August 3, 2022

Texas AFT: Welcome back to school 2022

We build power by increasing participation in the labor movement, winning elections and public narrative, and engaging members and communities. Building community inside and outside our union is about creating concentric circles of trust, forming coalitions and using campaigns as an organizing principle. As a union of professionals, we want what the children, families and communities we serve need. We fight for the RESPECT public school employees and students deserve.

Stay in touch with our respect campaign at www.texaft.org/respect.

We’ve prepared this online resource bank for Back to School 2022 to provide you and your family with the best benefits information and updates. #RespectUsWaitForUs

Message from Zeph Capo, President of the AFT in Texas

Zeph Capo, Texas AFT President special message to members. On behalf of the 66,000 members of the Texas American Federation of Teachers (AFT), we are thrilled to have you back safely as we begin the 2022-2023 school year. This page provides information about member benefits and material related to important topics and issues we will be working on together over the next year, including our respect campaign.

Respect Campaign: Earn the respect you and your students deserve

Join our Respect campaign today. We need every member to take action: (1) ask your colleagues to join our union, (2) attend local union meetings and stay informed, (3) vote in all upcoming elections, (4) participate in local elections and national actions, and (5) never give up for this is a long campaign to elevate our crafts and improve working conditions — the learning conditions of our school children — for all public school employees.

The lost decade

In “The lost decade”, a report published in April 2022, Texas AFT and Every Texan revealed surprising trends in public school funding in Texas, as well as the effects that underfunding has had on teacher and staff salaries. If our state and local leaders fail to address issues like declining wages, we will continue to make headlines about massive teacher and staff shortages, and we will continue to lose experienced, hardworking educators.

Four AFT members from Texas share what they struggle with and what drives them to consider their future in public education. They are not alone. Their stories resonate with public school employees across the state. Are you ready to make changes in your workplace, school district, and profession?

Political power is your power to make a big change

We have fought a global pandemic and fought together in several legislative sessions this year. Now is the time to raise our voices and make real change. To do this, however, we must finance our future. Help us by (1) making a voluntary contribution to help us elect public school-friendly candidates; (2) become a political volunteer; and (3) if you’re social media savvy, join our Texas AFT Digital Organizing Team. Together we can make a difference.

AFT+ Member Benefits Guide

As a member of Texas AFT, you belong to a community of colleagues. We understand the power of coming together – in our work, in our communities and in the marketplace. At AFT, we have our own marketplace, AFT + Member Benefits, which combines the buying power of AFT’s 1.7 million members with the benefit offerings of Union Plus, the benefits branch of AFT. ‘AFL-CIO. This gives you a rich range of discounts, services and benefits that go beyond the workplace. Many of these programs are also available to family members.

Share My Lesson: Back-to-School Resources

As we return to school and a new normal this fall, join our community, Share my lessonwhere you can find and share resources and ideas on topics like safe reopening of schools, blended and distance learning, social-emotional support, anti-racism education and more. REGISTER HERE for all the new back-to-school webinars.

Professional learning and you

As a member of the American Federation of Teachers, you have access to a variety of programs and resources designed to enhance your professional growth. This brochure highlights many of these possibilities. You can also visit aft.org/education, email [email protected] or contact your local union. By meeting the professional needs of our educator members, we are able to help them be even more successful in their careers; in their union; in the institutions in which they work; and serving the students, families, and communities they serve.

Register today for our upcoming student debt clinics

The rising cost of higher education has led more than 45 million people in the United States to seek student loans to fund their pursuit of higher education, borrowing more than $1.6 trillion. Of these borrowers, 1 in 4 are now in trouble – they are late or unable to pay their full monthly payments, or they are in default. Relief is available for troubled borrowers, but student loan servicers and the US Department of Education seem to confuse or mislead borrowers as often as they help them.

All clinics will be held online via Zoom. Zoom instructions will be provided in your registration confirmation email. All clinics are free and will last 90 minutes.

July 27 | 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
August 10 | 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
August 31 | 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
September 14 | 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Summer presentation: benefit for new AFT members

Support for our members in debt does not stop when they leave the Debt Clinic. AFT has partnered with Summer, an online resource that helps borrowers navigate the student loan repayment landscape.

Summer’s Borrower Success Team helps our members register and manage paperwork for income-contingent repayment and cancellation of public service loans, find other debt relief programs available debt and tailor student loan repayment options to their individual needs.

Organize materials | Build union power in your workplace

Download and share these organizational documents with your colleagues. Ask others to join you in your move to earn respect. Additional details can be found at:

General organization leaflet
Comparison Organization Flyer
Power Point presentation to share with colleagues and/or staff meeting presentations.

Social Media | Like + Follow + Engage

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