CEA Today March 20, 2020

It’s Spring and Coronavirus is invading every aspect of our lives. Nothing is more important to us right now than you and your loved ones continuing to be safe. Here’s what’s going on in our union:

COVID-19 Resources Available

In times like these, information is critical to everyone’s well-being. To that end, we have created a COVID-19 Resource Page that houses all of the latest information from CEA and links to pertinent COVID-19 information like from the State of Colorado, the CDPHE, CDC and more. This information will be updated as we get it, so make sure to check it out often.

Look For & Complete Your Census Form

If you haven’t already received something in the mail from the U.S. Census Bureau, keep an eye out for it now. Every household is receiving a mailing in March with a 12-digit Census ID number and instructions to complete the Census online by April 1st. You can also complete the census by telephone or mail. The Census matters because an accurate count is necessary to set federal funding levels and help educators address the needs of every child. We know you get lots of junk mail, but the census is not trash! Don’t throw it out – fill it out and be counted.

Coronavirus isn’t the Only Virus to be Concerned About:  Cyber Security in a Time of Crisis

While Coronavirus continues to spread and people change their everyday routines to work from home to lessen impact, cyber hackers are seeing opportunity. These cyber-criminals are taking advantage of heightened emotion and lowered security on home networks. For example, hackers are using Coronavirus-tracking maps to inject malware into computers and harvest passwords. There has also been an increase in phishing attempts where seemingly legitimate emails regarding Coronavirus information are harvesting information and downloading malicious software on computers and smartphones. What can you do? Think before you click.

  • Use caution when opening emails, especially those containing links and attachments. If you were not anticipating an email with links or attachments, or you do not know the sender, do not click them.
  • Be wary about downloading any software and only visit websites that are known to be legitimate such as those ending in .org and .gov.
  • Do not fall for phone scams. Most information, especially by phone companies, banks or the government, will be sent by mail or email. Do not provide any private information or agree to send money orders or purchase gift cards over the phone (or email).

Remember: Navigate the cyber-world on the defense and think before you click. Here’s some additional reading from Norton’s and Time.com.

Apply for an Early Career Learning Lab

NEA’s Early Career Learning Labs support early career educators (ECEs) with professional learning around problems of practice. These member-led, member-driven labs demonstrate the Association’s support for ECEs, assist ECEs in improving their practice, and introduce ECEs to the local and state affiliate to increase membership and retention in the profession. ECEs can use the labs for relicensure and/or salary advancement and receive Adams State credit. Local associations interested in housing a lab need to complete this application by Friday, March 27th. The coordinator and virtual coach positions are compensated by NEA.

Learn More about Fair Tax Colorado

Initiative #271  reverses our upside-down tax code, one that causes most middle and working class taxpayers to pay more of their income in state and local taxes than the wealthiest households. Families earning less than $250,000 of taxable income will pay a lower rate than they currently pay, reducing their state income tax rate from 4.63% down to 4.58%. Tax rates will only be increased on income over $250,000 per year, and income at $1 million will be taxed at a top rate of 8.9%. For more information go the Fair Tax Colorado website, sign up for updates, and/or sign up to volunteer! Coloradans deserve better funding in their communities, a more equitable tax structure, and realistic solutions to the fiscal challenges Colorado’s current tax code has created…and Fair Tax Colorado is it!

Rockies Educator Night, May 9th, Postponed

Major League Baseball has indefinitely delayed the start of the 2020 season. It remains to be seen if the Colorado Rockies will have our game on Saturday, May 9th, to thank teachers and education support professionals during National Teacher Appreciation Week. We will update you here and in member emails when we get the latest information from the Colorado Rockies.

Lunch Break with Amie & Kevin

On this week’s Lunch Break, Amie has some help with production as she discusses what’s going on in our COVID-19 world. WARNING: Extremely shaky video!!!

As always, if you have content ideas, or if you have a colleague who goes above and beyond and needs a shout out or if you have ideas on how we can improve the CEA Today, please drop us a line at ceatoday@coloradoea.org.