The Union Difference


When asked why they entered the profession, almost all teachers reply, “To make a difference in students’ lives.”  Rarely heard is, “To join a union.”  But with union solidarity, we have positioned ourselves to make a great difference in public education. Teachers, like others, have ORGANIZED for one reason: POWER, to take into our own hands the responsibility for the future of our profession, our students, and our families. 

The ground rules for your teaching and working conditions are governed by the terms of the contract  between the union and the school district. Among the matters we collectively bargain:

  • Salaries, Extra Duty Pay, and Stipends
  • Evaluation Process
  • General Protections Against Arbitrary & Capricious Actions-Just Cause
  • Class Sizes
  • Site-Based Decision Making
  • Professional Staff Development
  • Length of Work Day and Length of Work Year
  • Personal and Academic Freedom
  • Transfers
  • Grievance Procedure
  • Medical, Dental, Vision, and Life Insurance Benefits
  • Planning Time
  • Curriculum and Instruction-Teacher Input
  • Adjunct Duty Responsibilities
  • Leaves
  • Teaching Materials and Equipment
  • Non-Discrimination
  • Role of Seniority
  • Assistance in Moving Classrooms
  • Safety
  • Personnel Files

Collective Bargaining

Political Involvement

Public education and the teaching profession are too important to leave in the hands of politicians alone. Among the issues in which we are politically involved:

  • Collective Bargaining Rights
  • Evaluation Criteria
  • Curriculum and Standards
  • Standardized Testing
  • Textbook Adoption
  • Finality of Grades
  • Student Discipline
  • Credentialing
  • Teacher Classifications
  • Seniority and Lay-Off Procedures
  • Privatization of Public Education
  • State and Federal Education Funding
  • Teachers' Rights and Due Process
  • STRS Retirement Pensions
  • School Improvement Plans
  • Career Technical Education and the Arts
  • School Nutrition
  • English Language Learners Instruction
  • Children's Healthcare
  • Children with Special Needs
  • Construction and Maintenance of Facilities
  • Technology Grants


Belonging to the union carries additional advantages for yourself and family. Among the benefits of Union  membership:

  • Full Eligibility for Voting on Union issues and Holding Union Positions
  • Employment Related Legal Representation
  • Membership Insurance Programs
  • Voluntary Group Insurance Plans
  • Auto and Home Insurance Programs
  • Discounts on Shopping, Entertainment, and Travel
  • Disaster Relief Fund
  • Trainings, Conferences, Scholarships, and Grants for Professional Growth
  • The Institute for Teaching Working to Create Better Teaching and Learning Conditions
  • Well-Baby Program
  • Financial Services, Including Credit Card and Credit Union Services; CTA Home Loans; and a CTA Personal Loan/New Member Loan Program