Member Voices: AACTE’s New Advocacy Center Timely for Professional Engagement
On Election Day, AACTE launched its new Advocacy Center – a one-stop online resource to help guide your federal and state-level advocacy. To that end, you will find handy advocacy guides, state and federal pages with key resources and links, and the opportunity to sign up for a brand-new AACTE Action Alert system.
These alerts are timely, allowing anyone who signs up to participate in e-mail-based advocacy campaigns in support of the profession. We all were reminded of the power of the constituent voice in the recent elections, and we know we need to make our individual voices (and the collective voice of the profession) heard in our states and in Washington, DC, going forward.
Right away, there is work to be done before the end of the 114th Congress focused on the appropriations process, and there will be numerous advocacy opportunities with the new Congress and Administration. For example, the Congress is expected to take up the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act next year, and there could be action taken on regulations as well.
The AACTE Action Alerts allow AACTE staff to provide subscribers with the necessary text and information to take action as needed. E-mail alerts to our inboxes will direct us to a website with instructions on what to do and how. The Action Alert system itself does a lot of the work for us, automatically directing your response to the appropriate elected officials. And stay tuned – AACTE will be rolling out this system for the state chapters as well!
More than just one-time campaigns, of course, advocacy is about building and maintaining relationships with our elected officials. The AACTE Advocacy Center provides us with downloadable guides that break down key pieces of advocacy into clear steps – like how to request a meeting with a representative or how to ask an elected official to cosponsor a bill. And there are more guides in development, so check the website often and follow Ed Prep Matters to get the announcements. (Please note that these guides are exclusively available to AACTE members.)
I hope you will join me in signing up for the Action Alerts – it’s a simple and quick process. Click here to get started. You don’t even need to be an AACTE member to participate. If you don’t have an AACTE account yet, you can simply create one (regardless of membership).
Joen Rottler Larson, dean and professor in the College of Education at Ashford University (IA), chairs the AACTE Committee on Government Relations and Advocacy.