PACE: Fast-Growing Membership Option for Colorado Professional Teachers

The school year is back underway in most places in Colorado, and that means it’s time for an important reminder: Just as parents ought to be informed consumers and make wise decisions concerning educational options that suit their children’s needs, so teachers ought to be informed consumers in choosing a membership organization that meets their professional needs.

As far as membership organizations go, the new kid on the block in our state is the two-year-old, fast-growing Professional Association of Colorado Educators (PACE), “a Colorado-based, non-profit, professional educator association, dedicated to the academic and personal growth of every student.”

Recently, PACE’s director of membership Megan Leatham explained what her organization is about with my Education Policy Center friend Ben DeGrow on an 8-minute iVoices podcast.

For $180 a year, a full-time Colorado teacher has access to the following PACE membership benefits:

  • Professional development and training in order to advance knowledge, abilities, and earning potential
  • Member benefits, such as liability insurance and legal protection
  • Teacher scholarships, classroom mini-grants and other forms of monetary support and resources
  • Partnerships with educational institutions and research organizations to further the educational profession
  • A voice on educational issues that affect teachers most

Information on PACE and all available membership options for Colorado teachers is available on our Independent Teachers website.

This message is timely. Why? Because unlike many other consumer options, Colorado Education Association members in many school districts who wish to cancel their dues deductions and switch to another organization (or no organization at all) have to file a request within a short window of time near the beginning of the school year. Otherwise, they end up paying between $600 and $800 (mostly more than $700) for 2009-10.

The following districts (in alphabetical order) have September deadlines:

  • Adams County 14 (Commerce City)
  • Adams County 50 (Westminster)
  • Alamosa
  • Canon City
  • Centennial
  • Center 26 JT
  • Colorado Springs 11
  • Englewood
  • Fremont RE-2
  • Greeley
  • Huerfano
  • Jefferson County
  • Las Animas
  • Littleton
  • Mapleton
  • Poudre
  • Pueblo 60
  • Pueblo 70
  • Sheridan
  • South Conejos (Antonito)
  • St. Vrain Valley

Go here to check out the entire list.