Burlington Education Association’s Beliefs

Organizing to build the schools our children deserve! 

Why do we teach?

We teach because we love sharing our passions and interests. We teach because we enjoy making learning fun and relevant. We teach because we believe in providing students with opportunities to take risks in a supportive environment.  We see learning come to life when students finally “get it.” It is these moments that make us smile and give us chills, and remind us that learning is a lifelong journey. That is why we teach. 
It is not a secret that Burlington is a uniquely diverse community in Vermont. That is what draws so many of us to teach in the district.  We serve Burlington by ensuring that our students are receiving the best education possible. 

We believe in building a culture of professional growth:

The Burlington Education Association (BEA) is a union of skilled educators who work together every day to close the achievement gap.  Continued investment in skilled educators is essential to the success of our schools. To that end, Burlington educators must have access to continued professional development in current research-informed teaching practices to continue to engage, support, and challenge our students.  Also, Burlington educators must be respected as experts with a broad range of professional credentials and experiences.  To retain a highly qualified staff, we must create a system of reflection and action that supports both beginning educators and veteran educators.  

We believe in nurturing a welcoming school climate:

Empathy and inclusivity are the principles of our daily work and must anchor our school climate, policies, and procedures.  School climate seems immeasurable but it begins with relationships and depends on how we treat each other and how we do things. As educators, we strive to build relationships with each child and to create vital, warm, and safe learning communities in which children can discover who they are, what they need, and how to grow.  Educators require these same conditions to grow as professionals and continue to provide our students with the best possible educations. Building a positive school culture requires care and respect between all humans in the system. As such, we believe that a reciprocal, respectful, dialogue with district leadership is essential to building and sustaining healthy schools. The result is a school climate where all are welcome.

We believe in supporting the whole child:

We believe Burlington’s students deserve the resources they each need to grow. Our facilities and staffing must meet the physical, social, and mental health needs of our diverse and dynamic student body.  Every physical space in our district must be ADA-compliant.  Time is also a precious resource.  To succeed, educators and support teams must have time to teach, time to collaborate, and time to plan. 

We believe in connecting families to schools:

In a healthy and safe school system, open and honest communication builds relationships and trust between all members of the learning community. Our students and families must have continuous opportunities to connect with school staff via multiple access points.  The families of our multi-lingual, multi-cultural student body deserve a responsive educational system wherein language, culture, socio-economic status and access to transportation or educator time are not barriers to communication and student support.  

We believe in building community: 

​Burlington deserves welcoming schools to which all members of our community are informed and connected.  The responsibility for the children of Burlington belongs to all of us. When educators, students, parents, and community members are well-informed about the issues and work together to improve our schools, our students benefit.  Consistent, truthful, timely and transparent communication between all stakeholders builds strong school- family- community partnerships and promotes the well-being of our students, our schools, and our Burlington. When decision making is collaborative and purposeful, we develop trust in each other, in decisions made, and ultimately, within our community.

We are the BEA and we organize to build the schools our children deserve!

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