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 magazine contains union news and positions 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

Arizona outlaws core Mexican-American Studies program
Tucson High School teacher recounts story of textbook and curricula ban

A few days before she traveled to CFT Convention in San Jose, María C. Federico Brummer received an email at 8 p.m. from the Tucson Unified School District. It contained a list of newly banned books that the district wanted packed by noon the next day. During class, her students watched her comb the cabinets and remove classroom sets of the affected titles.

California Teacher Lecturers Librarians

Classics lecturer maintains classic ideas about unions
New local president Rundin says union makes lecturer job worth having

Classics lecturer John Rundin feels privileged to pass on to another generation the cultural treasures that were given to him by the previous generation. The teacher of Latin and ancient Greek is one of two recipients of this year’s Award for Excellence in Teaching from the UC Davis Academic Federation.

“I live my job, love what I do, and I love my students,” says Rundin. “It is a great honor.”

California Teacher Millionaires Tax

March in March voices rising anger with increasing cuts
Faculty, students, and staff demand Millionaires Tax at state Capitol rally

Getting on the bus at UC Berkeley on March 5, Desiree Angelo acknowledged how hard it has been to get to her senior year there. “I was a transfer student, a high school dropout, and a low-income student too,” she recalled.

“Because I dropped out, I don’t quality for a lot of financial aid. To afford the fees, which have gone from $5100 to $7100 a semester while I’ve been here, I’ve had to work in the dining hall. The discussion sessions for my classes have been cut, and with 500 students in a class, we really need them. So I’m paying more, getting less, and working like crazy just to stay here.”

California Teacher Representational Elections

Berkeley workers succeed in quest for AFT representation
Operations and support workers reunite with colleagues in Local 6192

For nearly a decade, classified employees in the Berkeley Unified School District were divided between two unions, but when a majority of operations and support workers signed petitions to be represented by the Berkeley Council of Classified Employees, AFT Local 6192, they were reunited. In December the school board agreed to the workers’ decision.

California Teacher Retiree chapters

New retiree chapters offer social connection, wield political clout
Expertise of post-career members brings valuable asset to mid-size local unions

Although it began as a social group, the recently chartered retiree chapter of the ABC Federation of Teachers has become increasingly political, says its president, Gayle Pekrul. “Many retirees are not interested in just being social — they want to be involved in the issues.”

California Teacher

Local organizer preps for fall elections, takes on financial giant
Peralta Federation challenges Morgan Stanley to share bailout windfall with district

Janell Hampton rarely slows down as she goes about connecting faculty, students, staff, unions, and community groups. The political organizer for the 1000-member Peralta Federation of Teachers is pulling together people with a long-term vision for improving public education. She calls her work “the perfect opportunity to impact the world in a way other than teaching.”

California Teacher Elections 2012 Proposition 32

Deceptive ballot proposition is another corporate power grab

The latest in a string of ballot measures claiming to limit special interest money in politics will appear on the November ballot. This is yet another attempt to deceive voters into passing a law that benefits wealthy corporate interests at the expense of workers and unions. It is nothing but a corporate power grab, the kind California voters have already rejected twice first in 1998 and again in 2005.

California Teacher Rank & Files

Rank & Files, Feb-March 2012

Kimberly Claytor, president of the Newport-Mesa Federation of Teachers, Local 1794 and CFT vice president, was listed by Costa Mesa’s Daily Pilot newspaper as the eighth most influential person in the Newport-Mesa community for 2011. The Pilot said, “The teachers’ union president voiced support for cutting money from the administration instead of the classroom and led a teachers union no-confidence vote in the superintendent.”

California Teacher CFT 100

The passage of Proposition 25 will help make California a working state

The members and leaders of CFT see that California’s education system, and our jobs, are placed at grave risk by a faltering economy, chronic late state budgets, and a paralyzed political process. On November 2, the rest of California agreed with us.

Voters passed Proposition 25, changing state budget approval to a majority, ending the tyranny of a two-thirds vote and the partisan groups that benefit from a revenue-starved government.

California Teacher CFT 100

The March for California’s Future: We walked the valley with a message of hope and justice
A capsule summary: 365 miles, 48 days, rallying from town to town

In the CFT-organized March for California’s Future, six “core marchers” walked 365 miles from Bakersfield to Sacramento over the course of 48 days. Putting their lives on hold, they braved the elements, sleeping in churches, schools, and RV parks.

Throughout California’s great Central Valley — home to people who work the fields as well as legislators elected in small towns who demand budget cuts and oppose tax increases — the marchers talked to people and listened to personal stories of economic hardship.