What Do Educators Make? The Idaho Education Association held its 2015 Delegate Assembly/Annual Meeting April 10-11 at the Boise Centre in downtown Boise, with 365 delegates from around the state on hand to represent their local associations and steer the course of IEA business for the next year. The theme for this year’s DA was “What Do Educators Make?”, accompanied by the parenthetical answer—“They Make a Difference”. [button text=”View images from Delegate Assembly 2015″ type=”btn-theme” size=”btn-lg” url=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/idahoea/sets/72157651481983397″ target=”_blank” bg_color=”#1062CC” bg_hover_color=”#1062CC” txt_color=”#FFFFFF” txt_hover_color=”#FFFFFF”] The joint address by IEA President Penni Cyr and Executive Director Robin Nettinga focused on the association’s strategic plan for the future, including specific attention paid to membership, professional development, leadership development and public relations. They noted that the IEA is developing a toolkit for membership recruitment, and touched on a number of professional development initiatives that have been launched (or soon will be). The IEA’s Instructional and Professional Development hearing was one of the most popular at this year’s Delegate Assembly, with Ingrid Spence, Valerie Aker, Jolene Dockstader and Becky Hannifin leading the discussion on becoming a better educator and career advancement. A number of new business items addressed professional development as well, including a directive to develop a Jump Start training program for National Board Certification candidacy as part of the run-up to this year’s IEA Summer Institute. Among the other directives coming out of the 2015 Delegate Assembly were instructions to approach the State Department of Education to engage in conversation aimed at reducing class sizes in all grades, and the development of a candidate questionnaire for all IEA statewide offices. The ESP and women’s caucuses were also well attended, and a standing room only crowd heard from Nettinga and IEA Director of Public Policy Matt Compton about the new Career Ladder legislation. IEA Children’s Fund A fixture at the IEA’s Delegate Assemblies has been the Children’s Fund silent auction, where a wide variety of items are put up for bid. The proceeds from the silent auction, as well as cash contributions, go to benefit the IEA Children’s Fund, which provides help to school children around the state who lack the basic necessities (clothes, food, school supplies, health care, etc.) to help them succeed in the classroom. The silent auction and cash contributions each raised about $10,000 for the Children’s Fund. One of the most touching and memorable moments of the entire Delegate Assembly was the $3,000 contribution from IEA member Eva Ochoa (Firth), to the Children’s Fund in honor of her Grandmother, Lucrecia (Lucy) Ayala, who passed away recently at the age of 98. “Whenever I would visit, she would proudly share the fact that I am a teacher and belong to the union”, Eva says. “My way of honoring her and also my colleagues, is to donate to the children in our schools”. IEA’s Annual Award Winners In a long-standing tradition, the IEA honored some of its most exemplary members at the annual meeting. Congratulations and thanks to these dedicated and passionate educators.
- Travis Manning Larry Caldwell Member Advocacy Award
- Stacie Aspiazu-Johnson Edythe Crowe Educational Support Professional Award
- Dick Chilcote Shane Anderson Outstanding Member Award
- Mary Lee Ruch Marsha Nokamura Award for Teaching Excellence
- John Hyatt Friend of Education Award
The IEA Board of Directors also voted to create a new award in honor of long-time member and leader Sue Hovey, who passed away recently. Starting next year, the Sue Hovey Mentoring Award will be bestowed upon a deserving member in her honor.