Notes from Camp: July 4, 2012

Since yesterday’s caucus had been canceled to allow delegates more time to go through security for Vice President Biden’s address, today’s caucus had its work cut out for it. Ohio’s Steering Committee and Legislative Committee members helped delegates develop positions on New Business Items and the NEA Legislative program.

Once at the Convention Center, delegates heard from the national ESP (Education Support Professional) of the Year, Judy Near, a health technician at Skyline Elementary School in Denver’s Cañon City School District. (To read more about Judy and her inspiring address to delegates, see the online coverage at www.nea.org/grants/52464.htm)

Today’s business on the RA floor involved consideration of more New Business Items and the NEA Legislative Program. Between those business sessions, delegates celebrated the Independence holiday with a speech by NEA Executive Director John Stocks and a performance by the NEA Choir, an ensemble gathered together each year for the RA, which this year included NEOEA Recording Secretary Brian McConnell.

Delegates today returned to consideration of New Business Items. (More complete information about NBIs, including the adopted text, can be found at www.nea.org/grants/33354.htm.)

NBI 22: strategy to reverse the “Citizens United” ruling. No OEA position; the RA adopted.
NBI 23: to restore biennial meetings of the NEA Resolutions Committee. No OEA position; the RA defeated.
NBI 24: push for increased access to broadband capacity. OEA supported; the RA adopted.
NBI 25: call for removal of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. OEA opposed; the RA sustained an objection to consideration.
NBI 26: examine EFT transactions for paying NEA and affiliate dues . OEA supported, and the RA adopted.
NBI 27: educate members about Canada’s student strike. No OEA position; the RA sustained an objection to consideration.
NBI 28: access to the Voter Activation Network for retired affiliates. OEA opposed; referred to the NEA Executive Committee.
NBI 29: NEA not to collaborate with anti-union organizations. OEA opposed, and the RA defeated.
NBI 30: encouragement of environmental practices. OEA opposed, and the RA defeated.
NBI 31: support civic engagement curriculum. OEA opposed, but the RA passed.
NBI 32: Day of Recognition for experienced staff. OEA opposed, and the RA defeated.
NBI 33: publish a listing of Gulen charter schools. OEA opposed, and the RA defeated.
NBI 34: evaluate the influence of charter schools on re-segregation. No OEA position; the RA defeated.
NBI 35: talking points on parent trigger laws. No OEA position; referred to the appropriate committee.
NBI 36: integration of fine arts into STEM education. OEA opposed, and the RA defeated.
NBI 37: endorse Financial Speculation Tax. OEA opposed; referred to the appropriate committee.
NBI 38: inform members about abuse of members by principals. OEA opposed; the RA sustained an objection to consideration.
NBI 39: endorse Save Our Schools. No OEA position; the RA defeated.

Delegates headed out about 6:30, many of them in pursuit of Fourth of July fireworks. Tomorrow is the last day of the RA, with 50 NBIs to go!

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About neoeaxd

Bill Lavezzi serves as Executive Director of the North Eastern Ohio Education Association. NEOEA is a professional association of educators consisting of the nearly 31,000 members of the 192 local OEA and NEA affiliates in northeastern Ohio. Founded in 1869 as the North Eastern Ohio Teachers Association, NEOEA took its present name in 1989 in recognition of the diversity of its members.
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