TREND Winter 2017/2018 - Page 5

MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR Our Choices Become Realities in the Classroom In 2018 political season will be in full swing. We will elect a new Governor, as well as many new House and Senate Members at both the state and federal level. It is important to remind our members that we will never tell you how to vote or who to vote for either. Your dues dollars never go to a political candidate or political party. However, we do meet with many candidates for local, state or national office when they request it, regardless of political party or office. We share our members’ concerns with them. We strive to treat all equally and fairly. This has garnered us goodwill across party lines as we embrace the nonpartisan label. Contrast that philosophy with our union As we step into the 2018 friends. Recently in one state senate race, the union endorsed a political candidate, elections, we hope you will who admitted knowing very little support and work for the about public education. What has been more shocking is that they used their candidates of your choice. member’s dues to assist this individual in this political race, knowing that they also support school vouchers and send their own children to a private school. From this point forward, it is clear that whatever criteria is used in the union endorsement process, it is not based upon knowledge or support of public education. As educators, we know a leader’s attitude sets the tone for the entire team. And our attitude will determine the success of the team as much as any other factor. As we step into the 2018 elections, we hope you will support and work for the candidates of your choice. Take the time to educate them on public education and your own concerns. Share your ideas and experience with those who want to lead in your chosen profession. Public schools impact every Tennessean’s life. Most Tennessee children attend public schools. Our tax dollars fund them. And our future depends on their success. We have sent enough people to Nashville and Washington DC who “don’t know anything about public education.” It is time for every citizen to understand what educators have long known: Our choices at the polls in 2018 will become the realities in the classroom. Get involved and please vote. Executive Director