See photos from the "CT Smart Start" PreK launch press conferenceMore
Chartered as a labor union by the AFT in June 1947, the HFT is the second largest teacher local in New England. Originally founded to assure teachers of equity in regards to wages, hours and working conditions, and to help negotiate collective bargaining agreements. The HFT has grown from its first 10 members to over 2,400 members. The HFT represents not only teachers, but also school nurses, dental hygienist, special police officers, child development associates and substitute teachers. Together we are an organization of over 2,400 "Professionals Who Care."
The HFT has a long history of involvement both on the state and local level. We are often recognized as leaders by many neighborhood and community groups. Our ability to achieve employee rights and benefits, as well as improve the educational environment for Hartford's children, is only as strong as our solidarity as a union. This is why every member is so important.
A broad-based group of organizations has released "A New Social Compact for American Education"—a groundbreaking rethinking of accountability that replaces the current paradigm of "test and punish" with a focus on what is needed to support and improve teaching and learning.
One rotten apple at Time magazine—specifically, the cover of an upcoming issue about teacher tenure—is generating lots of anger and activism among AFT members and our friends and allies.
The AFT is challenging the assumptions of a new report from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute on school support staff, which suggests that the increase in the number of these employees is "adding more hands, but not necessarily more value."
AFT President Randi Weingarten appeared on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" television show to make the case for teachers' due process rights, to correct widely held misconceptions about the teaching workforce, and to clarify that problems tied to evaluation are often mislabeled as due process issues.
AFT convention delegates unanimously passed a special order of business—recommended by the executive council—to fight back against attacks on unions and teachers like Vergara v. California and Harris v. Quinn, and to fight forward to reclaim the promise of America.