Hello NEA-SN Family!
I am Vicki Kreidel and I am excited to be addressing you for the first time as your new union President! I am so grateful for this opportunity. There is a lot going on within education at the local, state, and national level. I believe it is our leadership’s responsibility to keep you up to date on what is happening so we can be involved at every level. That is one of the reasons we so appreciate our affiliation with the Nevada State Education Association (NSEA) and National Education Association (NEA). Together, we can bring meaningful change to our schools. I am hopeful that together we can move our “little union that could” onto the next level. There is so much work to be done. I’m ready! Are you?
Recently NEA invited me to a very special training for new union presidents. It was extremely informative. The glaring fact is that NEA-SN is in a very unique position. Unlike other local unions, we do not have a full-time release president position or any staff members. Our officer positions and Board of Directors are volunteers. We do this work purely because of our deep desire to help students and support teachers, so it is imperative that we have an active membership. To do that, we need you. Yes, YOU! To be successful we all need to step up.
Now, I know you are busy. We are going to make “stepping up” as easy as possible. I’m asking each member to pick at least one action item per month. Just one thing! Here are some ideas to be more active in NEA-SN:
- Attend Leadership Council Meetings. These take place at 5 PM on the second (2nd) Tuesday of every month at the NSEA building located at 3511 E. Harmon Avenue. We try to keep them brief because we value members’ time. A lot of information is shared at these meetings. It is a great way to get more involved!
- Become part of our NEW team called “Board Watch.” This team will be attending school board meetings and tackling specific issues that hurt our students and teachers. While would love for you to speak, you do not have to be willing to speak to the board to participate with Board Watch and attend the board meetings. These meetings happen twice a month and you can leave after public comments (usually by 6:30pm). School Board Meetings are usually second (2nd) and fourth 4th Thursday of the month at 5 PM at the Ed Shed located at 2832 E Flamingo Rd.
- Train to be a part of our Stewards Council. You will need to take our NEPF trainings, Know Your Contract training, and some additional Advocacy trainings. Our hope is that our trained Stewards will represent members at investigatory meetings when they feel prepared. I have taken some of these trainings and feel better prepared to advocate for myself with administration now. Think about it!
- Join our Twitter Team and learn to use social media to advocate for education. On this team, you will learn how to use social media in ways that affect change. All this can be done from your couch! Are you a Twitter Warrior? Join us!
- Join our Recruiting Team and help recruit new members! Talk to teachers you know about NEA-SN. Bring interested teachers to a Starbucks meeting so they can meet and speak to us. Encourage colleagues to speak with us who you know are ready to join us. The best way to find new members is to get personal referrals, right? Help us build our organization!
As we begin this next phase of our organization, I that I think it is vital we re-focus. For the last year, we have continued to be sometimes mired in our past. It is time we have found OUR own focus. A quote was shared by Lily Eskelson-Garcia, president of NEA, from “The Last Jedi” that seems the most fitting for the next phase of NEA-SN’s growth:
“You don’t win by fighting what you hate, but by saving what you love.”
One thing I have discovered is that our membership is driven by a love for our students. We all want to make things better in our district, so let’s work together and do the work that needs to be done to make changes happen! All I ask is for you to commit to one action to help grow our organization.
NEA of Southern Nevada