State Teachers Union Gives Nod to Vargas Bid for State Representative

Massachusetts Teachers Association President Barbara Madeloni and Haverhill Education Association President Lisa R. Begley last May. (WHAV News photograph.)

The Massachusetts Teachers Association Tuesday endorsed Haverhill City Councilor Andy Vargas in his bid for state representative.


The group, affiliated with the Haverhill Education Association, cited, among other reasons, Vargas’ social media campaign to raise awareness of the conditions at several Haverhill schools, which ultimately resulted in the city receiving a matching grant to renew the Tilton library.


MTA President Barbara Madeloni said, “Andy Vargas will be a compelling advocate in the legislature for students and public education. In meetings with educators, Andy has clearly articulated his commitment to our public schools, colleges and universities. We can count on him to be a strong voice for working families and communities throughout Massachusetts.”


Besides raising awareness of school conditions, the endorsement said Vargas advocated for legislation to make Civic Education a graduation requirement for high school students while attending Haverhill High School, and has been a strong advocate for educational equity while a city councilor.


A statement added, “With the relationships Councilor Vargas has fostered on Beacon Hill, he will be able to hit the ground running when it comes to supporting Haverhill’s students and teachers.”

22 thoughts on “State Teachers Union Gives Nod to Vargas Bid for State Representative

  1. Some corrections to commments here:
    Magliocchetti publicly supported Silver Hill charter renewal efforts publicly at many school committee meetings, as did Shaun Toohey and Sven Amirian.

    Andy Vargas served on Silver Hill’s Board of Trustees and was instrumental in helping Silver Hill grow and retain its diverse student population, through the efforts of the school’s outreach plan.

    Ideally, a statewide teachers union endorsement should be highly valued and held in high regard for a candidates commitment to public education-because of our recent history here in Haverhill with the HEA and MTA agenda directly affecting one of our most successful schools, just their mere mention causes alarm.

    Andy knows that he will be representing all of Haverhill as State Representative, and knows how to bring people and resources together effectively. This is what Haverhill needs. Endorsements prove that he is building relationships and bringing stakeholders together-his integrity and vision will prove fruitful for Haverhill’s future.

    • “a statewide teachers union endorsement should be highly valued and held in high regard for candidates…”

      Did you not learn anything during the Silver Hill charter issue? Teacher unions don’t care about students and parents. The ONLY thing they care about is themselves. Teacher unions do nothing but breed mediocrity among its members at the detriment of the students they supposedly serve. An endorsement of a candidate from a union the size of the MTA doesn’t just happen. The MTA had discussions with Andy prior to this announcement. There is no way the MTA endorses any candidate who isn’t in full agreement with their own selfish agenda. The MTA endorsement is a public rubber stamp that Andy is in the bag, with no ability to act independently against their wishes. The experienced politicians at the MTA wouldn’t have approved the endorsement if they thought otherwise. This public endorsement is the final step in proving where Andy’s loyalties lie. Which means, Andy now promoting this endorsement shows, once again, he’s more concerned about politics than doing right by the people of Haverhill. It also means Andy thinks the people of Haverhill are stupid. We’ll see about that in a couple of weeks.

  2. If the Massachusetts Teacher Association backs Vargas, as it states here, then that is the BIGGEST sign that Haverhill taxpayers need to run away from the Vargas candidacy. Andy worked hard to ensure that the parents at Silver Hill DID NOT get what they wanted for THEIR children, but MTA did. You think it will be different in the state house? These are clear and undeniable facts – with Andy, your taxes (of all kinds) will continue to rise, your net income will continue to plummet, education will get watered down, illegal immigration will spike, corruption will continue to spread like poison ivy, the Democrat hack machine of management on Beacon Hill will tell Andy how high to jump – and he’ll do it – all the time, every time.

    Andy Vargas is about taking from those who work and earn it – and giving it to those who refuse to help themselves – period.

    If you have any respect for your children, your city, – hell – even yourself – you will not vote for Andy Vargas.

    • Except Andy served on the Silver Hill board, helping them recruit more Haverhill applicants/families of diverse backgrounds. Sheesh you people never give up on bashing this guy. Do you ever leave your mom’s basement?

      • He certainly didn’t serve the parents – do you ever take off the blinders? And what do you mean diverse backgrounds? The whole neighborhood is diverse – you don’t have to make it more so. Forced busing was a failure and and gerrymandering classroom diversity is another failure.

        Maybe you enjoy getting your picture taken with Andy because he makes you feel important – I’m more concerned with policies and laws that should be followed and not cherry-picked by those full of a sense of entitlement.

        Try doing some research that matters and get your head out of the local democratic talking points.

      • Sarah, as an involved parent who had three kids go to SH, I can tell you Andy did absolutely NOTHING to benefit that school. Politicians sitting on boards and committees to pad a resume with fake accomplishments (see Joe Bevilacqua) means nothing. The act of being on a board means nothing…you have to actually do something. Andy said/did absolutely NOTHING during the SH charter renewal issue. He was in hiding. If he was so concerned wouldn’t he have been voicing his opinions, especially as a board member like you point out? Andy not only said/did nothing, he stood by watching as Lisa Begley bogusly used the issue of Latino students as a pawn to justify not renewing the charter so teachers in other schools wouldn’t subjected to the more intense demands as SH teachers are. And now we know why he said nothing….so that he could get their endorsement. Andy sold out the families at SH for the sake of a political endorsement. That’s as sleazy as it gets. Andy gets bashed on here because he’s a liar, a fraud and he doesn’t represent the taxpayers of this city. Call all the names you want about “basements” Sarah, but you have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about.

      • Sarah, If you dont know that Andy worked behind that scenes with other elected officials to make sure the vote didnt pass the union your simply not paying attention. Andy quit the board, ask him the reason he gave people behind the scenes. It may open your eyes

  3. Wake up Haverhill voters. Another endorsement for Vargas from outside of Haverhill. Isn’t anyone concerned that sooner or later Andy will have to pay for his Boston endorsements? Who will come first, Haverhill or the Boston politicians who even ran a fundraiser for Andy’s campaign?

    • the headquarters might be in Boston but there are a lot of people throughout the state who affiliate with the AFT or the MTA or their professional associations and we affiliate with some in Washington DC like ASCD, CEC (Council for Exceptional Children) etc. where the headquarters is does not imply much other than it has transportations and communication links to tie together disparate communities — there are 350 school districts in the state. I was never a Boston poliltician but I lived in Chelmsford, and Upton, and Sudbury and Acton, and Ayer and wherever I lived the affiliations was through the headdquarters just as it is for any professional organization. Some like the American Educational Research Association have conferences in Detroit, or Miami or even Toronto — where they host the conference is not important… it is the colleagues that you meet and the information that you gain that will help to share best practices in the field (getting the information back to the cities and towns )

      • Congrats on being a world of Massachusetts traveler! However, the one “group” you left out of the equation when it comes to “best practices” in regards to children is glaring (and typical for a liberal) it’s called the PARENTS.

        Washington DC has no business deciding what my child’s educational journey should be – period.

  4. Recently a spokesperson for a Pro-Illegal Immigrant advocacy group supporting making Haverhill a sanctuary city estimated that 15% of the student population in city schools are children of parents illegally in this country. That number means Haverhill taxpayers are paying $13.2 MILLION a year to educate kids that aren’t even citizens of this country.
    Andy is the sanctuary city candidate who fully supports Haverhill taxpayers paying to educate all these kids. If Andy gets elected that $13.2MIllion is going to go up…way up. This is why the HEA supports him. As the number of illegal kids in city schools increases, so too do the demands for more schools and teachers. The higher the number of illegal kids in Haverhill schools, the higher the level of job security is for teachers. Andy is already promoting the need a new city school in the city.

    Why would anyone vote for a candidate who supports illegal policies that are going to drive taxes way up?

    • as I posted yesterday, the statewide League of Women Voters MA supports the Safe Communities Act and has given testimony in the state house about the reasons why they (and I ) support it. I have only been a member of the LWV for a year because I see the important work they are doing and have more time now that I am retired to work on the specific issues.

    • I would like to check this figure; I have worked with schools for over 50 years , traditional public schools, and no where have I heard this. I will ask the MA Association of School Committees if they have specific data. I go to them when I want to find out information on special education, what Watertown is doing, what Framingham is doing and what the other cities are doing for important programs and improvements such as civics education. “That number means Haverhill taxpayers are paying $13.2 MILLION a year to educate kids that aren’t even citizens of this country.

      • Jean, the spokesperson I referenced represents The Merrimack Valley Project…a far left liberal, pro-illegal immigrant advocacy group. Do I know if that number is correct? No….and I don’t care either. What I care about is the insanity of liberal politicians with no regard for the laws of this country regarding people trespassing and being in this country illegally for the sake of a political agenda. I care about the social and financial consequences of those policies. Whether the number is $13.2Million is correct or not, who cares? “ANY” amount of money that taxpayers in Haverhill have to pay to educate students who are not even citizens of this country is too much!! I also care about the threat pro-illegal invader politicians like Andy pose the to future of this city.
        Jean, you as a retired teacher should be scared to death about the promotion and support of these liberal policies. If you think the state can sustain the negative economics of the drain they are putting on the system, think again. When that pension check isn’t in the mailbox you will have wished you thought, and most likely voted differently.

      • The entire process is intentionally opaque.

        However, it’s easy to figure out were the information FULLY disclosed: Number of Invader students x cost per pupil.

        Of course, Haverhill and most municipalities will never disclose the number of Invaders with children in the school system, if it were, people would be outraged at the cost of supporting Invaders while taking away from their own children which their parents pay for. Just like the bigger fiscal issue in regard to Invaders: Free health care which is budgeted and paid for through the MA Health Safety Net.

        Your comment though is more interest because you claim to be retired. Many Americans in this Era will never afford to be retired, in part due to the aforementioned.

  5. Remember, both Maggliochetti and Vargas supported the Haverhill Education Association in the quest to deny Silver Hill Charter School the renewal of their charter. While Haverhill teachers were voting to dumb down the educational standards of Silver Hill, both of these looney liberal democrats were right there along side them. Only Shaun Toohey spoke out publicly in support of Silver Hill keeping its charter.
    While Lisa Begley was lying and using inaccurate data about the minority population as Silver Hill, and using that fake issue as a pawn to deny the charter so teachers in other schools wouldn’t be held to the same standards, Andy Vargas stood by and said nothing. Andy brags about being the first Latino city councilor in the city, but when Latinos were being used right in front of his eyes he was no where to be found…as usual.

    The fact that Vargas would even consider support from Lisa Begley and the HEA an asset to his campaign just goes to show what an uneducated, inexperienced child he is. Any political candidate knowing what a liar Begley is would consider her endorsement the last they would want.