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avatar for Mercedes Martínez

Mercedes Martínez

Federación de Maestros de Puerto Rico
President
Puerto Rico
Mercedes Martínez, mother of 3, has been the President of the Teachers Federation from Puerto Rico since 2015. She is an ESL teacher, graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, who has been in the union as an active member since 2005.

In 2008 she participated with thousands of teachers in a 10 day strike, requesting a fair contract for teachers, no charter school implementation, a salary increase, amongst others. As a direct result, wages were raised 14% for all Puerto Rican teachers and a NO charter stipulation was signed by the secretary of education. In 2014 a great opt out movement against standardized testing came to life in Puerto Rico, led by the Teacher´s Federation, where 20% of the students in a nationwide movement opted out.

Mercedes participated in 2016 in the Decolonization Deposition Hearings held in the United Nations. She has represented the union nationwide and internationally in events such as the Network for Public Educarion 2018, the Trinational Coalition Conference in Orizaba, Mexico, in forums held by the CUNY Proffessors Union, the Journey for Justice Alliance in Chicago and the Teachers Curriculum Fair in Chicago as well. She was a keynote speaker in the UTLA Delegate's Assembly in 2018. In February 2019 the union participated in the Pedagogical Encounter 2019 held in Cuba and in a Conference held by the British Columbia Teachers Union in Canada.

Mercedes has defended a bilingual curriculum in the DOE for all kids and children in Puerto Rico and defended more ESL teachers to be hired.