Press Release from Tennessee Education Association President Gera Summerford; May 23, 2011:
Tennessee’s Teachers Ask Governor to Veto Bill
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Monday, May 23, 2011) – The following message was sent by Tennessee Education Association President Gera Summerford, a high school math teacher from Sevier County, to Governor Bill Haslam concerning the Professional Educators Collaborative Act of 2011.
Dear Governor Haslam:
The Tennessee Education Association is completely dismayed that this entire legislative session has been an attack on teachers and our Association. At the top of the list is HB 130/SB 113, legislation which repeals the 1978 Education Professional Negotiations Act (EPNA) and replaces it with a process of “collaborative conferencing.” Professional negotiations has worked well for over 30 years and passage of this legislation has nothing to do with education reform and everything to do with partisan politics. The negative impact of this Session on teacher morale cannot be overstated — teachers feel totally demoralized and disrespected!
On behalf of the 52,000 members of the TEA, I would ask that you show your support for responsible education reform by vetoing this legislation. Your leadership can send a strong message across the state that you stand with Tennessee’s teachers – the very teachers who stepped forward only last year to win $500 million in Race To The Top funding for our state. The teachers of Tennessee deserve better than the treatment afforded them by the majority of this General Assembly. Please help us work toward real education reform by vetoing this regressive, demoralizing bill.