CEA advocates for teachers and public education. We've been a driving force in lobbying legislators
for the resources public schools need and campaigning for high standards for teachers and students.
Our proud history spans more than 150 years.
Whether it's your first time in the classroom or your sixth year, we are here with
all the resources early-career professionals need. We've got classroom management
and professional development ideas. We've got more ways to stretch your hard-earned
dollars. And we've got your back.
The Teacher Education and Mentoring Program (TEAM) is a two year induction program for
beginning teachers that includes mentorship and professional development. Beginning
teachers participating in the program are assigned a trained mentor to guide them
through developing individualized growth plans, uniquely based on their own needs as
Targeting What Students Need for Academic Growth Through Quality Teacher Evaluation
March 6, 2014
A teacher evaluation initiative, studied in new research being released today, offers a teacher evaluation
alternative to using unreliable standardized test scores to evaluate students and teachers—an alternative that
holds educators more accountable and is supported by the new flexibility options for teacher evaluation, but
contrasts sharply with the state model (SEED).
Seeking a better way than the state way, CEA advocates a holistic, qualitative approach that trusts educators
by enabling them to set student goals for growth and assess their students' growth by using a common Quality
Student Work Rubric (QSWR) as it applies to student work done over time in the subject they teach.
CEA President Sheila Cohen said, "We want to redirect teacher evaluation in Connecticut so that it is student
based. We want to refocus it on what teachers do on a regular basis and how teachers assess student growth on a
continuing basis. And we want to allow teachers to focus their energy on what they know matters most—planning and
providing engaging instruction for their students."
At a news conference today at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford, CEA released the results of a field
study that bolsters that approach—one that provides countless opportunities for teachers to focus on their students
rather than spend endless hours on paperwork and compliance as required by the state model. With the enormous and
unreasonable demands of the state system, teachers' attention is being diverted from their students' learning needs.
No Teacher Left Behind: A Look at CEA's Alternative Approach to Educator Evaluation is a field study conducted by
Daniel A. Long, Ph.D., assistant professor of sociology at Wesleyan University, and Rebecca Coven, Long's former
research associate. The study, conducted last year, included Hamden educators at the elementary, middle, and high
Student growth over time vs. a single standardized test score
Using student work over time as a measure of growth, and linking that to teacher evaluation, is a concept that hadn't been
studied in Connecticut prior to last year. As a first step in this direction, the new study was limited in scope, but the
authors had comprehensive access to current research about what works and what doesn't in teacher evaluation.
Cohen said, "Although the Hamden field study was limited in scope, the findings show promise as an important component of
a robust teacher evaluation system. This is one that encourages greater teacher accountability and responsibility in the
process, provides stronger accountability for student learning, promotes more collaborative discussion about teaching and
learning, and provides greater trust in the accuracy of the evaluation."
Unreliable test scores
There is no evidence in research that the state model, which uses unreliable test scores to assess student growth and evaluate
teachers, improves the quality of teaching in public schools. Under the approach discussed at today's news conference, the link
between a teacher's student goals and use of the QSWR encourages the teacher to design instruction that more precisely targets
what students need to grow academically, holds teachers more accountable, and shows growth more realistically than a single
unreliable test score.
Teachers from across the state have shared concerns with CEA about the state model and how it is hindering high-quality teaching
and learning. CEA is confident that its qualitative approach promotes student growth and positive changes in teacher pedagogy
and practice. It also facilitates teacher autonomy, collaboration, self-reflection, interpersonal trust, and morale.
Using the growth model not only allows educators to look at student achievement in terms of their performance over the course of
the entire school year, but it also allows evaluators to get a better representation of how a teacher's instruction more
specifically fosters quality student work. Collecting student work and rating it using a rubric that describes the elements of
high-quality work is something that many more educators can apply to their classrooms, regardless of whether they teach a class
that has standardized tests.
The Connecticut Education Association represents 43,000 teachers in Connecticut.
The National Education Association (NEA) and Connecticut Education Association (CEA) today applauded Rep. Jahana Hayes, longtime NEA and CEA member as well 2016 National Teacher of the Year, on her introduction of the Pell Grant Restoration Act, H.R. 4298.
There are those, including current U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, who argue that spending more on public education doesn't lead to better outcomes. School finance expert and Rutgers Professor Bruce Baker begs to differ, and he has research to back his position up.
Teachers are a selfless group who choose their profession because of a love for children and teaching, not for any expectation of accolades or honors. And that makes those times teachers are recognized and have a chance to be in the spotlight all the more special.
Teachers have a lot to say on issues from their pensions to classroom safety this legislative session, which is why local associations around Connecticut are meeting with their legislators and making their voices heard.
Speaking to hundreds of students at Harding High School in Bridgeport today, Governor Ned Lamont encouraged his audience to pursue a career in teaching and be role models for the next generation of students.
Wearing #RedForEd T-shirts, several hundred Waterbury teachers showed their strength as a union, their dedication to their profession, and their value to the community they serve when they packed a March 7 Waterbury Board of Education meeting.
Community schools, minority teacher recruitment and retention, the opportunity gap, and school literacy were just some of the issues members of the legislature's Education Committee heard public input.
"Our students would only benefit from having more opportunities to learn about the culture, struggles, and contributions of African-Americans and Latinos throughout history," Waterbury teacher Sean Mosley told the legislature's Education Committee
"Teachers become teachers because we want to help kids," says Danbury building rep Lori Woodruff. "It's the same with our union—we are here to help each other. As teachers, when we're involved with the union we can do more to help one another."
Connecticut Education Foundation's (CEF) second annual Read Across America Reading Bus Tour kicked off on February 25, featuring a customized blue bus decorated with well-known Dr. Seuss characters and outfitted with bookshelves, benches, carpeting, and hundreds of new books.
At a public hearing of the legislature's Education Committee today, classroom teachers—along with CEA leaders and staff—gave powerful testimony urging lawmakers to address the crisis of violent student behavior in rural, urban, and suburban schools throughout the state.
Teachers, CEA leaders, and staff testified before the Connecticut General Assembly's Black and Puerto Rican Caucus on issues critical to teachers this legislative session. These issues included school climate, classroom safety, the persistent shortage of ethnic minority educators, and funding for public schools.
CEA supports sensible ways of assisting the state in its efforts to make up for decades of underfunding teachers' retirement, including the governor and treasurer's plan to smooth out the state's payments to the fund over a longer period of time and lower the investment earning assumption to a more realistic rate.
"We reject the idea of cutting our way to prosperity. That has never worked," said Connecticut AFL-CIO President Sal Luciano. His remarks came at a press conference yesterday where members of the labor community, including CEA, called on the state to adopt a pro-growth, investment budget.
Project Oceanology and New England Science and Sailing are partnering to offer "Sound Education: Working with NGSS and STEM in Long Island Sound". This is a FREE two-day PD event from April 5 - April 6 for teachers in grades 4-12, with overnight accommodations provided in Project Oceanology's waterfront hostel.
Legislation passed late in 2015 made many "tax extenders" semi-permanent, but there are still a few esoteric items that keep everyone on tenterhooks when, as once again this year, Congress fails to pass the tax bill by the end of the year.
Marks the inauguration of a new governor and the beginning of the 2019 session of the Connecticut General Assembly. It's likely to be a busy session with many issues for legislators to tackle over these next five months.