CTA Conference Grants

CTA offers a variety of incentive grants to attend its many top-notch conferences. These include Minority, Small Chapter and New Member grants, and cover registration and transportation. Apply by Jan. 1 for the Equity and Human Rights Conference (March 2–14) and Good Teaching Conference South (March 16–18). Details at

Good Reads

A few 2017-18 book recommendations from California Reads:
Undefeated: Jim Thorpe and the Carlisle Indian School Football Team (grades 6-8), by Steve Sheinkin, tells of the Carlisle Indian Industrial School’s football team, a national powerhouse during the early 20th century. And no wonder: The federally funded boarding school for Native Americans boasted now-legendary student athlete Jim Thorpe and fabled coach Pop Warner. The book also looks at the U.S. government’s violent persecution of Native Americans and Carlisle’s mandate to erase Indian cultures. The obstacles that Thorpe and his fellow students overcome, both on and off the field, will move and inspire young readers.
The Bear and the Piano (pre-K, kindergarten), by David Litchfield, is a story of friendship. A bear cub finds a piano in the forest and learns to play it, delighting his friends. He’s excited when he is invited to the city to share his sounds. But should he leave his friends to follow his dreams?
The 11-year-old protagonist in The Secret Life of Lincoln Jones (grades 3-5), by Wendelin Van Draanen, retreats into the stories he writes, for good reason: He and his mother just fled her abusive boyfriend and now live in poverty, kids at his new school make fun of his Southern drawl, and he must spend most of his time at the nursing home where his mother works. Lincoln slowly realizes who the real heroes in his life are and that “real folks around me had stories I’d been completely blind to.”
For more teacher-recommended books, see (#californiareads).

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 15

Looking for lesson plans focused on King and his work, or for content you can use during Black History Month in February? Stanford University’s Martin Luther King Jr. Research and Education Institute provides document-based K-12 lesson plans and online resources. Scholastic has new, curriculum-focused service lessons for grades 9-12. And NEA offers classroom resources to help students put King’s life and impact in perspective.

Fred Korematsu Day, Jan. 30

Officially recognized by California in 2010, Fred Korematsu Day of Civil Liberties and the Constitution is the first state-observed day in U.S. history named after an Asian American. Born in Oakland, Korematsu was 23 when he refused to go to the internment camps for Japanese Americans in 1942. Arrested and convicted of defying the government’s order, he appealed his case all the way to the Supreme Court. Since then, several states have enacted laws to commemorate his birthday, Jan. 30.

Go Global

Cultivate global competence skills and build lesson plans to share with educators around the world with the NEA Foundation Global Learning Fellowship. Active NEA members who are current K-12 classroom teachers are eligible to apply for the fellowship, which offers 12 months of professional development opportunities and a nine-day international field study. Deadline to apply is Feb. 5.

Come Together, Right Now

CTA conferences are among the best ways to hone your professional skills.
Check out the Issues Conference, Jan. 26–28 in Las Vegas, which features dynamic sessions for rural, urban, county office of education, and ESP educators. Keynote speaker Alan J. Daly, from UC San Diego’s Department of Education Studies, will present “Better Together: The Power of Networks for Leveraging the Collective Potential.” Hotel cut-off is Jan. 3.
And the Good Teaching Conference North, Feb. 2–4 in San Jose, offers a plethora of peer-to-peer workshops on curriculum content areas for K-12 teachers, as well as the annual Teacher Innovation Expo hosted by CTA’s Institute for Teaching. Hotel cut-off is Jan. 25.

CTA Human Rights Awards
Jan. 8                    Nomination Deadline
These awards, in a variety of categories, promote the development of programs for advancement and protection of human and civil rights within CTA. Any active CTA member, chapter, caucus or Service Center Council may nominate a member, chapter or Service Center Council.

CTA State Gold Awards
Jan. 12                  Nomination Deadline
Recognize persons and organizations whose leadership, acts and support have had a positive impact on public education in California. Any CTA member or affiliate may nominate.

Candidacy for NEA State Delegate
Jan. 31                 Filing Deadline
Candidates for NEA RA state delegate must submit a declaration of candidacy.

NEA Foundation Grants
Feb. 1                   Application Deadline
The NEA Foundation awards grants to NEA members. Student Achievement Grants support improving academic achievement; Learning and Leadership Grants support high-quality professional development. Applications are reviewed three times a year.

CTA Scholarships
Feb. 2                   Application Deadline
The 2017-18 CTA Scholarship Program offers up to 35 scholarships of up to $5,000 for dependent children of CTA members, including one for a child attending a continuation high school or alternative education program; up to five scholarships of up to $3,000 for CTA members completing college coursework, including one for an ESP member; and up to three scholarships of up to $5,000 for Student CTA members.

National School Counseling Week
Feb. 5–9               Event
“School Counselors: Helping Students Reach for the Stars.” Celebrate your counselor! School counselors make unique contributions to education and can have tremendous impact on students’ academic success and career plans.

CCA Winter Conference
Feb. 9–11             Conference
Hyatt Regency LAX, Los Angeles. “Bargaining and Representation: The Building Blocks of a Strong Union.” The Community College Association’s winter conference focuses on enhancing bargaining skills and coordinating bargaining strategies with other locals. Bargaining teams are encouraged to attend.

Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarships
Feb. 16                 Application Deadline
Aimed at helping members of ethnic minorities prepare for careers in public education, the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Scholarship Fund is supported by voluntary contributions from CTA members and the CTA Foundation for Teaching and Learning. An applicant must be an active CTA or Student CTA member, or a dependent child of a CTA member. Award amount: up to $4,000.

New Educator Weekend
Feb. 23–25          Conference
SFO Marriott Waterfront, Burlingame. The New Educator Weekend, geared for those in their first three years of teaching, is a new type of conference for CTA members. In addition to plenty of time to connect with colleagues, its workshops and trainings are everything new educators need, with topics such as:
• Classroom management
• Navigating IEPs
• Working with colleagues, administration and parents
• Common Core, state standards, assessments and pedagogy
Come early on Friday for a free pre-conference session tailored to educators’ professional and personal lives with topics such as understanding your contract and financial planning. Hotel cut-off is Feb. 7.

CTA/NEA-Retired Issues Conference
March 1–2           Conference
Torrance Marriott South Bay. Whether you’re retired or considering retirement, learn how CTA/NEA-Retired is working to protect your future and maintaining a constant watch on federal legislation that affects retirement benefits. Stay connected, be protected, and enjoy great benefits. Hotel cut-off is Feb. 14.

Equity and Human Rights Conference
March 2–4           Conference
Torrance Marriott South Bay. This conference affirms CTA’s mission to protect the civil rights of children and secure a more equitable, democratic society. Speakers and workshops provide members with a greater understanding of diversity, equity and social justice. Hotel cut-off is Feb. 14.