What are the Temporary Standing Rules?

The board passed by 99% a motion to suspend the NEA Standing Rules in their entirety for the duration of the 2020 virtual convening of the Representative Assembly and adopted temporary Rules of Procedure for the purpose of conducting business at the emergency virtual convening of the 2020 Representative Assembly being held on July 2-3, 2020.


The Credentials Committee, as detailed in Standing Rule 1.A.1, shall remain in place, but the deadline under Standing Rule 1.A.2 for complaints or questions regarding the issuance of credentials shall be extended to June 15, 2020. The procedure for the certification of delegates and successor delegates shall remain as set forth in Standing Rule 1.B except for reasonable extensions of the April 10th and May 15th deadlines shall be granted upon request.

The Credentials Committee shall submit its preliminary report in writing by June 25th. That preliminary report shall be posted on the website for delegates. Any challenge to the seating of a delegate or delegates may be made in writing by June 26, to Keira McNett (kmcnett@nea.org). The Credentials Committee shall review any such challenge and make a recommendation as to its disposition to the NEA Board of Directors, which shall have final authority over the matter.


Registration materials shall be sent to all delegates prior to the time of the virtual RA. Registration of delegates and successor delegates shall be on June 23rd- 24th, and shall be completed by the day prior to the virtual RA. No one shall be permitted to participate in the virtual RA other than registered delegates.


The Committee on Constitution, Bylaws & Rules as detailed in Standing Rule 2 shall remain in place and shall serve as a resource to delegates considering submitting amendments to the Constitution, Bylaws and Rules for consideration by the 2021 Representative Assembly.


The sole items to be considered at the 2020 Representative Assembly, and the order in which those matters will be considered, will be:

  1. The election of the NEA President, Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, 2 members of the NEA Executive Committee, and the At-Large members of the NEA Board of Directors;
  2. Delegate consideration of the endorsement recommendation from the NEA Fund for Children and Public Education for President of the United States in the 2020 general election;
  3. The adoption of the NEA Strategic Plan & Budget for the 2020-22 fiscal year.


Nominations for all offices to be elected at the Representative Assembly shall be submitted in writing to the Committee on Constitution, Bylaws, and Rules (CCBR) (CLewis@nea.org) by June 24th at 4:00 p.m. EDT. Nominated candidates shall be afforded the opportunity to speak to the virtual Representative Assembly on July 2nd for the time periods set forth below.

  1. Candidates for NEA President – 5 minutes each
  2. Candidates for NEA Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, and Executive Committee – 3 minutes each
  3. At-Large candidates for the NEA Board of Directors – 2 minutes each

The speaking order of candidates shall be determined by a lottery conducted virtually on June 25th at 7:00 p.m. EDT. Candidates shall be provided with the log-in information for the lottery by noon on June 25th.

The vote for NEA candidates will take place by secret ballot mailed directly to delegates’ home addresses in the process detailed below. Final election results will be posted on nea.org/ra, and provided via email/mail to delegates.


Presentation of the recommendation of the NEA Fund for Children & Public Education to NEA delegates for NEA’s endorsement in the 2020 general election for President of the United States. The recommended candidate will be allowed to address delegates.

Vote on PAC-recommended U.S. presidential candidate for NEA endorsement will take place by secret ballot mailed directly to delegates’ homes addresses in the process detailed below.


Due to limitations in technology to facilitate virtual debate among thousands of delegates, there will be no motions from the floor, no amendments of any kind and no voting during the virtual sessions of the 2020 Representative Assembly. This includes a motion to “move to close debate” as we have no reliable way to count votes virtually.

There will be limited debate on adoption of the NEA Strategic Plan & Budget according to the following procedure:

Delegates wishing to speak in favor or in against the motion to adopt the Strategic Plan & Budget shall be instructed to call-in in order to get in the electronic queue to speak. To the maximum extent possible given technological limitations, speakers will be heard in the order in which they called in, alternating between those speaking in favor of the motion and those speaking against the motion.

As no Motion to Close Debate is possible, we will end debate when all in the queue have spoken or after 2 hours of debate, whichever comes first.
Vote on the NEA Strategic Plan & Budget will take place by paper ballot mailed directly to delegates’ home addresses in the process detailed below.


Because of the technical limitations of remote voting, and concerns regarding the accuracy and equity of remote voting with such a large number of delegates, all of the action items at the 2020 Representative Assembly shall be decided by mail ballot.


The Elections Committee and its Chair as defined by Standing Rule 11.A shall be appointed by the NEA Board of Directors on the basis of recommendations from the state affiliates.

Elections shall be by mail ballot to be sent out by July 6th to the home address of each delegate as submitted on their delegate registration form. Mail ballots must be returned by August 4th to be counted in the 2020 Representative Assembly elections.

Candidate names shall be placed on the first mail ballot in the order determined by lottery held on June 25th supervised by the Elections Committee Chair and the CCBR Chair. All candidates shall be provided with login information for the lottery by noon on June 25th. Should runoff elections be necessary, the order of candidate names shall similarly be determined by lottery.

The order of the lottery shall be as follows: For placement on the first ballot, the Chair of the Election Committee shall draw on behalf of each candidate in the alphabetical order of each candidate’s state. For placement on a runoff ballot, the candidates shall draw in order of the highest number of votes received on the previous ballot.

Runoff elections shall be held as necessary by subsequent mail ballots until there is an election for each position by a majority vote.

Candidates shall be briefed on the mail ballot procedure and shall be provided with the opportunity to observe the procedure, either in-person or virtually. Candidates shall be provided at least 7 days advance notice of the time and place for the counting of the ballots and shall be given the opportunity to observe that process virtually or in person as the pandemic situation allows. The Elections Committee shall have the authority to set procedures for ensuring observability, secrecy, and election integrity. The Elections Committee shall also have the authority to make reasonable adjustments to the election timelines.

Candidates for President, Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, Executive Committee, and At-Large Board of Directors shall file both the preliminary and final reports called for in Standing Rule 11.B.4(b). Preliminary reports shall be submitted to the Elections Committee by July 2nd and final reports shall be submitted to the committee within thirty (30) days following certification of the election results.

The committee shall report to the Representative Assembly, prior to nominations, whether any candidate has in any manner violated the election rules and regulations. The final report shall be made available for inspection by any member by means of an appropriate NEA electronic publication.
The Elections Committee shall report the results of the election after the ballots are counted on August 5th. If a runoff election is needed, the Election Committee shall report the results of the election after the ballots are counted on September 4th.

The prohibition in Standing Rule 11.B.4a against the use of any union or employer money or resources in any campaign shall remain in effect throughout the virtual Representative Assembly. The representative requirements by job category and ethnic-minority identification in Standing Rule 11.B.7(d-h) shall also remain in effect.

Elections shall be administered according to the definitions in Standing Rule 13, which shall remain in effect.


All other Standing Rules shall be suspended during the 2020 Virtual Representative Assembly.

NEA Acts to Make the 2020 Representative Assembly (RA) Virtual
See NEA’s Announcement on the Virtual RA
Learn more about the virtual RA
Download PDF of 2020 RA Overview & Q&A (PDF)