Plymouth County Education Association was founded in 1835 with the help of Horace Mann, the founder of Bridgewater State College (Bridgewater Normal School), the oldest teacher training institution in the U.S.A. It most likely was called the Plymouth County Association for the Improvement of Common Schools.

The earliest records that we have found so far were obtained from the NEA, where The American Journal of Education, edited by Henry Bernard, Vol. I, 1856 says: “At a meeting of the ‘Plymouth County Association for the Improvement of Common Schools,’ held at Hanover, September 3, 1838, the question of the Normal School in Plymouth was discussed…”

Jan. 24, 1850 – Could be the date that we became PCTA?

As of 1936, the organization was called the Plymouth County Teachers’ Association.

During the 1940-1941 school year, PCTA talked about offering health insurance (Blue Cross) to members.

With a war in Europe, September 1941 saw more men entering the armed services. The PCTA voted to allow “men in service to remain on the Board and that the Nominating Committee should select military substitutes for them for the duration.”

In November 1941, a committee was formed to create a seal for the Association. On December 9, 1941, a student contest to obtain this seal was announced. On April 29, 1942, the County Seal Contest winner was announced. George Bernard of River St., Norwell received a $25 prize for his entry. While the word “Teachers” had been changed to “Education,” the seal has not changed since then.

January 20, 1942 – PCTA voted to buy a US Defense Bond, Series F, in the amount of $500.

March 10, 1942 – a Mission Statement was drafted:
” The aim of the PCTA shall be to provide leadership, to stimulate growth, and to foster professional loyalty by presenting the broad aspects of education, by presenting the latest thought on the current problems and methods of education, and by working on behalf of teachers in school and civic affairs wherever and whenever possible.”

January 12, 1943 – Mission Statement adopted:
“The aim of the PCTA shall be to provide leadership, to stimulate cultural growth, to foster professional loyalty, and to work on behalf of teachers in school and in civic affairs.”

January 1, 1946 – The PCTA News Bulletin now has an official editor, Mary Louise Reilly

October 23, 1953 – Sen. John F. Kennedy speaks at 118th convention. His topic was “Challenge to America.”

May 9, 1957 – the annual PCTA conference discusses “best practices.”

By 1957 the office records included more ball point pen and “purple dittoes” (spirit masters).

November 1964 – an Executive Assistant position was created.

April 10, 1967 – a new Constitution was adopted that renames the organization as Plymouth County EDUCATION Association.

September 1968 – The minutes read: “Organized 133 years ago.” This supports the 1835 inception date.

September 1969 – Members voted to ask an MTA staff member to speak to them about the new Massachusetts Teacher Retirement law.

December 1969 – Bridgewater State College agrees to host off campus courses for credit under the auspices of PCEA. The first three credit course would cost $155. It was cancelled due to lack of interest.

February 1970 – MTA needed 3000 members to particpate in a dental program. They did not reach that number.

April 30, 1970 – Professor Majorie Ford speaks at the PCEA’s Elementary School Teachers’ Convention on “Making Ready for the New Compulsory Kindergarten Law.” A high tech workshop was held so that members could learn how to prepare and use overhead projectors.

January 1972 – the First two PCEA courses were presented.

April 1972- PCEA was in support of Bill S1220 – a bill to allow maternity leave.

January 8, 1973 – It was moved, seconded, and carried that “members of the PCEA Board of Directors may take courses at half the regular fee and the full registration fee.”

January 17, 1977 – at a meeting at Ridder’s Country Club in Whitman: Jack Maynard moved that the PCEA change the Newsletter to a newspaper beginning with the next issue. The motion passed upon first consideration, but upon a motion to reconsider, it failed! Later in the meeting, George Shaugnessy resigned as newsletter editor. The Public Relations Committee was assigned the task of sorting through this decision.

March 14, 1977 – The Public Relations Committee recommended that the newsletter not be changed to a newspaper.

May 9, 1977 – Betty Shaugnessy was PCEA Administrative Assistant.

May 9, 1977 – It was decided to pay mileage to all Directors for the first time. There was much discussion about the national NEA Collective Bargaining bill.

December 12, 1977 – 13 courses and a workshop were being offered.

1978 – The first rumblings of Proposition 2 1/2 cause urgent discussions at PCEA meetings.

January 1979 – The agenda item “Good and Welfare” was added.

March 1979 – voted $10,000 be placed in a certificate of deposit “earmarked for a Building Fund.”

March 25, 1980 – PCEA became incorporated.

April 14, 1980 – This is the last set of minutes recorded in manuscript. Future minutes were now typed, and later computerized.

1983- 1984 – PCEA is looking for new office space. A room in the home of Administrative Assistant Betty Shaughnessy has been used up until this point.

October 1987 – Ellen Brown takes over as Administrative Assistant.

In General:

PCEA supported other professional educational associations in times of crisis.

PCEA was instrumental in the founding of the Plymouth County Teachers’ Federal Credit Union.

PCEA helped update and reorganize the Association to reflect educational progress.

PCEA provided financial assistance to local associations for legal fees.

PCEA led the United Teaching Profession commitment to Political Action and Legislative clout.

PCEA led in the adoption of the Code of Ethics of Educators and the enforcement procedures.

PCEA led the way in instituting programs, conferences, and conventions, that later were adopted by the M.T.A.

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