September 4, 2013 FEA Pacific Update


Debra Degalis, FEA Pacific Area Director

  • Youkoso! Hwanygonghamnida! Welcome!
  • Upcoming Events
  • FEA Pacific Structure
  • Why Join FEA?
  • Two Year Interview
  • First Pay Day Issues
  • Administration List
  • Pay Organizer
  • LES
  • SF 50
  • FEA Pacific Wall Calendars
  • Do You Know your Negotiated Agreement?
  • Mark Your Calendars
  • Other Tidbits

Welcome: Welcome back to our veteran Pacific teachers and welcome to our freshmen teachers. Once again a summer has come and gone, and we are off to a brand new school year. You are now in your second week with students, and I'm sure off to a great start. The Federal Education Association (FEA) and its leadership at every level are ready to help you with employment related problems.

Upcoming Events: September is the month when your Faculty Representative Spokesperson (FRS) will receive training in the Collective Bargaining Agreement. A second day of training will be held with school administrators. This Joint Labor Management Training is a tradition in the Pacific Area. Trainers will include Michael Bauernfeind, FEA Pacific UniServ Director/General Counsel; Stephanie Trotter, FEA Pacific Assistant UniServ and HT Nguyen, FEA Executive Director/General Counsel. I will be working with all of the trainers including Steven Won from the Pacific Area Office, who will co-host the Joint Labor Management Training. This year our members will have a special opportunity to call or set up a meeting with Ms. Trotter concerning pay related problems while she is in your district. Stay tuned. Your District President will be sending details in the near future.

  • September 19-20 Japan/NEATA at Yokota Officer's Club
  • September 23-24 Okinawa/AEAO at Ocean Breeze Consolidate Club, Camp Foster
  • September 26-27 Korea/TEAK at Yongsan, DSO
  • September 28-30 Pacific Area Leaders (PAL) Council -- Yongsan, TBD

FEA Pacific Structure: As I like to call it, your handy dandy FEA pocket calendar has a wealth of information for you. You will find the FEA leaders, their contact information, as well as a pay organizer, salary schedule, important regulations, upcoming school calendar dates and what to do in case of child abuse and your right to representation. Below is a description of each FEA leadership position.

  • Faculty Representative Spokesperson (FRS) - The FRS is your first and most important contact. If you have a concern that needs to be elevated, please go through your FRS.
  • District President -- The District President works with the District Superintendent and your FRS. When needed, the District President elevates issues to the Pacific Area Director. Japan/NEATA President is Jeannette Ferguson; Korea/TEAK President is Joan Oana; and Okinawa/AEAO President is Melanie Horton.
  • Pacific Area Director -- The Pacific Area Director, Debra Degalis, works with Ms. Linda Curtis, Director of DODEA Pacific. The Area Director works closely with the Pacific General Counsel/UniServ, Michael Bauernfeind. Unlike stateside organizations, FEA UniServs are attorneys.
  • FEA Washington Headquarters and FEA Board of Directors -- The FEA President, Chuck McCarter, works with the DoDEA Director. The Acting Director currently is Adrian Talley. Chuck is lucky to have an experienced staff in Washington. The Executive Director/General Counsel is H.T. Nguyen. The Board of Directors is made up of the FEA president, Vice-President (Michael Priser), Secretary/Treasurer (Anita Lang), NEA Director for FEA (Brian Chance), Human and Civil Rights Coordinator (Noemi "Mimi" Cuadrado), the Europe Area Directors (Lisa Ali & Alex Veto) , Pacific Area Director (Debra Degalis) and Stateside Area Director (Teri Arvidson).

Why Join FEA? Honestly there so many reasons that this Update would never end if I began listing everything that came to mind. Most recently FEA in partnership with our mother organization, National Education Association (NEA) worked tirelessly on every angle possible to stop furloughs for our teachers. It came down to the wire, and our students were the winners. Recently Michael Bauernfeind won a case to reinstate a teacher that was unfairly terminated. Can you say pay and debt problems? Did you have problems with tickets and orders this past June? How about correct information? More often than not, the Association will be the one that makes sure you have the correct guidance and understanding no matter what the issue. To learn more go to

First Pay Day Issues: It seems each year some of educators have to face pay problems right off the starting line. We do not find this acceptable and will continue to highlight pay issues with management. Last week I was notified that about 140 educators in the Pacific would not be paid on August 30. Chuck McCarter contacted Director Marilee Fitzgerald on behalf of our educators. Michael Bauernfeind and Stephanie Trotter have been working with DoDEA Headquarters (HQ) Human Resource (HR) personnel. The most recent communication from Chuck is that these teachers should receive a Special Pay on September 6. If you have questions, please contact your FRS.

Administration List: Attached is the most recent administration list for the Pacific.

Pay Organizer: Attached is an electronic pay organizer for SY 13-14, courtesy of Europe member, Larry Tjeltveit of Shape ES.

Leave and Earnings Statement (LES): Attached is an electronic version of the LES with definitions of terminology on the LES.

SF 50 (Standard Form): The SF 50 is your documentation of personnel action. I have checked with Area Office, and the secretaries will be informed to place your most recent SF 50 in your distribution box. Please review your SF 50 carefully and compare with your LES.

Wall Calendars: Many apologies. You may have received your wall calendar from your FRS by now. The printer and I did not seem to be able to communicate very well. There are 3 date errors including my mailing address (no matter how times I corrected it). Dates: October 8 should be 14 for Columbus Day; under 2nd semester, January 2 should be 27 for 3rd quarter and May 27 should be 26 for Memorial Day. My mailing address: PSC 704 Box 2761, APO, AP 86338.

Do You Know your Negotiated Agreement? Article 2, Section 4 -- Employee Rights

Section 4 covers your rights as an employee. It is about 1 pages of reading. I encourage you review this important section to ensure that you understand your rights as an employee of DoDEA/DoDDS. If you have not received the Negotiated Agreement from your principal, he/she will provide you the link online. FEA also has the NA online. The document is about 100 pages.

Mark Your Calendars


4 School Desegregation Comes to Little Rock - On this day in 1957, nine teenagers became the first African-Americans to attend all-White Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. The ensuing events riveted the nation and focused a spotlight on racism. President Eisenhower intervened and sent federal troops to protect the students and ensure compliance with the Supreme Court's Brown v. Board of Education decision. For more information, go to Central High School National Historic Site. See PBS Newshour Transcript on 40th anniversary (in 1997)

4-6 Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) - The Jewish New Year, also known as the Days of Renewed Responsibility, begins at sunset on day one and ends at nightfall the next day. The event is marked by solemn religious observances.

8 Grandparents Day

8 International Literacy Day - Celebrated since 1965, when it was established by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), this event focuses on reading from a global perspective. Visit UNESCO and International Reading Association for information and activity ideas.

11 Anniversary of 9/11

14 Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) - The most solemn day of the Jewish year, and one of the most important, the Day of Atonement is typically spent at synagogue in fasting, reflection, and prayer. Celebration will begin on the sunset of September 25.

15 Hispanic Heritage Month - National Hispanic Heritage Month is a national observance authorized by Public Law 100-402. The observation was initiated in 1968 as National Hispanic Heritage Week but was expanded in 1988 to include the entire 31-day period. See NEA's National Hispanic Heritage Month resources.

16 Mexican Independence Day - September 16 is Independence Day in Mexico and is considered a patriotic holiday. Each year, the president of Mexico rings the bells of the National Palace in Mexico City, celebrating the start in 1810 of Mexico's struggle for independence from Spain.

17 Citizenship Day (or Constitution Day) - On this day in 1787, the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention met to sign the Constitution of the United States of America. By presidential proclamation, the entire week is given to observing this important anniversary. Visit the National Constitution Center and the Constitution Day website for more information and teacher resources.

21 International Day of Peace - Established by United Nations resolution in 1982, this event is a global holiday when individuals, communities, nations, and governments highlight efforts to end conflict and promote peace. To inaugurate the day, the "Peace Bell" is rung at U.N. headquarters. The bell is cast from coins donated by children from all continents, as a reminder of the human cost of war. For information, visit the International Day of Peace website.

Other Tidbits

Yen and Won Rates: To check the rates go to this page.

Until the next Update,

Debra S. Degalis
FEA Pacific Area Director