More than 500 delegates from New Jersey joined nearly 9,000 NEA colleagues from across the nation at the 2014 National Education Association Representative Assembly in Denver July 3-6. Among the highlights of the RA was the election of a new team of NEA officers, as well as two new members of the Executive Committee.
Current NEA Vice President Lily Eskelsen García was elected to a three-year term as president, while Secretary-Treasurer Becky Pringle was elected vice president. Current Executive Committee member Princess Moss won a close election to become secretary-treasurer. The New Jersey delegation had endorsed all three of those candidates.
In addition, New Jersey’s endorsed candidates for the Executive Committee were both elected, including incumbent Earl Wyman on the first ballot. Newcomer George Sheridan won an extremely close runoff election.
New Jersey’s own Ashanti Rankin was elected as the Education Support Professional (ESP) At-Large Alternate to the NEA Board of Directors and spoke powerfully to all 9,000 delegates on the final day of the RA. He highlighted his priority of giving all members—and especially ESPs—“CPR,” which he defined as “career path rights.” East Orange Education Association President Jacqui Greadington was re-elected Chair of the NEA Black Caucus, which she has led successfully for several years.
New Jersey once again led the way in Political Action Committee fundraising, with delegates contributing more to the NEA Fund for Children and Education than any other delegation.
Among the many issues discussed by delegates, the growing harmful influence of high-stakes standardized testing, referred to by many at the RA as ‘toxic testing,’ aroused the most passion. The delegates voted overwhelmingly to “launch a national campaign to put the focus of assessments and accountability back on student learning and end the ‘test, blame and punish’ system that has dominated public education in the last decade.”
For full coverage of the RA, click here.