SEA September Shuffle

A month and a half into the standard school year, the Springfield Education Association, is hitting on all eight cylinders.

Every school has been visited by your union president, Aaron Graves, at least one time thus far and your SEA Vice-president, Leslie Termine has been able to find time to visit several as well. Your SEA Special Education Solutions Chair, Lindsey Rudd, has met multiple times with district administration and special education colleagues in efforts to address issues mutually concerning to both student, staff and community. The Literacy Task Force, chaired by Melissa Hostetter, has gained several more members, has established a FB page for information/idea sharing, and convened for its meeting of the 23-24 year.

Your SEA Elementary Solutions Co-chair,Sarah Maley, SEA treasurer, Jennifer Rockwell, SEA VP, Leslie Termine, President, Aaron Graves, and IEA Uniserv Director, Sean Burns, met with SPS186 administration, Jennifer Gill and Jason Wind, board members, Erica Austin and Ken Gilmore, the State’s Attorney, Dan Wright, the SPD Chief of Police, Ken Scarlette, and the NAACP Alternative School Coordinator, Tim Allen, for our first ever Violence Prevention Round Table August 31 . Your SEA Sick Bank Chair, Dixie McQuality, has made certain that the bargained benefit of Sick Bank has continued to run strong, supporting our members in crisis. Your SEA Treasurer, Jennifer Rockwell, is working diligently to assure that your dues dollars are hard at work and that the new IEA dues structure is transparent. And our SEA Bargaining Chairs,  Christine Sander and Leslie Termine, are already spinning up, and planning together.

The SEA Elementary, Middle School and High School Solutions Committees (chaired by Mindy Daley, Sarah Maley, Katherine Stearns and Dylan Leach) all met September 27 to keep closely tied to the pulse of our members.  Fifteen of your fellow SEA members met as part of the union arm of the bargained SEA Curriculum Committee on September 28. Your SEA Insurance Committee chairs, Christine Sander and Mindy Daley, had an internal meeting to remind district administration of the absolute needs for better health, dental and vision care plans for all of our district employees.

We had nearly a half dozen SEA members at the table for the monthly SPS186 Equity Meeting, and our internal SEA Equity Development Team is having its first meeting of the year, September 14. Twelve SEA members attended the September SPS186/SEA Professional Growth Systems meeting September 11, in an effort to bring about positive change to our evaluation system.  Our SEA Grievance Committee  held its first meeting of the year September 26, to address any violations or district policy or contractual language.  And finally our political action committee, chaired by Dalton McGee, will meet before the month’s end too.

Your union, made up of fellow colleagues and friends, is working hard with and for you. Please make certain to thank your leaders and consider joining in one of these committees to help make our profession and school system better through unified and collective effort. Together, we are stronger.


-Aaron Graves

Springfield Education Association President

Sue Handy Scholarship 2023

The Springfield Education Association (SEA) is offering a scholarship for students who plan to pursue a career in public school teaching.  The scholarship is open to any graduating senior who has attended a District #186 high school for at least one year, or to a student whose parent or legal guardian is an employee of District #186, provided the student is enrolled in a public school.

The scholarship is designed to assist a deserving student who plans to become a public school teacher.  Students chosen for the scholarship(s) will receive $2,500 payable over four years with a copy of their transcripts and/or proof of enrollment.

All applicant packets must be submitted to Springfield Education Association, Attn: Scholarship Committee,  3440 Liberty Drive, Springfield, IL 62704 by March 31, 2023.

Finalists should be available to be interviewed on April 27, 2023, by representatives of the SEA Scholarship Committee.  Scholarship recipients/continuants will be announced by the end of May 2023 or at the recipients’ Awards Assembly, if applicable.

The scholarship was instituted in honor of Sue Handy, a Springfield educator who taught at Butler Elementary for many years. Sue wanted to encourage students to become teachers and had dreamed of creating such a scholarship. Before she was able to put it in place, she lost her battle with cancer. The scholarship was instituted in honor of Sue Handy, and had been continued under the auspices of the SEA.