November 3 2010 FEA Europe Update

1. Formatting Issues
2. Area Directors' Travels
3. Fall Unity Mailing
4. NEA HCR Training Opportunities
5. Association Day
6. School Accreditation Requirements
7. American Education Week
8. Veterans' Day
9. Free Resources for November
10. Intervention Plans and Performance Improvement Plans
11. Upcoming Events

1. Formatting Issues -- Because of some problems with the formatting of these Updates on some computers, I am trying a new format this week, with the FEA Logo at the end of the message rather than at the beginning. The important part of the Updates is the information and we continue to make changes to make it easier to read and use.

2. Area Directors' Travels -- Alex will be at Ansbach ES and MS on November 4, and at the Area office in Wiesbaden for a JCC with me on November 5. He will also be visiting the Schweinfurt schools on December 6 and the Bamberg schools on December 7. In addition, Alex is working out the details of a visit to the Ramstein/Landstuhl schools between November 29 and December 1. More school visits are being planned.

As Alex noted in his last Update, I was in Cuba last week, visiting members at our two schools at Guantanamo Bay. These are our oldest overseas schools and visiting there is always an adventure. This time, the weather was as warm and sunny as the welcome we received from our members there. I was accompanied by Gary Hritz, our FEA Communications Director, and John Rosales from the NEA Interactive Media Department. This department is responsible for much of what you read from NEA including the NEA Today. Many thanks to all the members who made our visit so positive and productive.

Next week (Nov 8-12) I will be visiting schools at SHAPE, Brussels, AFNORTH, and Kleine Brogel. The following week I will be in Stuttgart November 15 & 16. School visits are an important part of a FEA leaders' job. They give us a chance to speak with teachers directly, to see how issues impact our teachers, and to see the working conditions of our teachers and learning conditions of our students.

Please be patient with us when we are traveling if we do not get to answer your e-mails right away. If you do not hear from us within a week or so, please send a "gentle" reminder.

3. Fall Unity Mailing -- FRS's: If you have not received the fall edition of the Unity, please let me know.

4. NEA HCR Training Opportunities - Please be aware of two valuable trainings that are coming up quickly: November 5-7: NEA-HCR Social Justice and Diversity Training for Credit, Wiesbaden High School Media Center and November 9: NEA-HCR Social Justice Training with dinner to follow, Mannheim High School Media Center: 4-6. The POC for both trainings is Nancy Almendras.

5. Association Day -- Mark your calendars now for our Association Day on Saturday April 30, 2011. I know this is a long way in advance but we are already at work on making this a big event for our members. In addition to our European and Washington leaders, we are also planning to have speakers from the NEA as well. The event will be held in the Wiesbaden area. Watch future Updates for more information.

6. School Accreditation Requirements -- The following is from Michael Priser's November 1 President's Report. "FEA and Management have agreed to assess what is occurring in the field when it comes to the process that schools are going through in attempting to meet the requirements for accreditation. It appears that what is happening in the field has become very labor intensive. FEA has also asked for a clarification on data walls and how they are to be properly used in school improvement. It is FEA's goal that a way be found to demonstrate how schools meet accreditation requirements without imposing unnecessary tasks on those in the field."

If you have not signed up to receive this directly, you are missing valuable information. The current Report also includes information on the ELA materials adoption, UDDI and other important issues. Go to to sign up to be on this mailing list.

7. American Education Week -- November 14 -- 20 is American Education Week and is a GREAT chance to publicize the important work that you and your colleagues do. You might consider a special newsletter, inviting parents in, or other activities to highlight the good things going on in your classroom and your school. It is also a great time to thank your Education Support Professionals and your Substitute Teachers. For more information on how to celebrate AEW, go to

8. Veterans' Day -- Working on a daily basis with military families, we are very aware of the sacrifices these families make for their country. Veterans' Day, November 11 is an excellent opportunity to recognize the service of our military veterans. For a history of this important holiday, as well as resources on how to celebrate go to the following website.

9. Free Resources for November -- The NEA website has a wealth of free resources for the month of November, including information on American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month as well as other free activities and resources.

10. Intervention Plans and Performance Improvement Plans - If approached by management about an IP or PIP, please contact your Area Director so that we can help you through the process. For more information on the Appraisal System, go to and

11. Upcoming Events --
November 5 -- Area JCC, Wiesbaden
November 5-7 -- Social Justice and Diversity Training, Wiesbaden POC: Nancy Almendras
November 9 Social Justice Training with Dinner, Mannheim POC: Nancy Almendras
November 8 -- December 13 -- FEHB Open Season
November 11 -- Veterans' Day
November 15 -- 19 - American Education Week
November 25 - Thanksgiving

Thanks for all you do,


Chuck McCarter
FEA Europe Area Director
Tel/Fax: 0611-44756234
0611-44756131 or DSN 335-5373/69