Summer Leadership Academy


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‘Just Schools’ program focuses on equity and justice in schools;
sign up now for the July 29-31 training in Stevens Point

NEA Education Policy & Practice, in partnership with the Human and Civil Rights Department and the Office of Strategic Alliances, is offering the Leaders for Just Schools program July 29-31 in Stevens Point as part of the WEAC Summer Leadership Academy.  WEAC member leaders Nick Schwei, Racine, and Jen Voigt, La Crosse – who are members of the first cohort of NEA’s Leaders for Just Schools – along with Kelly Sullivan, Monona Grove, are ready to share what they have learned with fellow educators who also want to advocate for equity and justice in public schools. As leaders for just schools, participants will be asked to reflect on their own practices, how bias impacts equity, and how they are adhering to the visions and actions of a champion for learning environments that respect and celebrate diversity, foster equity for all students, and strengthen the cultural competence of themselves and others. Space for this training is limited, and WEAC members are encouraged to Register Now.

Thanks to all the WEAC members and leaders who helped make the 2018 Summer Leadership Academy a huge success.

Photo Gallery 2018 WEAC Summer Leadership Academy:

WEAC is there ‘every step of the way’ for its members and for students, President Martin tells Summer Leadership Academy participants

WEAC is there “every step of the way” for its members and for the students in Wisconsin public schools, WEAC President Ron Martin said in opening remarks at the 2018 WEAC Summer Leadership Academy.

Martin emphasized that members are the union and that they work collectively to advocate for the education profession and to make sure Wisconsin provides a great public school for every student. He pointed out that WEAC’s mission statement is to:

  • Advocate for the ideals of a diverse, democratic society and quality public education.
  • Promote and advance professional practice, personal growth, as well as the economic rights and welfare of our members.

“WEAC – which is all of us, it is you – will be with you every step of your journey,” he told participants at the 2018 WEAC Summer Leadership Academy in Eau Claire.

Martin said he hoped Wisconsin would again become more labor and education friendly after this fall’s elections but that WEAC continues to be strong and works every day for members and students.

Martin said that in a recent survey of Wisconsin teachers, 66 percent said they have given serious thought to leaving their school or district. The top reasons they cited were:

  • Insufficient pay.
  • The leadership in their building.
  • Feeling overwhelmed.

“I think that’s why you’re here. As leaders of your local, those are three things that perhaps you as a local can hope to address to make it so that that 66 percent would not even think about leaving teaching or that building or that district,” he said.

Martin said opponents of the union and public education attacked WEAC because we are an obstacle to those who want to profit from public schools and students, but they did not succeed.

“I know that. We’re here. And we aren’t going anywhere,” he said.

Watch these clips from President Martin’s address to the 2018 Summer Leadership Academy:

‘Become an educational leader,’ WEAC Vice President Peggy Wirtz-Olsen says

WEAC Vice President Peggy Wirtz-Olsen thanked the participants for caring so much about their profession and colleagues and students that they would take the time to come to the Summer Leadership Academy.

“I want educators to be the professional voice that’s revered in our schools,” she said. “As educators we often are giving voices to our students, and we know they are sometimes silenced in our buildings. We need to work to bring our students’ voices back to the forefront in all of our conversations. That’s why we went into the profession, and that’s why we’re here.”

The goal of the Academy, she said, is to find out how each attendee can best become an educational leader, whether it’s in their building or at the State Capitol or beyond.

“So I’m asking you, find a way to become an educational leader. I don’t mean a principal, I don’t mean the director of curriculum and instruction. I mean an association leader who believes in the potential of every student who walks in our buildings every day.”

Watch these clips from Vice President Olsen’s address to the Summer Leadership Academy:

Summer Leadership Academy participants also heard from a panel of school board members, addressing important education and union issues. They are: Joe Luginbill, Eau Claire; Doug Perry, South Milwaukee; and Laurie Cooper Stoll, La Crossse. View the video:

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