District Decisions Divorced from Classroom Needs; Educators Committed To Advocating for Students
CONTACT: Kristin Heimerdinger
CELL #559-970-5450 or firstname.lastname@example.org
CLOVIS - Following years of district decision-making that have excluded educators and classroom needs as well as concerns that peaked during the pandemic, a large and diverse group of Clovis educators are launching a petition drive to form a union.
The Association of Clovis Educators (ACE) has begun gathering signatures to build a union among the more than 2,100 teachers, psychologists, itinerant specialists, school counselors and other educators in the Clovis Unified School District. ACE announced its plans to organize in a recent letter to the Clovis Unified community signed by dozens of educators from all across the district who comprise the ACE union organizing committee.
The petition will circulate until a majority of educators’ signatures have been gathered.
“Clovis educators and schools are known for their excellence, and we believe that to stay true to our district’s core values, forming a union is our next important step,” said Kristin Heimerdinger, a teacher at Buchanan High School for the past 28 years. “Though many of our concerns have been building for years, a mismanaged school reopening during this pandemic has shown us that district decision-making is broken and does not value all students equally. Educators need a meaningful seat at the table and we believe a union is the best way to ensure a strong future for our students and schools for years to come.”
“I love Clovis Unified and my school, and it’s precisely because of that that I think it’s time for educators to organize,” said Dan Dritz, a teacher at Mountain View Elementary and Clovis Unified teacher for 26 years. “Clovis has grown over the years and times have changed. The upper Administration and School Board have lost the trust of educators over this past year and it’s time to find new ways of working together to restore trust and collaboration.”
“We are the education experts in the classroom day after day and are most in touch with what our students need to learn,” said Adrian Cardenas, a teacher at Miramonte Elementary School for the past six years. “Yet teachers' voices have been routinely left out of very important decisions. ACE will ensure that educators are at the table with district leaders and put education first.”
“Teachers are valued members of our community, both in and outside the classroom,” said Dr. Jonathan Terry, a parent of students in the Clovis Unified School District.
“Ensuring that teachers are heard and supported will translate into a more meaningful school environment for all of our kids.”
Clovis Unified School District is one of the last large school districts in California without a union that represents educators.
For a copy of the letter to the community signed by dozens of educators from all across the district who comprise the ACE union organizing committee, go here.
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