Monday, August 30, 2010

Primary Election Results

Thanks so much to all who played a part in making sure Ballot Measure 1 was defeated! This was one of the top four priorities from the 2010 Delegate Assembly and our management team helped make sure the word got out through staff and members across the state. A special thank you to those who participated in phone banking!

We still wait for the absentee and questioned ballots to be counted and the election certified. NEA-Alaska recommended Senator Lisa Murkowski in the primary and we hope for a positive outcome once all is known.

Friday, August 20, 2010

How Nice When Politicians Get It!

On Monday I'll be joining U.S. Senator Mark Begich in announcing two pieces of legislation that will help public education in Alaska. The first will make the i3 grants a permanent mechanism for funding innovative educational plans. The second will provide added support for Science Technology Engineering Mathematics (STEM) programs and focus on assistance to educators in related fields. I applaud the Senator's efforts in this area and appreciate his work to improve public schools in ways that make sense.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Huge Contributions, Tragic Loss

Former U.S. Senator Ted Stevens was among the five who perished in a tragic plane crash this week. Regardless of political differences, no one can dispute the huge contributions made by "Uncle Ted" to Alaska and to America. It surprised me to learn that Senator Stevens was instrumental in the creation of Title IX and the equity it provided. I was the beneficiary of Title IX's provisions as a student athlete. As a member of the University of Oregon women's golf team from 1974 to 1978, I was afforded opportunities no women previously were allowed. In today's world my daughter has no doubt about being a part of her college crew team. This is but one of the many ideas and priorities the Senator cared about. His presence and influence in Alaska and our nation will be missed greatly.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Let's Be Sure All Students Are Ready for the New Year!

Ah, there's nothing like new clothes and school supplies. It's the signal of the beginning of a new year at school. It's exciting for educators, support staff, parents and students. It's the promise of things to come. It's new learning, new friendships, and new horizons. Sometimes I worry that all the newness isn't so wonderful for our neediest youth. We know who they are. They are the ones who don't have anything new. They are the ones who come to us without the support systems in place that are needed for success. I noticed an ad on television the last couple of years where community organizations offer to help with start of the year essentials like coats and backpacks. This year I plan to see what I can do to help with this effort. Maybe we can initiate efforts like this in every community to be sure that EVERY student starts the year off with something new.