COLUMBUS, Ohio – December 1, 2012 – Today, delegates at the Ohio Education Association Fall Representative Assembly overwhelmingly voted to join forces with the Strong Schools, Strong Communities campaign. This campaign is a citizen-driven, non-partisan movement dedicated to informing and engaging Ohioans to tell the stories of excellence and achievement in public schools throughout Ohio – schools that deserve support from their communities and from state government.
Delegates to the Representative Assembly also recognized the 11 OEA member candidates who were on the ballot in the Fall 2012 election. “OEA is committed to electing representatives who understand and support public education in Ohio,” said OEA President Patricia Frost-Brooks. “OEA is proud of these candidates who share our commitment to transforming public education and the success of every child member John Patterson was elected to the Ohio House in the 99th District sending a teacher to the statehouse.
In her address to the 1,100 member delegates from across Ohio, OEA President Patricia Frost-Brooks outlined some of the many new changes and mandates in the education profession such as the new teacher evaluation process, the Common Core curriculum with new standards and tests, the newly adopted Third Grade reading guarantee, new legislation raising the bar for school district report cards and the punitive attitudes hanging on from No Child Left Behind. “School Districts need time to understand, absorb and implement new ways of doing things.” said Frost-Brooks.“We must join together to take collective action based on fairness and our belief that every student deserves a great public school.”
As Congress prepares for a political showdown in Washington, OEA Executive Director, Larry Wicks, addressed the delegation, warning that the looming fiscal cliff has dire consequences if Congress fails to act for Ohio’s students. The fiscal cliff includes $147.6 million in cuts to education in Ohio, and that means 60,000 Ohio students would lose learning opportunities, ranging from Head Start and preschool to adult literacy education and higher education. “We need Washington to stand up for Ohio’s school children and middle class families and we will hold elected officials accountable. We are calling on Congress to work out a good deal for hard working families. That means no more cuts to the vital services everyday Americans depend on: schools, healthcare, Social Security and public safety.”
In other business, Robin Jeffries, of the Columbus Education Association, was elected to serve on theNational Education Association Board of Directors. The Board is responsible for guiding NEA policy.
The Ohio Education Association represents 124,000 teachers, faculty members and support professionals in Ohio's public schools, colleges and universities.