March 27 2013 FEA Europe Update

27 March 2013

1. Excess Teacher Placement
2. Area JCC
3. FEA Europe Election
4. Focus on the Contract
5. Retirement Articles
6. Furloughs
7. Computer Issues
8. From Our Members
9. 2013 Federal Holidays

1. Excess Teacher Placement: Please note that the deadline for excess employees to submit their online application for placement consideration has been extended to Friday, March 29, 2013. FEA has posted on the FEA website, EXCESS PLACEMENT FAQs, containing answers to the most frequently asked questions about the excess teacher placement program. As well, Connie Shanaghan has put together a list of tips and information for excess employees to consider when filling out their excess placement program online application. This information can be found at this page.

FEA will be providing their usual verification service to our members for the Excess Teacher Placement program. If you are an FEA member who has been declared excess and would like FEA to verify that your application has been included in the Excess Teacher Placement program, please send a copy of your final application by Wednesday, April 3, 2013, to this email or fax it to 202-822-7867.

I would like to thank our excess teachers for their continued patience in this exhausting, interminable process. I know it isn't easy to wait and that there are numerous issues for which we still await answers/solutions, but you continue to do your best in the classroom while dealing with these issues and for that, I commend you. FEA is dedicated to supporting you, and we will continue to do everything we can to help you through this difficult process. Remember, "The game of life is not so much in holding a good hand as playing a poor hand well." (HT Leslie) You have been dealt a poor hand, but you are playing it well--please continue to do so.

2. Area JCC Meeting: Our next Area JCC Meeting will be held next Friday April 5, 2013 in Wiesbaden. Will get the minutes out to you as soon as they are available.

3. FEA Europe RA Election: Ballots will be for the annual European Election for Candidates to this summer's Representative Assembly next week. Results will be posted by the end of the week. The election for FEA BOD positions, as well as a constitutional amendment are still ongoing. Please note the deadline for ballots to be received in Washington is April 22, 2013.

4. Focus on the Contract: This week I will discuss Article 8---Staffing Procedures, in particular how it governs Inter-complex moves. Section 2 states the following: "Unit Employees who are interested in being considered for vacancies within their school or school complex will notify the appropriate Principal in writing each school year. The appropriate Principal is the Principal in the school where the vacancy exists. A school complex is defined as a school or group of schools within a specific geographic location listed under each country in the transfer program instructions. Unit employees must meet the qualification standards published by DoDDS for the pertinent school year for the positions for which they request reconsideration."

It should be noted, that any moves of this kind, must be conducted after excess teacher placement has been completed and any unused vacancies are returned to the District Superintendents' Offices for hiring purposes. We have no way of knowing when this will be. Check with your district representative later in the spring for more details. I would also advise copying your district representative on your request to move that you send to principals and the superintendent, so that they are aware of your wishes.

5. Retirement Articles: I have attached several articles from These range from the 2013 Checkbook Guide to Health Care for Federal Employees to an article outlining how more than ever people are choosing to delay their retirement.

6. Furloughs: There is still no definitive word from DoDEA or the Pentagon about possible furlough plans for our schools. FEA will continue to keep our members posted on any developments. Please check the FEA website regularly for updates.

7. Computer Issues: I continue to receive concerns about CAC Cards, in particular, a lack of CAC card readers for home computers. It is my understanding that management is aware of this and is working to rectify the situation.

8. From Our Members: As always, if you have any news to share with our membership, please let Alex or me know, and if possible, we will include it in our updates.

9. 2013 Federal Holidays: Below is a list of federal holidays for 2013.

2013 Federal Holidays

Federal law (5 U.S.C. 6103) establishes the following public holidays for federal employees in 2013.

Please note that most federal employees work on a Monday through Friday schedule. For these employees, when a holiday falls on a nonworkday -- Saturday or Sunday -- the holiday usually is observed on Monday (if the holiday falls on Sunday) or Friday (if the holiday falls on Saturday).

Mon., May 27 Memorial Day
Thurs., July 4 Independence Day
Mon., September 2 Labor Day
Mon., October 14 Columbus Day
Mon., November 11 Veterans Day
Thurs., November 28 Thanksgiving Day
Wed., December 25 Christmas Day

As always, in these days of increased computer security and the loss of symbols in my updates, I leave you with a quote: "I do not think Rome is burning at such a pace we should sacrifice our lunch." Andrey Vishinsky, Soviet Diplomat

Have a great week!

Lisa Ali
FEA Area Director
Heidelberg, Isles, Cuba