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March 18, 2009 FEA Europe Update

1. Transfer Round
2. FEA BOD Meeting
3. Vacancies
4. Local Leaders' Training
5. RAT Travel
6. The NEA Foundation Awards
7. March Unity
8. Save the Date
9. Intervention Plans or PIP's

1. Transfer Round - This week, I am working in the Transfer Placement Round along with Debra Degalis, Pacific Area Director, and Connie Shanaghan from our FEA office as well as DoDEA staff, including Patti Ross. Since I am working "remotely," I am going to forward this to John and ask him to forward it to FRS's and POC's. Please forgive any strange spacing or formatting that occurs in this transition. I will attach this as a Word Document as well.

As is customary, information on individual transfers will not be released until DoDEA has sent out its transfer notifications. We know waiting is difficult. Thank you, in advance, to our members for their patience while the transfer round is conducted. The most up to date and accurate information on transfers is always available at www.feaonline.org.

2. FEA Board of Directors' Meeting - Last week, John and I represented Europe at our spring BOD meeting. We had a lengthy list of concerns from Europe which were discussed and we will be addressing those issues at the appropriate level. Please watch for future Updates from John and me as well as Michael Priser's President's Reports.

3. Vacancies - FRS's: Please continue to report any vacancies that may occur in your schools due to late retirements/resignations, etc.

4. Local Leaders Training - I will be conducting a Local Leaders/Membership Training in the Mannheim/Heidelberg area on Saturday, May 16th. Please let your FRS know if you are interested in attending. Watch future Updates for exact times and locations. John and I have been conducting these in various locations and the response has been very good. These are open to all members.

5. RAT Travel - The following guidance is from HT Nguyen, our Executive Director:
The following options are available to members of the FEA bargaining unit when they exercise Return Agreement Travel (RAT) this summer
(2009):

1. MAKING YOUR OWN TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS: Request RAT travel orders through TOPS. Once travel orders have been issued, teachers can make their own travel arrangements, which may include circuitous travel (stopovers). DoDEA will reimburse them the constructive cost of travel to their home of record. Travel must be on American flag carriers.

An issue was raised as to whether or not teachers will need to obtain an endorsement or approval from the CTO/TMO travel office before making their own travel arrangements. FEA has been in contact with DoDEA and has been assured by DoDEA's Office of Human Resources that no such endorsement would be required or needed. Prior to making their own travel arrangements, teachers need to ask CTO/TMO for the constructive cost to determine how much they will be reimbursed. Most CTO/TMO will provide the constructive cost upon request. Some other CTO/TMO offices
may not provide the information. If a teacher cannot obtain the
constructive cost after having made such a request to CTO/TMO, DoDEA will use the constructive cost contained in block 20b of the travel order (DD Form 1614).

2. MAKING TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS THROUGH CTO/TMO: If teachers do not want to make their own travel arrangements, namely, if they don't want to pay up front for travel cost and request/obtain reimbursements later at the constructive cost, they can make travel arrangements through the CTO/TMO office.

6. The NEA Foundation Awards for Teaching Excellence are presented annually to recognize, reward, and promote excellence in teaching and advocacy for our students, profession, and public education. FEA would be thrilled to receive nominations from our Association members in Europe. The process can start because of your encouragement and support of that special educator that you so admire. Go to the NEA Foundation site to download the materials explaining the nomination process. Possibly you will want to get a group of colleagues to go with you to talk to your nominee to give them the encouragement and support to fill out the paperwork and meet the deadlines. Many teachers are hesitant to "blow their own horn" but we know that DODEA teachers are some of the best in the world and together we can help them receive the recognition they deserve.

The complete packet should be received by Gary Hritz in the FEA office at GHritz@nea.org no later than March 31st, 2009.

7. March Unity - FRS': The March edition of the Unity should be arriving in your mailbox. Please distribute these to your members as soon as possible.

8. Save the Date - In cooperation with the NEA, FEA HCR Europe is planning a Human & Civil Rights workshop--- April 24, 25, 26, 2009 in Kaiserslautern. The exact times and locations will be announced. We hope to be able to offer credit for this training. Watch for more information as it becomes available. Linda Callender, FEA European HCR Coordinator, is the POC for this meeting.

9. Intervention Plans and PIP's - If you are approached by your evaluator about being put on an Intervention Plan or especially if you are placed on a PIP, please contact your District Rep and/or your Area Director. These are serious steps and cannot be treated lightly.

Thanks for all you do.

Chuck

Chuck McCarter
FEA Europe Area Director
Tel/Fax: 0611-44756234 or
0611-44756131 or DSN 337-6251