Every decision we make is with our community of students in mind
My name is Edgar Hermosillo, and I teach Social Studies courses at Alliance Judy I Burton Technology Academy High School. As a seventh year teacher in the Alliance, I, like many other teachers in our school, wear many different ‘uniforms’: AP teacher, basketball coach, ALLI coach, student tour leader, and many other roles many of us fill for our students. As such, I have come to see myself as a stakeholder in my students’ education and at their school. The union provides us the means to better influence policy in a way that benefits all stakeholders.
I and many other teachers, find Alliance’s continued campaign against our right to organize not only inappropriate, but also disrespectful. To intimate that we have some other purpose for contacting teachers, parents, and other stakeholders about our organizing efforts is to question the dedication and professionalism of the people hired to spearhead Alliance educational initiatives. Being pro-union does not make us anti-Alliance.
We support our students every day in the classroom and out, and we have a view of their needs that the Alliance home office and even our administrators may not catch. This gives us the sense of responsibility that all of us take so seriously. Every decision we make is with our community of students in mind. We organize for their benefit, and come to work every day dedicated to their success.
A key insight for me has been to realize that we, the teachers, are the union. It is not UTLA, some faceless organization, but rather the actual educators that do the teaching every day at Alliance schools across LA who fuel the unionization movement and fill it with meaning. We saw this at Burton Tech when we as a group won the addition of $2000 departmental budgets after holding meetings, democratically deciding what was important to us in our budget, and collectively voiced these concerns in a letter to our school board.
We are committed to ensuring collectively that Alliance becomes a best place to work, and a best place to teach our students.