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Hamtramck Teachers & Para-Educators Rally for a Fair Contract

Monday afternoon, I had the chilly pleasure of joining Hamtramck teachers and para-educators as they rallied outside the district’s administration building in support of the union’s bargaining demands. Hamtramack Federation of Teachers President Toni Coral read a powerful opening statement that she delivered to the district’s bargaining team later in the afternoon at the first negotiating session.  The local’s demands center on respect for teachers and para-educators, including fair compensation and enhanced educator voice.

Mourning the Passing of Cesar Chavez Academy ACTS Virginia Casey

We mourn the passing of Virginia Casey, a union steward at Cesar Chavez Academy. Virginia was senior moderator at Chavez, softball coach and robotics mentor. A devoted educator, Virginia did not let illness undermine her devotion to her students.  During virtual learning, she taught her math classes from her hospital bed. She will be greatly missed by Cesar Chavez Academy ACTS and the entire CCA community. 

Register for the 2022 AFT PSRP Conference

Registration is now open for the 43rd AFT Paraprofessionals and School-Related Personnel Conference, April 22-24, at the Marriott St. Louis Grand in St. Louis. The registration fee is $100. 

Register here.

The conference opens on Friday, April 22. There will be a first-timer orientation for all new attendees, and then three mini plenaries will be offered for all attendees:

  • How to Run a PSRP Issue Campaign
  • Leadership Training for New Leaders
  • Organizing and Community Building

During the following two days, there will be workshops on:

  • Union leader skills, such as building steward/representative structures, communicating with your members and engaging the community.
  • Worker skills and knowledge, such as bilingual education, dealing with diversity, student management, classroom teams and green cleaning.
  • Advocating for worker/workplace concerns, such as health and safety, coalition building, workplace stress, political action/federal legislation and fighting privatization.

Visit to register and secure your hotel accommodations, for updated conference information and to download all conference materials.

Contribute to the AFT Michigan PAC Today

AFT Michigan fights for our members, students and communities all year round and we need your help. Can you donate $1 a week to aid us in this fight? Please visit the AFT Michigan website and set up a recurring gift to make a big difference in protecting public education and building a better Michigan future! 

Upcoming Union-Building Workshops

Does your local need to get the word out to members more efficiently using email, text messages, etc.? Come learn about Communication Tools for Local Leaders this Wednesday!

Treasurer Tuesday: Internal ControlsTuesday, February 1, 20227:00 PM8:30 PM
Communication Tools for Local LeadersWednesday, February 2, 20225:00 PM6:30 PM
Delegation, Feedback & Accountability (2 Sessions)Thursday, February 24 & March 3, 20225:00 PM6:30 PM

Professional Development 

Share my Lesson

Black History Month Activities: Celebrating Historical Legacies

Explore Black History Month ideas for your lesson planning with our curated collection of activities, blogs, webinars and more. You’ll find everything you need to teach your preK-12 students about key events and individuals whose accomplishments continue to influence, inspire, and shape American society and the world today. Explore some of our most popular resources with:

Improving Literacy Webinars

As part of the AFT’s new literacy campaign Reading Opens the World, Share My Lesson has a new community for you to check out. And, we are hosting a series of webinars–open to everyone–focused on various aspects of teaching literacy to help all students become strong readers. Here are a few of the upcoming webinars: 

Literacy and ELLs: Scaffolding with Visual and Linguistic Supports

Thursday, February 03, 2022 | 06:00 PM Eastern Standard Time

Students’ ability to read and understand grade level text is integral to their academic success. Learn how to scaffold literacy instruction and make the content comprehensible to English Language Learners. This webinar will include specific strategies and models of visual and linguistic support that will enhance your instruction and assist students in reaching high levels of success.

A Primer on the Science of Reading

Thursday, February 17, 2022 | 06:30 PM Eastern Standard Time

This webinar will examine The Simple View of Reading—a formula demonstrating that an individual’s reading comprehension is the product of decoding skill and language comprehension. We will break down each category into its component factors that contribute to developing successful young readers.

Click here to register for one or all of the sessions.

In solidarity, 

David Hecker


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