California Educator

August/September 2020

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months I hope all members wear "I voted" stickers and have an impact in their communities. CASTRO SILVA: As a "DACA-mented" educator [see following story], I believe those who are able to vote must exercise that right and get rid of these injustices for future gen- erations. … Social and racial justice means teaching real history, not just Eurocentric ver- sions. It means closing achievement gaps and not racially targeting students. After hearing SCTA member issues, you set up a COVID-19 relief fund that provides cash for members struggling to live in a pandemic. Talk about that. WIESER: The grants reimburse for CSET or CBEST, or certificate clearance classroom observation hours. Grants lessen the financial burden in some small way. CASTRO SILVA: Testing grants help mem- bers getting ready for the profession, dealing with the Reading Instruction Competence Assessment (RICA), and students having cre- dentialing issues during COVID. How has COVID affected your training and your teaching? TAMOTUU: My teacher training has been a roller coaster. It doesn't hinder my aspirations, but I worry it may discourage others, forcing them to put dreams on hold. Students like to engage and participate; I see that with my younger siblings who are still in school. It's hard to motivate students from a distance. AVIL A: It's hard to learn and teach through a screen. The transition was a struggle. CASTELLO: I interned with a teacher/mentor and helped older teachers not used to using technology. I was happy to do that — dis- covering apps, getting students talking and participating, learning to embed websites. CHAMNESS: For me, the best way to learn is in the field directly helping students. COVID does not allow observation hours. … We're at a disadvantage. WIESER: COVID made me think about ways to assess students' knowledge — who missed class and how do you help keep up with learning? CASTRO SILVA: My undergrad program fit OK online. Others had student teaching hours that did not meet requirements for credentials, which brings the equitable teaching lens into perspective. Being forced to transition in a short amount of time brought out inequalities for students. For more information about Student CTA , go to Using NEA resolution documents ( white-supremacy-culture-characteristics.html), SCTA Executive Board members have been educating themselves and systematically looking at characteristics of white supremacy culture and how they manifest in SCTA. Board members say understanding those characteristics helps them not perpetuate the culture, allows for distributive leadership, and makes them better educators and advocates. Selaima Tamotuu Tristan Wieser Viridiana Castro Silva "An important board objective is dismantling white supremacy culture and institutional racism. It's a long journey — reshaping the education system, adding equity to every part of a student's journey." 60 CTA & You

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