“The Hardest Year of My Career”

“THE HARDEST YEAR OF MY CAREER.” I’ve heard this sentiment from many educators as they describe the past year. You turned challenges into opportunities and made herculean efforts to turn it into a successful year for students. You learned new technology and safety protocols on the fly and taught students both in your classroom and virtually while directives were changing constantly. Congratulations! You made it to the end of the school year!

So many educators, no matter their role, stepped up and you all deserve continual gratitude, respect, and appreciation for your tremendous work this year.

I hope you will join me in saying thank you to another group of people who, from the start, advocated and worked on your behalf: our local presidents and MSEA staff. Whether it was answering your calls, negotiating MOUs, organizing car rallies and local actions, conducting workshops, lobbying in a virtual environment, addressing technology needs, getting creative with social media to get information out, securing leave, holding virtual hearings and meetings, or supporting members during coronavirus outbreaks, inequitable digital divides, ransomware attacks—our local presidents and MSEA staff have stepped up.

We saw that no matter the circumstances, we will continue to support, organize, motivate, and advocate for our members so you can do what you do best—educate and support the social, emotional, and educational needs of our students and families. I appreciate Sean Johnson and our management team, my fellow officers, Doug Prouty and Joe Coughlin, our MSEA Board of Directors, all of our MSEA and local staff, and our hardworking local presidents for stepping up and supporting each other. We have experienced this global pandemic together and we are stronger—even more unified—as we emerge from it. I can’t wait to see how we continue to grow and strengthen the voices of educators.

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