What We've Done
Our history and impact in a nutshell
ACHIEVEMENT GAP BILL:
As a member of the Race to the Top Coalition, we helped support the successful passage of “An Act Relative to the Achievement Gap,” giving underperforming schools the flexibilities they need to craft successful school turnaround plans, including the ability to expand the school day and remove low performing teachers from the classroom. This legislation also supported innovation and expanded public school choices available to parents in low performing districts.
ADOPTION OF BOARD OF ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION TEACHER EVALUATIONS:
As part of the Educator Evaluation Task Force, we supported regulations that require every district in the state implement a teacher and administrator evaluation system by the 2013-2014 school year.
MUNICIPAL HEALTH BENEFIT REFORM:
We successfully advocated for municipal health benefit reform that allowed cities and towns to direct millions of dollars towards protecting teachers’ jobs and support community services across the Commonwealth.
GREAT TEACHERS GREAT SCHOOLS:
Made job performance, not seniority, the primary consideration in teacher staffing decisions in every public school in Massachusetts, with the new evaluation systems being a key component of how job performance is measured.
SPECIAL EDUCATION CIRCUIT BREAKER:
Helps school districts pay for providing services to special education students. The Governor approved the FY 2013 state budget, which contained $242 million in funding for the circuit breaker account.
EFFECTIVE TEACHERS AND PRINCIPALS:
We proposed and support the passage of teacher effectiveness legislation to ensures that every public school gives priority to effectiveness over seniority in layoff and hiring decisions and supported the effective implementation of a new teacher evaluation system in order to ensure Massachusetts’ teachers get meaningful feedback in order to improve their practice.
SUFFICIENT FUNDING, SPENT WISELY:
Provided a consistent lobbying presence and hosted a tele-town hall meeting for Governor Deval Patrick with voters. As a result of this landmark law, more than 200 communities and school districts across the Commonwealth have collectively saved more than $200 million in health insurance premiums. This reform has the potential to achieve over $250 million in savings statewide, freeing up substantial funding for schools.
HELP INCREASE FUNDING FOR EARLY EDUCATION
Worked to increase funding for early education in the state budget. Member Karla Rivera, testified on the importance of opening more preschool seats. In addition,nearly fifty members and staff packed the Budget Hearing at the State House in support of Governor Patrick’s proposed $15 million funding increase to improve access to early childhood education programs for low-income families.
HELPING TO TURNAROUND LOW-PERFORMING SCHOOLS
Helped pass legislation that would increase the number of allowed charter schools in the state and extend proven turnaround flexibilities to at-risk schools. Members, hand delivered signed letters of support for the Race to the Top legislation to chairwomen of the Joint Committee on Education. We attended a rally to raise awareness and support of the bill with parents, educators, and legislators.