We are all ready for the break, looking forward to our holiday celebrations and the coming new year. Looking back on 2015, it was a tough year for those of us who work in or for public schools. The legislature wasn’t exactly friendly when it came to schools or teachers. School budgets are being challenged, the state budget is in collapse, and what the world holds for us next year is anybody’s guess.

While some bad ideas made their way into law, others did not and that’s thanks in large part to you and all the other devoted public school advocates. You called, you emailed, you attended forums and asked the hard questions. When your profession, your schools, and your students needed you, you where there.

We shouldn’t be surprised. It’s what you do every day when you walk into the school building. Every day, educators from Johnson City to Johnson County put it all on the line for their students and Kansas. We’re proud of you and proud to represent you under the dome.

But right now, you deserve some well-earned R & R. We want you to have the best, most relaxing, family-oriented holiday you can. Put all the negatives aside, forget about the challenges of 2015, and just relax in the warmth of this season.

January will be here soon enough. You’ll get back to your schools and we at KNEA will head back to the statehouse for the 2016 legislative session. We’ve got a lot on the plate for 2016 and when the going gets tough, we know we can count on you to stand with us and fight for a quality public school for every Kansas child regardless of zip code or income or race or language or any of the other things that are used to divide us.

To be fully ready, we are providing you in this edition of Under the Dome, an advocacy toolbox that will help you keep engaged in public education issues in 2016. We urge you sign up for the JoinUsKs campaign and download the KNEA app on your smart phone or tablet. Take a moment to click on the link below to get prepared. That way you can focus entirely on your break knowing that you’re ready for action next year.

So have a blessed holiday. Let it bring you joy and peace and love.

We’ll see you in January – rested and ready to go forward!

Click here for the KNEA Advocacy Toolbox!