With NSEA, Following the Legislature is Easy

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Face-to-face communication with senators is simple and easy, says NSEA Government Relations Committee Chair Jared Wagenknecht. To illustrate, Wagenknecht tells a story of an encounter with a senator in Omaha late last fall.

“I saw a senator out and about a couple of weeks ago. I didn’t say much, other than ‘I’m a public school teacher and I just really wanted to thank you for standing up for public education,’” he said.

Policymakers need to know teachers are interested and watching, he said. They also need to know what is going on in schools so that they can make fact-based decisions.

“Senators want to hear from teachers and their constituents because they (senators) aren’t experts on every bill,” he said.

Such action is easy to do.

“You cannot over-emphasize how truly accessible the senators in Nebraska are,” he said. “It’s pretty easy to call your senator and just talk to them or to stop by the capitol if you’re in Lincoln. Just drop in and have a five-minute conversation about your concerns.”

Keeping abreast of issues is also easy — almost imperative — as state law touches nearly every action a teacher takes in the classroom. Here are some simple methods for staying on top of the issues:

  • Add your name to NSEA’s e-mail list to receive NSEA’s weekly Capitol Update emails. “The Capitol Update is a fantastic resource and the best way to stay up on what is happening,” said Wagenknecht. To get the Update via email, subscribe at: www.nsea.org/subscriber
  • Call the NSEA. Call toll-free at 1-800-742-0047. An experienced team of NSEA employees watch the legislative process closely.
  • Read NSEA’s The Voice to stay abreast of the latest happenings.
  • Scan the Internet: Follow the progress of any legislative bill at: nebraskalegislature.gov
  • Call the Legislature’s 24-Hour request line for the weekly Unicameral Update. Dial 1-402- 471-2877. 
  • Write your senator: Simply address the envelope with the senator’s name and district number, and complete the address with State Capitol, P.O. Box 94604, Lincoln, NE 68509-4604.
  • You can also e-mail your senator via the Legislature’s home page at: nebraskalegislature.gov
  • Or you can e-mail your senator through a link on NSEA’s site at: www.nsea.org/legislature
  • Know your senator.  Most senators return home on weekends and meet with constituents. Meet and get to know them.