We are entering the final month of this school year, learning about staffing assignments for next year, planning for each precious moment of instructional time with students, and preparing to say goodbye to students for the summer.  For so many educators, this year has been the hardest year of our career.  This year has required us to continually dig deeper into our reserves of energy, compassion, patience, advocacy, creativity, and resolve.  For over a year, you have gone above and beyond to make sure that your students are getting the best learning experience possible. It cannot be said enough: THANK YOU.

As we wrap up this year, and plan to re-engage our students in school next year and beyond, there will be an urge and desire to return to “normal.”  However, we need to do better and differently than normal, and we need to do so in a way that is centers community care, safety for students and staff, restorative practices, and trust amongst each other.

One way that our union is advocating for a better future for our students and our profession is at the bargaining table. The BEA and BSD Bargaining Teams have begun negotiations and we are determined to secure wins that will increase supports for students, uplift the professionalism of educators, and make our schools more equitable, safe and inclusive.  We will be updating members frequently throughout the process. The Contract Action Team will be observers during bargaining sessions and will serve as a communication link between the Bargaining Team and the members, and we are encouraging each worksite to have at least one member on the Contract Action Team.  Be sure you know who that person is in your building and keep an eye out for communication about negotiations after our session this evening.

I wish you the best as we finish off this challenging year, and I hope that you are able to make the most out these last precious weeks with your students.

In unity,
Sara Schmitt