AFT TEACH Daily: July 21, 2023

Photo of AFT President Randi Weingarten delivering the keynote address at TEACH 2023

Weingarten launches new campaign: ‘Real Solutions for Kids and Communities’

The AFT has always been a solutions-driven union, and our new campaign, launched during TEACH on July 21, proves it once again with a fresh, practical approach to strengthening public education. As AFT President Randi Weingarten pointed out during her keynote speech, the $5 million, yearlong campaign, “Real Solutions for Kids and Communities,” stands up against attacks on public schools and offers real-world solutions to build up, rather than break down, our communities.

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AFT Members in a workshop at AFT TEACH 2023

Strengthening educators to strengthen the union

When unions offer professional development, it does so much more than build capacity. It improves teaching and learning conditions; it builds relationships with administrations and communities; and it creates a stronger union.

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Photo of Diane August speaking at AFT TEACH 2023

Supporting literacy development for English language learners 

Nearly all students experienced learning and achievement gaps because of COVID-19, but some of the most impacted were English language learners. How can educators help these students get back on track and better support their language and literacy development? This was the focus of the opening day TEACH workshop “Expanding Literacy Instruction by Tutoring English Learners: Project ELITE.”

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Participants talk during the Individual and Collective Identity (Hand in Hand) workshop

The power of identity and empathy inside and outside the classroom

Two principals from two schools in Israel—as part of the Hand in Hand program bringing Jewish and Arab students and teachers together in a multicultural setting—shared their incredible experience and tactics for getting students to explore their own identities and promote radical empathy. Efrat Meyer and Mohammad Kundos led an amazing and cathartic workshop that left participants feeling empowered and enriched.

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Photo of Colleen Callahan speaking at AFT TEACH 2023

What local leaders can do to support student literacy

Despite the science of reading being clear—and despite decades of the AFT sharing that science—for too long, many state and local policies on reading instruction have promoted less-effective practices. During the workshop “Literacy for Leaders: What Locals Can Do to Support Student Literacy” at AFT TEACH, a state union leader and the Albert Shanker Institute presented research on teaching reading and a new analysis of recent state laws on literacy.

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Photo of presenter Gerardo Muñoz speaking at AFT TEACH 2023

Empowering educators to use their voice

Friday’s workshop on elevating educator voice in education policy gave an energetic group of educators a road map to champion honest education. The workshop was led by Gerardo Muñoz, the 2021 Colorado Teacher of the Year, and Takeru “TK” Nagayoshi, the 2020 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year. This event ignited a fire within educators to stand up and speak out for the students they serve. 

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Photo of Wendy Salcedo-Fierro (at microphone) and Taryn Snyder speaking at AFT TEACH 2023

With teachers in charge, schools meet more needs, more effectively

What happens when teachers are in charge? Great things: Teacher retention goes up; student performance goes up; and community involvement goes up. That’s according to data presented in “Teachers at the Helm: When Teachers Run Schools,” one of the Lunch & Learn sessions at the AFT TEACH conference.

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TEACH banner: Reading Universe - All About Teaching, Reading, & Writing.
AFT TEACH banner: Likes vs. Learning. The real cost of Social Media for Schools

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