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Voting for democracy and a better life

In the leadup to the midterm elections, pundits predicted a red wave, even a tsunami, based on polls, historical precedent, and steep gas and grocery prices. But I had my doubts. I spent the weeks before the elections talking to voters and traveling on the AFT Votes bus, rolling through a dozen states with more than 50 stops. In a year when kitchen table issues, democracy and our freedoms were on the ballot, many people told me that the elections came down to a choice between, on the one side, election deniers and extremists stoking fear, and on the other, problem-solvers working to help the country move forward. Many races were close, but Americans turned the tide from a red wave to a swell of support for progress and problem-solvers. Read the full column here.

Sharing more pathways to student debt relief

As the landscape of student debt shifts, and more and more opportunities allow borrowers to have their debt relieved, the AFT is using every avenue to ensure that the word is out. In affiliate meetings, telephone town halls, media coverage and social media, the union is spreading the news, and at a student debt clinic at AFT headquarters in Washington, D.C., on Aug. 31, AFT President Randi Weingarten vowed to reach as many people as possible with information that could save them tens—and sometimes hundreds—of thousands of dollars.


Reconnecting McDowell takes center stage at AFT National Convention in Detroit

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Education Week photo blog spotlights McDowell project

Check out the photo blog and article appearing in Education Week about Reconnecting McDowell and the wonderful teachers, school service personnel and students of McDowell County.

Making a Difference: Kanawha Co. member profiled by AFT

Deborah Cannada, the librarian at West Side Elementary in Kanawha County, is profiled by the national AFT as an educator making a difference every day.

Making a Difference: Fayette Co. member profiled by AFT

AFT-WV member Christy Gill, an art teacher at Divide Elementary in Fayette County, is profiled on the national AFT website as an example of educators who are making a difference everyday. Watch the video below.

Education Audit Report Released

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin  announced the four regional and local school system audits conducted for the Education Efficiency Audit of West Virginia’s Primary and Secondary Education System are now online.

Public Works LLC reviewed Taylor County Schools, Wyoming County Schools, Harrison County Schools and Regional Education Service Agency 7 (RESA) to identify inefficiencies and discover potential cost savings. Data from these audits support the state audit report released last week.

A copy of the full reports can be found online on the governor’s website at this link.

Fayette County Member Recognized by National AFT

Christy Gill, an art teacher at Divide Elementary in Fayette County, is profiled by the national AFT as being a very special AFT member who has gone above and beyond—both in and outside the workplace—to help their students succeed, or to provide exemplary service to the public, or just to make their communities better places to live. Click her name above to read the profile.