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Bow, NH

January 27, 2017 

Yesterday was a warm, almost Spring-like day, always welcome in January.  The gold of the State House dome shone brightly in the sunshine, and I even took the time to sit for a short while on a bench on the State House grounds.  Inside, however, the legislative session is just beginning to warm up, with a short session of the House to deal with a few legislative items, following an intensive week of public hearings on proposed bills, as committees work hard to push legislation to the floor for debates and votes.

The most important news of the week was the scheduling of


AFT-NH has called for a day of action for members across the state to wear RED for Public Ed(ucation) on Tuesday, January 31st. Two important nominations will be considered on this day. Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education will be voted on by committee in Washington. Here in NH, there will be a public hearing on the nomination of Frank Edleblut for Commissioner of Education. NH students, parents and teachers deserve candidates who support public education and are qualified for these positions. Please wear red and take the actions suggested in the attached flyer.



AFT-NH ‘Lesson Plan’ on Frank Edelblut


NH Students Deserve a Commissioner of Education Who Is QUALIFIED and SUPPORTS Public Education 


UPDATE: The public hearing on the Edelblut nomination will be on Tuesday, January 31st at 1pm at the State House in the Executive Council Chambers.

AFT-NH  ‘Lesson Plan’ on Frank Edelblut


  • Determine if the nominee for Education Commissioner is qualified to serve the 180,000+ public school students in NH;
  • Advise fellow citizens how to have their voices heard on the Edelblut nomination


  • Governor Sununu has nominated Frank Edelblut to be the next NH Commissioner of Education.
  • Mr. Edelblut served as a state representative for one term and then ran for  Governor.
  • Frank Edelblut ran in the republican primary against Gov. Sununu and lost by 800 votes.
  • Mr. Edelblut has no background in education.
  • Mr. Edelblut has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and a Master’s Degree in Theological Studies. He attended K-12 public school.
  • He home-schooled his 7 children.
  • His work experience includes Price Waterhouse Coopers, Niagara Corporation and his own business, Control Solutions International.
  • He supports school choice in all forms such as private, charter, religious, public schools, and home-school.  As a legislator,  he supported school choice legislation.
  • He has never served on a local school board. He did serve on the Water Commission in the Town of Wilton.


What is the job of the Education Commissioner?

  •  Department of Education Responsibilities

 21-N:2 Establishment; General Functions. – 
    I. There is hereby established the department of education, an agency of the state under the  executive direction of a commissioner of education
    II. The department of education, through its officials, shall be responsible for the following   general functions: 
       (a) Providing general supervision for elementary and secondary schools, teachers and administrators. 
       (b) Providing a variety of educational services to schools and particular groups. 
       (c) Providing vocational rehabilitation and social security disability determination services for persons with disabilities.


  • RSA 21-N:3, I  states in relevant part, “…The commissioner and deputy commissioner shall be qualified to hold their positions by reason of education and experience.” 
  • The specific duties of the Commissioner of Education are outlined in law at RSA 21-N:4  Duties of Commissioner. The Commissioner needs to be qualified  in order to efficiently and effectively run the NH Department of Education and support our schools across the state.


Who approves the nomination of Frank Edelblut as Commissioner of Education?

The five elected members of the NH Executive Council.  The vote could occur as soon as February 1st.



                                                                      You can express your opinion about this nomination by sending an email to all five Executive Councilors at


Bow, NH
January 20, 2017 

Yesterday, the NH Senate passed SB 11, the so-called ‘right to work’ bill, by a vote of 12-11.  Ten Democratic senators were joined by Republican Senator Sharon Carson in opposing the bill, while one Republican Senator, Robert Guida, was absent and did not vote.  By this action, the Republican majority in the NH Senate (excepting Senator Carson) makes clear where it stands.  Their aim is to weaken organized labor and the ability of working people to negotiate collectively and have a powerful voice in the workplace.  When organized labor is strong, working people are strong, wages rise, benefits improve, and there is greater mutual respect and equality in the workplace.  ‘Right to work’ intends to reverse gains made in New Hampshire over nearly the past fifty years, and in tandem with other legislation, will turn New Hampshire into the low-wage haven of New England.


AFT-NH Statement on Nomination of Frank Edelblut for Commissioner of Education



Contact: Douglas Ley, AFT NH  President
Phone: (603) 831-3661

2:00 P.M. EDT, January 18, 2017

BOW, NH -  AFT-NH President Douglas Ley released the following statement on the nomination of Representative Frank Edelblut as Commissioner of Education.

“Just as AFT on the national level has expressed strong opposition to the nomination of Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education, we are gravely concerned about a Commissioner of Education who, when running for governor, supported further diverting much needed funding and resources from our public schools.   Our teachers and school district employees are trained professionals who have dedicated a lifetime to serving NH students. There is no evidence based on Mr. Edelblut’s public record that he either has the experience in education or public service on the local level that demonstrates the requisite knowledge and understanding to lead NH schools and serve more than 180,000 students, our State’s most precious resource.” 

AFT-NH represents approximately 4,000 teachers, school support staff, city and town employees, police officers, library employees, and higher education faculty. AFT-NH is a member of the New Hampshire AFL-CIO and is the state affiliate for the American Federation of Teachers with more than 3,000 local affiliates nationwide, 43 state affiliates, and more than 1.3 million members.



On Tuesday, January 10, hundreds packed Reps Hall in the State House for the Senate Commerce Committee public hearing on SB 11, the proposed “right to work” legislation.  From 1 pm into the evening, a long line of witnesses, including Senators, Representatives, labor leaders, and working people (union and non-union) spoke against so-called “right to work” legislation. They pointed out that it would bring no new economic investment to NH, would inject the State into the negotiations process, and was simply an attempt to financially cripple labor unions and thereby weaken their ability to better the working conditions and the lives of those they represent.  And then, at the end of the day, without taking any time to consider evidence presented, the Committee voted 3-2, along strict party lines, to send SB 11 onto the Senate, with a recommendation of “ought to pass.”