Summer Conference 2015 header 

Due to the May 9 vote of Annual Meeting delegates to cancel Summer Conference at UMass Amherst because of a contract dispute, we are planning a smaller, more focused conference in Springfield.

The Springfield mini-conference will run Monday, August 3, through Thursday, August 6, and will include the leadership track programs below. There is no charge to locals or members for any of the mini-conference tracks, most meals or hotel rooms. Programs will be held in the Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel. Participants will be housed in the Springfield Marriott and the Sheraton. The MTA will make hotel arrangements for you after you register. Please do not call the hotel directly.

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MTA Organizing Institute

This new program is designed to provide a space for teams of three or more from MTA locals and committees to consider and plan strategies to shift to an organizational model that:

  • Engages in deep internal organizing that emphasizes greater member involvement.
  • Widens the scope of our power and influence by engaging in a program of student and family engagement, community organizing and coalition building.
  • Encourages an ongoing process of analyzing the political, economic and regulatory environment in which we exist.

To Apply: Interested members should approach their local or chapter president or MTA field representative about sending a team to the institute.

Click here to download the flier.

New Presidents’ Academy

This leadership workshop for newly elected local and chapter presidents is designed to provide practical skills and resources so presidents can function effectively. Areas to be covered are running meetings, staying organized, managing time, understanding parliamentary procedure, developing the membership’s awareness of diversity, communicating with members and the public, negotiating and maintaining contracts, recognizing legal issues, accessing MTA services and building confidence as a leader.

To Register: All new presidents are welcome. Please email Jessica Parlon at for registration assistance.

New Presidents’ II Academy

Using presentations, case studies, panels and round-table discussions, we will take a deeper dive into topics of importance for developing local presidents, including the role of the local president in contract negotiation; grievance processing and professional rights and responsibilities; organizational and leadership development geared toward building effective and productive executive boards; working with the community and the school committee; helpful legal basics and other topics. Concludes August 5.

To Register: Open to local presidents in their second or third year in office. Please email Jessica Parlon at for registration assistance.

New Member Program

Participants in this program will work with peers to understand the changing face of public education and the often confusing world of educational policy and legislation that affect them as classroom teachers and school-based educators. There will be an opportunity to learn about different approaches to collective bargaining and participate in a mock negotiating session.

To Apply: This program is open to those in their first five years of practice. Please email Erin Tracy at for registration assistance.

Click here to download the flier.

The Annual Meeting vote to cancel the UMass conference was taken to protest the fact that UMass employees have not received the retroactive pay they are owed. The smaller, more focused program does not include the usual array of workshops on professional and organizational development topics at Summer Conference. We would  like to thank the dozens of members and non-members who proposed workshops this year, and we hope to be able to bring many of these workshops to MTA members in other venues over the next school year.

Other MTA Training and Professional Learning summer offerings include:

  • Two opportunities to hone your presentation skills at a Presenter Boot Camp. Sessions are scheduled on Tuesday, July 21, in Burlington and Tuesday, July 29, in West Springfield.
  • MTA Open Office Hours will be held in regional offices on Wednesdays throughout the summer. Meet with staff from the Communications and Training & Professional Learning Divisions to learn how to create websites, leverage social media, plan an Ed Camp-style professional development day or build your online professional learning network.
  • Crucial Conversations has been canceled for August. It may be rescheduled during February vacation week.
  • Also, the first class of MTA’s Next Generation Leaders program, which was selected by application this spring, will begin a year-long program in the Framingham area at the same time as the mini-conference in Springfield.

Use the hashtag #mtasummer to check out the action from past summer conferences on Facebook, TwitterFlickr and Instagram.