The Fate of Classroom Supply Tax Credits

Teachers provide an endless stream of supplies for their students, spending an average of $1,500 a year from our own pockets.  We provide shoes & jackets for kids who may not have them; pencils, paper and field trips for enrichment; and nutritious snacks to make sure all of the children have full bellies so they can focus on their work.

Until recently, teachers could claim a small amount of these expenditures as work expense deductions similar to the uniform/clothing deduction. This was a deduction, not a tax credit, so it would reduce your tax liability without contributing to any refund you may be due.  This “Ask Dow Jones” column addresses the potential fate of that piece of tax code.


10 Things Your Health Insurance Won’t Tell You

The Sunday Wall Street Journal publishes a weekly list of “Ten Things ____ Won’t Tell You” in the Sunday business section of affiliated papers around the US.  It can be interesting and a bit of fluff as well.  This week they chose to focus on health insurance.  Given the changes in Butte County benefits in the last couple of years, it is worth a read if only for some background and a little perspective about where we fall in the current climate.  This is a link to the original content on the Market Watch website. It is a slideshow, obnoxious to navigate, but worth clicking through the pages for the information.  Happy reading!

MAA disbursement is underway.

The MAA forms were sent on October 23rd to those who are eligible this year through district email.  If you believe you are eligible to receive funds this year because you filled out MAA time surveys for the district last year and have not received notice, please contact Rachel Frank.  Next year all members will be eligible for this wonderful support!

Thank you for your meaningful work in the classroom.  This program should help us all offer a little more to support our students in their education!




CTA Disaster Relief Fund

Are you aware that the CTA Disaster Relief Fund provides financial assistance to CTA members who have experienced significant losses due to disasters in California?

The Disaster Relief Fund is a separate special fund for the members of CTA. Money for the fund comes directly from members’ contributions. Thanks to this tradition of good will and generosity, members can turn to their professional organization for assistance with dignity.

The CTA Disaster Relief Fund provides four different grants summarized below:

  • Standard: Up to $1,500 for significant economic hardship related to damage to the member’s primary residence, displacement, or disruption in required utilities;
  • Catastrophic: Recipients of the Standard Grant may be eligible for up to another $1,500 if damages exceed $50,000;
  • Temporary Displacement: Up to $500 for members who are displaced from their primary residence as the result of a disaster, but do not meet all the requirements for a Standard Grant; and
  • School Site: Up to $500 for damage to classrooms.

For more information, see the flyer, go to, or contact the CTA Member Benefits Department at 650-552-5200.

MAA is ready to go!

MAA forms for 2012 – 2013 are available!

Everyone is eligible to participate this year.  If you haven’t received an email with the MAA forms attached, please email Rachel Frank and we will get them to you right away!

Thank you for your hard work in the classroom.  This program should help us all offer a little more to support our students in their education!

MAA Funds 2012-2013

In 2003, your BCTA negotiations team had an opportunity to secure a share of teacher-generated funds.

The BCTA negotiated share of MAA funds has always been intended as a support, in recognition that teachers spend a significant amount of personal funds to offer their students the best opportunities possible.  The funds were negotiated with the specific goal, reflected in our contract, of supporting the continued professional growth of teachers.  This allows us to continue to offer high quality programs to our students.

BCTA is aware that budgets at work and home are tight. The BCTA board voted to increase each member’s share this year to help make up that gap.  Look for a letter with detailed instructions for the MAA procedures in late September.