The top governing body of the California Teachers Association has opened membership to education-support professionals, resulting in more than 5,000 new members in the state’s largest teachers’ union.
Though the new members previously had been in the National Education Association, the CTA’s national parent, and been affiliated with the 335,000-member CTA, they had not held voting privileges.
The change could have a sizable impact on California charter schools, whose small staffs often do not unionize. Now, the CTA can recruit both teachers and support personnel together at charter schools, making it easier to unionize the sites.
Support-staff employees are recognized as members of teachers’ unions in every other state except Connecticut and Hawaii, according to Karen Mahurin, the president of the National Council for Education Support Professionals, a division of the NEA.
A version of this article appeared in the June 14, 2006 edition of Education Week