MSEA delegates from every county gather in the spring every two years. Their two main tasks are among the most important they have as delegates—approving MSEA’s operating budget and endorsing candidates for the primary and general elections.
At this year’s Spring Representative Assembly (RA) held on April 2, nearly 300 delegates took up recommendations made by MSEA’s Endorsement Council for governor, comptroller, and attorney general. The Endorsement Council—MSEA’s Board of Directors, chairs of the political action committee and retired council, and local presidents, plus one additional member from each local—referred its recommendations for the Democratic primary to the assembled delegates who then voted by secret ballot. Ballots were counted and reported out by the Nominations and Credentials Committee and in the end, candidates who won at least a 58% majority of delegates’ votes earned MSEA’s endorsement.
MSEA invited candidates to complete a questionnaire and participate in a recorded interview with MSEA President Cheryl Bost as part of the recommendation process. Of the nine candidates for governor who participated, Wes Moore was recommended by the Endorsement Council and received 85% of delegates’ votes. In the other statewide primary races, Delegate Brooke Lierman (D-Baltimore City), candidate for state comptroller, received 98% of delegates’ votes; Representative Anthony Brown (D-4th), candidate for attorney general, received 96% of delegates’ votes.
In his detailed education policy, Moore addresses the needs of students in every neighborhood with support for community schools, affordable child care, access to free and/or affordable early childhood education, and expanded career and technical education. He wants to reinstate the Commission on the School-to-Prison Pipeline, and supports trauma-informed policies and practices, closing the digital divide that impacts rural and disadvantaged communities, and truth and honesty in curriculum. Moore not only values education support professionals, he values the entire school community and opposes the disruption that privatization of services can bring. Recognizing the broad reach of policies and programs, he sees the intersection of education equity and housing equity—and how that impacts access and opportunities for students, families, and communities.
“Before the Spring RA, I had a conversation with Wes Moore,” said Teresa McCulloh, president of the Carroll County Education Association. “I was impressed with the experiences, credentials, passion, and enthusiasm that make him a genuine and well-rounded person. He has demonstrated his accessibility and his willingness to actively listen and is familiar with educators’ challenges. Wes has proven that he’s not only aware of our dedication to our students and communities, he truly appreciates our service.”
“Dorchester Educators is proud to support MSEA’s endorsement of Wes Moore for governor,” said Katie Holbrook, president of Dorchester Educators. “We believe Wes is a strong, passionate candidate for governor that supports the work of educators. We are emboldened by his promise to give educators a seat at the table, and a voice in all decisions that involve education. His statement ‘nothing about you, without you’ speaks volumes to this commitment. And his efforts to hear from leaders all across Maryland, including the Eastern Shore, gives hope to smaller, often forgotten groups that our opinions, contributions, and way of life are valued.”
“As a candidate for governor, Wes Moore’s commitment to Maryland continues. Wes has promised that he will fully fund the Blueprint and work with us to implement it with fidelity,” said MSEA Vice President Theresa Mitchell Dudley. “He understands that even though the Blueprint is a historic step in how we address education inequities, we must not be afraid to identify its blind spots and do more, including addressing increasing wages for our education support professionals.
“Our students and communities need leadership committed to the promise that no matter their neighborhood, students will have the same opportunity to reach their potential,” said MSEA President Cheryl Bost. “Wes Moore has demonstrated a commitment to unite people whom he leads in the fight for racial and social justice, and to give educators a voice in the decisions and policies that affect education. When MSEA’s 76,000 educators support a gubernatorial candidate like Wes Moore, voters across Maryland listen.”
Throughout the primary season, you’ll hear from MSEA with opportunities to get involved. Your voice counts! Pitch in for your candidates! Contact your local association to learn how.
Nearly 300 delegates from across the state attended the first in-person RA since the 2019 Fall Annual Representative Assembly and Convention. Delegates voted to endorse candidates in the primary this summer and elected Neil Becker, Washington County, to fill a vacancy on the MSEA Board of Directors. Read more about the election here.
MSEA Treasurer Joe Coughlin reviewed MSEA’s proposed operating budget for fiscal years 2023 and 2024. The budget passed unanimously and will support MSEA’s strategic objectives. Read more about MSEA’s budget here.
Brianna Ross, Maryland’s 2021–2022 Teacher of the Year, spoke to delegates of the new reality in teaching—the care required in supporting student welfare post-pandemic while mitigating pandemic-related impacts on learning. Ross is a Baltimore County social studies teacher. Learn more about Brianna here.