Sharing Our Commitment to Excellence
It came as no surprise that when the gavel finally came down on the 2012 Utah Legislative Session, I breathed a sigh of relief. However, I also experienced a great sense of collaboration. This past legislative session was unprecedented in many ways.
UEA played an integral role in the creation of landmark legislation in the form of Senator Aaron Osmond’s Senate Bill 64: Public Education Employment Reform. Our professional voices were valued and respected as this legislation was being crafted.
A bill creating a pilot program for Peer Assistance and Review also passed with many local districts looking toward applying for the monies to help improve mentoring and remediation. In addition, we were able to defeat or defer many bills designed to make it more difficult for the Association to conduct business and to advocate for our students and our profession.
It is with great hope that I look forward to building upon the relationships developed over this past legislative session. I am optimistic that there is recognition of the importance and willingness of our members to engage in the critical work to improve public education. I have faith that the voices of those who continue to vocalize rhetoric with no positive solutions will be drowned out by the voices of those whose desire is to collaborate in order to create a great public school for every child.
This session taught me that we can accept conditions as they exist or accept the responsibility for changing them. UEA members stepped up and accepted the responsibility to improve our relationships with our legislators. Policymakers took notice. They welcomed the change in the discourse. Now, we must stand ready to continue to be the agents of change.
We cannot underestimate the necessity to share our vision, our expertise, our passion and our commitment to excellence with those in our legislature and our community. The 2012 Legislative Session was a great beginning in this work.
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