Hello Fellow Fort Bend AFT members,
I hope this message finds you recharged and ready to start a new school year! I am Karina Anderson, Interim President for our Local AFT Union #6198; and lead advocate for Fort Bend ISD Educators - teachers, paraprofessionals, nurses, counselors, diagnosticians, nutrition, custodian, and transportation staff. I know first hand it takes a village, each and everyone of us working together to ensure our students succeed. I have been an Educator for 20 years, wearing many hats including teacher, after school director, tutor, interventionist, parent, PTO officer, program director and non-profit community leader. All of these roles have led me to step up, join hands and use my voice to promote change and improvements in our public schools. I humbly accept the duty of protecting and empowering educators and support staff to fight for fairness so that all can perform their jobs effectively while advocating for equity, professionalism and respect.
In the most recent few years, our world and especially our education system which is the foundation has experienced tremendous loss from the almost two year gap in instruction for the majority of our students, to the severe underfunding of schools including the state of Texas spending approximately $3300 less per student than the national average each year. All while, not respecting the most talented and skilled individuals who show up every day with a smile and caring heart to provide a quality education, healthy food service and safe transportation by not adequately compensating all our educators.. The state of Texas spends $18 billion less each year on its public schools and has an over $32 billion surplus, which leaves no excuse or logical fiscal reason why teacher, paraprofessionals and support staff are not earning a viable living wage, well above the poverty threshold for doing the hard work of molding our future.
It is my vision that our members feel appreciated all year long, empowered to lead in schools, at home and in our communities. We are here to support you through the challenging times and cheer you on and celebrate you through good and great days!
I look forward to serving my union brothers and sisters, uniting our voices to evoke positive improvements within our district, state and nation. I ask that you keep showing up for yourselves, our students, our union and our community. Together we have the power to influence legislation, inspire innovation, and interrupt inequities.
Our Fort Bend AFT union will continue to do the great work of advancing education! Some of last years highlights include:
- Reading Opens the World Grant award of 10,000 books distributed to Fort Bend AFT members for their classrooms and to the community
- Recognized by Texas AFT with Worksite Leadership Award 2023
- More than 50 Fort Bend AFT members traveled to the Capitol in Austin, TX for the Public Education Advocacy Day to use their voice and influence to demand fully funded Public Schools through our Respect Us, Expect US campaign.
- Advocacy for Retirees resulted in the House approving a Cost of Living Allocation (COLA) plan as a start, but the work continues for retirees who’ve endured a 64% increase in the cost of living since they retired.
- 2023-2024 The Launch of the FBAFT and FBISD Alternative Certification Partnership to address the teacher shortage crisis in FBISD. Available to candidates who wish to become certified teachers in Fort Bend in the areas of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), Special Education, Bilingual, and Foreign Language. Please contact our office for more information.
I look forward to seeing you at our general meetings, social events, and on campus!
Things we will continue to fight for are:
- Fully funded Public Schools, Fully Staffed Schools, Fully Safe Schools!!!
-PAY increase for Educators: Teachers, and all Support Staff
-Adherence to the law, I.e. conference time and such.
-Fair and transparent discipline for teachers as well as students.
- Educator Empowerment
-Fair treatment for new teachers
- Equity for all
-Parent action committees
- Community rallies around education issues
-First Book Events
- Recognition for members, administrators, community helper, Parents and students