Submit for the May eBulletin!

The bluebonnets are blooming, the rain is falling, and the students are… antsy for summer vacation!  What’s on your mind as Spring approaches this year?  How can TACT serve you better?  We want your opinions and observations of your profession.  Consider this your formal invitation to share what is important to you by submitting for the May eBulletin.  

Submissions can be from 1 to 3 pages, and may be edited for length.  Articles with pictures are highly encouraged, and if you are a first-time contributor, please include a headshot and short, 3-sentence bio.

Submit your article to the eBulletin Editor at TACT@bizaustin.rr.com by May 1, 2012.  

Have you heard about our Spring Membership Drive?  New members can join for only $125 until May 31, 2012, so act quickly and tell your colleagues about TACT now!

Also, a special congratulations to Donald McClaugherty, winner of the Kindle Fire for the Winter Membership drive!

Higher Education Costs and Officer Elections

What is the price of ignorance?  Much higher than the price of higher education, according to a new International Youth Foundation study.  While the cost of higher education continues to be lambasted in political arenas, not going to college proves to be much more expensive than paying for a degree.  According to the article, an investment in a college education yields a higher lifetime return than even an investment in stocks and bonds.

TACT Elections.  The State Board has adopted the Nominating Committee’s recommended slate of officers for the upcoming 2012-2013 year.  The slate is:

  • President-Elect:  Cynthia Simpson (Sam Houston State University)
  • Vice-President of Legislative Affairs: Mary Jo Garcia Biggs (Texas State University)
  • Vice-President of Membership: Chad Rose (Sam Houston State University)

Please send an email to tact@bizaustin.rr.com to cast your vote.  Please indicate whether you approve or disapprove of the candidates.  Voting is open for one week, through next Wednesday April 11, 2012.  Results will be announced next week at the conclusion of the voting period.

The Southwest Teaching and Learning Conference took place this past Friday and Saturday at Texas A&M – San Antonio.  TACT was a sponsor of the event that focused on how technology enhances the teaching and learning process.  The Keynote Speaker was Ms. Elaine Mendoza, former Vice-Chair of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and current Regent of The Texas A&M University System.

The TACT Spring Membership Drive is in full force!  New or renewing members can join now for the discounted price of only $125, which includes TACT membership and the Educators’ Professional Liability Insurance.  The price is good through May 31st, so tell your colleagues now!

Illinois TRS might be heading toward insolvency, according to an article in Springfield’s State Journal-Register.  In a confidential email, the executive director suggests decreasing benefits for already retired teachers.  In contrast, you can be assured that TACT is closely monitoring and will continue to monitor the TRS of Texas. We can report that it is actuarially sound, and we will continue to be vigilant on behalf of our members.

Retirement Issues and Other News

An Austin-American Statesman article details how “Retired school employees in Texas could face major changes to their health care because the state fund that pays for their insurance is projected to run out of money in 2015… Lawmakers have known for years that the health care fund would eventually run out of money, though the exact date has been a moving target.”

State Sen. Robert Duncan, R-Lubbock, indicated that, like in 2003, all parties will contribute to the additional costs.  He added, "This cannot be a two-year fix. This needs to be a program that will last for at least 10 years."  View the entire article here.

The TACT Spring Membership Drive has begun!  Recruit your friends and colleagues to join TACT now – it is only $125 for membership and Educators Professional Liability Insurance through 10/31/2012.  Suggest TACT so they will not only receive legislative advocacy, but also the personal protection needed in today’s higher education climate.  And remember, your dues allow TACT to work with policymakers to help positively affect your profession and way of life, not just for the current membership year, but for years to come. 

Thank you for all the submissions during the Winter Membership Drive!  TACT wants to congratulate Donald McClaugherty, whose name we drew as the winner of the Kindle Fire!  

Thanks again to all those who referred colleagues to TACT, keep up the good work recruiting new members.

Senate Interim Charges Announced

The Lieutenant Governor released the following interim charges relating to Higher Education:

  • Study and make recommendations regarding more cost-effective funding of financial aid, including ways to restructure financial aid programs to incentivize student success.  Examine student loan debt and institutional default rates.
  • Study and make recommendations regarding more effective means of using technology, including the effectiveness of online learning and online coursework for underprepared students.
  • Examine the existing transfer systems and the potential development of a 2+2 transfer system between public junior colleges and universities. Examine the transfer of credit between degree-granting private sector colleges, public junior colleges, and public universities.

For the complete list of the Senate Higher Education Interim Charges, click here.

And check out the TACT history video: 60 Years of Success, or learn more at the TACT History Page.

Thank you for your dedication to your association, and we look forward to hearing of your success.

The February TACT eBulletin is Here!

TACT eBulletin - February 2012

The Official Newsletter of the Texas Association of College Teachers

Download the eBulletin here or go to:

http://www.tact.org/bulletin/feb12

 Inside This Issue:

  • Letter from TACT President Peter Hugill
  • Executive Director’s Report from Chuck Hempstead
  • Reminder: What’s in Your Office, on Your Computer, Isn’t Really Yours, by Gaines West
  • TACT Spring Conference: the 13 Points
  • TACT Conference Wrap-Up and Legislative Issues
  • TACT Conference Photos
  • Thanks to The James M. Puckett, Ph.D. Government Relations Fund Contributors!
  • Spring Membership Drive

Would you like to have your writing published?

Are you interested in helping your collegues or do you just have some interesting information to share?

TACT wants to hear from YOU!

Send your article to: TACT@bizaustin.rr.com.

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