The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Local News

April 9, 2013

AEA rally draws big crowd in Montgomery

— MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Several hundred members of the Alabama Education Association filled the Capitol steps Tuesday to push for better working conditions and the repeal of new state tax credits for private school students.

The rally was one of the biggest by any group during this year's legislative session. The AEA lobbies on behalf of Alabama's teachers and other school employees.

Incoming AEA president Anita Gibson said the school employees took off from their jobs to try to preserve their profession. "There are those who can't wait to declare the death of AEA. Boy, have I got news for you," she said.

She said a similar rally a year ago helped defeat a bill to legalize charter schools. One goal of Tuesday's rally, she said, was to urge the Legislature to reconsider a recently passed bill that provides state tax credits for parents who choose to send their children to private schools rather than public schools rated as failing. She predicted the law will ravage some communities.

Across the street at the Statehouse, Republican advocates of the new law said it won't be repealed. AEA is also challenging the law in court.

At the rally, other speakers said education employees must remember what's happened in the last three years when they vote in next year's state elections. That includes losing their deferred retirement option, paying more of their salaries toward their retirement benefits, and seeing tenure protections revised.

"We've got to send a message you cannot continue what you want to do without punishment," AEA Associate Executive Gregory Graves said.

1
Text Only
Local News
Poll

Do you think Athens-Limestone County is better prepared than in April 2011 to provide shelter from a major tornado?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook
AP Video
SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Cubs Superfans Celebrate Wrigley's 100th Raw: Cattle Truck Overturns in Texas Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming Raw: Erupting Volcanoes in Guatemala and Peru Alibaba IPO Could Be Largest Ever for Tech Firm FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Raw: Violence Erupts in Rio Near Olympic Venue Raw: Deadly Bombing in Egypt Raw: What's Inside a Commercial Jet Wheel Well Raw: Obama Arrives in Japan for State Visit Raw: Anti-Obama Activists Fight Manila Police Motels Near Disney Fighting Homeless Problem Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye' S.C. Man Apologizes for Naked Walk in Wal-Mart Chief Mate: Crew Told to Escape After Passengers
Twitter Updates
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Stocks
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Business Marquee