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Article State Budget

Governor proposes record education funding in state budget

To cap a tumultuous week, today Governor Newsom announced his state budget proposal for the coming year. Despite a struggling economy, and high unemployment, the top line budget numbers are hopeful for public education: a record $85.8 billion for K-14 schools, along with additional funding for teacher recruitment and training, and special education, among other programs. Additionally, the governor estimates that there will be an additional $6.7 billion from the federal government for K-12 as part of the most recent stimulus package.

Article Union Communications

CFT website, UTLA strike series capture first place honors
Union wins nine first place awards for communications

The CFT has won nine First Place awards in the International Labor Media Communications contest for 2019, in a competition delayed by a few months because of the pandemic. 

2019 was a busy year for the CFT and for union communications. In the first three months alone, the union experienced the UTLA strike, the launch of the new CFT website, and CFT’s 100th Anniversary Convention.

Article Coronavirus

The pandemic — reopening, regrouping, testing and protecting
K-12 locals put safety first, find communities on their side

The week after Thanksgiving, Mariah Fisher, president of the Novato Federation of Teachers and a middle school drama teacher, said she was ready to go back to in-person teaching, starting that week. She had marked off six feet of space between all the desks and she was preparing to teach acting to students wearing masks.

Article Elections 2020 Members elected

Paul da Silva became the candidate he wanted to see
First teacher elected to College of Marin Board of Trustees

For years, Paul da Silva, a biology teacher at the College of Marin and a member of United Professors of Marin, Local 1610, wondered about the lack of teachers on the college’s Board of Trustees and tried to talk retiring professors into running. No one took him up on it.

So when he decided in the summer of 2019 that he would retire, he concluded, to paraphrase Mahatma Gandhi, he’d have to be the candidate he wished to see in the world.

Article Elections 2020 Free College

A First Lady who is a community college teacher
President-elect supports two years of free community college

Dr. Jill Biden, a community college teacher, union member, and soon to be First Lady, spoke virtually to members of the AFT and the National Education Association, thanking them for all the phone banking, text messaging, voter registration drives and poll work they did to get her husband, Joe Biden, elected. AFT President Randi Weingarten and NEA President Becky Pringle introduced her.

Article State Budget

Legislative Analyst forecasts state revenue windfall
Preliminary state budget outlook for 2021-22

Each November, the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) is tasked with providing the state Legislature with forecasting of the state’s revenue and budget constraints. Those numbers have just been released to provide a starting point for what to expect in budget negotiations for the California 2021-22 state budget.

Article Coronavirus

With COVID on campus and normal a long way off, strategic action saves classified jobs
Unions save graveyard custodial shift, defeat most of devastating layoff proposal

El Camino College has been slowly resuming activity. Nursing, auto repair, construction and other “essential classes” returned to the Torrance campus in late September, along with scores of custodians, groundkeepers, computer techs and facilities staff.

Returning to normal is another matter. Administrators are trying to eliminate the night shift, even though “graveyard” is typically the busiest time for custodians. Meanwhile, four COVID cases on campus have underlined the pandemic’s ongoing threat, as well as the importance of properly trained and equipped cleaning crews.

Article Labor Solidarity

San Diego County college staffs tackle food insecurity in their communities
Food bank distributions feed thousands of families
PHOTO GALLERY

March 20 was the last day of on-campus classes for about 18,000 San Diego City College students. The college has maintained a food pantry for needy students, faculty and staff, but AFT Local 1931 stepped up the emergency response in September with monthly giveaways.

“It’s joyful to see everyone — students, staff and faculty — come together to help. My happiness was seeing everyone smile,” said Neary Sim, a Guild member and instructional office specialist in the School of Behavioral and Social Sciences.