Analysis: The Real Reason Teachers Unions Pump Millions of Dollars Into School Board Races

Williams: Congress Moves to Kill ESSA Accountability Rules, Giving States Lots of Room to Do as They Please

Kisida: Fresh Calls to Eliminate the National Endowment For the Arts — Now With Alternative Facts

Rotherham & Schmitz: 1 Million Teachers Don’t Get Social Security. Trump Can Make It Great Again By Letting Them In

Tucker Haynes: Why ‘Hidden Figures’ Should Be Required Viewing at Every U.S. School

Analysis: The NEA’s 5 Financially Shakiest States

Bradford: Teachers Unions Exploited Ed Reform Split Over DeVos While Never Losing Focus

Essay: Running for Change, South Dakota High Schooler Protests Pipeline, Meets the President (Twice)

Allen: Advice to Secretary DeVos — Lean In, Be Bold, Talk About Power, and Rethink Twitter

Opinion: Why I’m Taking My Child Out of Our Renewal School

Analysis: Was Hillary’s Union Support Limited to (Some of) the Public Sector?

Barber: Transformation — The Time Is Now

KIPP Leaders: 4 Critical Areas Secretary DeVos Should Focus on to Ensure All Students Succeed

Opinion: Now More Than Ever, Diverse Charter Schools Are Essential

Whitmire: Dear Secretary DeVos, If You Want to Grow Great Charter Schools, Do This, Not That

Sahm: Found in Yonkers

Hernandez: DeVos Should Tell Her Critics All Kids Deserve School Choice — Just Like Theirs Have

Marnie Kaplan: Sometimes Government IS the Solution — Reauthorizing Head Start, 10 Years Later

Analysis: The One Senator Teachers Unions Might Have Swayed on DeVos Is the One Who Couldn’t Vote ‘No’

Analysis: Facing Threats, Can Public-Sector Unions Learn From the Demise of Industrial Workers?

Analysis: With Question 2 Defeated, Mass. Teachers Turn to Ambitious Legislative Agenda

Photo Credit: Getty Images

December 13, 2016

Talking Points

.@Massteacher legislative agenda proposes wide-ranging union protections

Union hopes to capitalize on momentum after defeating Question 2 @NoOnQu2

Sign Up for Our Newsletter

Mike Antonucci’s Union Report appears Wednesdays; see the full archive
Having successfully maintained the cap on the number of charter schools in the state, the Massachusetts Teachers Association is hoping to use that momentum to push a package of bills through the state legislature.
The agenda was approved this month by the union’s board of directors but has not been made public until now.
The nine-page document describes a membership that is “tremendously energized as never before” and ready to create schools that are “fully funded, safe, accessible places of joy.”
To achieve its goals, MTA plans to craft three omnibus bills that address K-12 education, higher education and retired public employees. A fourth package of bills would help institute a constitutional amendment creating a tax on incomes over $1 million, a $15-per-hour minimum wage and paid family medical leave. The constitutional amendment was approved by the Legislature last May, but it must receive legislative approval again next year before being placed before voters.
Among other things, the K-12 bill would eliminate “incursions on collective bargaining,” place a moratorium on high-stakes testing, limit class size in special education inclusion settings and mandate recess.
The higher-education bill would require the state’s community colleges to hire 250 tenure-track faculty each year for four years, and 250 full-time support and professional staff.
The retiree bill would increase the cost-of-living allowance base from $13,000 to $16,000 and freeze retiree premium contribution rates permanently.
Despite these ambitious plans, MTA also expects to have to play defense. “Even with an overwhelmingly Democratic majority in the Legislature, proposals to undermine the rights and working conditions of our members present a constant threat, particularly in the more conservative House,” the document states. “We need to demand that legislators stand with us in support of public education and hold them accountable for their actions or inactions.”
Email tips to [email protected]