California Educator

December 2018 / January 2019

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Page 60 of 75

Tony, Tony, Tony! With the State Council meeting during the election homestretch, educators focused on creative ways to help push Tony Thurmond over the finish line in the Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) campaign (see story on page 40). With polls showing the race neck-and-neck, the Council led a Tweet-a-Thon to spread the word about why Thurmond was the educators' choice for state schools chief. The effort went viral, as tweeters propelled #TeamTony and #VotePublicEd to the No. 2 and 3 trending topics on Twitter. In addition to tweets, Council edu- cators text-banked for Thurmond, sending more than 68,000 text messages to get out the vote. Retired teachers also added 600 handwritten postcards in support of Thurmond. Amid all this, Thurmond took time out of his campaign schedule to rally with educators at Council and thank CTA for the tireless support during the grueling campaign. Thurmond said it's been an honor to work along- side educators to fight for public schools and our students. "My opponent is supported by bil- lionaires; I'm supported by teachers," Thurmond said. "You all are champi- ons for our kids every day!" CTA President Eric Heins said that the love and support shown by Council educators gave Thurmond a much-needed boost entering the final week of his campaign. "You could feel the electricity in the room," he said. Standing, Working Together Election takes center stage at State Council BY JULIAN PEEPLES S O U N D I N G T H E C H A R G E for the final week before the November election, CTA's October State Council exemplified the power built by educators in California and nationwide this year with the #RedForEd movement. Inspired by the struggles of teachers in West Virginia, Arizona and Oklahoma, Council educators stood together to defend public education on Election Day and to show solidarity with members of United Teachers Los Angeles and Oakland Educators Association, who are battling for respect in their school districts (see story on page 44). On the heels of the "Educator Spring," Council delegates demonstrated solidarity for our shared values and the belief that strong public schools are a cornerstone of our democracy. " You all are champions for our kids every day!" — Tony Thurmond, SPI-elect, addressing CTA State Council Photo: Mike Myslinski 59 D E C E M B E R 2 018 / J A N U A R Y 2 019 CTA & You

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