PSEA is a community of education professionals who make a difference in the lives of students every day.
Emily Nell came back to teach art and make an impact after spending 14 years as an independent artist working in schools and holding benefit auctions.
Pennsylvania’s public schools should be the safest and healthiest places for students to learn and grow.
PSEA is committed to making changes aimed at protecting everyone who works and learns in our schools.
The protests that erupted across the nation this past summer following the killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor put the issues of racial justice and equity into sharp relief. PSEA responded with numerous actions to ensure our Association is operating with the utmost respect for these principles.
In July 2020, President Rich Askey asked the Minority Affairs and Educational Justice committees to review and update a 2010 report on increasing minority involvement in PSEA. At the same time, PSEA’s Board of Directors had a conversation about racial justice that led to the creation of the Task Force on Racial Justice and Equity in September 2020.
The task force includes 12 members who represent the full spectrum of the Association’s membership. The task force’s charge is to consult with rank-and-file members on relevant PSEA committees. Its focus will be on PSEA’s internal culture, documents, and activities and will make recommendations for the PSEA Board of Directors to consider.
“This is not only about providing opportunities for members of color in our organization,” said PSEA Vice President Aaron Chapin, who chairs the task force. “This is about trying to fix a lot of the inequities that exist not just in PSEA but in our commonwealth. We want this to be something our members are going to adopt and buy into. That’s why we’re looking for input from all sectors of our organization.”
PSEA’s commitment to the ideals of racial justice and equity are embodied in the Association’s values statement, created as part of the mission, vision, values, and goals process, and approved by the House of Delegates in May 2016.
The task force has been meeting to discuss how to best project racial justice and equity in all of PSEA’s operations and how to facilitate racial and ethnic diversity and equity within our locals and statewide Association. The task force expects to produce a report and recommendations that will guide PSEA activities over the coming years to ensure our equity goals are being met.
“Social and racial justice are principles that PSEA has always embraced,” Chapin said. “While our goal has always been to get people of color involved in their local, state, and national associations, we also know that bringing people of color into the profession is good for students. We are now actively working on a written commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, an effort which strengthens the collective voice of our Association.”
• Integrity in words, actions, and data
• Professional growth and expertise
• Student-centered teaching and learning
• Unionism and collective action: working together based on
core union principles
• Equitable resources and equal opportunities for all
• Our members’ voices in the union and as leaders in our
• Respect and diversity in our Association and workplaces
• Partnerships with our communities