California Educator

December 2018 / January 2019

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O N S E P T . 2 2 , 19 7 5 , a young Gov. Jerr y Brown signed a bill into law giving public school educators the right to collective bargaining. This CTA-spon- sored bill, the Educational Employment Relations Act (EERA), required school districts to negotiate c ontracts w ith t each ers' unions to set t erms of employment, such as pay, benefits and working con- ditions. is was a monumental victory for CTA and all educators, who were the first public employees in California to win bargaining rights. Also known as SB 160 or the Rodda Act, the EERA was the culmination of years of effort by state Sen. Al Rodda (D-Santa Barbara) and CTA, along with other school unions and even school administrators. The act strengthened a weak state law that required school districts to "meet and confer" with educators to determine conditions of employment. This was often referred to as the "meet and beg" process since districts and school boards were allowed to ignore teachers' proposals (and usually did) and impose whatever conditions they wanted. The victory also set the stage for legislation that granted the same right to other public workers. "California Teachers Association ushered in collec- tive bargaining for all public employees," said Stephen Edwards, Jr., CTA President from 1975-1978. As we bid farewell to Brown for a second time (and welcome Gov. Gavin Newsom!), remember the years of work that went into passing the law that guarantees educators a real voice, the unity of CTA members who fought to make it a reality, and the potential of what we can accomplish as educators when we stand together. — Julian Peeples Union 101: The Value of Our Unity How teachers won collective bargaining Union 101 is a new, recurring section focusing on victories and advancements won by CTA members over our 155 years. For more about your union's mission and history, see Above: CTA's deputy executive director Cal Rossi (far left) and governmental relations executive Bill Logan (second from right), along with Sen. Al Rodda (far right), celebrate passage of SB 160. Top: An explanation of the legislation's impact; Gov. Jerry Brown in 1975. Associated Press 72 CTA & You

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