Join the 2020-2021 ATF/AFT-NM Union Leadership Program!

ATF/AFT-NM Union Leadership Program Class of 2020 with Lt. Governor Howie Morales

The Albuquerque Teachers Federation and AFT New Mexico recently completed our 2019-2020 Union Leadership Program (ULP) and we’re ready to recruit candidates for next year. The ATF/AFT-NM Union Leadership Program is intended to support the development of union leaders to also serve as leaders in their school sites and in their districts. The program meets for a full day on one Saturday per month from September until April. Participants conduct action research on topics they are passionate about, speak with policymakers, and examine issues in public education and unionism. We usually have potluck lunches and the program has led to greater comradery and fostered friendships among union members. Participants are also paid a $1,500 stipend from the American Federation of Teachers after completing the entire program.

Our most recent cadre of candidates came from diverse role groups and AFT-NM locals around the state. This year our group included nurses, teachers, educational assistants, and participants from outside Albuquerque. The group featured two newly elected ATF officers, the local president from Los Alamos, and the Vice President from Rio Rancho. Our Saturdays were informed by the richness of wide-ranging experiences our participants brought to our discussions. Our culminating activity took place on Saturday, May 16th, when we held a Google Meet showcase to present our research and findings. You can access the research of each participant below.

Members who participate in the ATF/AFT-NM Union Leadership Program have opportunities to serve on union committees and joint union/district Task Forces. It is our hope that participants will run for union office someday. ATF/AFT-NM ULP participants are part of a nationwide educator leaders network. Through their completion of action research projects this year, ATF and AFT-NM members are taking an active role in influencing policy in areas like:

  • Restorative Justice Practices;
  • Social-Emotional Learning;
  • Multicultural Gifted Education;
  • Teacher Evaluation;
  • Union Recruitment and Organization;
  • Student Access To Fine Arts and Certified Librarians;
  • Student-Centered Learning;
  • Career and Technical Education;
  • Improving Special Education Practices;
  • Student Awareness of Available Counseling Services;
  • Student Perspectives on the Effectiveness of Out of School Suspension;
  • and much more.

We are seeking a diverse group of ATF/AFT-NM leaders who are active in their school communities to comprise next year’s ULP. All AFT members are eligible to participate: certified and classified employees.  Download the application and JOIN us here.

Union Leadership Program Class of 2020 Research Summaries and Presentation Materials

April Baca, Middle School Educational Assistant, AFCP Buidling Rep,  “How to keep consistency in the classroom when SPED teachers are absent” (Presentation Included)

Katrina Garcia Spillman, Elementary Teacher, Fed Rep, Organizing Team, “Equity Issues with Gifted Evaluation Practices in Albuquerque Public Schools” 

Aide Gonzalez Espindola, Special Education Teacher, Fed Rep, “In what ways can we improve teaching culturally and linguistically responsive in Special Education?” 

Sarah Hager, Middle School Art Teacher, Fed Rep, ATF Secretary, Organizing Team,  “What role does visual art play in the social-emotional learning of adolescence?” (Presentation included)

Whitney Holland, Elementary Teacher, President of Los Alamos Federation of School Employees, Secretary of AFT-NM, “What Are The Elements Of An Effective Student Survey System?”.  Whitney’s Presentation

Bonnie Kavanagh, Nurse, Fed Rep, “Building Membership in a School Nurse’s Role Group” 

Phillip King, Elementary Teacher,  Fed Rep, Organizing Team,  “Cooperative Learning & Student Engagement Within a 5th Grade Classroom” (Presentation Included)

Lisa Lopez, Elementary Teacher, Fed Rep, “In what ways does play impact the behavior and emotional well-being in kindergarteners?”  

Cindy Mathews, Elementary Educational Assistant, “Beyond the Safety Team- A Holistic Approach to Disruptive Behavior” Cindy’s Presentation

Tracy Nichols, Librarian, Fed Rep, Organizing Team, “In what ways do classroom teachers value a Full-Time Teacher Librarian at their school?”

Julieana Reed, Middle School Educational Assistant, AFCP Building Rep, “How can we help students with disabilities understand and reach their career or college goals?” (Presentation Included)

Paul Reichbach, Technology Teacher, Vice President Rio Rancho School Employees’ Union, “The Difficulties in Implementing Distance Learning” (Presentation Included)

Ben Temkin, Middle School Teacher, Fed Rep, Organizing Team,  “Counseling Awareness in Albuquerque Middle Schools”

Derek Villanueva, High School Teacher, Fed Rep of the Year 2020, ATF Treasurer, “Incorporating Mindfulness as a Component of Social-Emotional Learning (SEL)”.    Derek’s Presentation

Bren Vitter, Middle School Teacher, “A Correlation Study of Restorative Practices Implementation and School Climate”.  Bren’s Presentation

Facilitators: Donna Teuteberg, Ellen Bernstein, Dwayne Norris