Colorado Springs teachers promote the education agenda at the opening of the legislative session


Dressed in red with an education on the body and a smile on their face, some local teachers joined a hundred other state teachers on Capitol Hill Friday to highlight their priorities to legislators at the opening of the legislative session of 2019.

The mood was upbeat and upbeat, but concerned, said Simon Ellis, a freshman teacher at the Academy Academy's International Elementary Academy Academy 20.

"We wanted to remind legislators that we are still fighting for our profession, for a better recognition of what we do," he said.

The participants, who traveled from the Colorado Education Association headquarters on Capitol Hill, sent postcards to elected officials with a list of their union's funding priorities.

These include the funding of classrooms instead of "corporate income tax giveaways" and property tax exemptions, the overthrow of Colorado's testing system and the reduction of the shortage of through a "fair pension system" and the empowerment, empowerment and decision-making of educators. to make the capacity.

"I think education is starting to come back on the table, which must not only be discussed, but must also be implemented," Ellis said. "We need to retain our educators and bring more. We are still scrambling J-20; even to replace teachers, we do not have enough.

"There is no longer this desire to work in schools as in the past, and we need to make sure that this stature of being an educator is restored."

ECA President Amie Baca-Oehlert, a high school counselor, said the concerns and ideas of educators, parents and students should be at the center of any approach to improving public schools.

"We told our legislators today that we would give merit to legislative proposals that respect and value the voices of Colorado educators," she said in a press release issued by the largest union. State educators, which has more than 35,000 members.

Although all the candidates supported by the association have been retained in the House, the Senate and the Governor's Office currently controlled by the Democrats, Ellis said: "We must keep their promises, as they promised in November.

"Everyone, without exception, cited education as one of the highlights of his election campaign."

A proposal for a state-wide vote to increase funding for schools – Amendment 73 – failed in November, which "was probably not surprising", said Becky Thomas, president of the Academy Education Association, comprised of 230 members, D-20 and paraprofessional of several D-20s. schools.

Supporters pointed out that despite his defeat, a record number of 1.1 million voters in Colorado supported the measure.

"I think people are realizing that something needs to be done and we will continue," Thomas said.

"The people we have elected understand that they have achieved their goals with the support and help of educators," she said.

"And the benefits will be needed."

Contact the author: 719-476-1656.

Contact the author: 719-476-1656.