out of the Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday and now moves to the full legislature. AB 5 is rigorous, but it’s fair and focuses on improved teaching and learning.
AB 5 requires that the evaluation process be collectively bargained at the local level to consider educator and student needs in that community, requires multiple measures of teacher effectiveness, mandates the use of the California Standards for the Teaching Profession to ensure consistent standards and practices, provides training and calibration for administrators/evaluators in conducting fair and standards-based evaluations, and provides for parent and community input.
In order to ensure that there are adequate resources to support this new evaluation system, CTA also supported amendments to the Quality Education Investment Act. AB 5 uses some unspent QEIA funds to provide resources to implement the evaluation system in QEIA schools. In addition, it provides flexibility to QEIA schools around class size requirements and provides additional resources to help QEIA schools implement the new Common Core State Standards. Future funding to expand the evaluation program will come from the K-12 Block Grant on mandated costs.
An AB 5 Fact Sheet and Talking Points are attached. We will need members to make calls to lawmakers as this bill moves through the Assembly and Senate. Legislative Alerts and requests will follow. This is our opportunity to set the agenda and be proactive for our members. Please also read CTA’s Guiding Principles on Teacher Evaluation and the CTA Teacher Evaluation Framework.
If you have any questions, please contact CTA Vice President Eric Heins at firstname.lastname@example.org or Tricia Papapietro in our Governmental Relations Department at 916.325.1500.
Please call AMERICAN FIDELITY
NUMBER 800.365.8306 ext: # 0 for all employees to call for information and to schedule their appointment for the Benefit validation process.
American Fidelity is allowing 40 minutes per member for this process.
I wanted you to know that we made some changes to the WDEA website. Things will be added as time goes on and we also wanted you to know about some of the recent updates:
#1 - The Yahoo Group page will be phased out and we will be using the forum page (Click here)
#2 - You will get to subscribe to updates as you feel necessary, you can get a daily digest, weekly or monthly through our email collection program mailchimp. Through this process, you will get blog updates (news from WDEA/CTA/NEA) and finally we can get a collection of emails with names, so we can keep our list updated.
#3 - Please be patient, this is a process and I am updating as I have time. If you have special requests for info such as dates, benefits info, etc. Feel free to email myself or use our contact page to contact the WDEA President, Jeff Reed.
Thank you for being the best!