Election Committee Updates: Nominations are Open!
Please be sure to be checking the bulletin, newspaper, and all other forms of contact for pertinent updates from the Election Committee. Last week, nominations opened for all current BTU/RTC members in good standing. Reminder that you need anywhere between 25 and 100 validated signatures, depending on the office. It is best practice to collect more signatures than necessary just in case. Members can collect nomination signatures online and/or on paper. Signature collecting will close the evening of March 8. The election committee’s next meeting is January 23 at 5 p.m. at the BTU; members are always welcome at the beginning of the meeting for questions and conversation. You can also reach out to electioncommittee@btu.org with questions or comments. Please see this document for more information.

Job Sharing Meeting: February 6, 5:00-6:30PM
Interested in job sharing next year? Join BTU and BPS at the union hall to learn more. Register now!

NEW- Telescope Story Slam: February 9, 6:00-8:00PM
Join us for an open-mic storytelling session. Bring a story to share or come to listen to stories from your BPS colleagues. Our theme: OOPS! Prepare a five-minute story about a time when things didn’t go as planned. Register now!

BTU Member Winter Party: February 10, 3:30-8:00PM
Show our educators some love! Join us at the union hall for a winter party with food, DJ, cash bar, and fun! Registration required – this is a BTU-member ONLY event. See you there!

2023 JET Recruitment Information Sessions: Applications due March 1
This is a great opportunity for paraeducators to learn more about the JET program and ask any questions they may have before applying to JET by March 1. There will be three information sessions held on the following dates. People interested in attending should RSVP by clicking the link on the session of their choice. Session 2 – 1/24/23 4:30pm-5:30pm; Session 3: 2/14/23 4:30pm-5:30pm.

Share My Lesson Virtual Conference: March 21-23
Submit your webinar proposals for this event here, or learn more about other upcoming AFT events at aftpd.org/conferences.

Educator Supports Program Available for Teachers Rated Less than Proficient
Many educators will receive a formative assessment during the month of January.  BTU educators in the teacher bargaining unit who receive a rating of less than proficient are typically eligible for support from the Educator Supports Program (ESP).  The ESP is a jointly-run collaboration between the BTU and BPS which provides a range of supports for educators who find themselves in evaluation difficulty. If you or a colleague is rated less than proficient, please make sure you or they visit the ESP Website for more information, and to sign up for a meeting to learn more using the Enroll button.

NEW- Rollins Griffith Memorial Classroom Library: Mini Grant Application
The goal is to keep the legacy of Rollins Griffith present in BPS and to promote black authors that share the vision of antiracism, the culture of black people through art and music. Thirty-one $250 mini grants are being offered to provisional teachers in the BPS.  All Provisional teachers are encouraged to apply.

Teacher Early Hiring Pool & Academic Support Pool Extended to 2/27
BPS’ Teacher EHP Pool remains open to all individuals interested in becoming a teacher for the next upcoming school year. In addition, BPS has opened an Academic Support Pool for roles including Paraprofessionals, Family Liaisons and more. By applying to the pool, you have the opportunity to participate in an interview & be named one of the top priority candidates. Apply here.

Unafraid Educators Meetings
Unafraid Educators, BTU’s immigrants’ rights committee, is meeting the second Monday of each month from 4:30 – 6 p.m. on Zoom. Please join us!

Important Dates for Paras
Please see here for important dates for excessing, pools and assignments.

Join AFT MA Climate Caucus
AFT MA is committed to honoring our Climate Resolution that was passed on April 4, 2020. We are facing an historic environmental crisis. The science on climate change is irrefutable. Catastrophic effects of unchecked climate change include severe drought, increased disease, threatened food systems and more. We know from experience that the labor movement must be at the table to shape the conversation if we are to affect positive change for working people. Are you interested in working with AFT MA on climate issues? If so, please complete and submit this form.

BTU/AFT Para/PSRP Conference: April 1, 8:30AM-2:30PM
Please join us for a day of collaboration and learning with fellow paraprofessionals from around the state. The deadline for registration is March 30. Register now!

NEW- AFT Massachusetts Convention Awards Dinner: April 28
Help the AFT Massachusetts celebrate the service of an educator, librarian, nurse, or school employee whose leadership has made our union stronger. The deadline to submit nominations is March 1. Forward all nominations to President Tang. The 2023 Scholarship Winners and the 2023 Distinguished Service Award Winners will be honored at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate located at 210 Morrissey Boulevard in Boston. Interested members and guests are asked to complete the registration form linked to attend the dinner.

SAVE THE DATE- AFT Massachusetts Convention: April 29
AFT Massachusetts convention delegates from across the state will celebrate our victories, discuss the battles we face, and be inspired to act. We’ll hear about important initiatives and further develop our collective strength as educators and organizers. It will be in-person at the IBEW Local 103 Union Hall located at 256 Freeport Street in Boston. We will email a registration link, etc. to all eligible delegates.

Homework Helper Program
The Boston Teachers Union Homework Helper Program was created along with the City of Boston and the Boston Public Library to help all children with their homework during the school year. We have BTU educators working at every library in Boston that is open at least one day a week, from September to May. Please pass this information and flyersalong to all of your students.

MA Farming Reinforces Education and Student Health (FRESH) Grant
DESE has just released a new grant, titled MA Farming Reinforces Education and Student Health (FRESH). Schools can apply for $5,000 to $50,000 in funding and the applications are due January 31. To learn more, see Mass Farm to School’s website which includes a recording of an info session on the grant and the opportunity to sign up for one-on-one application coaching.

BTU Housing Justice Committee Meetings
The BTU Housing Justice Committee has begun meeting every other Monday at 5 p.m. If you have any questions or would like to be added to the mailing list, please reach out to Emma or Shakeeda. You can access the Zoom via this link.

Building Rep Stipends
Building Reps receive a $1,000 stipend for attending (and signing in) to 75% of the monthly membership meetings. The stipend can be earned in other ways too. The BTU BRep app is going through redevelopment along with our website, so reps can complete the BTU BRep Tally Sheet and submit it at the end of the school year if 75% attendance (and sign in) is not possible. All BReps must submit a W9 and will receive a 1099 at the end of the tax year.

Journey into Education and Teaching
The JET application is now open for 2023-2024! The JET program provides support for Massachusetts paraprofessionals without bachelor degrees in partner school districts to obtain their degree and licensure. Direct any questions to jetintoteaching@gmail.com.

School Site Council Training: Sessions in January
The School Site Council plays a criticial role in hiring of staff, reviews and advises on the budget, and can waive the provision of the collective bargaining agreement or any School Committee rule regulation. More information and registration available here!