Category: Recent News

FREE FINANCIAL PRESENTATION: Tax Tips for 2018

Open to all MMSD employees!


Crash Course: Tax Tips for 2018

Could you be missing out on important tax deductions for the 2018 tax year?

In this crash course, find out what deductions you may be able to claim as a public school employee so you can maximize your tax refund.

Here are a few of the topics we will cover:

  • Educator expense deduction.
  • Tuition and fees deduction.
  • Student loan interest deduction and loan forgiveness.
  • Withholding and tax bracket changes for 2018.
  • The Lifetime Learning Credit.
  • 2018 tax law changes and how they may affect you.

Whether you are just beginning your career or near the end, there will be something for you. Join us for this crash course to pick up some helpful tax tips.

>>Preregistration is required. Register here for the Crash Course: Tax Tips for 2018 presentation.

This seminar is for informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal, financial, or tax advice. Certain recommendations or guidelines may not be appropriate for everyone. Consult your personal advisor or attorney for advice specific to your unique circumstances before taking action.

Seminars are free to attend; however, if you choose to invest in the WEA Tax Sheltered Annuity or WEA Member Benefits IRA program, fees will apply. Consider all expenses before investing.

Free Financial Consultations in February and March!

Attention MTI Members!

Steve Pike is a retired MTI teacher and current Member Benefits Consultant for WEA Member Benefits.  Steve will be onsite to meet with staff.

WHAT:  FREE Financial Consultation

WHEN:  See Below (register by clicking on the link below)

WHERE:  33 Nob Hill Road, Madison, WI

This is ideal if you are just getting started, have specific questions, or would like a quick check-in.  Because these are held onsite, it’s a convenient way to meet with someone face-to-face to get some general help or guidance.

Steve can answer your specific questions on a wide range of financial topics such as:

  • Reasons to start a 403(b) or IRA savings account and how to enroll
  • Wisconsin Retirement System basics
  • Retirement Savings strategies; Pre-tax vs. Roth, 403(b) vs. IRA
  • Investment/Account Fees
  • Budgeting
  • Tips for purchasing personal insurance

Some things to bring along to your consultation include:

  • Recent paycheck stub
  • Recent 403(b) and/or IRA account statements
  • WRS statement
  • Laptop (if available)
  • Other financial information you would like reviewed

Spouses/partners welcome.

Sign up here for your consultation in February

Sign up here for your consultation in March

Can’t make it to a consultation but want to talk to someone? Sign up for a 30-minute phone consultation and speak to a Retirement and Investment Consultant. Find a time and day that’s convenient for you at www.weabenefits.com/consults.

Black Lives Matter At School Madison -Pledge and Resources

Take the pledge

Check out links to helpful resources

We are a group of educators planning a Black Lives Matter Week of Action in Madison as part of the National BLM Week of Action from February 4 – 8. This is the third year that a growing number of schools and communities around the country have held a BLM week in schools. Our intention for the week is to bring together community members, teachers, parents, students, and union members to put forth a vision for a school system and community that truly values Black lives.

The Black Lives Matter movement recognizes the impact of mass incarceration, poverty, non-affordable housing, income disparity, homophobia, unfair immigration laws and policies, gender inequality, and poor access to healthcare. All of these injustices exist in the intersection of race, class and gender. And they have always existed and continue to exist within our Madison community, including within our own school system.

This is why our Black Lives Matter week is a vital action. It is one that will empower each of us and our students to know that it is possible to eradicate these ills by actively engaging in the truth and never being afraid to share it, even when it is unpopular. If society continues to marginalize, murder, and devalue Black and Brown lives, then there is little hope for America to ever reach her fullest potential.

We call all of our colleagues, administrators, students, families and community members to partner with us as we engage in the National Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action Feb 4-8, 2019. We commit to analyzing and challenging both our personal and systemic or institutional racialized beliefs and practices. This work is urgent and long overdue. This week is one action embedded in the lifelong work of creating a society and school system where all of our students, staff, and families experience respect, equity, and justice.

WEA Member Benefits Presents a Student Loan Forgiveness Seminar February 7

Student Loan Forgiveness Process Presentation

With Ben Senson and WEA Member Benefits

Thursday, February 7, 2019, 5:00 pm

WEA Member Benefits, 660 John Nolen Drive, Madison

For details and registration, click here.

Jan. 27 – Fighting for Justice, Teaching for Black Lives

Only 100 seats remaining! Register TODAY!
Download and share event flyer with your coworkers.

Register online for this free event. Seating is limited.

Jesse Hagopian, editor of Teaching for Black Lives, author of More Than a Score: The New Uprising Against High-Stakes Testing and activist teacher at Seattle’s Garfield High School, is coming to speak to Madison teachers as we prepare to join the National Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action Feb. 4-8. 

This event is sponsored and hosted by Edgewood College. Co-sponsors include MTI, WEAC, TAA, UW School of Ed and MMSD. 

The event is Sunday, January 27 at 12:30 in Predolin Hall, Edgewood College Monroe St. Campus.

REGISTER NOW.SEATING IS LIMITED AND FILLING FAST. Please share this with your site and hang this flyer. REGISTRATION-bit.ly/fighting4justice

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Holiday Events & Organizing Opportunities

History shows that workers have been advocating for a day of recognition
honoring King’s legacy since 1968. It may come as a surprise that the holiday
began as a union demand in contract negotiations. He was an advocate for
working people and a pillar of the civil rights movement. 

All Madison schools will be closed and all MTI-represented employees will
receive a paid holiday on Monday, January 21.  Madison will host multiple
events to recognize, honor, and renew the struggle for racial equality and
economic justice that was Dr. King’s life.  MTI encourages members to
participate in these community-building opportunities.
 
* Friday, January 18, 4:30-7:00 p.m.:  MLK Free Community Dinner,
Gordon Commons, 770 W. Dayton Street in downtown Madison. Dinner
served buffet style from 4:30 to 7:00 p.m. There is NO COST to attend. Info at King Coalition Facebook page.

* Sunday, January 20, 7:30-10:00 a.m.: 35th Annual Urban League
Outstanding Young Person Breakfast, Edgewood High School. Middle
and high school students are nominated by schools from across Dane Countybased on their academic performance, community service, and extra-curricularparticipation. Tickets are $10 and available online.

* Monday, January 21, 5:00 p.m.: 34th annual Madison & Dane County
King Holiday Observance, Overture Center in downtown Madison. Freedom songs in the Overture rotunda at 5:00 pm. Program begins at 6:00 pm. NO
COST to attend. More info available on King Coalition Facebook page.

Labor History Essay Contest for Wisconsin High School Students

Encourage Wisconsin high school students (grades 9-12) to participate in a Labor History Essay Contest.

Students are invited to write 750 words on the following theme: “Unions have been important to my family and community because….”

Students are urged to interview family members, neighbors, friends, or others about their connection to work and labor unions. The contest is easy to enter and is an opportunity for high schoolers to learn more about the labor movement.

Applicants could win up to $500! Essays are due on Feb 15.

Visit the wisconsinlaborhistory.org for contest rules and more details.

Join MTI’s Equity & Diversity Series

Come prepare and PLEDGE to participate in MTI’s Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action Feb 4-8.

January 12 9AM -12 PM at MTI

ENROLL HERE

In October, the MTI Faculty Representative Council adopted the motion below:

MTI’s Equity and Diversity Committee, in partnership with NEA and WEAC, will  promote the Black Lives Matter at Schools week of action February 4-8, 2019.

Student advocacy and equity are a part of MTI’s mission and beliefs:

Madison Teachers, Inc. is a member-led organization which advocates for its members and students in order to advance quality public education for all students.

Public schools have a moral responsibility to provide a quality education, broad and equitable in nature, to all students with no exceptions, exclusions, or disparities.

  • Come learn about and sign the pledge for action!
  • Get resources, lesson plans and time to plan age appropriate lessons with colleagues
  • Find out how to participate in community events occurring during the week
  • Choose which presentations and discussion to attend
  • WIN DOOR PRIZES

2018 Winter Break & 2019-2020 School Calendar

One of the real joys this holiday season is the opportunity to say thank you.
 

Thank you to all MTI members for your hardwork and your dedication to MMSD students. MTI is successful because of YOU.As a member-led organization we advocate for MTI members and students in order to advance quality public education. We appreciate all that you do for students and for the goodwill of our organization. 

We hope you are excited for some well-deserved time away from school. 

As a friendly (and happy) reminder: WinterBreak for school year employees lasts from Monday, December 24 though Friday, January 4, 2019. 

MTI is dedicated to ensuring members (both school year and 12-month employees) have vacation, holiday, and floating time to enjoy the holiday season. As we ring in the New Year we would also like to share the 2019-2020 School Calendar. 


Highlights of the School Calendar 2019-20

  • We have retained a 2-week winter break; 
  • There will continue to be 6 Staff Only days throughout the year;
  • Together, we secured a 1-week spring break; 
  • New Teacher days will be August 21-23, followed by the Staff Learning/Prep days August 26-29, and the Voluntary day on August 30; 
  • The student year will begin the day after Labor Day, September 3, 2019 and end on June 10, 2020, with the last Staff Only day on June 11, 2020; 
  • Parent-teacher conferences for middle and high schools will be held during the third and fourth full weeks of November, and the comp day will continue to be the day before Thanksgiving (November 28 is Thanksgiving); and 
  • Teachers will have an additional day off on February 28, 2020. 

Thank you for continuing to stand together in solidarity on important issues that impact your profession. Feel free to contact MTI’s calendar committee members or the MTI office should you have any questions about the upcoming year. 

May you soar into 2019 filled with health, happiness and prosperity!

Solidarity &Happy Holidays from all of us at MTI. 

School Calendar 2019-20!

Teacher Salary Schedule Update – December 6, 2018

Good news!

At the December 3 meeting of the Teacher Salary Schedule/Compensation work group, we reached consensus on recommended teacher salary schedule changes. These recommendations were forwarded to the Employee Handbook Review Committee for their review on Thursday, December 6, and will be shared with the Board of Education on Monday, December 10.

We are pleased to report that the only recommended changes to the schedule will be those that the MTI participants to the committee support, including:

  • Moving Improvement levels to every 5 years with 6 academic and/or PAC credits required to pass
  • Removing half-steps for part-time employees, allowing part-time employees to advance a full step annually in same manner as full-time employees
  • Removing 2-year holds after Step 15, providing for annual step movement
    • Teachers in the BA tracks at levels 15 and above will receive approximately an 0.87% increase every year instead of 1.75% every two years
    • Teachers in the MA and PhD tracks at levels 15 and above will receive approximately a 1% increase every year instead of 2% every other year
  • Renaming steps to alpha rather than numerical

These recommendations represent a significant accomplishment for this Committee and for our Union. After we bargained a 2.13% cost-of-living base-wage increase for 2018-19, the BOE directed District Administration to work with MTI to identify modifications to the teacher salary schedule which would make it “more sustainable” (i.e. less costly). While committing to collaborate with the District on exploring potential changes that we felt were in our members’ interest, we consistently opposed any salary schedule changes which would reduce investments in our teaching staff. We shared this position repeatedly with District Administration and the Board of Education. At their November 12 meeting, the majority of the BOE agreed with us and amended their directive to District Administration to seek reductions in the schedule. Now we have reached consensus recommendations which retain the value and integrity of the salary schedule.

As always, we have much work ahead, including significant compensation issues such as health insurance premium renewals and base-wage bargaining for 2019-20, but our successful protection of the integrity of the teacher salary schedule is a major accomplishment.

MTI Salary/Compensation Handbook Work Group includes: Pamela Ferrill, Holly Hansen, John Howe, Nobel Perez, Kristin Scheffler, Ben Senson, Steve Somerson, Susan Stern, Amy Turkowski, Andy Waity, Kati Walsh, Jeff Knight, and Doug Keillor.

Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns.