California Educator

April / May 2019

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Leadership in Lesbian and Gay Issues Human Rights Award in Honor of Nancy Bailey KURT DEARIE Carlsbad Unified Teachers Association High school social studies teacher Kurt Dearie became the teacher adviser to the first Gay-Straight Alliance in Carlsbad in 2002. Despite hostility from school board mem- bers, administrators and teachers, as well as personal attacks from the community, Dearie and his students have persevered through the years to improve the lives of LGBTQ+ people in the district and beyond. They've developed training workshops that have provided more than 1,000 educators and leaders — in multiple arenas, including a few CSU cam- puses — with tools to address issues facing LGBTQ+ students. They've organized no-hate-speech campaigns and World AIDS Day assemblies, expanded the GSAs in district schools, and partnered with commu- nity organizations that help families struggling with HIV/AIDS. Dearie himself has counseled and supported hundreds of students. Physically/Mentally Challenged Students' Issues Human Rights Award DARCI GIBSON Garden Grove Education Association Music teacher Darci Gibson is passionate about using music to bring life-changing experiences to physically and mentally challenged students, and about promoting equal educational opportunity for all. There was no curriculum for medically frag- ile students at the special education center when she started there, so she set about creating from scratch an engaging, individualized music cur- riculum for them. Within the first four or five months, the students, who range from preschoolers to adults, responded to the music with sounds and movement, surprising many of their teachers. She collaborated with teachers to help students grow and discover their voice, using technol- ogy to compose music and hold and manipulate instruments. Gibson's work has given her a bridge between her students with special needs and her general education students and the broader world. Women's Issues Human Rights Award KYNA COLLINS United Teachers Los Angeles When high school English teacher Kyra Collins found out that charter school educators did not get the 12 weeks of paid parental leave that tra- ditional school teachers now receive (thanks to the passage of AB 2393 in 2016), she went to work. She under- stood that parental leave and child care predominantly affect women, as women tend to take responsibility for the bulk of child care. On her local's bargaining team, Collins stressed the economic and personal benefits of parental leave and its help in attract- ing and retaining teachers. Rebuffed by the all-male district officials across the table, she met one-on-one with female members of the school board to get their support. She had colleagues bring their children to a school board meeting to speak on the issues. She rallied her members to hold out for the full 12 weeks, and they won. CTA Service Center Council Human Rights Award STUDENT CALIFORNIA TEACHERS ASSOCIATION The Student CTA executive board adopted the language of a 2018 NEA Representative Assembly resolution and made elimination of white supremacy culture (WSC) and institutional racism a statewide goal for the year. Through organizational changes and the Social Justice Symposium last fall, SCTA worked to educate its members about the dangers of WSC in the classroom, ways to combat it, and ways in which educators can better advocate for their students on different levels. SCTA worked to gain a greater voice for all members in making policies and decisions, encourage broader participation and leader- ship, improve intergroup relations, design and implement projects about the meaning of human and civil rights and how to protect them, and more. SCTA is proud of the "courageous conversations" its members have had to spur reflection and change. 63 A P R I L / M AY 2 019

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