The legislature is back in session. The 2020 election led to a slightly friendlier legislature when it comes to education issues, but we know that we still need to fight extreme legislators who would rather insult teachers than fix our broken funding system and help our schools recover from COVID, as well as stay in close contact with those we helped elect to so they understand key issues facing our students and our profession.
We need all of that #REDforED energy back to continue the fight this year! This Legislative Toolkit will give you what you need to be an advocate for your students and your profession during the legislative session.
To advocate effectively, you need to know what is happening at the capitol. This can be difficult because of the pace of the session and the flood of bills that get considered, but there are ways to stay informed without becoming overwhelmed:
- read up on CEA’s 2021 legislative priorities
- subscribe to the AEA Legislative Update to receive weekly e-mails from AEA with bills to watch and ways to take action
- visit and subscribe to the AEA YouTube Channel to watch weekly leigislative updates from AEA
- bookmark and frequently visit the AEA Bill Watch List, which gives a deep dive into the status of bills that are being considered
- subscribe to CEA’s Political Action Google Calendar to know about important events happening (or related to what’s happening) at the capitol
Once you’re informed, it’s important to make your voice heard by our leaders. There are numerous ways you can do that:
- use the Arizona Legislature Request to Speak (RTS) system to officially register your position on bills before the legislature (AEA has put together some great instructions on how to sign up for the RTS system, and the legislature has an RTS manual, as well)
- find and contact your legislators directly to let them know your position on important bills
- visit the AEA Take Action page and participate in campaigns regarding bills before the legislature (note that direct, personal contact with legislators is generally more effective than mass campaigns)
Please consider signing up to attend one (or both!) of AEA’s Lobby Days. With COVID still making in-person gatherings too dangerous, these days will be held virtually this year from 6:00-7:30pm on:
- Thursday, February 25
- Monday, March 8
These events will give you the opportunity to engage in direct conversations with your legislators and learn how to effectively advocate for or against bills being considered in the legislature. Check AEA’s website for more details.