On May 19, 2015, TU discussed and voted on our three focus issues for the coming year: Professional Development Implementation, Compensation, and Early Career Teacher/Admin Support. Over the summer months, we will be accepting research suggestions for these policy teams to consider when they convene in the fall. We are always looking for interested parties to be involved in our research, recommendation, and implementation of our policy work.
Professional Development Implementation: This past legislative session saw the introduction of House Bill 1345, which saw support in both the House and the Senate. Ultimately, the bill did not pass as originally written. The 2015-2016 legislative session saw the reintroduction of House Bill 1345. With continued work with our legistlators, Teachers United celebrates the passage on March 31, 2016, of House Bill 1345: Defining Professional Learning.
Compensation: Listening to the dialogue in state government and around our districts, we see that compensation is an important issue for our teachers to research, understand, and have a voice in decisions. The team has read and analyzed proposed compensation bills from the 2014-2015 legislative session. They are currently looking to share their analysis and investigate further on models that work in Washington state.
Early Career Teacher/Admin Support: Supporting early career teachers grew out of our research on teacher retention and overwhelming support from our TU253 members. At our May 19th meeting, we also discussed the need to involve new admin in the research and policy recommendation as they play a key role in mentoring new teachers and creating a building climate. The team has been meeting since September: reviewing research and talking to experts. They plan to have a recommendation in the coming months.