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TRUNK TALK

May 2011 Volume III- Issue 2

Newsletter of the National Education Association Republican Educators Caucus

Special Feature Exclusive to TRUNK TALK: NEA-REC 2010-2011 NATIONAL OFFICERS Chair Davina Keiser- CA Vice-Chair Kathy Gann- KS Recording Secretary Neil Wilson- CA Corresponding Secretary Jerome Hoynes- IL Treasurer Larry Fells- CA Past Chair Sarah Simoneaux- TX REGIONAL CHAIRS Mid-Atlantic David Kinsella- VA Midwest E-Ben Grisby- WI Northeast Laura Bochner- NJ Mark Mangalliaux- CT Wade Whitehead- NJ Pacific Ron Edwards- CA (NEA Board of Directors) Southeast Michele Bowman- TN Linda Francis- FL Western David Gould- OK TRUNK TALK Editor- Jerome Hoynes

Diary of a Republican Educator Pat Schmidt of Wautoma, Wisconsin F e b. 9, 2011-At t en ded a n in for m a t ion a l m eet in g a bou t t h e Bold Refor m s for edu ca t ion pr oposed by t h e Wiscon sin Edu ca t ion Associa t ion . Th ese r efor m s in clu ded su ch t h in gs a s t h e r igh t t o n egot ia t e m er it pa y a n d n ew t ea ch er eva lu a t ion la n gu a ge. We a lso discu ssed Gover n or Scot t Wa lker ‘s n ew Bu dget P r oposa l. We wer e t old we m a y h a ve t o pa y a s m uch a s 12.5% t owa r ds ou r h ea lt h in su r a n ce a n d 5.6% t owa r ds ou r r et ir em en t ben efit s. In m y dist r ict we pa y 5% t owa r ds h ea lt h insu r a n ce bu t t h e dist r ict pa ys bot h em ployee a n d em ployer por t ion of r et ir em en t . Th e t on e of t h is m eet in g wa s ver y ser iou s a n d ou r lea der s wer e ver y a ppr eh en sive a bou t wh a t t h e fu t u r e wou ld br in g for u s. F e b. 11- Toda y t h e Gover n or a n n ou n ced h is bu dget r epa ir bill a n d ou r wor st fea r s beca m e t r u e. We wer e bein g a sked t o m a ke h u ge m on et a r y con cession s wh ich wou ld a m ou n t t o a cu t of a bou t $500.00 a m on t h for m y m em ber s. F e b. 12- Wen t t o Mosin ee, a bou t 70 m iles a wa y, t o ou r Un iSer v office t o m a n t h e ph on e ba n ks t o ca ll ou r m em ber s a bou t t h e bu dget r epa ir bill a n d t h e m on et a r y effect it will h a ve on t h em . Ma de ca lls fr om 10:00 u n t il 5:00 a n d ca lled a bout 150 m em ber s. WE AC P r esiden t Ma r y Bell wa s t h er e t oo ca llin g m em ber s ju st like m e. My pr esiden t st a yed h om e a n d st a r t ed a ph on e t r ee t o ca ll ou r own m em ber s. I dr ove h om e in a n ice st or m a n d sa w m a n y ca r s in t h e dit ch . F e b. 14-Va len t in e‘s Da y. I r eceived a va len t in e fr om on of m y st u den t s t h a t sa id ―Give P ea ce a Ch a n ce!‖ I ga ve h er a h u g a n d sa id, ―Oh h on ey, you h a ve n o idea h ow m u ch I n eeded t h is t oda y!‖ I didn ‘t kn ow it wou ld h a ve so m u ch m ea n in g in th e da ys t o com e! F e b. 15-My a ssocia t ion pr esiden t Sh a r i Weiss a n d I dr ove t o M a dison for t h e fir st Ra lly a n d Ca n dleligh t vigil. We kn ew we ju st h a d t o be t h er e! St ood ou t side t h e Ca pit ol bu ildin g a n d sh ou t ed ―Kill t h e Bill!‖ a n d sa n g ―Solida r it y F or ever ‖ wit h WE AC P r esiden t Ma r y Bell. Th e cr owd su r ged for wa r d a n d t h e n ext t h in g we k n ew we wer e in t h e Ca pit ol Rot u n da h oldin g sign s t h a t sa id, ―Ca r e for edu ca t or s like t h ey ca r e for you r ch ild‖ a n d ―St op t h e At t a ck on Wor ker s Righ t s‖. Wh a t a scen e lookin g down a t t h e r ot u n da floor fr om t h e ba lcon y. We kn ew we wer e wit n essin g t h e st a r t of som et h in g big! We dr ove h om e ver y h a ppy t h a t we h a d pa r t icipa t ed. A lon g da y! Th e fir st of m a n y! F e b. 16-WE AC P r esiden t Ma r y Bell issu es t h e ca ll for WE AC m em ber s t o com e t o Ma dison for a pea cefu l dem on st r a t ion . We decided t o t ell ou r m em ber s t o go bu t on ly if t h ey h a d a per son a l da y a n d n ot ch a n ce disciplin a r y a ct ion . It wa s becom in g clea r t h is figh t wa s not ju st goin g t o be a bou t wa ges, bu t a bou t sa vin g ou r u n ion ! F e b. 17-All 14 Dem ocr a t ic Wiscon sin St a t e Sen a t or s flee t o Illin ois so t h er e wou ld n ot b e a qu or u m in t h e ch a m ber t o vot e on t h e Gover n or ‘s bu dget r epa ir bill. Wiscon sin St a t e Tr ooper s cou ld n ot cr oss t h e st a t e lin e t o br in g t h em h om e beca u se t h ey h a ve n o ju r isdict ion in Illin ois. Th ese br a ve la dies a n d gen t lem en wou ld soon becom e kn own a s t h e ―F a b 14‖ a n d in t h e com in g da ys wou ld r isk ever yt h in g t o keep t h e legisla t ive pr ocess in t a ct ! Ma n y sch ool dist r ict s close du e t o t ea ch er s ca llin g in sick or u sin g per son a l da ys t o go t o Ma dison . F e b. 18-Den n is Va n Roekel, NE A P r esiden t , m a r ch ed a lon gsid e ou r m em ber s a n d spoke t o t h e cr owd in Ma dison . We st a yed h om e a n d st a ged a pea cefu l r a lly in ou r h om et own of Wa u t om a . We h a d 85 people st a n d in t h e sn ow a n d lin e bot h sides of t h e st r eet h oldin g h om em a de sign s. We h a d t ea ch er s, pr ison wor ker s, a n d cou n t y wor ker s st a n din g t oget h er ch a n t in g a n d get t in g people t o h on k t h eir h or n s in su ppor t of ou r effor t s. Ma n y of m y

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011 you n ger m em ber s ca m e a n d I t old t h em t h ey wer en ‘t ju st st a n din g in t h e sn ow t h ey wer e st a n din g in t h e foot pr in t s of t h ose wh o h a d fou gh t for t h eir u n ion r igh t s for so m a n y yea r s. F e b. 19- Ma n y of m y m em ber s wen t t o Ma dison for t h e fir st t im e. Wh a t a n in spir in g exper ien ce for t h em ! Th ey a r e begin n in g t o u n der st a n d wh a t t h is figh t will be a bou t ! I wen t t o Wa u sa u for a n ews con fer en ce fea t u r in g ou r Dem ocr a t ic sen a t or s a n d r epr esen t a t ives wh o a r e figh t in g for u s. I did t h is wit h 1 hou r a n d 15 m in u t es n ot ice a n d m a de it ju st in t im e. I n ow kn ow h o w t h e m in u t em en m u st h a ve felt wh en t h ey h a d t o be r ea dy t o figh t wit h ver y lit t le n ot ice. F e b. 20- As a m em ber of t h e Repu blica n P a r t y I a m in vit ed t o t h e Wa u sh a r a Cou n t y Repu blica n Ca u cu s. I h ope t o t a lk t o m y St a t e Sen a t or Lu t h er Olsen a n d m y St a t e Repr esen t a t ive J oa n Ba ll eweg. I wa n t t h em t o kn ow h ow I feel a s a m em ber of t h e Repu blica n E du ca t or s Ca u cu s. I wa n t t h em t o kn ow h ow t h is figh t in Ma dison is a ffect in g m e. Befor e t h e din n er I st a n d in a blizza r d ou t side t h e bu ildin g wh er e t h e Ca u cu s is t o be h eld wit h a bou t 85 people. Toda y we a r e join ed by Un it ed St eelwor ker s loca l 128 fr om Ripon . We ca n h a r dly see a n d we a r e soa kin g wet a n d cold a n d t h e sn ow is pilin g u p fa st . On e you n g m a n is so fr ozen h e is r ed in t h e fa ce a n d sh iver in g wit h cold, bu t he t ells m e h e wa n t s t o see Lu t h er Olsen . H owever , Sen a t or Olsen do esn ‘t com e du e t o t h e wea t h er . I offer t h e m a n m y coa t a s I a m goin g in side t o a t t en d t h e din n er bu t h e declin es a n d t ells m e a ga in ―I ju st wa n t t o see Lu t h er !‖. At t h e din n er I get t o spea k t o J oa n Ba lleweg a n d expla in t o h er t h a t ou t of t h e 3.2 m illion m em be r s of NE A 1 m illion of t h em a r e r egist er ed Repu blica n s. As a Repu blica n edu ca t or I a m willin g t o du e m y pa r t t o be fisca lly r espon sible, bu t I don ‘t u n der st a n d wh a t t h a t h a s t o do wit h givin g u p ou r collect ive ba r ga in in g r igh t s. We h a ve been t old t o m a ke t h e m on et a r y con cession s t h e Gover n or r equ est ed bu t n ow h e is st r ippin g u s of ou r collect ive ba r ga in in g r igh t s a n d t h ose we will NOT give u p. I a m ver y con fu sed by a ll t h is. Sh e rea lly h a s n o a n swer s for m e. Sh e ju st t ells m e t h a t t h e st a t e is br oke a n d ever yon e h a s t o t igh t en t h eir belt s. I give h er m y va len t in e a n d t ell h er t h a t I a m pr ou d t h a t m y sch ool didn ‘t close a n d t h a t a ll of ou r m em ber s wer e a t wor k for t h e ch ildr en . Sh e t old t h e cr owd t h a t n o sch ools in h er dist r ict closed a n d sh e wa s pr ou d of t h a t t oo. Aft er wa r d sh e st ood ou t in t h e sn ow a n d t a lked t o t h e dem on st r a t or s a n d list en ed t o t h em t ell t h eir st or ies. I r ea lly a ppr ecia t ed t h a t gest u r e. Good for h er ! F e b. 21- Sn ow Da y t oda y. Th a n k God! Wh en t h e wea t h er clea r ed u p I wen t t o Ripon t o spea k a t a t own h a ll m eet in g wh ich Sen a t or Olsen is t o a t t en d. It is a t t h e Un it ed St eelwor ker s u n ion h a ll. Th er e a r e a bou t 65 people in a t t en da n ce a n d bu t n ot Sen a t or Olsen . So I spoke t o t h e cr owd a n d t old t h em t h a t I wa s a Repu blica n E du ca t or a n d expla in ed t h e sa m e t h ings a bou t ou r gr ou p a s I h a d t h e n igh t befor e. On e la dy led u s in sin gin g ―We Sh a ll Not Be Moved‖. Ou r gr ou p h a d ou r pict u r e t a ken by t h e lit t le wh it e sch oolh ou se in Ripon wh ich is t h e bir t h pla ce of t h e Repu blica n P a r t y. E ffor t s t o r eca ll St a t e Sen a t or s, bot h Repu blica n s a n d Dem ocr a t s begin . F e b. 23- Got a ca ll t oda y t o be in Wa u pa ca a t 4:30 t o spea k a ga in a t a r a lly in fr on t of t h e Wa u pa ca Libr a r y wh er e Lu t h er Olsen is t o h old a t own m eet in g. Th is t im e m or e t h a n 500 people sh ow u p ch a n t in g a n d ca r r yin g sign s. H owever , we fin d ou t la t er t h a t it is a sca m a n d Sen a t or Olsen wa s n ever com in g a t a ll. I ga ve m y sa m e speech a n d wa s join ed by a n u r se fr om t h e loca l vet er a n ‘s h om e wh o spoke a bou t h er con cer n t h a t t h e cu t s Gover n or Wa lker is goin g t o m a ke in t h e st a t e bu dget will a ff ect h er pa t ien t s. H e is goin g t o m a ke cu t s t o Medica id a n d Ba dger Ca r e. Th ese a r e pr ogr a m s m a n y of ou r low in com e fa m ilies a n d m a n y of h er pa t ien t s pa r t icipa t e in . This figh t isn ‘t ju st a bou t t ea ch er s a n d pu blic wor ker s a n ym or e! We en ded by h a vin g a ll 500 of u s r ecit e t h e P ledge of Allegia n ce in fr on t of t h e t own squ a r e fla gpole. Qu it e a m om en t ! F e b. 24-It is becom in g clea r t h a t I will h a ve t o r et ir e t h is yea r . I love m y job a n d I don ‘t wa n t t o r et ir e bu t I will lose a bou t $500.00 a m on t h wit h t h e con cession s we will be m a kin g. If I r et ir e t h is yea r I ca n still t a ke a dva n t a ge of a n egot ia t ed ben efit t h a t a r et ir ee r eceives h elp wit h h ea lt h in su r a n ce pr em ium s for 5 yea r s. I ca n ‘t r isk t ha t ben efit bein g t a ken a wa y if collec t ive ba r ga in in g is a bolish ed a n d ou r con t r a ct is n u ll a n d void. Alm ost 4500 people h a ve a pplied for r et ir em en t in t h e la st six weeks a lon e a ccor din g t o t h e Wiscon sin Dept . of E m ployee Tr u st F u n ds. I‘ve n ever cr ied so m u ch in m y life! F e b. 25-St a t e Assem bly pa sses t h e Gover n or Wa lker ‘s bu dget r epa ir bill in clu din g pr ovision s t o st r ip wor ker s of t h eir collect ive ba r ga in in g r igh t s. Ca lled Sen a t or Olsen t o t ell h im a bou t m y r et ir em en t a n d t h a t I wou ld a ppr ecia t e h im vot in g a ga in st t h e bu dget r epa ir bill. Alm ost a ll of ou r Repu blica n legisla t or s h a ven ‘t a n swer ed a n y em a ils or ph on e ca lls sin ce t h is st a rt ed, bu t it wa s wor t h a t r y! F e b. 26- t h e dem on st r a t ion s con t in u e in Ma dison . E stim a t es a r e a t lea st 85,000 people a t t en d t h e r a lly. Dem on st r a t or s even sleep over n igh t in t h e Ca pit ol Rot u n da . Sen a t or Olsen ca lled m e ba ck! We t a lked for a bou t 45 m in u t es a n d h e wa s a ver y good list en er a n d ver y sym pa t h et ic a bou t m y r et ir em en t . H e t old m e t h a t h e wou ld like t o com pr om ise a n d wor k ou t a set t lem en t . It m ea n t a lot t o m e t h a t h e wou ld r et u r n m y ca ll. F e b. 28-pr elim ina r y la yoff not ices wer e issu ed t oda y for ou r Tit le I t ea ch er s. We wer e a ble t o ext en d t h e dea dlin e for t h em t o Ma y 1 t o see h ow t h in gs pla y ou t wit h t h e bu dget r epa ir bill. Th ey h a ve a good ch a n ce of get t in g ca lled ba ck beca u se feder a l m on ey u su a lly com es in t o fun d t h is pr ogr a m .

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011

Ma rc h 8-WE AC Vice P r esiden t Bet sy Kipper s a ddr essed t h e Wa u t om a E du ca t ion Associa t ion . We h a d m or e t h a n 80 m em ber s in a t t en da n ce a n d we u su a lly on ly h a ve a bou t 25. Bet sy expla in ed wh a t t h e bill a ct u a lly m ea n t for collect ive ba r ga in in g a n d if it wa s a bolish ed h ow we wou ld go a bou t r e-cer t ifyin g ou r u n ion . Ma rc h 9-My Bir t h da y! I h a d a ver y n ice da y a n d t h en wen t h om e t o t h e n ews t h a t t h e Sen a t e Repu blica n s pa ssed t h e Bu dget Repa ir Bill by t a kin g ou t a ll of t h e fisca l r efer en ces. By doin g so t h ey did n ot r equ ir e a qu or u m so t h ey bypa ssed t h e 14 Dem ocr a t ic Sen a t or s wh o wer e st ill in Illin ois. Th ey on ly h eld t h e vot e open for 14 secon ds u n t il t h ey h a d t h e n u m ber of vot e s t h ey n eeded for pa ssa ge. All of ou r collect ive ba r ga in in g r igh t s wer e gon e! I wa s so depr essed I wen t t o bed a t 8:30, slept u n t il 2:00AM a n d cr ied u n t il 5:00AM. I h a ve been in volved in m y u n ion for 35 yea r s a n d ha ve h eld ever y lea der sh ip posit ion you ca n t h in k of. My st u den t s a r e singin g a son g for ou r spr in g pr ogr a m en t it led ‗Th e Wor st Da y All Da y Lon g‘. H ow a ppr opr ia t e! By t h e wa y, Sen a t or Olsen vot ed in fa vor of t h e legisla t ion . Ver y disa ppoin t in g for m e! Ma rc h 12-m eet in g in Wa u sa u t o discu ss r e-cer t ifyin g ou r u n ion . On e m em ber looked a t a ll t h e sa d fa ces a n d com m en t ed t h a t it wa s like goin g t o a wa ke. Sa w a ver y m ovin g video a bou t wh a t h a s been h a ppen in g t o u s t h e la st few weeks. E ver yon e in t h e a u dien ce cr ied. We h a ve t o get r e-en er gized som eh ow! Ma rc h 17-Mich a el Wa lsh fr om WE AC Gover n m en t Rela t ion s a sked m e t o t est ify in fr on t of t h e St a t e Sen a t e a bou t a bill expa n din g t h e n u m ber of in depen den t ch a r t er sch ools in ou r st a t e. I‘ve n ever don e t h a t befor e so it sh ou ld be in t er est in g. Ma rc h 23-Test ified in Ma dison t oda y in fr on t of t h e St a t e Sen a t e E du ca t ion Com m it t ee. It will be t h e fir st t im e t h e Com m it t ee is h ea r in g t est im on y sin ce t h e pa ssa ge of t h e bu dget bill. My sen a t or , Lu t h er Olsen , is t h e ch a ir m a n of t h e com m it t ee. Secu r it y wa s ver y t igh t a n d t h er e wa s a sign a t secu r it y t h a t st a t ed t h e it em s t h a t wer en ‘t a llowed in t h e Ca pit ol. #1 sa id, ―No firea r m s‖ a n d #2 sa id, ―No cr ockpot s‖! Th is wa s a r efer en ce t o t h e n igh t s t h e dem on st r a t or s st a yed over n igh t in t h e Ca pit ol r ot u n da . My t est im on y wen t well bu t I r egist er ed a t 9:00AM a n d didn ‘t t est ify u n t il 4:30. It wa s in t er est in g t o n ot e t h a t t h e sen a t or s wer e st ill sn ipin g a t ea ch ot h er a cr oss t h e t a ble a n d open ly cr it icized ea ch ot h er . Th e Repu blica n s ch a st ised t h e Dem ocr a t s for lea vin g t h e st a t e a n d t h e Dem ocr a t s ch a st ised t h e Repu blica n s for byp a ssin g t h e open m eet in g la w a n d pa ssin g t h e bill befor e ever yon e h a d a ch a n ce t o vot e. Over a ll it wa s a t er r ific exper ien ce a n d I felt like I did m y pa r t t o h elp pr ot ect ou r gr ea t pu blic sch ools ! Ma rc h 27-At t en ded a r a lly in Wa u t om a in su ppor t of wor ker s‘ r igh t s. Ra lly wa s a t t en ded by a bou t 150 people. A gr ea t t u r n ou t for a t own ou r size! WE AC P r esiden t Ma r y Bell a t t en ded a n d spoke t o t h e cr owd. I got t o lea d t h e cr owd in sin gin g ‗Solida r it y F or ever ‘. Th a t wa s r ea lly som et h in g! Som e of ou r m em ber s got t o r ide t h e AF L-CIO bu s t o t h e r a lly. It wa s decor a t ed wit h a pict u r e of u n ion wor ker s n ext t o a sign decla r in g ―Th is is Wh a t Dem ocr a cy Looks Like!‖ Ma rc h 28-ou r sch ool boa r d r efu sed t o con sider ou r r equ est t o ext en d ou r con t r a ct a s it is st ill un clea r wh et h er t h e collect ive ba r ga in in g la w is st ill in effect or n ot . A Da n e Cou n t y ju dge h a s issu ed a r est r a inin g or der pr even t in g t h e Secr et a r y of St a t e fr om pu blish in g t h e bill so it ca n becom e la w. H owever , Gover n or Wa lker fou n d a wa y a r ou n d t h a t a n d h a d a n in de pen den t a gen cy pu blish t h e la w. Th e ju dge h a s n ow fou n d t h a t t h e Gover n or wa s in viola t ion of h er r est r a in in g or der a n d h a s decla r ed t h a t t h e la w is n ot in effect u n t il fu r t h er n ot ice. Th is is good n ews for u s a s we m a y be a ble t o ext en d ou r con t r a ct wh ile it is st ill lega l t o do so. I h a ve m et m a n y of you a t t h e NE A Repu blica n Lea der sh ip Con fer en ces. As a Repu blica n edu ca t or t h e la st t wo m on t h s h a ve been ver y con fu sin g t o m e beca u se I t h ou gh t it wa s OK t o be a t ea ch er a n d a m em ber of a u n ion a n d st ill h old Repu blica n va lu e s. I wr ot e t h is dia r y t o sh ow m y fr u st r a t ion a t t r yin g t o live in t wo wor lds wh ile m in e wa s fa llin g a pa r t . Th a n ks for t a kin g t h e t im e t o r ea d it . E d itor’s N ote: If you wou ld like t o r espon d t o P a t , plea se con t a ct h er via e -m a il a t sch m idt pa x@gm a il.com

RNC Chair Steele visited NEA-HQ in 2009 for NEA’s Republican Leaders Conference; will we welcome new RNC Chair Priebus at the RLC-V in D.C. this summer? E leph a n t E du ca t or s acr oss t h e cou n t r y m u st a t t en d loca l a n d st a t e pa r t y fu n ct ions a n d ga t h er in gs t o a n n ou n ce t h at t h ey a r e in deed “g o o d Re p u blic a n s AN D g o o d u n io n m e m be r s ” a s well. If n ew RNC Ch a ir Rein ce Pr iebu s wer e a war e of t he n um ber s wou ld h e a gr ee t o a lien at e GOP Un ion vot er s wit h websit es t h at a r e so bla t a n t ly h ost ile a nd opposed t o u n ion m em ber s? Take a look at t his : h t t p://www.gop.com /obam a su n ion bosses/em a il. We ca n m a ke a differ en ce if we all speak u p t h is spr in g.

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011

Message from NEA-REC National Chair Davina Keiser It ‘s spr in g, a n d t h a t m ea n s t h at t h e NE A Repr esent a t ive Assem bly is ju st a r ou n d t h e cor n er . Ou r own Mich ele Bowm a n h as been wor kin g over t im e t o p la n a socia l act ivit y for our ca ucu s m em ber s. Our h ope th wa s t o coor din at e it wit h J u ly 4 , bu t t h e cost wa s pr oh ibit ive. St a y t u n ed for t h e la t est on ou r u pcom in g pla n s. Du e t o t h e conden sed sch edu lin g of t h is yea r ‘s RA, we will h a ve on ly 30 m in u t es for ea ch of ou r m or n ing m eet in gs, so our Da y 1 90-m in u t e speaker ‘s block is gon e. If you h a ven ‘t don e so a lr e a dy, be su r e t o sign u p for t h e NE A E du ca t ion Vot es pr ogr a m , a dvoca t in g for edu ca t ion a ct ivit ies du r in g t h eir Spr in g Recess in t h e Dist r ict offices of you r Con gr ession a l a nd Sen a t or ia l legisla t or s. I a m lookin g for war d t o h ea r in g fr om a ll of you wh o a t t en ded your NE A Regiona l Lea der sh ip Confer ences. I a t t en ded t h e P a cific Region a l in P or t la n d, Or egon , a n d wa s t r eat ed t o below fr eezin g weat h er , in clu din g sn ow; I kept a skin g m yself wh y I wa s in P or t la n d wh en t h e wea t her in su n n y Sou t h er n Ca lifor n ia was a ba lm y 70 degr ees. It wa s a gr ea t con fer en ce, com plet e wit h a r a lly, in below fr eezin g wea t h er , su ppor t in g Wisconsin t ea ch er s. Now I know I‘m cr a zy! I kn ow we‘r e all bu sily wor kin g in ou r r espect ive st a t es, so plea se pla n t o h a ve a ver ba l (or wr it t en, if you pr efer ) r epor t on t h ose a ct ivit ies r ea dy for ou r m eet in gs at t h e RA. Unt il our n ext n ews upda t e, I t h a nk you a ll for ever yt h in g you do. W e ar e m ovin g for wa r d a nd get t in g n ot ice, so keep it u p!

Thoughts from National Vice-Chair Kathy Gann I'm Lookin g for t h e Br igh t Side [fr om In side a Bla ck H ole ]... Do you kn ow wh at wou ld h a ppen t o you if you ca m e t oo close t o a Bla ck H ole? You wou ld in st a n t ly becom e 'spa gh et t ified'! Yep! Beca u se of t he ext r em e gr a vit y in cr ease, you wou ld lit er a lly be pu lled a pa r t a n d st r et ch ed in t o a t h in st r ea m of discon n ect ed at om s...like m in iscu le spa gh et t i. Oka y. Wh a t does t h is ha ve t o do wit h u s as Repu blica n E du cat or s? Well, if you a r e like m e, you h a ve been st r et ch ed a n d pu lled in ever y dir ect ion ! You ha ve been a sked t o do m or e...wit h less! Th er e a r e con st ant dem a n ds t o r ea ch h igh er a n d t h en st oop lower . You a r e exper iencin g spa get t ifica t ion ! Th e ou t com e is oft en gloom y, bu t I a lwa ys look for t h e br igh t side [even wh en I feel as if I h a ve been su cked in t o a pr over bia l Black H ole]! As you r Vice-Ch a ir , I con st a nt ly ca n see t h e br igh t side. I feel t h e con n ect ion of a ll t he Repu blica n E du ca t or s in t h e NE A. We a r e a ble t o r each a cr oss t h e Un it ed St a t es a n d place a t h u m b on t h e t r u e pu lse of wh a t is im por t a n t for ou r fellow t each er s a n d ou r st uden t s! We a r e a ble t o defin e t h e issu es of ou r peer s an d t h en legisla t e befor e t h e NE A-RA. We a r e a ble t o br in g bot h Repu blica ns a n d Dem ocr a t s t o see wh a t is im por t a n t . We a lso con n ect a cr oss ou r st a t e legisla t u r es a n d a ll t h e wa y t o Wa sh in gt on , D.C. As we com e t oget h er in Ch ica go, we m u st bu ild on t h e fou n da t ions of a ll t h ose wh o h a ve gon e befor e u s. We ca n see beyon d t h e edge of ou r own Bla ck H ole a s we con t in ue ou r wor k. Br in g your sun gla sses beca u se I ca n a lr ea dy see t h e ligh t !

NEA-REC Caucus Membership P lea se con sider join in g ou r or ga n izat ion . Mem ber sh ip for m s a r e a va ila ble on ou r ca u cus websit e.

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011

Comments from the Midwest Chair E-Ben Grisby H ello m em ber s of t h e Repu blica n E du ca t or s‘ Ca u cu s! Th e Midwest Region h a d t h e pleasu r e of con ven i n g a t t h e West in Cr own e P la za in down t own Kan sa s Cit y on t h is past MLK weeken d (J a n. 14 -16) for t h e Region a l Lea der sh ip Con fer ence. In spit e of t h e cold, blu st er y win ds bot h lit er a lly a n d polit ica lly, t h er e wa s a wa r m r ecept ion acr oss t h e boa r d a t t h e Con fer ence. Th is past J a n u a r y, it wa s gr ea t seein g a GOP m a jor it y in t h e US H ou se of Repr esen t at ives, as well as Repu blica n m a jor it ies a t bot h st a t e a n d local levels am on g ou r r egion . In st a t es su ch a s Wisconsin, Repu blica n s t ook t h e helm at t h e gu ber n a t or ial level, wit h st r on g m a jor it ies in bot h t h e St a t e Sen a t e a nd t h e Assem bly. H owever , as edu ca t ion a l pr ofession als wh o pr ou dly iden t ified a s Repu blican s, it was a posit ive, yet ch a llen ging exper ien ce a s we em ba r k on fin din g ou t m or e a bou t t h is n ew cr op of pol it icia ns, especia lly t h ose wh o ar e pu blic edu ca t ion advoca t es wit h in t h e GOP . On J a n u a r y 15 t h , t h e NE A-RE C m et for a br eakfast m eet in g, wit h your s t r u ly a s Moder a t or . Th er e wer e a bou t t wo dozen people fr om t h r ou gh out t h e Midwest Region, a lon g wit h Mer wyn Scot t fr om t he Na t ional E du ca t ion a l Associa t ion (NE A). Mer wyn ‘s collea gu e, E r in Du n ca n was u n a ble t o a t t end, but wa s t h er e in spir it . Mer wyn expla in ed h is r ole a s advoca t e for t h e Repu blica n E du cat or s t o h a ve t h e a ccess t o lobby for m em ber s of t h e US Sena t e a n d H ou se of Repr esen t a t ives wh o h a ve a pr oven t r ack h ist or y of su ppor t in g pu blic edu ca t ion fr om gr a des P r e-Kin der ga r t en t h r ou gh College, a s well a s cu r r yin g fa vor wit h polit icia n s wh o va lu e pu blic edu ca t ion a s a con du it for cit izen sh ip, adva n cem en t , an d com m u n it y bu ildin g. Also, we ga ve h igh ligh t s of 2010 NE A-Repr esent a t ive Assem bly in New Or lea ns, wh ich in clu ded con cessions of m a in t a inin g t h e An n u a l Repu blica n Lea der sh ip Con fer en ces h eld aft er t h e RA. Th er e was a ddit ion a l discu ssion r ega r din g t h e r en ewa l of t h e E a r ly a n d Seconda r y E du ca t ion Act (E SE A) a n d Ra ce t o t h e Top a n d t h eir r espect ive im pact s on ou r r egion a n d ou r n a t ion . La t er t h a t m or n in g, sever a l RE C m em ber s at t end a sem in a r on t h e polit ica l clim a t e wit h t h e Novem ber 2010 elect ions. Th e im p a ct of new blood a m on g t h e GOP, m a in ly fr om t he Tea Pa r t y h a s m a de issues wit h pu blic edu ca t ion as bein g a s a lobby for t h e Dem ocr at ic P a r t y a n d a s t ied up in t oo m u ch r ed t ape. Un for t u n at ely, t he ju r y is st ill out on m a n y of t h e n ew m em ber s of t h e Con gr es s. H owever , t h er e is a dir e an d u r gen t n eed for n eed t o r em a in a ct ive in ou r com m u n it ies a s Repu blica n /In depen den t educa t ion pr ofession als a n d st r ess t h e im por t a nce of h a vin g a cent r ist t o cen t er -r igh t t o indepen den t voice in t h e qu est of en sur in g h igh qua lit y pu blic edu ca t ion for all, n ot sim ply t h e pr ivileged few. Over t he la st few m ont h s, it h as been a wild a n d bum py r ide wit h st a t e level legislat or s wit h in t he Midwest r egion a t t em pt in g t o u pr oot u n ion -r ela t ed inst r u m ent s su ch a s collect ive ba r ga in in g a n d pen sions. P r ot est s wer e in for ce bet ween m id -F ebr u ar y a n d la t e Ma r ch in Wiscon sin as well a s in In dia n a , Mich iga n . P olit icia ns a s well a s bot h pu blic a nd pr iva t e un ion m em ber s con gr ega t ed in ou r r espect ive st a t ehou ses wit h r elen t less fer vor , fea r , a n d a n gu ish. P olit icia n s, m a in ly st a t e sen a t or s fr om bot h polit ica l pa r t ies wer e bein g r eca lled via con st it u en t -ba sed pet it ion s a cr oss t h e Ba dger St a t e. It t r u ly h a s been eye-open in g, yet a r ea l oppor t u n it y t o see dem ocr acy in a ct ion. H owever , as pr ofession a ls , it h as been a wist fu l exper ience t o see vet er a n t ea ch er s seek ear ly r et ir em ent s, while n ascent t ea ch er s qu est ion r em a in in g in t he t ea chin g pr ofession a n d per h a ps seek em ploym ent in ot h er car eer fields. Th e effect s fr om st at e leader s wh o m a y be Repu blica n, bu t a r e a n t i-pu blic edu ca t ion will be last in g for yea r s and possibly deca des t o com e. As Repu blica n a nd In depen dent s, it beh ooves u s t o m ake a con cer t ed effor t t o n et wor k in our r espect ive loca l a nd st a t e-level GOP a n d t ell t h ese m en a n d wom en t h a t we a r e t a xpa yer s, vot er s a nd r esiden t s of ou r com m u n it ies. We also r aise h ou seholds a nd volu n t eer in gr assr oot s or ga n iza t ions. We a r e willin g t o wor k wit h civic-m in ded polit icia n s, especia lly in t h e Gr a n d Old P ar t y t o h elp see t heir const it uen t s in

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011 bold a n d livin g color . We m u st live ou t a n d pr ou dly a s r epu blica ns, r ega r dless of iden t it y or ideology a n d speak in defense of st r en gt h en in g pu blic edu cat ion a cr oss t h e boar d!!!! 2012 is n ea r a n d we m u st t hink for wa r d wh ile n ot for get t in g t h e a ct ion of t h e pa st yea r or so. Addit iona lly, a s m em ber s of t he Repu blica n E du ca t or s‘ Ca u cu s, it will be a da u n t in g t ask in gr owin g m em ber sh ip, given t h e polit ica l clim a t e, but we m u st pr ess for t h wit h collect ive for ce a m on g ou r r egion s beca use in t h e pr oph et ic wor ds of Abr a h a m Lin coln ―a h ouse divided a ga in st it self ca n n ot st a n d.‖ Now we m ove on war d t o Ch ica go bet ween J u ne 30 t h a n d J u ly 6 t h , 2011 for t h e 2011 Na t ion a l E du ca t ion Associa t ion -Repr esen t at ive Assem bly. Mem ber s fr om t h e Midwest r egion will h a ve a gr ea t oppor t u n it y t o lea r n m or e a bou t t h e Repu blica n E du ca t or s‘ Ca u cu s wit h m em ber s fr om t hr ou gh ou t t h e n a t ion , inclu ding ou r a wesom e boa r d a nd con st it u ent s. Wh et h er you a r e pr esent a t t h e Assem bly or you a r e u n a ble t o a t t en d, please cont a ct an yon e fr om t h e ca u cus a n d we wou ld be willing t o len d su ppor t !!!! Rem em ber — Tr u n ks Up!!!!!

Greetings from Southeast Co-Chair Michele Bowman Gr eet in gs fr om t h e soggy Sou t h ea st ! We h a ve h a d t o dea l wit h n ot on ly t or r en t ia l r a ins, but also t or r en t s of legisla t ion per t a ining t o Associa t ion a ct ivit ies. Ala bam a was t h e fir st t o be en gu lfed in t h e ba t t le t o r et a in t h e r igh t t o con t in u e pa yr oll du es dedu ct ion s in Decem ber wh en t h e fir st of ou r wild wint er st or m s bega n . Ten n essee was t h e n ext st at e in t h e eye of t h e st or m . Wh en t h e legisla t u r e con ven ed in J a n u a r y, legisla t or s filed a flu r r y of a n t i-u n ion bills. As I wr it e t h is, t h er e a r e bills in com m it t ee t h a t cou ld t ake a wa y collect ive bar ga in in g r igh t s, pa yr oll du es dedu ct ion s, r epr esen t at ion by t h e Associat ion on t h e st at e r et ir em en t boa r d a nd even t h e r igh t t o con t r ibu t e t o polit ica l cam pa ign s. Mem ber s of t he Ten n essee E du ca t ion Associa t ion r espon ded by in u n dat in g la wm aker s wit h e-m a ils, t elephon e ca lls a n d let t er s befor e m or e t h a n 4,000 people m a r ch ed in Legisla t ive P la za in Na shville on Ma r ch 5. NE A P r esident Den n is Va n Roekel br aved t h e elem en t s a lon g wit h suppor t er s fr om ot h er u n ion s t o sh ow solida r it y. Bills will be com in g u p for vot in g soon a nd we will see h ow TE A wea t h er s t his st or m .

Encouragement from Western Chair David Gould Get t o know your legisla t ive r epr esen t a t ive. Th e 2011 legislat ive session is over . It 's t im e for u s t o t a ke st ock, find a n issu e fr om t h is pa s t session . The issu e m a y be a piece of legisla t ion t h a t you a gr eed wit h or disa gr eed wit h . F ind a legisla t or t o becom e best fr ien ds wit h a n d m ake pla ns for n ext yea r . We'll see a ll t h ese sam e people t h is fa ll/spr in g, a n d we n eed t o be pr oa ct ive t h is su m m e r . Th e sch ool yea r 's win din g down for som e, over for ot h er s a nd sum m er sh ou ld be a t im e for u s t o m ake pla n s. Tr y t o m eet wit h legisla t or s in you r dist r ict . Ask t o h a ve br ea kfa st or lu n ch wit h t h em . Ask you r loca l or st at e Repu blica n ca u cus t o pa y for t h e m ea l if you n eed t o. P lea se consider t a lkin g wit h a st at e legisla t or t h is sum m er over on e bill or la w a t a t im e an d m eet ing wit h t h e a ut h or s t o t r y a n d give t h em you r inpu t . It ‘s a lso wor t h n ot in g t o consider m eet ing wit h t h eir st a ff wh o pla y a n a ct ive r ole in t h e legislat ive pr ocess. E ven if t h e bill h a s a lr eady passed a nd is law, we ca n t r y t o get t h em ch an ged so t h a t t h ey ca n be bet t er . Ma n y of t h ese la ws a r e n ot fla wed in t h e idea , bu t t h e execut ion . We ca n help m a ke t h em bet t er . We ca n also p ick legislat or s a n d m eet wit h t h em t o a ddr ess ot h er issu es t h at h a ven 't been consider ed yet . As t each er s we need t o get m eet in gs wit h t h ese people, beca u se t h a t is t he best wa y t o get t h in gs don e t h is su m m er . P lea se don‘t be t h e lone r a n ger bu t go in wit h a fr ien d or t wo. As t ea ch er s we will st a nd t oget h er , be su ppor t ive a nd com e t o a gr eem ent on key issu es. Don‘t wa it t ill a n ew session st a r t s t o m ake a r ela t ionsh ip wit h a legisla t or or st a ff m em ber .

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011

Words from Northeast Co-Chair Laura Bochner Th e Nor t h ea st Region a l Con fer en ce was h eld t h is yea r in P h ila delph ia , P en n sylva n ia on J a n u a r y 21 -23, 2011. It wa s h eld a t t h e Lowe‘s H ot el on Mar ket St r eet . Th is yea r t h e con fer en ce wa s h ost ed by t h e P en n sylva n ia E du ca t ion Associa t ion a n d t h e con fer ence t h em e wa s ―T u r n in g Act ion in t o P ower .‖ Va r ious st u dent or ient ed wor ksh ops wer e pr esent ed on t opics su ch as Th e Sm a r t Boa r d a n d H elpin g St u den t s t o be Sa fe On lin e. Leader sh ip t r a in in g on t opics such a s H ea lt h ca r e Refor m , Ba r ga in in g, an d t h e St a t e Bu dget in g Cr isis wer e ver y in for m at ive. On a n ot her n ot e, t h e st a t e bu dget cr isis cont inu es t o t h r ea t en t h e educa t ion syst em s in m a n y st at es like New Yor k a n d New J er sey. Specifica lly in New J er sey, Gover n or Ch r ist ie t h r ea t en s ser ious ch a n ges t o em ployees‘ h ea lt h ca r e an d ben efit s by t h e end of J u n e. H e is r efusin g t o com e t o t h e ba r ga in in g t a ble wit h t h e NJ E A a nd cla im s he will get t he ch a n ges pa ssed wit h t h e h elp of t h e legisla t u r e.

Report from the Mid-Atlantic Chair David Kinsella Mid-At la n t ic Repu blica n E du ca t or Ca u cus m et on 1-29-2011. Da vid Kinsella – Ca u cus Cha ir led t he m eet in g. At t endees pick ed u p a copy of Tr u n k Ta lk fr om t he NE A-Repu blica n Ca u cus a nd sign ed in 10 people at t ended t h e m eet in g. Mid-At la n t ic m oved t o su ppor t endor sem ent of P r in cess Moss for NE A E xecu t ive Com m it t ee Ted P a yn e m oved t o suppor t endor sem ent a nd Sa n dr a H a t ley seconded t h e m ot ion Mot ion passed u n a n im ou sly Mid-At la n t ic St a t es t h at h a ve a Repu blica n Cau cu s WV – n o; OH – n o; VA – yes; KY – yes; NC – yes; MD – n o West Vir gin ia does n ot h a ve ‗scor e ca r ds‘ a n ym or e. Issu es: a . E du ca t in g our Repu blica n officia ls a bou t pu blic edu cat ion issu es b. Ta lk t o ca n dida t es a n d h a n d t h em t h e NEA for t o fill ou t per son a lly for en dor sem ent possibilit ies c. Wor k on bu ildin g r ela t ion sh ips wit h Repu blican lea der s. Su m m er 2011 – Da vid is goin g t o con t a ct E r in Du n ca n abou t wh o a t t en ded su m m er 2010 fr om Oh io a nd let Con n ie Ar n old kn ow. Nor t h Ca r olin a – Act ively iden t ify Repu blica n m em ber s h a vin g sm a ll gr a ssr oot s m eet in gs wit h m em ber s a n d legisla t or s. Issu es – vou ch er s, k-3 issu es, in cr ea se in class size. Not es- Renee‘ Ya tes, KY; t yped by Ted P a yne, MD. On Apr il 8 t h , t h e Mid-At la n t ic Ch a ir m et wit h t h e Vir gin ia Repu blica n E du ca t or s Ca u cu s a t t h e VE A Con ven t ion in Roa n oke, VA. Two people wer e select ed t o a t t en d t h e NE A Rep u blica n Lea der sh ip Con fer en ce in Wash in gt on , DC. Th er e wa s a lso a discu ssion of t h e U.S. Sen at e r a ce a nd wh et h er t he VE A wou ld en dor se Tim Ka ine a s a ca n dida t e for t h e office. Th e Vir gin ia Ca u cu s did n ot su ppor t t h is possible a ct ion a s t hey did n ot feel t h a t Tim Ka in e h a d don e en ou gh for edu ca t or s as gover n or a n d t h at h is r ecent exper ien ce a s DNC Ch a ir m a n did n ot n ecessar ily qu a lify h im for a r u n for t h e U.S. Sen a t e. Th e opt ion of m a kin g n o endor sem ent in t h e Sen at e r a ce was a lso con sider ed. Dialogu e wit h t h e Geor ge Allen ca m pa ign wa s a lso m en t ion ed as possible wa y t o open som e door s a nd t o a t lea st develop a r ela t ionsh ip wit h a m a n wh o cou ld ver y well be t he n ext Sena t or fr om Vir gin ia . Th e Mid-At la nt ic Ch a ir pla ced a gr ea t dea l of em ph a sis on being in vol ved wit h t h eir loca l P AC com m it t ees a n d bein g on ca n dida t e in t er view t ea m s. Repu blica n m em ber s of t h e NE A sh ould a lwa ys be pa r t of a ll en dor sem ent s du r in g a n y ca m pa ign yea r . It wa s a lso st a t ed t h a t m em ber s sh ou ld give t h e m a xim u m t o t h e VE A a n d NE A F u n d t o ensur e t h eir legit im acy a s m em ber s of t h e Na t iona l E du ca t ion Associa t ion.

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TRUNK TALK- National Education Association’s Republican Educators Caucus Newsletter- May 2011

Illinois Education Association Republican Activist Joyce Bailey elected to NEA Board of Directors J oyce Ba iley of Illin ois was elect ed t o a t h r ee -yea r t er m a s a n NEA-Dir ect or a t t h e Ma r ch 2011 IE A Repr esen t a t ive Assem bly. Th e a ddit ion of Ba iley will assist ou r a lr ea dy effect ive gr ou p of open ly Repu blica n NE A Dir ect or s in cludin g: Leslie Dake of Iowa , Ron E dwa r ds of Ca lifor n ia a n d Ginn y E va n s of Texa s. Th ese leader s con t in u ously st a n d u p for polit ica l liber t y a nd diver sit y wit h in t h e NE A; t h eir effor t s a r e sin cer ely a ppr ecia t ed. Good lu ck J oyce a n d t h a nk you for st eppin g for wa r d t o ser ve!

Elephant Educator selected to serve as a Delegate to 2011 Education International World Congress Da vid Gou ld, a t ea ch er fr om Tu lsa, Okla h om a, h a s been select ed t o at t en d t h e E du cat ion Int er n a t ion al Wor ld Con gr ess, ser vin g a s a m em ber of t h e NE A delega t ion . Th e Wor ld Con gr ess, h eld ever y fou r yea r s, is t h e supr em e gover n in g body of E du ca t ion In t er n a t ion a l. Th e Wor ld Con gr ess will be h eld in Cape Town , Sout h Afr ica , in t h e Ca pe Town In t er n at ion a l Con ven t ion Cen t r e (CTICC) fr om J u ly 22n d t o J u ly 26t h , 2011. Th e Con gr ess pr ovides a n oppor t u n it y for r epr esent a t ives of a ll E I a ffiliat es t o m eet a nd st r en gt hen t h e bon ds of solidar it y bet ween t ea ch er s a n d educa t ion wor ker s t h r ou gh ou t t h e wor ld. Delega t es con sider t h e m a jor con t em por a r y issu es affect in g t h eir or gan iza t ion s, t h e int er n a t ion a l t each er t r a de u n ion m ovem en t , a n d t h e on goin g st r u ggle t o a ch ieve qu a lit y pu blic edu ca t ion for a ll. H e will h a ve a fu ll r epor t of h is act ivit ies in t h e fa ll issu e of t h e T R U N K T ALK n ewslet t er .

TRUNK TALK NEA-REC Newsletter P.O. Box 6 Winnetka, IL 60093

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Trunk Talk