The National Education Association will not be substituting “mothers” for “birthing parents” this year, at least.
The largest teacher union in the country stated in a Thursday statement, that the hot button proposal to replace “mother”, “father” and “maternity leave with gender-neutral contract language was not up for vote at this week’s annual meeting.
“NBI 63 [New Business Item 63] was not considered on the floor of NEA’s 2022 Representative Assembly,” said the NEA in an email to The Washington Times. The item proposed to make “mother” a “birthing parent,” “father”, and “maternity leave,” LGBTQ inclusive. The delegates passed several left-of center proposals at Wednesday’s assembly in Chicago. These included items about abortion and LGBTQ issues.
The successful items included a proposal to spend $140,625 to create and distribute “fact sheets” about the 25 largest organizations seeking to “dismantle public education,” including information about funding sources, leadership, and office locations.
” Truth cannot be priced,” stated one delegate to Education Week. We must know our enemies .”
A whopping 74% approved an item to take a public stand “in defense of abortion and reproductive rights” and “encourage members to participate in activities including rallies and demonstrations,” Education Week reported.
Also winning passage was a $56,000 proposal to “take all necessary steps” to overturn Florida’s HB 1557, decried by foes as the “don’t say gay” bill, which prohibits classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in grades K-3.
The delegates also approved spending nearly $500,000 to present “a unified response to the rise in gun violence,” and use the words “murder” and “murderer” when applicable in reference to mass shootings.
Failing to make the cut was NBI 37, which called for the NEA to advocate for a national policy of mandatory masking and COVID-19 vaccines in schools. It was voted down by 84% of the delegation.
New business items require the union to act for one year. However, they don’t constitute a permanent statement. Madeline Will from Education Week said that it takes only 140 delegates to move such a measure on the floor of the representative assembly. “It only takes 50 delegates to move such a measure to the floor of the representative assembly.”
The “birthing parent” item stoked an uproar after it was exposed Tuesday by Terry Stoops, director of the John Locke Foundation’s Center for Effective Education, along with a dozen other items up for consideration at the meeting.
This year, the NEA made it clear that they would not publish the agenda. So I stepped in to help and said that I was going to search for the agenda. “We are going to let everybody know about the NEA’s agenda at the representative assembly.” Mr. Stoops spoke Thursday on Fox’s Fox’s The Ingraham Angle .”
— Terry Stoops (@TerryStoops) July 5, 2022
Mr. Steops claimed that he was blocked from his Twitter account on Wednesday because he violated the platform’s policy against posting private information. He denies this claim, saying that he got the list of NEA proposal lists from a public website. Now, the document can be found on Locke Foundation’s website.
“The truth is, NEA chiefs wanted to keep the conference agenda secret because it revealed their obsession with social injustice and an appalling disregard of the needs for public school students and teachers,” he said to the Carolina Journal.
Mr. Stoops said he appealed to the Twitter suspension and that the business items had nothing to do with classroom teaching.
They seem incapable of discussing what is really important: student learning,” said Mr. Stoops. “I am comforted knowing that the union continues to lose members, dues, and influence, particularly in North Carolina.”
The document, “RA Today: The Official Newspaper of the 2022 NEA Representative Assembly,” listed dozens of proposed business items up for debate. These items were not introduced by the NEA leadership, but rather by delegates and state affiliates.
” Every year, NEA members submit new business items concerning a broad range of topics,” stated the NEA statement. Some are directly related to NEA operations, while others represent policy positions delegates want the organization to adopt. NEA believes in democratic processes and free debate. These values are fundamental not just to NEA’s vision as a union but to our functioning as a multiracial democracy.”
The July 3-6 gathering was the union’s first in-person representative assembly since 2019. About 4,500 showed up at the event, while 1,500 participated virtually.