Student Program Core Values
The NEA Student Program Foundations – Teacher Quality, Community Outreach, and Political Action – are the underlying areas of focus that direct Student Program activities. It is in these areas that our members and affiliates sponsor programs, educate on issues, and affect change.
Teacher Quality encompasses pre-professional development and job preparation. At local meetings and workshops, state conferences, and national symposiums, our members encounter professional development opportunities: guest speakers on classroom management, experts on testing and practitioners sharing tips on smoothly running science labs. Job preparation comes in the form of resume workshops, portfolio tutorials, mock interviews and new teacher panels. Student Program publications and websites share teacher quality information relevant to our members, including certification requirements and resources for working with special needs children. Student members and chapters partner with Local Associations to enhance in-the-classroom opportunities and secure “real world” insights into the education profession. Students shape their college curriculum by serving as change-agents on boards and committees. Our members’ involvement in the NEA Student Program increases their ability to become quality teachers.
Community Outreach describes how NEA Student Program members engage the people and environment around them; we impact our communities – locally and globally – and value the meaningfulness of such involvement. Our members learn about communicating with parents, experience partnering with local businesses, and find grant support through Chamber of Commerce consortiums. We design and implement projects as diverse as after-school tutoring programs, Harry Potter learning carnivals, and Senior Citizen dances. New teachers who are NEA Student Program Alumni are more successful in helping their students achieve because they know how reaching out to the community provides them access to material and human resources.
Political Action includes both the realization that political and legislative issues impact the education world and the initiative to get involved. We celebrate issue awareness around vouchers, IDEA funding, and state-mandated new teacher rights. We share information with peers, family and community. We sponsor voter registrations, get-out-the-vote activities, contact elected officials, help elect pro-public education officials, and lobby our local, state and national legislators. By educating each other, organizing activities and publicizing our involvement, we are making an impact.