With less than three weeks left of the legislative session, teachers from every part of the state have been coming to the Capitol after school to get key priorities past the finish line.
“These are the final days of the 2023 legislative session, and we need lawmakers to know we have not forgotten about our issues,” said Coventry fourth grade teacher and building representative Michael Daigneau, a member of CEA’s Legislative Committee. “We’re here to remind them that everything we have been talking to them about and writing to them about—it all still matters.”
Daigneau, pictured outside the Capitol (above) with fellow Coventry teachers and staff Zoe Zimber, Mikayla LeBlanc, and Therese McKeever, along with CEA lobbyist Louis Rosado Burch, came to the Capitol on May 17 and met with Senators Jeffrey Gordon (pictured at left), John Kissel, and James Maroney as well as Representatives Tim Ackert, Kate Farrar, and Amy Morrin-Bello.
“We wanted teachers to have a chance to follow up with their legislators and speak from their own experience about what matters to them,” said Burch.
“Addressing the teacher shortage is critical for me,” said Zimber, who is part of a chronic shortage area—special education.
“As a fourth grade teacher, I’m focused on legislation that could reduce the negative impacts of standardized testing,” said LeBlanc.
For Daigneau, these issues and a proposed COVID pension benefit for teachers were key talking points. Joining him and his fellow educators was Coventry school nurse Therese McKeever, who said, “I’m here to support education, teachers, and students.”
A variety of excellent proposals that would improve teaching and learning conditions and elevate the profession are awaiting legislative action, but a final push is needed to ensure they are called to a vote and enacted into law. That’s where CEA members can continue to make a difference—showing up and speaking out. In addition, said Burch, CEA is asking members to contact Governor Ned Lamont directly to ask for the necessary investments that would make many of these proposed initiatives a reality.
You can also help by
- Watching your inbox for CEA Action Alerts letting you know where we are with legislation and where your voice is most urgently needed.
- Writing to your senators and representatives. CEA is hosting a virtual letter/email-writing workshop that takes the guesswork out of what to write, whom to direct your message to, and how to make it personal and impactful. Learn more.
- Driving the message home. Join CEA staff and leaders at the Capitol after school to lobby our legislators and show them that educators care deeply about the issues. Click here for upcoming dates and times.