Saturday, July 19, 2008


Delegates gathered gather July 1 through July 6 at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC for the Association's 146th Annual Meeting and 87th Representative Assembly.

Tracy was among 280 Tennessee delegates. She served as state delegate. Each morning the Tennessee delegation met at their Bethesda, MD from 7 to 9 for their daily caucus. They discussed 83 new business items, 15 new legislative items and numerous resolutions as part of the RA business.
Delegates heard from the Friend of Education award winner Barbara Morgan, NASA's first teacher in space. The assembly also welcome the 2008 Teacher of the Year Michael Geisen and the 2008 ESP of the Year Laura Vernon. Each speaker was very inspiring and made you proud to be a member of the education profession.

This was President Reg Weaver's last Representative Assembly and the delegates elected Dennis Van Roekel as the new President and Lily Eskelsen as Vice President of the NEA. Tennessee's delegation heard from these candidates as well as those running for Secretary-Treasurer, Executive Committee and ESP at Large during the morning caucuses. Candidate elections were exciting and Tracy was the state contact for Donna De Kraai's campaign for Executive Committee.
Tracy also served as the state contact for the Utah delegation and exchanged items from Tennessee with the Utah delegate. The Utah delegation was having a great RA, their candidate for V-P Lily won the election.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Summer Happenings

The Smith County Education Association (SCEA) sponsored a School Board Candidate Forum on July 8, 2008 at the Smith County Chamber of Commerce Building.  All candidates were invited to attend.  Candidates were:  Karen Shoulders, District 1 (opposition not present); Dick Fulton and Chris McCall, District 2;  Sonja Hammonds, District 7 (current board member not present) and Tommy Manning (running unopposed) from District 5.  Each candidate made an opening and closing statement. 

Questions that had been submitted by members of SCEA were presented to the candidates concerning: open meetings, rotating Board of Education (BOE) meetings to different schools, their favorite teacher and subject,  evaluations of the Director of Schools, his job extensions and taking applications for the position, changing board policies and opening board policy up to the public or posting it on line.  Mr. Manning expressed surprise that the board policy was not on line since the BOE had paid the Tenn. School Board Association to do so a couple of years ago.  Several candidates also expressed new ideas to add to the effectiveness of the Smith County Board of Education.  All the candidates present spoke positively about the schools, students and teachers of Smith County.

The Smith County Education Association hopes to continue forums in the future to help promote awareness of education in Smith County .