Organizing

Organizing

MEA’s power is in the collective strength of our 120,000 members.  From local school boards to the State Capitol and beyond, our collective action can advocate for the change our students and our colleagues need.

Want to organize with MEA? – If you work in a school employee group not represented by MEA but are interested in organizing with us, please call us at 800-292-1934 and ask for Organizing Consultant Jacob Louks (jlouks@mea.org).

Organizing News

Study finds school reform has left rural communities behind

By Brenda Ortega MEA Voice Editor Education policies pursued for the past two decades in Michigan have ignored the needs of rural school districts, which has reduced opportunities for students and stymied community development in areas facing serious economic hardship, a new study has found. School reforms favored by policymakers over the past 20 years – test-based accountability and school…

Federal funding providing critical tutoring support for students

Providing additional academic support for students recovering from the pandemic has become a key use of federal school rescue funds in local districts across Michigan. Many school leaders are spending these resources on tutoring for students who struggled to adjust to learning from home and are now working to catch up. More than 200 school districts throughout the state signaled…

Parents and educators push back against unwarranted attacks

As a parent in Livingston County’s Hartland Consolidated Schools, Laura Moore publicly addressed the school board in February to say that a small group of vocal people who have been lobbing insults and criticism at every board meeting for months do not speak for everyone. “I addressed the board as a parent of three students and said that while I…

We Must Advocate and We are Not Alone

Amid critical educator shortages, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is focused on delivering support and resources in her proposed education budget for next fiscal year with plans to use ongoing state revenue increases to shore up public schools as they respond to ongoing effects of the pandemic. In contrast, Republican leaders in the House and Senate issued budget proposals focused on massive…

Forming a Higher Ed Union

Frequently Asked Questions What does it mean for us to form a union? Forming a union allows you and your colleagues to come together and advocate for yourselves. As union members, you’ll decide what priorities you share and how to address them. While you will elect your own officers and board, that’s just the beginning. The more participation there is…

MEA Members Share Reasons Behind Educator Shortages

Several MEA members, including Michigan Teacher of the Year Leah Porter, testified last week at a hearing on the varied causes behind growing educator shortages before the Appropriations Subcommittee on School Aid and Department of Education. The subcommittee, chaired by Rep. Brad Paquette (R-Niles), heard wide-ranging explanations for why educators are leaving the profession and not enough young people are…

Santa and Solidarity Appear in Breitung Township

Santa fought through near blizzard conditions to visit Breitung Township Education Association (BTEA) and Breitung Township Education Support Personnel Association (BTESPA) family members earlier this month. More than 40 children and adults were on hand to meet with Santa in the first of what the two local unions hope will become an annual event for members and their families. Under…

Decline to Sign Latest Voucher Scheme

On Monday, the State Board of Canvassers approved revised summary language for a new voucher scheme, including important details about the cost and discriminatory practices in the description voters will see on the petition. The decision moves the GOP-backed scheme forward to signature collection – and signals the beginning of Decline to Sign efforts by a ballot committee formed to…

Lansing Educators: It’s Time to Rally for Public Education

By Brenda Ortega MEA Voice Editor Mariah Gaither MEA member Mariah Gaither had a challenging entry into her teaching career in 2020, having to adapt her secondary science curriculum for remote learners through the full school year in Lansing. Now Gaither is working in-person and getting an eye-opening lesson of her own: she’s discovering how much educators spend out-of-pocket to…

Union Caucus in Ann Arbor Targets Special Education Issues

Engagement * Bargaining * Advocacy * Justice * Empowerment * Support by Brenda Ortega MEA Voice Editor Four years ago, MEA member Dr. Tracy Loveland joined with a fellow Ann Arbor school psychologist to bring the union’s strength to bear on frustrations within the district’s special education department, which were contributing to high staff turnover. “We were struggling to have…

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