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From Our President

Becky’s Journal of Joy, Justice, & Excellence April 2022

NEA's president continued to visit schools and NEA members and to support safe and healthy schools for students and staff. Check out her latest column from the pages of the NEA Today magazine April issue.
NEA President Becky Pringle visits educators in Delaware Edward Savaria
On a stop in Delaware, Becky talks with Delaware State Education Association President Stephanie Ingram and bus driver James Miller, who is president of his local.
Published: April 4, 2022

Dear NEA members,

United, we will reclaim public education as a common good and transform it into a racially and socially just system that actually prepares every student—not one, not some, but every single student—to succeed in a diverse and interdependent world. Onward!

Face to Face with NEA Members

My “Joy, Justice, and Excellence Tour” has introduced me to NEA members who create joy, fight for justice, and personify excellence in our schools. During my recent visit to Delaware, I met Gloria Ho, a school social worker who showed me around Milton Elementary’s food pantry—a community-supported operation that has provided 39,000 bags of food to local families. Amazing! I also was delighted to take a ride with James Miller, a school bus driver and president of his local who shared his insights into the driver shortage. I agree, James: You are far too often underpaid and underappreciated! 

NEA President Becky Pringle greets social worker Gloria Ho at her school's food pantry

Follow the tour

What I’m Listening To

NEA’s School Me podcast is one of my favorite listens (up there with Malcolm Gladwell!) It’s full of advice from educators like you and me, who’ve been there, done that. One of my favorites is Episode 66 with Larry Carey, a Columbus, Ohio, preschool teacher who reflects on why there are so few educators who look like him—a Black male—and how he and his colleagues have leaned on each other during the pandemic. Carey, who created his own YouTube channel to connect with students’ families during virtual learning, is an active union member who frequently advocates for his students at the Statehouse. “As a collective power, as a collective unit, we can cause change,” he says. That’s right, Larry! If we listen, we will learn and we will be inspired by what we hear. 

Check it out below:

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We’re working together to achieve joy, justice, and excellence in our schools and communities. Here are a couple of actions you can take:

Get the Debt Forgiveness You Deserve

In response, in part, to action by NEA members, Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona announced a new PSLF waiver, which will enable 500,000 educators to move closer to student loan forgiveness. But you still must apply for it.
Diverse Students in Library

Celebrate Reading Without Walls Month in April

According to author Gene Luen Yang, this is a time to read something that opens the world to you. As educators, it’s an opportunity to introduce students to a character who doesn’t look like them.

Becky's Take on

“You cannot pick and choose. You’ve got to have all of those [COVID-19] mitigation strategies in place [including vaccinations, ventilation, mask wearing, and testing], and then you have to collaborate and communicate … and care for your educators! I heard one educator describe it like being in a spin cycle all day long. We have to care for those educators—or we’re going to have an even bigger crisis!”
Watch the full clip on MSNBC Morning Joe Live

Caring for Our Educators and students

“A just system means you have the respect, support, compensation, authority, and collective autonomy you deserve as professionals. A just system means your students—every one of them—have what they need and deserve to live into their brilliance.” — at the National Teacher of the Year Gala
National Education Association

Great public schools for every student

The National Education Association (NEA), the nation's largest professional employee organization, is committed to advancing the cause of public education. NEA's 3 million members work at every level of education—from pre-school to university graduate programs. NEA has affiliate organizations in every state and in more than 14,000 communities across the United States.