Cultivating Curiosity

We are very fortunate to have chosen a profession that is built on curiosity. For the most part, we are our students’ guides on a journey of discovery. But at the same time, we are on that journey.

In this issue, you will hear from two educators who are sharing their mental health stories and strategies, and you will read about two programs, the FAA Tech Center’s Aviation STEM Day and Girls Who Code, who are trying to open more doors for our students and inspire greater curiosity about our world.

I hope that in this issue you find things you connect with that help you maintain your curiosity and inspire your creativity. Thank you for choosing the education profession and thank you for the amazing work that you do to encourage and engage your students every day

-Marie Blistan

Officers Online

Marie Blistan


@Marie.Blistan: NEA SUPERWEEK was full of meetings, discussions and sharing of best practices that support our students across the country! What a wonderful host, John Marshall, son of the great Thurgood Marshall, was at the NEA Gala celebrating our educators who have been recognized for outstanding accomplishments! Dr. Linda Darling-Hammond accepted her achievement award and recalled her beginning teacher career in NEW JERSEY and Pennsylvania! Our presidents’ meetings included sharing highlights of Congressional candidates who are true supporters of the American Dream and role of public education and our members’ support of THEM! Our solidarity in RedforEd Wednesdays continue as educators continue to pursue respect and fair compensation. RedforEd is a national campaign and NJEA is part of the movement in New Jersey and with our sister states! Our board of directors continued the advocacy on behalf of our members, students, and public education. NJ State Teacher of the Year Jen Skomial, Morris County (2019) was recognized on stage at the Gala! New York teacher, Alhassan Susso, recognized as the recipient for the Member Benefits award. His story was inspirational and noteworthy!

NJEA President Marie Blistan shared her observations and photos of this year’s NEA Superweek, an annual gathering in Washington, D.C. that brings together association presidents from across the county as well as NEA Directors and other leaders to coordinate a national strategy that advances public education.

Sean M. Spiller


@SpillerForNJEA: Congratulations to our 2020 ESP of the Year Stacy Yanko, Career Achievement Awardee Jayne Carmen, Friend of ESP honoree Kevin Ciak and all our county honorees!

NJEA Vice President Sean M. Spiller shared photos from the 2020 NJEA Educational Support Professionals (ESP) Conference. With his fellow officers, he presented awards recognizing excellence among NJEA’s ESP members and honoring those who value the work they do. For more about the winners, see Page 14.

Steve Beatty


@SteveBeattyNJEA: Thank you to all the members of the Pleasantville Education Association at the high school and middle for a great day and “lunch in local.” You were welcoming and engaging as we discussed the work that we do and where we go, together! Always empowering to be out in the buildings with our union brothers and sisters, adding advocates to the cause!

NJEA Secretary-Treasurer Steve Beatty shared photos and his observations from his visit to Pleasantville schools in Atlantic County.

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