Banners of educators become Annapolis Main Street mainstay
Each day during the 2017 General Assembly, delegates and senators walked by MSEA’s Annapolis headquarters on Main Street greeted by larger-than-life banners of educator members, a reminder perhaps of the faces of those who will carry the weight of implementing the education policies and bills they would be working on.
The banners are not only for legislators, of course, but for everyone who visits the capital city. They are part of a series MSEA is producing to showcase the breadth, depth, and passion of Maryland educators.
Annapolis sees nearly 7 million visitors a year — many from our state alone. “These banners represent the best of what all educators provide our students, schools, and communities,” said MSEA President Betty Weller. “Yes, we inspire, enchant, electrify, energize, support, and strengthen. That is our passion, our calling. And as a union, we fight for the greater opportunities to do just that. Now with legislation reducing the burdens of over-testing, we have more opportunities to once again deliver instruction that nurtures the critical thinking and creativity our students need and want.”
To create the 7’ x 3’ banners (12 total to be produced), members and MSEA staff visit a photography studio in Baltimore for a photo shoot. Creating the image — with stylists, props, lighting changes, and wardrobe choices is fun and collaborative. “I hope the photographs will showcase what we truly bring to students as classroom educators,” says Christella Potts, whose banner highlights her work as an art teacher. “The public sees us so often as one-dimensional — I think they will think of us differently when they see these banners.”