California Educator

June 2013

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Page 36 of 39

Note: In every 2013 issue of the Educator we will be highlighting a portion of CTA's proud history in a timeline. Collect all 9 and put them together for a big look at all we've accomplished over the past 150 years. 1961-76 In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court's Brown v. Board of Education decision, school districts desegregated schools through busing, implementing open enrollment policies and redrawing attendance areas. The CTA Journal published articles on team-teaching, bringing creativity into the classroom, educating disadvantaged students, teaching democracy, moving toward year-round schools, and the emotional factors in teaching. CTA's membership and influence grew with an influx of World War II GIs entering the profession. Teachers saw the need for adequate compensation and improved teaching conditions. Many teachers worked a second job to make ends meet. In 1969 United Teachers Los Angeles led the first major teachers' strike in California, lasting 23 days, over decent pay and benefits. Alvia Barfield, Southern Section president, recalled, "Everyone was just kind of scared, and we had to say, 'The principals The peace and tranquility of the 1950s gave way to the turbulent times of the '60s. can't hurt you. They don't have as much power as you think they do.'" Laws had changed to allow teachers to "meet and confer" on their contracts with administrators, though the process was more often characterized as "meet and defer." With the number of teacher strikes rising, CTA's leadership recognized the only way teachers would make economic strides was through collective bargaining, like other unions. Thus began a five-year effort that culminated with then-Gov. Jerry Brown signing the Rodda Act in 1975. Collective bargaining redefined the profession. It took time for some educators to embrace the idea, but collective bargaining represented the first time teachers were able to sit down as equals with administrators to negotiate their salaries and teaching conditions. 1964 1967 1969 1975 Social issues, such as school integration, become more prominent for CTA. Gov. Ronald Reagan commends CTA for its "dedication to providing responsible representation of the best interests of our schools and teachers." Picket lines and strikes abound as teachers demand better compensation, benefits and working conditions. The CTA-sponsored collective bargaining bill, known as the Rodda Act, brings a team handshake from CTA officals and lawmakers. Educator 06 June 2013 v2.0.indd 37 6/14/13 9:30 PM

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