Why MEA and not fall break


Jay Sullivan, Writer

Every year during the third week of Oct., The Education Minnesota Union holds a two day conference in St. Paul. This conference is called the Minnesota Educator Academy or MEA. This year, the purpose of the conference is to “Inspire our members to motivate their students and colleagues through sessions that support dynamic, multidimensional teaching and learning,’’ according to the Education Minnesota website. During this time, classes across Minnesota are cancelled to give teachers the opportunity to attend. Mr. Todd Andrix, the Union President of OEA, Owatonna Educator Association, goes to the conference every year, as well as a few others from Owatonna. Mr. Andrix said, “The main purpose is to allow educators to get professional development. There will be two to three speakers on key topics and break out sessions for more specific topics.’’ Another big part of the conference is the tradeshow, a place where teachers get materials for free to bring back to their classrooms. Some schools require teachers to attend while Owatonna stays optional. It is also a place for teachers to earn staff development hours to renew their teaching licenses.

To most kids, this is a much needed break from the school routine and a chance to sleep in four days in a row. Is MEA really being used for its purpose, or do teachers treat it as a four day weekend as well? Either way, it is a refreshing break for both students and school faculty.