CFT United

Overview

CFT United

CFT United, previously named California Teacher, is the union’s flagship magazine that is emailed to all union members. The award-winning digital magazine contains union news important to members, and covers major issues in each division of the CFT: PreK-12, Classified, Community College, University, and Retired. Browse stories by date here or by index.

CFT United is published regularly during the academic year. We welcome unsolicited articles, letters, and story ideas. Please send letters, submissions, or other inquiries to Publications Director Jane Hundertmark.

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California Teacher Rank & Files

RANK & FILES, Sep-Oct 2015

Mark James Miller, English instructor and president of the Part-Time Faculty Association of Allan Hancock College, Local 6185, published a novel about seeking truth and finding redemption. In Red Tide two surfing buddies venture into an abandoned power plant one fateful night. Instead of finding adventure, they find murder. Order the novel online.

California Teacher Local Action

Local Wire, Sep-Oct 2015

LOCAL 61 
Magic can’t pay the rent…
With the average price of a house over one million dollars, San Francisco is the most expensive real estate market in the nation.

California Teacher CalSTRS gun control divestment

CFT urges CalSTRS to divest from gun manufacturers now
New documentary film Gun-Free Retirement features CFT members

In April 2013, a few months after the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut that killed 20 children and six adult staff members, the board of California State Teachers’ Retirement System voted to divest from firms making weapons that are illegal to own in California. More than two years later, that hasn’t happened, and Joshua Pechthalt, president of the CFT, wants to make sure it does. Soon.

California Teacher Local Action

Local Wire, Apr-May 2015

ADULT EDUCATION
Funding in limbo… 
The last few years have been a terrible time in the adult education world, according to Jack Carroll, the executive director at the Pajaro Valley Federation of Teachers. Carroll, who teaches office skills to adults, hopes AB86 will alleviate that by providing $25 million for adult education.

California Teacher CFT Convention

Robert Chacanaca: The workers’ advocate

When he accepted the Raoul Teilhet Educate, Agitate, Organize Award, Robert Chacanaca, known as “Chaca,” asked for a moment of silence to remember Teilhet, the former CFT president who successfully pursued collective bargaining.   

California Teacher librarians educational technology union communications

Librarian masters digital tools for workplace and union
Carla Arbagey creates infographics to illustrate workload

UC Riverside librarian Carla Arbagey says, “Technology is like air to me.” It is essential in the library, where she integrates systems and tracks information on more than 3.4 million items. She is the winner of the 2014 Technology New Leader Award from the California Library Association, and a self-described “type-A personality” who likes things to be tidy, organized, and efficient.

California Teacher CFT Convention resolutions

Floor debate: Delegates tackle rich array of social justice and education topics

Delegates took on social justice concerns, passing a resolution from the United Educators of San Francisco and the CFT Executive Council to officially support the “Black Lives Matter” movement. Resolution 23 calls for community meetings, teach-ins and curricula, such as what’s already posted on UESF’s website and AFT’s Share My Lesson.

California Teacher international CFT Convention

CFT supports families of missing Mexican students
Survivor tells horrific tale of persecution and murder

Angel Neri described the unique education given students at the Raul Isidro Burgos School in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, in his speech at CFT Convention. The school takes students from rural farming communities, trains them as teachers, and then encourages them to return to work in schools in the poorest, most remote communities in Mexico. This has earned the school the enmity of corrupt and violent elements of Mexican society.

California Teacher part-time faculty

Former part-timer chairs Assembly Higher Education Committee
Teaching background brings understanding, nuanced solutions

Community College Council President Jim Mahler says having Assemblyman Jose Medina as the new chair of the Committee on Higher Education is a gold mine.

Why? Because Medina, before going into politics, was a high school teacher in the Riverside Unified School District and a part-time teacher at three different community colleges, active in his union. He knows first-hand the insecurity part-timers have to deal with — cobbling together a schedule, finding enough work to support themselves, and worrying about their classes being cancelled. 

California Teacher CFT Convention

Classified staff: We wear many hats

Lab techs. Secretaries. Bus drivers. Groundskeepers. Food service workers. The varied hats classified staff members wear cover a multitude of job roles, said Carl Williams, a senior custodian and president of the Lawndale Federation of Classified Employees. He had members pick up a hat and come on stage when they heard their job title called out.

California Teacher Up Front Prop 30 Prop 13 split roll

“Make it Fair” creates real change for California

By Josh Pechthalt, CFT President

California’s largest, oldest corporations have not been paying their fair share for more than 35 years. As a result, the state has lost billions of dollars in uncollected property tax revenues — a major factor pushing our public schools to the national bottom in per pupil spending and class size average. The state’s most at-risk families and individuals have also seen essential services repeatedly cut for more than a generation.

California Teacher Rank & Files

Rank & Files, Apr-May 2015

Mediha Din, a part-time sociology instructor and member of the El Camino College Federation of Teachers, Local 1388, received a Gerald C. Hayward Award for Excellence in Education from the California Community Colleges, which comes with $1250. The award recognizes Din’s creative teaching strategies and outstanding work with at-risk students from diverse academic and cultural backgrounds, service as faculty advisor for the Muslim Student Association, and initiatives to engage students in community service.