From the Front Lines

Margaret Chaney


Margaret was elected as TEA President for both of her terms, and served them with distinction.  

Best of Luck to our Past President for a glorious future.

What does the TEA President do?

The TEA President is the leader of our district's local  association. Margaret uses the power of the association's members to advocate for fair, safe, equitable, and appropriately compensated positions as well as representing members in grievances and discipline issues.

(March 9, 2023)

Dear Members - Happy Women's History Month!

Contracts, job fairs & transfers:  Contracts should be out by March 15th.  Part of the reason behind the delay was to allow members to review their commitments to their communities and look into opportunities at other sites.  At this point, TUSD is not automatically transferring anyone but if you wish to remain with the district but would like a new site, please talk to people at the new site and apply through the HR website.  There will be a job fair March 11th and current employees are allowed to enter at least 1 hour EARLIER than outside applicants with your district ID.  TEA hopes you do remain with the district so please sign your contracts when they arrive and understand that the contract is with the district , NOT the site, which makes it possible to apply to a new site asap.  

Code of Conduct Committee notes:  TEA is committed to the restructuring of the Student Code of Conduct.  So far, we have determined that the code should discipline different age groups with methods that are appropriate and best practice for Elementary, Middle School and High school.  We have also found that there needs to be more intervention at a younger age with the goal to prevent future infractions as much as possible.  Student accountability and appropriate consequences are key at the sites so that students and employees may see the district's commitment and trust that we all have their best interests at heart.

Join AEA at the Capitol:  While TUSD is on Spring Break, AEA and other districts will be at the Capitol to continue to advocate for our students and fellow members!  Since Tucson will be on break, TEA is imploring you to take time to become a part of this opportunity to speak directly with legislators.  Please register now for March 15th or March 22nd!

Your Vote:  Don't forget to vote for the delegates for the State and National Assemblies.  TEA has already sent out ballots, AND you should have received a separate ballot from AEA for statewide delegates.  Please don't forget to vote!

Your Salary & Steps:  Teachers should get retro pay on the March 10th paycheck.  Some of you have received erroneous emails stating that steps are frozen, this is not the case;  TDR-B has already received their steps, TDR-A will ALSO RECEIVE A STEP for this year.  TEA has spoken to HR and they are still trying to catch up with steps since the data breach.  If you believe you are not at the correct step after the March 10th paycheck, please contact HR and Payroll and CC your Regional TEA Director so that we may collect the data and follow up if needed. 

Members, we know these are difficult times and there seems to be a new twist to old issues each time we turn around but please know that TEA is working with you to help resolve these issues.  As we begin our negotiating sessions, we will have in mind salary compression, staff discipline, equity in extra duty pay, sick leave justice, health insurance costs, site safety and more.  Also, know that we cannot do any of this without you, your voice or your action.  Work with us to get the job done!

In Solidarity,

Margaret Chaney
Tucson Education Association President

(February 6, 2023)

Welcome to February Dear Members and Happy Black History Month!

Most of you have survived an entire week without internet and it appears that many will have to adjust until the issue is resolved.  TEA knows that many of our more experienced teachers have a multitude of lessons and alternate activities stored somewhere that will make life a bit more bearable and are flexible and creative enough to get as close to following the original lesson or standard as possible.  We want to encourage new teachers to reach out to their more experienced colleagues and administrators for ideas and resources they can share as we know how difficult and frustrating this week(s) has/will be.  

Payroll: The good news is that everyone will still get paid this week at whatever their “full time equivalent” (FTE) is and that people on paid leave of absence will also get paid on time.  If you are classified, please keep a written record of your hours and job codes if you are working out of class. Everyone should fill out the time sheet adjustments and appropriate corresponding job codes if you receive supplemental pay, tutoring or loss of planning. Unfortunately, this disruption will delay the long-awaited February 24thretroactive raise payout. TEA is in regular communication with district administration and will provide updates as we receive them.

Parent Teacher conferences:  As of this email, TUSD regional assistant superintendents have decided to continue with parent teacher conferences this week despite the network being down and no assurances it will be back up this week.  Our advice is to try to contact parents of students who were failing or near failing at the last grade report and let them know that you will have official grades posted as soon as technology makes this available.  We do know that more hotspots have been ordered but that the priorities are with the front offices, health office and food service.

Delegate Assembly and Representative Assembly: pledge to serves are on our website.  Delegate Assembly is a great opportunity for the members to get their voices heard and see democracy in action at the state level.  There is a small stipend to help cover expenses and we need over 40 representatives from TEA this year, so if you are interested or know someone who is, please complete the form and send in as soon as possible! Deadline: Feb. 15th, 2023

Delegate Assembly Pledge to Serve

Representative Assembly Pledge to Serve

Governor Katie Hobbs Educator Retention Task Force: In a win for Arizona educators, and at the urging of our union, Governor Hobbs has created the Governor’s Educator Retention Task Force to study and make recommendations to address the educator retention crisis in the State of Arizona. The Governor is looking for educators, parents, and experts to take on this role. If you are interested in applying or know someone who should, fill out this google form.


NEW! Aspiring Educators Request for Proposals

Proposals to present at the 2023 Aspiring Ed Conference are now being accepted. The conference will be held in Orlando, FL, in late June, prior to NEA's Annual Meeting and Representative Assembly (official dates will be announced). Use this link to submit an RFP. The deadline to submit a proposal is 11:59 PM ET, February 10, 2023. Presenters will be notified of selection by March 15, 2023.

Green Schools Conference. February 27-March 1.

The Green Schools Conference (GSC) is the only event to bring together all the players involved in making green schools a reality: people who lead, operate, build and teach in schools. Designed to educate, connect and inspire, attendees of the three-day in person conference will explore interdisciplinary content during general sessions, while also having dedicated time with peers to work through specific challenges, share best practices, and generate momentum to further green school actions across the country. Register Here

2023 NEA ESP Conference 

Registration is now open for the 2023 NEA ESP National Conference, the premier professional development opportunity for education support professionals across the nation, happening March 24-26 in Seattle! Share this event with your ESP members and register by February 17. Register Here

NEW! 2023 National Leadership Summit

Registration opens Monday, February 6 for NEA's 2023 National Leadership Summit. The annual Leadership Summit is designed to develop education activist leaders and prepare them with the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) necessary to lead relevant, thriving associations and to lead in their professions. The Summit is open to NEA members and leaders of all experience levels, membership types, and professions. Join fellow education leaders in San Francisco CA, March 10–12. Keynote speakers for this year's Leadership Summit include Dr. Christopher Emdin, Robert A. Naslund Endowed Chair in Curriculum Theory and Professor of Education at the University of Southern California; 13-year-old author, artist, and activist Helena Lourdes Donato; and Charles Best, founder of DonorsChoose. The Summit also will include social and networking opportunities for NEA members. Join your fellow leaders in San Francisco from March 10 – 12. Register Here 

In Solidarity,

Margaret Chaney
Tucson Education Association President

(Jan 30, 2023)

Dear Members:

TEA ELECTIONS: Congratulations to our new 2023-2025 Executive Team: Jim Bryne – President; Dan Ireland – Vice President; Christy Sainz - Secretary; & Linda Lyon - Treasurer (uncontested)!  The coming year will no doubt have its challenges and we wish you all the best as you come together to continue to find solutions and better work conditions for all.  Thank you members for participating in a hotly contested election process.  We hope that you will continue to vote in TEA elections for the Consensus agreement and of course the district wide vote for the 301 plan once those documents are ready.  We will keep you posted!

Contracts: Some of you are still looking for your updated contract agreement emails for this school year that were being sent out by HR.  If you still have not received one please send an email to HR, and cc your TEA Area Director so that we can keep track of what still needs to be done. Step corrections should be finalized by February 10th with a payout by February 24th.

Certified contracts for school year 23/24 are due to come out between February 20th – 22nd.   You will have 2 work weeks to sign and return them. TEA is starting negotiations with the district soon, so these contracts will not reflect any increases that may still be negotiated.

Temporary & probationary contracts for next school year should have already gone out. 

ESSER Contracts: While ESSER funding is gone, there is good news – Dr Trujillo has asked the school board to continue as many ESSER supplementary positions as possible last Tuesday. The Board vote was unanimously in favor as they understand the need to keep positions wherever possible!  Our partnership with the school board helps them understand that this cannot just be a numbers game – student and employee well being are at stake and we must continue to work toward better relationships within our sites and better resources for our students.  This is a true WIN!

Retirement: If you are planning to retire this year and have been employed by the district for over 10 years, it is in your best interest to complete the paper work by February 1st, 2023 so that you will get the appropriate sick leave payout.  Also, please attend the AEA retirement webinar on January 31st at 5:30PM.  Your site rep should have more information on how to sign up.

DIT Season is coming: The DIT (district initiated transfers) process  for the next school year is scheduled for April 14th – May 19thYou should be notified if you are DIT’d by your principal by April 1st .  Please note, they should seek people who volunteer first and this should be announced to ALL faculty.  Classified DIT’s will be April 10th – April 28thIt is imperative that projected student counts for the fall be as close as possible to avoid the Fall Equalization process which can result in another round of employee transfers well after the school year has begun.  Please assist in any way you can in order to help make the count accurate

JOB FAIRS: TUSD Job Fairs will be held January 30th & February 1st & March 11th.  The Arizona Department of Ed will hold a job fair on February 4th.  We are very low on Exceptional Education (Special Ed) teachers and TA’s in addition to shortages in various subject matter.  TEA is doing all it can to retain employees by addressing salaries and wages and work conditions.  If you know of someone who is interested in this noble profession please ask them to apply and tell them about TEA’s work to help improve our district.

Delegate & Representative Assemblies:  TEA will be fortunate to send over 40 delegates to Phoenix the Friday before Mother’s Day to the annual statewide assembly of Delegates!  This gathering is brought together so that the needs of our state can be heard and responded to at the National Assembly in July.  You do not need to have experience to attend the Assembly – you only need to be committed to improving our state and local organizations for our membership.  If you are interested, or know someone who is – please look for the pledge to serve forms on our website in the next few weeks.

Thank you all for all the work you do as members of the LARGEST COMBINED LOCAL in the STATE!!

TEA Member Benefits seminar with Antonio Galindo: Join us January 31st at 5PM via ZOOM to learn how your union membership can help you save time money on everyday expenses and help stretch your paycheck.  From travel discount, online discounts, student loan debt navigator and much more.

For a short link to join the presentation click here: 


To get an early start on your savings scan the code to register on the website. You only need the email address on file with TEA to start the savings.


VIRTUAL: Tuesday, January 31, 2023 at 5:30 PM on Zoom

Join your union for an in-person conversation to learn about what life after retirement can look like. Connect with other educators who are thinking about retiring OR have retired.

Learn more about the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) from others who have first-hand experience: differences between defined benefit and defined contribution; how pensions are calculated, funded, and paid; how and when to apply.

The 31st session is virtual via zoom! Be sure to download zoom before the session starts!

RSVP today!


The ESP Conference is designed to support our ESPs in growing their leadership potential, enhancing knowledge and skills to build school and community partnerships, and in learning to organize and build stronger local associations with the ESP voice at the center in positively impacting student and worksite success.

La Conferencia ESP está diseñada para ayudar a nuestros ESP a crecer su potencial de liderazgo, mejorar el conocimiento y las habilidades para construir asociaciones escolares y comunitarias, y aprender a organizar y construir asociaciones locales más fuertes con la voz ESP en el centro para impactar positivamente el éxito de los estudiantes y el lugar de trabajo.

Please share this opportunity with your members.

2023 AEA ESP Conference

February 17-18, 2023

Friday, February 17 5:30-8:00 PM

Saturday, February 18 9 AM-3 PM

Location: Arizona Education HQ

345 E Palm Lane

Phoenix, AZ 85004

Cost $50

Includes Friday dinner and Saturday breakfast & lunch. Lodging included (double occupancy) for members who live 100 miles or more away from AEA headquarters.


(Jan 9. 2023)

Welcome Back Members to Spring Semester 2023!

We hope that your winter break was as fun and relaxing, enriching and rewarding and/or as spiritually fulfilling as you hoped it would be!  We were honored to attend the Governors Inauguration this past week and have renewed faith in our democracy and election process in Arizona. There were promises of a more positive gains for educator rights and a desire to create partnerships in the future.

Hope you enjoyed that $2500 stipend over break!  Look out because there is more to come – new raises in January include:
TDRA – $1000 ($500 to the base salary schedule and $500 step raise) – please double check with HR to be sure your step is correct!
TDRB – $1000
OT/PT/SLP – $1,000
ESP’s – 2% raises plus steps for years of seniority (this should account for decompression)

The district has been sending out letters to all employees to double check for discrepancies so please contact HR if you find any in your salary or wage.  Everyone’s new wages will be retroactive from point of hire for the 22-23 school year and you should see those checks sometime in February. Also, you will get another $2500 in June of this year as long as you complete your contract for spring. (there’s another $2500 coming NEXT December too!)

This is all thanks to the amazing work of our Bargaining Team: (Audrey Cunneely, Dan Ireland, Marivel Yanez, Tim DeYoung and Jana Gahm) and amazing partnership with the district.

We are excited to welcome back Linda Lyon as Treasurer, Corina Ontiveros as Ethnic Minority At Large Director, Tim DeYoung as the Catalina Region Director & Hillary McLeod as Rincon Director -  as their nominations were unchallenged during the nomination process.

All members will receive an email from Lysa Nabours today that will give you instructions & a ballot on how and when to vote this month.  The 3 positions are: President, Vice President and Secretary.  The ballot is open from January 9th until 6PM January 25th.  If you have trouble accessing your ballot or do not receive one, please contact our elections chair at .

Last year the Arizona Legislature passed a bill that allowed for an unfunded universal voucher system that threatens to bankrupt our state.  This spring we are once again poised to face the threat of layoffs due to the outdated Aggregate Expenditure Limit (AEL).  Our politicians are directly impacting our jobs and our students well being and the new Superintendent of Schools, Tom Horne has promised to only further the extremist agenda.

Click here for the most recent iteration of the ARS Reference Guide. It includes all of the important school-related statutes from the last session.  

Title: It's a Gift!

Description: Winter can be a stressful time of the year with so many cultures celebrating holidays or swapping gifts. Picking out the right gift can be overwhelming, so we compiled a list of book gift recommendations for the kids in your life no matter their age. We also asked some teachers what their favorite gifts have been from students and families to give you some ideas about how best to show your appreciation for educators in your life! 

We here at TEA wish you the very best this coming semester.  We recognize that many of you are hurting and surviving instead of thriving the way you should.  We hope that we have been able to provide a much-needed network of support of colleagues who understand what you need and help you find appropriate solutions.  Please continue to let us know what you and our students need to be successful, and we will continue to do our best to bring you what you deserve!

In Solidarity,
Margaret Chaney

(Nov 2, 2022)

Happy Native American & Alaska Native Heritage Month

First...the GOOD NEWS!

Thursday PD Planning Periods are back! We hope you are ready for changes this month and this one is long overdue! As of this Thursday all day PD, every person who is entitled to a planning period will be able to get a planning period! 

Thank you all for bringing the issue to our attention!  It was in part thanks to our partnership with the district that we did not even need to grieve the issue!


 In order to make change happen, it takes great ORGANIZING! We hope you will join us for the final Jane McElevey training, Thursday, November 3rd at 5PM on Zoom! 

November Elections

We are one week away from one of the most controversial and contested midterm elections in our nations history. There are some major shifts in Public Education that are due and we are hoping you will join us one last time THIS Saturday November 5 th at TEA HQ or in Phoenix AEA HQ to make phone calls or canvass neighborhoods one last time!   Get Involved!

We are also on the precipice of an officer change within your Union! That’s right, this coming May will

mark the end of our second term and there are many positions available for new faces to step up and take charge! 

The positions are as follows:

In order to become a candidate, all you need to do is select one of the links above, read the requirements and due dates, complete the form and get it to the TEA office between now and December 14 th . Voting begins the following day and winners will be announced at the January AR

meeting. Once a pledge to serve form has been submitted and receipt acknowledged, candidates may

begin their campaign after instructions on campaigning at the end of the November AR meeting!


Know Your Rights - Arizona #teachtruth

Here is a resource compiled by the legal team at AEA & NEA that answers some Frequently Asked Questions about what we can and can’t teach given all the recent attacks on educators!

Did you miss our “How to Be An LGBTQIA+ Ally in Education” webinar 

on October 24th?

Don’t worry! We recorded it!

Micro-credential Spotlight

A Microcredential for National Board Certification

This stack was developed in partnership with Nevada Education Association and is intended to give educators an understanding of the 5 Core Propositions that were developed by National Board. Educators who would like to learn a little bit more about what National Board is about or start to get ready for applying for a National Board Certification would benefit from these Micro-credentials.

Credentials In This Stack:

(Sept. 13, 2022)

Dear Members!


Please join us this Saturday and every Saturday until Election Day as we canvass neighborhoods to spread the word about Pro-Public Education Candidates for this election season! We will have snacks before and after and we can partner you up with more experienced canvassers to make your morning safe and enjoyable.


Early voting for the General Election begins in 34 days. We need your help to knock on doors to support AEA's recommended candidates. Sign up for AEA's Day of Action on September 17 in Tucson.


Come on out and meet the candidates as they are walking the neighborhoods too!  This Saturday Sept 17th we will have Secretary of State candidate, Adrian Fontes and AEA President Marisol Garcia! We will also be joined by our TEA political action committee endorsed TUSD school board candidates Rebecca Zapien and Jennifer Eckstrom! Let's get our education champions elected in November. Join us for our neighborhood canvassing this Saturday, Sept. 17th at 8:30 AM - 12pm at the Tucson EA office (5447 E. 5th st. Suite 100). Coffee, donuts and childcare at a local park will be provided!


Please be sure to sign up before Friday, so that we know approximately how many people to expect.


 We will have anti-voucher petitions too!


TUSD School Board Candidate Forums

Mark your calendars for two upcoming opportunities to learn more about the TUSD school board candidates. More details to follow in a later email.


League of Woman Voters TUSD Candidate Forum: September 22nd, 5pm (Location TBD)


Tucson EA TUSD Candidate Forum: October 3rd, 5pm via ZOOM (link and registration to follow)

Episode 2 Update:

Find out in Episode 2!

September Update:

do you like the new format?  let us know on the TEA Facebook page!

May 29, 2020

June 30, 2020

TUSD's reopening dates

May 29, 2020

Margaret Chaney.mp4

April 16, 2020

Dear Members!

We have been a very active Union this month! Last week we held a town hall to discuss ESSER (COVID relief) funding and this week, we had a standout to welcome back School Board members to in-person meetings. We held an ESSER Funding Rally in the parking lot with great results! No doubt by now you have heard that everyone who has been working this past year will finally be given what they deserve in the form of a stipend – this INCLUDES Classified workers!

In total, all employees working over half time will receive at least $1,700, with individuals who had to work on campus prior to vaccines being widely available able to receive up to $2,700. TEA was able to increase stipend amounts as well as simplify the structure of the payouts to assure ESPs would not be shorted on their stipends. While we still believe TUSD staff deserve more for the extremely challenging year we’ve persevered through, these stipends are above average for stipends being paid by comparable districts, are much more equitable for support staff, and recognize the sacrifices of those required to work on campus during the height of the pandemic. It is also important to note, these stipends are separate from normal compensation. TEA is still in negotiations over regular raises and/or additional one-time stipends from non-ESSER funding sources. It is also important to note that TUSD has 2-3 years to expend ESSER funds, so conversations on the use of available ESSER funds will be ongoing.

The stipends will be broken up into two payments with the first being paid in June. For workers who have been on campus prior to 4th quarter – without vaccines and limited PPE – those workers will get $1,000. For those who transitioned to campus this 4th quarter, you will receive $500. If you are a part of both groups, for example, many ExEd teachers, you will get $1500!

The second stipend will be a $1,200 retention stipend, paid by Fall Break of the 2021/2022 school year. Employees working less than half time will recieve$600. Substitutes and supplemental staff will also receive stipends under this plan.

We also just got word that summer school teachers will get a $10 raise to $35 per hour!

ALL employees will shortly receive a survey about ESSER funding - something TEA has been advocating for - because we are all in this together and deserve a voice in how our district rebuilds from this pandemic!

Reps!  Don't forget – ZOOM Site rep meeting next Wednesday at 5:00 PM (We will have results for the Representative Assembly and final counts for the Delegate Assembly.

All members - Please remember this month is the month to sign up for the Health benefits package with the district!

Negotiations will continue for final wage and salary amount – we will continue to press for a better way, better wages, and better work conditions for our membership! We count on you and you can count on us!

In Solidarity,


Margaret Chaney, President