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NEA RA Election Information page 10

Insert: Evaluation Resource for Teachers Published by the TENNESSEE EDUCATION ASSOCIATION November 2012  Vol. 44, No. 4 

Allyson Chick

Tennessee Teacher of the Year

Jane Winter

Tennessee Principal of the Year

TEA Members Honored as Tennessee’s Top Educators page 5

Speaking out with you Gera Summerford, President

Every Tennessee School Can Be a Model School At this time of year we take time to appreciate the many things for which we can be thankful. I recently had the good fortune to visit a school in middle Tennessee that could be a model for all of us. The school was celebrating its 25th anniversary and the principal and staff had planned a special celebration for the students and community. The kids coming into the gym were all wearing school colors, a slide show of school history was presented and cake was provided for all (though the children had to wait until lunch time for theirs)! It was clear to me that the theme of the celebration had been the focus of this school’s activities for some time. Student work was displayed everywhere throughout the building and it was all connected to the 25th anniversary celebration. Kindergartners had produced creative representations of the number 25; fourth graders had done a research project on 25 years of culture; second graders had illustrated math skills to calculate what year the school had started or what year it will celebrate its 50th. A former student made a commemorative quilt and a former teacher made benches from some oak trees that had once stood on the property. Two things became obvious as I walked through the building: learning is relevant and connected to life outside school, and the entire school community shares responsibility for educating its students. In the front foyer the walls are covered with photos accompanied by “commitment” cards. Parents, teachers, bus drivers, cafeteria staff, custodians and teacher assistants had all written their responses to “What will I do to promote student success in this school?” This was the most inspiring display of all. Imagine what public education can be when everyone makes a commitment to work together for every child’s success. Creating such a school environment requires exemplary leadership. It happens when education leaders inspire all of us to embrace a shared responsibility, rather than pointing at some of us to take the blame. It happens when we trust one another to have the best intentions, rather than suspect each other of not doing enough. And it happens when people feel empowered to make a difference, rather than fearful for their jobs. Every school in our state has the potential to be a model school. Just as teachers provide support and encouragement to students, so must school leaders support and encourage teachers to do their best and reach their goals. When we recognize the importance of shared commitments and responsibility, we provide the best opportunities for our students’ growth and success. I’m so thankful for tens of thousands of dedicated professionals in Tennessee who choose to educate our children. May we all share the commitment, passion and responsibility for this important work!

Al Mance, Executive Director

Final Thoughts: Public School Teachers Must Live With Purpose Professional teachers who are passionate about all things that help them be effective are Tennessee’s best hope for establishing a world class education. These teachers also hold in disdain the policies, practices and lack of resources that detract from their effectiveness and their efforts to get better. They seek the highest achievement possible for every student by using the best that is known about teaching and learning. This passion fuels their lives. Passion is wasted, however, without action. Teachers and public schools have achieved success over the years primarily through the action of a critical mass of educators and public education supporters in pursuit of student success. If we are not alert and consistently engaged, opportunities to achieve academic excellence elude us. We are living through a period of distraction from effective education policy. Teachers are being evaluated through a system they do not respect and do not believe effectively measures their teaching. Human resource decisions such as tenure, performance pay, transfers and dismissal are being made based on those evaluations. Thus, the results of a seriously flawed evaluation system affect the most important decisions made in public schools. The state is moving closer to mandating performance-based pay. We anticipate bills to create a voucher system, allow the state to approve charter schools in local school systems, allow parents to force the restructuring of schools and expand the use of virtual schools to be introduced during the upcoming legislative session. None of these measures will do anything to improve teaching and learning in Tennessee. If you believe teaching is the key to the future for Tennessee’s boys and girls, you must be willing to fight for it. Pressure through collective action is the core of TEA’s strategy. This can be more powerful than negotiations. It requires a critical mass of educators and allies to join together and speak with one voice. It relies upon the passion of professional teachers, open communication, free exchange of ideas and a willingness to speak truth to power. It requires living with purpose. Before there was a negotiations law, TEA achieved job security through tenure, retirement benefits for teachers, salary increases, the TEA Code of Ethics and class size limits. Even after the professional negotiations act passed, we still depended upon political action to achieve duty-free lunch, duty-free planning time, state-sponsored health insurance and salary increases. The stakes are higher than ever for public education, teachers and students. It is my fervent hope that you will have the courage to continue to pursue your passion for teaching through collective action. The future of American democracy is in your heart and hands. It has been my honor to serve you for the past 29 years. I am appreciative beyond measure. You count. “A free society cannot avoid an element of risk. It will search in vain for absolute security. It is based on the assumption that people can be trusted to be free; that a majority of them will not in the long run persist in acting to their own disadvantage; that, given freedom to think, to act, and to influence each other, they will . . . do better for themselves than if their direction were entrusted to a few, however wise, not subject to popular control. This is the traditional faith at the heart of our political society.”

-American Association of University Professors, Spring 1951

teach (USPS 742-450, ISSN 15382907) is published in August, September, October, Nov/Dec, Jan/Feb, March/April, and May by the Tennessee Education Association, 801 Second Avenue North, Nashville TN 37201-1099. Periodical postage paid at Nashville, TN. The subscription price of $3.65 is allocated from annual membership dues of $258.00 for active members; $129.00 for associate, education support and staff members; $16.00 for retired members; and $10.00 for student members. Member of State Education Editors (SEE). Postmaster: Send address changes to teach, 801 Second Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37201-1099. MANAGING EDITOR: Alexei Smirnov ASSISTANT EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Carol K. Schmoock PUBLISHER: Alphonso C. Mance

Tennessee Education Association 801 Second Avenue North Nashville, TN 37201-1099 Telephone: (615)242-8392, Toll Free: (800)342-8367, (800)342-8262 Fax: (615)259-4581 Website:

BOARD OF DIRECTORS PRESIDENT: Gera Summerford* (800)342-8367 VICE PRESIDENT: Barbara Gray* (901)353-8590 SECRETARY-TREASURER: Alphonso C. Mance (615)242-8392 DISTRICT 1 Leisa Lusk* (423)928-6819 DISTRICT 2 Lauren McCarty (865)385-3220 DISTRICT 3 Karen Starr (423)628-2701 DISTRICT 4 Tanya Coats* (865)637-7494 DISTRICT 5 Michael Plumley (423)479-8228 DISTRICT 6 Scott Price (931)455-7198 DISTRICT 7 Allen Nichols* (615)653-6501 DISTRICT 8 Kawanda Braxton (615)554-6286 DISTRICT 9 Theresa L. Wagner (270)776-1467 DISTRICT 10 Guy Stanley (615)384-2983 DISTRICT 11 Wendy R. Bowers (731)645-8595 DISTRICT 12 Suzie May (731)779-9329 DISTRICT 13 Ernestine King (901)590-8188 DISTRICT 14 Sarah Kennedy-Harper (901)416-4582 DISTRICT 15 Tom Emens (901)277-0578 ADMINISTRATOR EAST Johnny Henry (865)509-4829 ADMINISTRATOR MIDDLE Julie Hopkins (615)569-5742 ADMINISTRATOR WEST Charles Green (901)624-6186 HIGHER EDUCATION Clinton Smith (901)230-4914 BLACK CLASSROOM TEACHER EAST Paula Hancock (865)694-1691 BLACK CLASSROOM TEACHER MIDDLE Kenneth Martin (615)876-1948 BLACK CLASSROOM TEACHER WEST LaVerne Dickerson (901)416-7122 STATE SPECIAL SCHOOLS Vacancy ESP Christine Denton (931)647-8962 TN NEA DIRECTOR Melanie Buchanan (615)305-2214 TN NEA DIRECTOR Diccie Smith (901)482-0627 TN NEA DIRECTOR Diane Lillard* (423)478-8827 STEA MEMBER Marilauren Anderson (731)478-5106 TN RETIRED Gerald Lillard (423)473-9400 NEW TEACHER CandraClariette (615)506-3493 * Executive Committee


UniServ Staff contact information can be found on page 12 or by scannig the Quick Response code below.


November 2012

‘Breakfast in the Classroom’ A Win-Win for Students, Parents and Teachers eliminates the chaos of the cafeteria in the morning,” Morgan By Amanda Chaney said. “Students now start their day in the calm environment of “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Parents their classroom. This environment shift leaves students focused have been using that line on children for generations, but unfortunately, many students across the country are missing out and ready to learn.” According to recent studies, children who eat breakfast at on this important start to their day. school show improvement in their concentration, alertness, With the help of the NEA Health Information Network (NEA comprehension, memory and learning. Participating in school HIN) and Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom, Knox County Schools have increased its school breakfast program from five to breakfast also is associated with improved math grades, attendance and punctuality. 22 schools across the district. Once the program was approved for Knox County, KCEA Knox County recently celebrated the expansion of Breakfast and NEA HIN got to work last spring in the Classroom with a school training teachers about Breakfast in assembly at Mooreland Heights “In addition to providing a healthy the Classroom. Elementary. Students heard from meal, the program also eliminates “The teachers’ buy-in is a huge participating partners about the the chaos of the cafeteria in the part of making the program a success,” importance of breakfast and also said Morgan. “Teachers understand enjoyed a live performance from the morning. Students now start their how important a good breakfast is for band Spencer’s Own. day in the calm environment of students. This program gives teachers “When KCEA was first approached their classroom.” the peace of mind in knowing that about partnering with the Breakfast their class is prepared and ready to in the Classroom program, I asked Sherry Morgan, Knox Co. EA president learn.” two questions: ‘Is this a good thing Knox County is the second school for Knox County students?’ and ‘Is district in the state to receive grant funding for the program. this good for Knox County teachers?’” said Sherry Morgan, Knox Memphis City Schools was one of five inaugural districts that County EA president. “I received a resounding yes on both implemented the Breakfast in the Classroom program in the questions.” 2010-2011 school year. The Breakfast in the Classroom program takes the traditional The Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom include the school breakfast and improves it by moving it into the classroom. Food Research and Action Center, the National Association With this program, breakfast is available to all students of Elementary School Principals Foundation, the National regardless of family income level. Children are now able to eat Education Association Health Information Network, and the a nutritious meal together in the classroom while the teacher School Nutrition Foundation. Breakfast in the Classroom is takes attendance, collects homework or teaches a short lesson. funded by the Walmart Foundation. “In addition to providing a healthy meal, the program also

Spencer’s Own performed at the “Breakfast in the Classroom” celebration. 3

Election Shapes Political Landscape for Two Years Two TEA members elected to General Assembly Two TEA members will be among the 99 members of the Tennessee House of Representatives when the General Assembly convenes in January. Voters in Knox County elected Gloria Johnson, a special education teacher at Richard Yoakley Alternative School, to her first term representing Tennessee’s District 13. Voters in Shelby County returned Jim Coley, a social studies teacher at Bolton High School, to his District 97 seat. More than one-third of the members of the new Tennessee House of Representatives were supported by the Tennessee Education Association Fund for Children and Public Education in their election bids this year. In addition, Senators Doug Overbey (District 2) and Jim Kyle (District 30) had the support of TEA FCPE in their successful races to return to the Senate in newly drawn districts. “While the November election significantly expanded Republican majorities in the Tennessee General Assembly by giving them a supermajority in both the Senate and House, the election of 36 TEA FCPE-supported candidates—along with the election of some new legislators who will hopefully join the ranks of public education supporters—can provide a base on which to build a public education-friendly majority,” notes Jerry Winters, TEA manager of government relations. While not all education issues are decided strictly on party lines, several legislative challenges lie ahead for public education and public school employees in 2013. Over the past two years, many attacks on education occurred, including: repealing professional negotiations; weakening teacher tenure; implementing a flawed evaluation system; and removing elected representatives from the state retirement board. “With the changing political dynamics, TEA members should anticipate that 2013 will see more attempts to weaken teacher rights, drain funding from public schools, and move toward further privatization in K-12 education,” warns Winters. Some legislators have already stated that they will push for vouchers for private schools, state-authorized charter schools, and elimination of the state salary schedule to promote merit pay schemes.

TEA as an association—and TEA members individually—are developing plans to effectively move forward with a positive legislative agenda for public schools in 2013 and beyond. To remain a strong voice on Capitol Hill, TEA staff and members will:  Work quickly to establish a productive relationship with all legislators (particularly those who are newly elected) to allow for a continuing dialogue as education issues are discussed.  Reach across political party lines to forge “education friendly” majorities. Public education should not be a Democratic or Republican issue.  Expand our influence by forging coalitions with other public education stakeholders, including school board members and administrators, particularly on issues such as vouchers and charter school expansion.  Reach out to parents as partners and stakeholders in the education debate as their child’s future often depends on decisions made in Nashville.  Engage more TEA members in the legislative process. Our members are not only education employees, they are constituents and taxpayers who deserve to have their voices heard. With many challenges ahead, TEA will remain a strong voice on Capitol Hill. The future of our state and nation depends on strong public schools. While there are undoubtedly tough legislative battles ahead, public education is worth the fight. For our children and our future, it is a battle we cannot afford to lose!

Price is right—Coffee Co. EA member Scott Price (above) works the phones with friends and colleagues (right) during his fall campaign for State House. While Price lost his race against imcumbent Republican Judd Matheny, he will run again and encourages more TEA members to seek public office. 4  November 2012

State Honors Five Members with Highest Awards TEA members are the best and brightest educators in the state. So, it came as no surprise to us that the Department of Education honored five of our members at their annual Tennessee Teacher of the Year and Principal of the Year banquets. Allyson Chick, a second and third grade teacher from Richland Elementary School in Memphis, was named the Tennessee Teacher of the Year and the finalist for the West Grand Division. Chick is a former TEA board member and local leader. TEA members Mary Pitner, a third grade teacher at Learning Way Elementary School in Bedford County, and Renda Crowe, a theater teacher at William Blount High School in Blount County, were recognized as Teacher of the Year Grand Division winners for Middle and East Tennessee, respectively. Jane Winter, the principal of Minglewood Elementary School in Clarksville/Montgomery County

Schools, was named the Tennessee Principal of the Year and Grand Division finalist for Middle Tennessee. Winter has been a member of TEA for 15 years. TEA member Frederick Malone was honored as the Principal of the Year Grand Division finalist for West Tennessee. Malone is the principal of Bellevue Middle School in Memphis City Schools. Among them, these outstanding educators have a combined 63 years of TEA membership. Crowe said while she was humbled by the honor, she was proud to represent Blount Co. EA and her colleagues, many of whom are more stretched than ever before. “I’m happy to represent my education association and the teachers of Tennessee. I’m going to continue to encourage colleagues to take pride in our association,” Crowe said. Please join us in celebrating the successes of these five members. TEA is truly honored to represent Tennessee’s talented, caring and committed educators.

Allyson Chick is Tennessee Teacher of the Year and Grand Division winner for West Tennessee.

Jane Winter is Tennessee Principal of the Year and Grand Division winner for Middle Tennessee.

Mary Pitner was named the Teacher of the Year Grand Division winner for Middle Tennessee.

Photos from by the State of Tennessee

Renda Crowe was named the Teacher of the Year Grand Division winner for East Tennessee.

Wanted: Distinguished Educator Award Nominees If you believe that excellence in education is both an art and a science that cannot be reduced to a number, the Tennessee Education Association invites you to find out how you can recognize TEA members at all levels of service and experience through the Distinguished Educator Awards Program. Every year, TEA honors educators who inspire students, parents, colleagues and the community through their talents, leadership and service. This year, all award winners will receive a significant technological gift which they will find useful both in the classroom and at home. Awards will be issued in the following categories: • Distinguished Classroom Teacher Awards (9) – All grades with three awards from each grand division of the state; • Distinguished Education Support Professional Award (1)—Any classified educator; • Distinguished Administrator Awards (3)— One administrator from each grand division; • Distinguished Higher Education Faculty Member (1)—One faculty member whose primary assignment is at the college or university level; • Distinguished New Teacher Awards (3)—Honors educators with five or fewer years of service in the following categories; grades P-K-4, grades 5-8, and grades 9-12. The deadline for all the distinguished educator award categories is February 15, 2013. More details and nomination forms are available in the Scholarships, Awards and Grants section at

Frederick Malone was named the Principal of the Year Grand Division winner for West Tennessee. 5

Looking for Balance TEA members take measure of the evaluation system TEA members on the Tennessee Evaluation Advisory Committee made recommendation after recommendation in 2010 and 2011 to ensure that the teacher and principal evaluation system in Tennessee would be a fair process, benefiting students and faculty alike. Now, looking back at the evaluation model’s first year, they say the state would have done well to implement more of their recommendations. According to the minutes from the January 13, 2011, TEAC meeting, educators pushed for an in-depth review for the evaluation system prior to its rollout. Jimmy Bailey, then principal of Arlington International Leadership Magnet School in Jackson-Madison and a longtime TEA member, asked whether TEAC would review policy recommendations made to the State Board of Education during prior months. Bailey believed such review was necessary, observing that certain recommendations, such as evaluating every teacher in every building, were proving more challenging than expected. Almost two years after that meeting, Jill Levine, principal at Normal Park Museum Magnet in Chattanooga and member of Hamilton Co. EA, has mixed feelings about the final product and the way it was rolled out across the state. “We made recommendations,” she says. “But there’s a big difference between making recommendations and the end result.” Of course, there are many positive aspects of the new evaluation system, such as having principals in classrooms giving immediate feedback to teachers. But the negatives are also evident. Take, for instance, the rush and confusion surrounding the system’s implementation. Several teachers and TEAC members interviewed about Tennessee’s evaluation model question why our state chose to forego a statewide full-year pilot, instead putting a raw system in place while it was still being tweaked. Many teachers and administrators have compared it to “fixing a plane in mid-air.” Such comparisons are not lost on Levine, who says TEAC members did not see the actual evaluation model until the last 15 minutes of the final TEAC meeting. “Then our committee was disbanded,” she says. “We received a nice letter from the governor, but we never had a follow-up meeting.” A year ago, Carter Co. Teachers Association member and TEAC panelist Kenny Lou Heaton expected recommendations made by TEAC to work very well. “I have always been of the personal belief that teachers, just like the students we face each day, 6  November 2012

will rise to the occasion and reach for the ‘bar’ when it is raised.” As a teacher at Cloudland High School, Heaton was concerned that some administrators would not understand the rubric and the procedure in order to do a fair observation of their teachers. “I had reports from teachers in my system who felt they were evaluated unfairly,” she says. “Some were told by administration that no one would be a ‘five.’ That bothered a lot of teachers, especially in a system where, in another school, there was a composite score of ‘five.’” Heaton cautions against such treatment of teachers because they will learn that no matter how well they perform, they will never be good enough. “There was also concern that protocol was not always followed with postconferences,” Heaton says. “Teachers complained that their observation reports were shared with other people. You’re always going to have people who won’t follow the rules.” After she moved to become an academic principal at Hampton High School, Heaton says her scores “were left dangling” and she never received a composite score from her prior job. She contacted the State Department of Education about the issue, but did not receive a response, which perplexed her even more. “I don’t know on which end [the system failed],” Heaton says. “It wasn’t just for me; it was for the entire faculty. When we schedule observations for this year, the number required is based on the composite score from last year. As a result, many people, me included, don’t know where we fall. We know our final score from the observations, but there was no composite score because the final data from the 15 percent was never entered.” Because Heaton is in a different position this year, having moved from a classroom to the principal’s office, her situation is not as precarious as that of her former colleagues. Heaton strongly believes that there should have been a trial year for the evaluation system. Heaton says that most evaluation training teachers received during the past year was inadequate. “This summer I went through the training to become an evaluator,” she says. “Teachers would have done well to have had some practice time before the scores were official.” Carter County schools currently use the state evaluation model, but Heaton

wishes they could afford to buy the one used in Hamilton County dubbed Project COACH, which is based on the work of Kim Marshall, education consultant and author of Rethinking Teacher Supervision and Evaluation. “That would be so much better,” she says. “With Project COACH, you actually catch teachers teaching.” Heaton says while the teacher is an important factor in child’s learning, when it comes to teacher evaluation one must also take into consideration what the students are doing, how they are assimilating, sharing and collaborating on a project. “We love Project COACH,” Levine says. “There’s no paper, it’s all electronic. The focus is on the instruction.” Levine says Hamilton County is in year three of using Project COACH, which was developed with the involvement of Hamilton Co. EA. The evaluation model has been wellreceived by principals and teachers, in part because its first year was a trial run. A busy principal overseeing two campuses, Levine jets between classrooms with her iPad, pushed to conduct eight evaluations of every teacher in a given school year. All evaluations are unannounced, which Levine says relieves teachers from having to put on a special lesson plan for announced visits, which are required under the state model. “With Project COACH, we’re just looking at the quality of instruction. When we first piloted it, it was optional. When we created [the rubric], we worked with people from our local union, with teachers and principals. We all wrote the model together. It was such a great example of working with the teachers’ union.” Another advantage of Hamilton County’s evaluation model is in using a four-point scale, which Levine says forces principals to make tough decisions. She recommended this approach during TEAC meetings, and had some support, but the Department of Education ultimately went with a five-point evaluation scale for teachers statewide. Even so, despite the time crunch surrounding the evaluation system’s rollout statewide, Levine finds a lot to be thankful for in the new system. “Here’s what I think is great: every teacher is evaluated every year,” she says. “Principals are required to have more face-to-face conversations with teachers. They are in the classrooms more. Teachers are getting feedback, and are more focused on the quality of teaching. Only good things can come from that.” At the end of the day, Levine says good teachers tend to get frustrated when their colleagues aren’t doing their part. “When the principal is going into every classroom, it elevates the quality of teaching,” she says. “When I as a principal go into every classroom and see great teaching, I benefit from that, too.” Fifteen percent of Levine’s own evaluation as a principal is tied to the quality of the evaluations she performs. Recently, Levine’s supervisor came to Normal Park to watch as Levine conducted observations, and stayed for Levine’s three post-observation conferences with teachers. “This is the first time I was observed by a supervisor, in my eleventh year as a principal,” Levine says. While some of the teachers’ egos have been bruised (and some of them – justly so), Heaton and others believe that the old evaluation model did not point out the weaknesses in teaching. “With the old model, nobody really did a bad job,” Heaton says. Still, Heaton is concerned for teachers unfortunate enough to teach low-functioning students, which is likely to cause their value-added score to be below three, putting any plans for tenure on hold. “When the state department does the math, and student value-added scores bring you down, that’s discouraging for teachers,” Heaton says. Levine agrees that the 50 percent of the evaluation based on student achievement was “really tough for the TEAC.” “There are so many teachers without their own value-added data,” she says. “It’s not appropriate to assess music in kindergarten with a standardized test. It would be fairer for the school-wide data to be their value-added. It’s a tough call, but I don’t think there’s a great solution for that one.” Overall, TEA members on the TEAC panel say it fulfilled its charge. As Heaton put it, “I was reminded many times that we were there to make recommendations, not policy, and I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to represent my colleagues.”

What do you think about the evaluation process? Take confidential survey @

NEA Human and Civil Rights Applegate-Dorros Award Carter G. Woodson Award César Chávez Award Ellison S. Onizuka Award George I. Sánchez Award H. Councill Trenholm Award Leo Reano Award Martin Luther King, Jr. Award Mary Hatwood Futrell Award Reg Weaver Award

2013 Nominations for the

HCR Awards that Honor Human and Civil Rights Champions! Help us keep the American Teachers Association legacy alive! Identify and nominate exemplary individuals, organizations, and affiliates to celebrate at the 2013 NEA Human and Civil Rights Awards Dinner. Deadline for submission: Postmarked by December 10, 2012 The nomination forms and step-by-step instructions are available online interactively at For nomination forms or questions, contact Sabrina Tines, 202-822-7709

Rosena J. Willis Award Virginia Uribe Award 08.12.13531.KC


8  November 2012

TEA Spring Symposium Looks to Inspire, Energize Mark your calendar and make plans to join your colleagues at the 17th Annual Spring Symposium on April 5-6, 2013, at the Park Vista Hotel in Gatlinburg. This teaching and learning symposium offers TEA members an unparalleled opportunity to hone their teaching skills while enjoying springtime in the Great Smoky Mountains. Symposium attendees may earn up to 8 hours of professional development credit during the weekend depending on the number of events and sessions they attend. Attendees will learn about new education apps they can use in the classroom, bringing science and agriculture into the classroom, new information about Common Core and best practices, using technology in the classroom, as well as economic literacy and retirement for educators. This year’s keynote speaker, Manuel Scott, is the original freedom writer whose story is told in the Hollywood movie, Freedom Writers. At the age of 14, Manuel dropped out of school and at one time was classified as an English as a Second Language student because of his poor grammar skills. He began using drugs and alcohol at age 16, but he managed to defy the odds and achieve greatness. “I was once dismissed as unreachable and unteachable,” says Scott. “But something special happened, and I love sharing that message with others.” The high school dropout now holds degrees from the University of California at Berkeley and Trinity International University. He is currently working on his PhD in Chicago. Stay tuned for further details regarding this dynamic conference on the TEA website:

A family affair—TEA President Gera Summerford (left) welcomes the Simpson family at the Jefferson Co. EA sign-in table during the JCEA “Night at the Park.” JCEA vice president Melanie Simpson is pictured with her husband Steve, their youngest daughter Emma and her big sister Caroline. Steve, an assistant principal at East Knox County Elementary School, is a member of Knox Co. EA.

Look for your new TEA membership card in the mail


Bio and Photo Deadline for Candidates: January 2, 2013

TEA Announces NEA RA State Delegate Nomination Procedures Just when you thought the elections were behind us, it’s time to consider nominating a colleague or throwing your own hat in the ring for the 2013 National Education Association Representative Assembly in Atlanta, Ga., June 28-July 6, 2013. Nominees may submit pictures and biographical material for publication in the February issue of teach. (See Biographical Information in the third column.) TEA urges minority educators to apply for delegate positions. TEA seeks at least 17 percent minority representation in its delegation, a goal we regularly exceed. Nomination/election procedures Category 1 Two delegates are elected from each of the 15 TEA Board districts. The delegates in each district must be classroom teachers, education support professionals or persons who serve in other non-supervisory positions. The state nominating committee has submitted the following names: District 1: Leisa Lusk; District 2: Gera Summerford, Lauren McCarty; District 3: Karen Starr; District 4: Tanya T. Coats, Paula Hancock; District 5: Diane Lillard, Michael Plumley; District 6: Scott Price; District 7: Allen Nichols; District 8: Kawanda Braxton; District 9: Candra Clariette, Kenneth Martin, Theresa Wagner; District 10: Christine Denton, Guy Stanley; District 11: Wendy Bowers, Melanie Buchanan; District 12: Suzie May, Clinton Smith; District 13: Ernestine King, Diccie Smith; District 14: LaVerne Dickerson, Sarah KennedyHarper; District 15: Tom Emens. Additional nominations shall be by an affiliated local association or upon petition of 50 NEA members from the respective board district. Voting for delegates from each board district shall be restricted to the NEA members employed in that district. Category 2 Three supervisor/administrator/ retired NEA life member delegates are elected in a statewide vote. The state nominating committee has submitted the names of Barbara Gray, Charles Green, Johnny Henry and Margaret Thompson. Additional nominations shall be by an affiliated local association or upon petition of 50 NEA members. Definitions An NEA member is one who on Jan. 15 is an active, education support professional or retired NEA life member. An active member is any person who is engaged in, or on a limited leave of absence from, professional education work or who is serving as an executive 10  November 2012

officer of the association. Active members shall hold or shall be eligible to hold a baccalaureate or higher degree or the regular teaching, vocational or technical certificates required by their employment. Active membership is limited to persons who support the principles and goals of the association and maintain membership in the local and state affiliates where eligible. An education support professional member is any employee of a school district, college or university or other institution devoted primarily to educational work who is not eligible for active membership. A classroom teacher is any person who is certified, where required, and a major part of whose time is spent in direct contact with students or who performs allied work which results in placement of the person on a local salary schedule for teachers. A supervisor and administrator is any person who has continuing authority to hire, evaluate, transfer, discipline, dismiss or otherwise direct employees or to officially recommend any of these actions. A retired NEA life member is a retired NEA life member who holds membership in the Tennessee Retired Teachers Association (TRTA). General Information Nominations Nominations shall be made by a letter signed by a local association president and secretary reflecting the name of their association’s nominee or by a separate petition for each nominee containing 50 legible signatures of NEA members and the local association to which they belong. It is suggested that each petition include a few extra signatures in the event a signature is challenged or is illegible. Each petition shall carry the name, address, Social Security number and phone numbers (school and home) of the nominee, along with the name of the local association of which he/she is a member and the category for which he/she is being nominated. Nominees shall be added to the proper category in the order in which nominations are received at the TEA headquarters. For retired NEA life members to be eligible to be a state delegate, they must be a member of the Tennessee Retired Teachers Association. In lieu of submitting nominations, the Board of Directors may function as a nominating committee for the purpose of nominating board members.

Elections The appropriate number of nominees receiving the largest number of votes in their respective categories shall be declared delegates. If the number of nominees for delegate positions is equal to or less than the number of positions to be filled, elections shall be waived, and the nominees declared elected to the delegate positions.

of delegates nominated. Any additional adjustments will be made in the board districts whose turn it is according to the following rotation plan.

Successor delegates Successor delegates shall be chosen in the order of the number of votes received by those nominees within the appropriate category and district who were not elected delegates. Successor delegates outside districts in which fewer district delegates are elected than called for in this plan shall be assigned as delegates in those districts in the order of the number of votes received.

Order Board District number 1........................................District 13 2........................................District 12 3........................................District 11 4........................................District 10 5........................................District 9 6........................................District 8 7........................................District 7 8........................................District 6 9........................................District 5 10.......................................District 4 11.......................................District 3 12.......................................District 2 13.......................................District 1 14.....................................District 15 15.....................................District 14

Deadline for nominations All nominations must be received at TEA Headquarters, 801 Second Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37201-1099 by Jan. 2, 2013.

The TEA Executive Director is responsible for maintaining the rotation records for use in determining which board district is in line for delegate adjustment when necessary.

Biographical information All nominees are eligible to have condensed biographical data printed in the Feb. teach. The deadline for receiving biographical materials is Jan. 2, 2013. Biographical information should contain no more than 75 words. A photograph may also be submitted. Information should be typed double-spaced with verbs, articles, prepositions, and conjunctions omitted. No abbreviations are acceptable except TEA, NEA and the abbreviation of the nominee’s local association. (Upon request, TEA will provide a form for listing biographical information.)

Expenses TEA provides expenses for delegates according to policies adopted by the TEA Board of Directors and TEA Representative Assembly.

Total number of delegates This plan is based on a state allocation of 46 delegates; three nonteacher (supervisor/administrator/retired NEA life member) and 43 non-supervisory (classroom teacher/education support professionals or persons who serve in other non-supervisory positions). If membership reports indicate that the number of non-teacher delegates must be revised, the number will be adjusted up or down, as appropriate. If either membership figures or nonteacher delegate allocation requires that the number of non-supervisory delegates be revised, an adjustment will be made by adding or deleting a delegate position for as many board districts as necessary to achieve the proper allocation of delegates. Such adjustments will be made first in any board district not having its full allocation

Ballots Ballots are mailed to each local association president prior to March 1. Each association shall distribute the ballots to the NEA members of that association. Marked ballots shall be collected and either counted by the local association or sent to TEA for tabulation. The local association’s tabulation of the votes cast by its NEA members or the untabulated ballots must be received at TEA headquarters no later than April 10. Modification of procedure The TEA President and Executive Director are authorized to temporarily modify this procedure in order to comply with NEA requirements if time does not permit the suggested changes to be considered at the next regular board meeting. Clustering of delegates The TEA Board of Directors has established the following cluster procedures for the election of nonteacher delegates, NEA-Retired delegates and delegates from small associations (fewer than 75 members) to the NEA Representative Assembly.

NEA-Retired delegates Non-teacher delegates Timeline for Electing Delegates A non-teacher is any person who has continuing Allocation of NEA-Retired delegates is based The timeline for the allocation and election of authority to hire, transfer, discipline, dismiss or on NEA-R membership as of January 15. Only NEA-R delegates to the NEA Representative Assembly in otherwise direct employees or to officially recommend members are eligible to nominate or serve as delegates. Atlanta, Ga., June 28-July 6, 2013: any of these actions. A statewide cluster of non-teacher A letter shall be mailed to all NEA-R members no later January 2 — Deadline for receiving state delegate members shall be established. The cluster shall be than December 15 inviting them to submit a nomination nominations (except student members), candidates’ achieved by combining the number of non-teacher for the allocated position(s). The nomination shall photographs and biographical information for members of each eligible local association (those with contain the name, address, phone number, and Social publication in teach. fewer than 10 local delegates), according to the following Security number of the nominee as well as the name and January 15 — Date on which the number of NEA guidelines: address of the NEA-R member making the nomination. delegates is established based on the number of The number of non-teacher members shall be Nominations must be postmarked no later than membership applications on file with NEA. subtracted from the total local association membership January 2. February 15 — NEA sends report forms containing for purposes of local delegate allocation determination. delegate allocations based on membership figures as Nominees are placed on the ballot in the order in The number of non-teacher members will not be of January 15 (March 15 for student members) to all which nominations are received at the Tennessee Retired subtracted from local association membership totals affiliates. Teachers Association office, 801 2nd Avenue North, March 1 — Latest date to mail state ballots to if it is determined, based on membership as of Jan. 15, Nashville, TN 37201-1099. presidents for distribution to members. (Ballots will that the subtraction would cause the allocation of local Ballots are mailed to each NEA-R member prior to be mailed earlier if possible.) Instructions for voting delegates to decrease. This provision may be waived if March 1. Marked ballots must be received by the TRTA procedures are also mailed. said local association does not send its full allocation of no later than April 10. If the number of nominees for April 10 — Local affiliates send local delegate and delegates. delegate positions is equal to or less than the number of successor delegate report forms to TEA office. Non-teacher members included in the cluster will positions to be filled, elections shall be waived and the May 15 — Deadline for TEA to certify state election not be allowed to vote in the election of their local nominees declared elected to the delegate positions. results to NEA and deadline for forwarding to NEA association delegates; however, they will be eligible The appropriate number of nominees receiving the the delegate report forms for all elected local and to vote in the election for state delegates to the NEA state delegates and successor delegates to the NEA largest number of votes shall be declared delegates. Representative Assembly. Representative Assembly. Successor delegates are chosen in the order of the A letter shall be sent to local association presidents May 15 — Deadline for filing with NEA. Report forms number of votes received by those nominees who were informing them of the statewide cluster. A form will be for delegates and successor delegates representing not elected delegates. included with the letter which is to be returned if a local student, higher education, retired, and educational The TRTA is responsible for compiling election association does not desire to participate. The deadline support members are due. results and notifying NEA-R delegates of their election. June 1 — Based on review of delegate report forms for returning the form is January 2. The TRTA and TEA are not be responsible for any submitted by May 15, NEA Credentials Committee The TEA Board of Directors serves as a nominating expenses of NEA-R delegates. issues credentials or notifies affiliates of reason for committee for the statewide cluster of non-teacher withholding credentials. Small association delegates NEA delegates in the same manner that it does for NEA June 5 — NEA sends credentials and registration A letter will be sent to each local education state delegates. Subsequent to the completion of the packets to delegates. association whose membership on January 15 (according above process, nomination shall be by an affiliated local to NEA membership records) contains fewer than 76 association or upon petition of 50 NEA members. members. This letter will list the names, addresses and Nominations shall be received at the TEA office after phone numbers of the presidents of these local associations as well as the number of Dec. 1, but no later than January 2. Nominees are placed on the ballot in the order in which nominations are received at members in each association. the TEA headquarters. The number of non-teacher delegates to be elected shall be based A local education association desiring to send a delegate initiates the cluster upon one delegate for each 150 non-teachers in the cluster. process by contacting the president of one or more local associations listed whose Ballots are mailed to each non-teacher member in the cluster prior to March membership, when added to that of the local association initiating the cluster, totals at 1. Marked ballots must be received at TEA headquarters no later than April 10. If least 76. the number of nominees for delegate positions is equal to or less than the number of Local associations desiring to cluster will be responsible for making their own positions to be filled, elections shall be waived and the nominees declared elected as arrangements regarding nominations, elections and finances. NEA’s requirements for delegates. election of delegates, which is mailed to local association presidents in October of each The appropriate number of nominees receiving the largest number of votes shall year, applies to clustered delegates. be declared delegates. The TEA Executive Director is responsible for compiling election TEA shall be provided the names of the delegates and the local associations involved results and notifying non-teacher delegates of their election. in the cluster when the selection is made and will in turn file the appropriate form with Successor non-teacher delegates are chosen in the order of the number of votes NEA. Such form must be submitted to TEA no later than April 10. received by those nominees who were not elected delegates. The TEA is not responsible Expenses of delegates elected through this cluster procedure are borne by the local for any expenses of the clustered non-teacher NEA delegates, unless the person is a associations involved in the cluster or by the clustered delegate. member of the TEA Board of Directors when elected. 11

Need information, services? Tennessee Education Association 801 Second Avenue N., Nashville, TN 37201-1099 (615) 242-8392, (800) 342-8367, FAX (615) 259-4581

UniServ Coordinators

District 1 — Harry Farthing, P.O. Box 298, Elizabethton, TN 37644; phone: (423)262-8035, fax: (423)262-8053; Assns: Carter, Hancock, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan.

Report: Federal Education Policies Undermine Democracy, Local Control While educational services are delivered at the local level, increasingly the power has shifted to state or national control. With the passage of No Child Left Behind (NCLB), the politics of education were nationalized to an unprecedented degree. A recently published report concludes the concept of local control “has all but disappeared” in discussions of education policy. Democracy Left Behind: How Recent Education Reforms Undermine Local School Governance and Democratic Education, a report by Kenneth Howe and David Meens of the University of Colorado Boulder, examines the impact on democratic ideals of vanishing local control over education. The study reviews the making of education policy as well as the decisions about what schools “Curtail privatization teach and how they teach it. The authors suggest that many of public education contemporary reforms “run afoul resources. Instead, build of democratic principles in several up democratic values...” critical ways.” While local discretion is allowed for how to comply with state and federal mandates, the constraints imposed by those mandates have been enormous. Consequently, Howe and Meens contend, NCLB and its progeny have been fundamentally anti-democratic. The same is true of the reform policies advanced by President Obama and Education Secretary Duncan. The authors warn that current reform approaches are marginalizing community involvement. “Democratic reform should involve local stakeholders, especially marginalized members of society, because inclusion is a democratic value that

increases not only the likelihood that policies will be just, but also the likelihood that reform will succeed,” Howe and Meens write. “Such inclusion also helps create the conditions in which all students can attain the democratic threshold.” The authors conclude with a series of recommendations, urging schools and education policymakers to take three key steps. 1. Move away from a punitive model based on threats to withhold funding. This should be replaced by a participatory model, such as support and incentives for school employees, parents and community members to collaborate together to resolve educational problems. 2. Encourage states and local communities to adopt curriculum standards “that include a conscious and substantive focus on developing the deliberative skill and dispositions required of democratic citizenship.” 3. Curtail the privatization of public education resources. Instead, build up democratic values by holding schools receiving public funds accountable to the public through democratically elected school boards and other democratic institutions. “If the future reauthorization of ESEA is to safeguard and strengthen democracy, it should make education for democracy a fundamental aim of public education,” according to the study. Find Democracy Left Behind: How Recent Education Reforms Undermine Local School Governance and Democratic Education at

District 2 — Jennifer Gaby, P.O. Box 70, Afton, TN 37616; (423)234-0700, fax: (423)234-0708; Assns: Cocke, Greene, Unicoi, Washington, Johnson City. District 3 — Tina Parlier, P.O. Box 74, Corryton, TN 37721; (865)6881175, fax: (865)688-5188; Assns: Claiborne, Grainger, Hamblen, Jefferson, Sevier, Union. District 4 — Jon White, Knox County Education Association, 2411 Magnolia Ave., Knoxville, TN 37917-8289; (865)522-9793, fax: (865)522-9866; Assns: Knox, TSD. District 5— Jason White, P.O. Box 5502, Oak Ridge, TN 37831; (615)5211333, fax: (865)200-5254; Assns: Anderson, Campbell, Blount, Morgan, Scott. District 6 — Jim Jordan, P.O. Box 4878, Cleveland, TN 37320; phone/fax: (423)472-3315; Assns: Rhea, Roane, Meigs, McMinn, Monroe, Loudon, Bradley, Polk. District 7 — Theresa Turner, 4655 Shallowford Rd., Chattanooga, TN 37411; (423)485-9535, fax: (423)485-9512; Assns: Hamilton County. District 8 — Jeff Garrett, P.O. Box 1202, Lebanon, TN 37088; (615)630-2605, fax: (855)320-8755; Assns: Coffee, Cannon, Bledsoe, Franklin, Grundy, Manchester City, Marion, Sequatchie, Tullahoma City, Van Buren, White, Warren. District 9 — Shannon Bain, 1001 Rhett Place, Lebanon, TN 37087; phone: (615)547-7769, fax: (855)7150824; Assns: Clay, Cumberland, DeKalb, Fentress, Jackson, Macon, Overton, Pickett, Putnam, Smith, Trousdale. District 10 — Jackie Pope, 2326 Valley Grove Dr., Murfreesboro, TN 37128; (615) 898-1060, fax: (615) 898-1099; Assns: Bedford, Marshall, Moore, Williamson.

District 11 — Susan Young, P.O. Box 422, Madison, TN 37116-0422; phone: (615)865-9700, fax: (615)8659701; Assns: Rutherford, Sumner. District 12 — Cheryl

Richardson-Bradley, 801 Second Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37201; (615)630-2601, fax: (888)519-4879; Assns: Cheatham, Dickson, Hickman, Wilson. District

13 — Forestine Cole, Ralph Smith, Metro Nashville, 531 Fairground Court, Nashville, TN 37211; (615)726-1499, fax: (615)726-2501; Assns: Metro Nashville. District 14 —

Rhonda Thompson, 801 Second Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37201; phone: (615)242-8392, ext. 321, fax: (615)2594581; Assns: Clarksville-Montgomery, Robertson.

District 15 — Miley Durham, P.O. Box 10, Lawrenceburg, TN 38464; phone: (931)766-7874, fax: (913)762-9391; Assns: Giles, Lawrence, Lincoln, Hardin, Lewis, Maury, Wayne. District 16 — Maria Uffelman, P.O. Box 99, Cumberland City, TN 37050; phone: (931)827-3333, fax: (931)827-3330; Assns: Benton, Carroll (West Carroll) Central, Henry, Stewart, Weakley, FTA, S.S.D. Decatur, Houston, Humphreys, Perry. District 17 — Lorrie

Butler, P.O. Box 387, Henderson, TN 38340; (731)9894860, fax: (731)989-9254; Assns: Chester, Hardeman, Henderson, Jackson-Madison, McNairy. District 18 — Karla Carpenter, P.O. Box 177, Brunswick, TN 38014; (901)590-2543, fax: (901)382-1433; Assns: Crockett, Dyer, Gibson, Haywood, Lake, Lauderdale, Obion, Tipton. District 19 — Zandra Foster, 3897 Homewood Cove, Memphis, TN 38128; (901)377-9472, fax: (855)3208737; Assns: Fayette, Shelby. District 20 — Memphis Education Association — Ken Foster, Executive Director; MEA UniServ Directors: Susanne Jackson, Terri Jones, Tom Marchand, Herman Sawyer, MEA, 126 South Flicker Street, Memphis, TN 38104; (901)454-0966, fax: (901)454-9979; Assn: Memphis. Scan this Quick Response code for UniServ contact information

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November 2012

November 2012 Teach  

TEA members win top honors from Tennessee Department of Education; “Breakfast in the Classroom” program makes a big difference to kids and t...

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