Newsroom

Article student debt

You may be eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness
AFT legal victory produces sweeping rule changes, and a year to apply

After years of pressure and lawsuits from AFT and other advocates, the U.S. Department of Education recently announced sweeping changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program that will make it easier to qualify and easier to achieve forgiveness.

Article Classified Conference
two panelists in Organizing for SuccessCarl Williams, CCE PresidentCCE President Carl WilliamsCCE Southern Vice President Tina Solórzano FletcherCFT President Jeff FreitasCCC President Jim Mahler Philip J. Gordillo, executive director of the California School Personnel Commissioners AssociationDan Golodner, AFT archivist and historian | Photo by Tina Solórzano FletcherCovid safe lunch servingJanet Eberhardt, CCE Northern Vice PresidentworkshopDanielle Short, AFT Guildworkshop attendeespanel discussion on organizing member signs up for rafflehelping with gift basketsCompton classified membersCFT President Jeff Freitaspanelistsplanning committee members

History, solidarity, reunion mark annual Classified Conference 
PHOTO GALLERY

The annual Classified Conference was held October 15-17 with nearly 125 people making the trek to Las Vegas for CFT’s first in-person conference and a pre-pandemic style but COVID-safe program with plenary sessions, workshops, and social events.

Classified staff and paraprofessionals were happy to see each other again after nearly 19 months of pandemic isolation, and a virtual conference last year. They joined together under the theme “Classified Professionals — The Heart of Education.”

Article lecturers contingent faculty
CFT Senior Vice President Lacy Barnes

Lecturers rally at nine UC campuses in statewide action
1700 supporters turn out to stand with lecturers

As hundreds of lecturers, students and other workers at the Berkeley campus of the University of California gathered in front of the MLK Student Center, they began to chant. “UC would not be anything, Without teaching faculty, ME!” Leading them was Lacy Barnes, senior vice president of the CFT, and former full-time faculty member and president of the State Center Federation of Teachers.

Article coronavirus Up Front staff shortage

Back-to-School Tour puts staff shortage in stark perspective
Dedication and inspired work of our members must be recognized

By Jeffery M. Freitas, CFT President

In early August, Luukia Smith, Lacy Barnes, and I ventured up and down the state on a three week Back-to-School, Forward Together Tour. We visited with early childhood educators, TK-12 teachers, classified workers, adult education teachers, and part-time community college faculty. We witnessed firsthand students learning in-person. We saw the incredible school communities our members have helped to build and visited campuses and classrooms to see CFT members in action.

Article coronavirus
masked teacher with masked students

Answers to common questions about return to in-person 
FAQ for teachers and support staff in TK-12 schools

Now that California schools have returned to in-person classes, teachers and staff on campuses up and down the state are having to navigate a new phase of the COVID-19 pandemic. In mid-August, the CFT held a tele-townhall meeting to connect directly with members and hear about your workplace concerns. Below are answers to the most common questions we heard from you.

Article community schools restorative justice
School building image with the words "Every community is different. What will yours be like?"

CFT launches community schools training program
Governor Newsom funds innovative schools at highest level in nation

The CFT has launched a training program following Governor Newsom’s extraordinary allocation of $2.8 billion to expand existing community schools and establish new ones.

According to CFT President Jeff Freitas, “This is a national effort, and California now has the largest amount of funding in the nation for community schools. These funds will assist nearly 1,000 community schools in our state.”

Article coronavirus
Classified employee members of the Lawndale Federation around a union bannerGilroy members with CFT President Jeff FreitasCFT President  with members at East Los Angeles College

Classified members feel the love during Back-to-School Tour
CFT leaders provide encouragement, support for safe working conditions

CFT’s top officers embarked on a statewide Back-to-School Tour in mid-August as many classified employees and teachers headed back to campus in-person for the first time since the pandemic forced distance learning for California schools and colleges. The road trip included stops from North Bay Counties to San Diego County, in both urban and rural districts.

Article coronavirus
students waiting for outside class "Engines, Fuel and Ignition"  to beginclassroom with new HEPA filterJason Newman, president of the Los Rios College Federation of Teachers

What’s on everyone’s mind? The return to in-person
From urban to rural, community college locals weigh in

Most faculty members, staff, and students at the state’s community colleges have been teaching, learning, and working online for more than a year and a half due to COVID-19. Many planned to go back to their campus in the fall semester, but after a brief period of hope that the virus was on the way out the delta variant emerged in the summer, and in many areas, COVID is surging again.

Article lecturers coronavirus

Back to the classroom, but no contract
Facing inequity, lack of COVID protections, 96% of UC-AFT members vote to authorize strike

As they have for the past two years, lecturers at the University of California continue their effort to get the administration to bargain a fair contract. The last agreement between the university and the University Council-AFT, expired on January 31, 2020. The union’s negotiating committee has met with UC’s bargaining team on 50 occasions, yet the four most fundamental issues are still outstanding — high turnover rates, lack of performance reviews, widespread uncompensated labor, and compensation itself.