March 28, 2013 FEA President's Report

TO: FEA Members Worldwide
FROM: Michael Priser, FEA President
RE: FEA President's Report
DATE: March 28, 2013

EXCESS PLACEMENT -- Remember, the deadline to submit your application for consideration in the DoDEA Excess Placement Program Module was extended to 5 p.m. EDT this Friday, March 29, 2013. You can link to the online application, read FEA's tips and answers to frequently asked questions, and get other information at this page.

NEW INFORMATION -- Just under the wire, DoDEA has released an information sheet to help answer questions for DoDDS excessed employees who are thinking about listing DDESS as location preference on their application. You can find that sheet on FEA's Web site at this location.

EXCESS VERIFICATION -- FEA members who have been declared excess and would like FEA to verify that your application has been included in the Excess Placement Program, please email a copy of the FINAL VERSION of your application to this email or fax it to 202-822-7867. You must do so by April 3 in order for us to have time to verify your application. Please do not send the copy of your application until you are sure you will make no further changes to it, in order to avoid confusion.

VSIP/VERA VERIFICATION -- If you sent FEA's Connie Shanaghan a message asking her to verify that you were on the list for consideration of VSIP/VERA and you have not yet received a response from Connie, please contact her immediately at this email. Connie finished the verification process recently and sent out notices to all those members whose requests she received prior to the deadline.

RAT TRAVEL -- Now that Congress has passed the continuing resolution to fund DoDEA and other federal agencies through the rest of the fiscal year, DoDEA employees can proceed with making their RAT travel plans for the summer. DoDEA had been delayed from authorizing any RAT travel until the funding in the continuing resolution was approved. We advise you not to wait too long to make your plans, in case the impeding debt ceiling fight later this spring or some new calamity ends up closing the government down altogether. (Sadly, I'm only half joking!)

FURLOUGHS -- The situation with furloughs remains unchanged since last week. The Pentagon still plans to send out notices no earlier than April 5 and is using this time to reevaluate its plans in light of the continuing resolution recently passed by Congress. What all of this means for DoDEA schools is unclear, mainly because there was never a clear picture in the first place of what DoDEA's original plan was for dealing with potential furloughs. FEA and NEA are continuing to make our case far and wide for no furloughs at all, let alone the 22 potential furlough days that initially were discussed by the Pentagon. We will, of course, notify our members as soon as we learn any concrete details about furlough plans. But if that will happen before DoDDS schools go on spring break remains a mystery at this time. We know this situation is causing a lot of anxiety and we share your frustration.

EVENTS -- April is Child Abuse Prevention Month (International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect Web site) and Autism Awareness Month (Autism Society Web site). Please check out the sites mentioned above for information and resources you may be able to use.

FEA ELECTION -- Spring break is coming up fast for DoDDS and in some DDESS schools it either has already happened or is about to. With all that's going on this time of year, don't forget to cast your vote for FEA At-Large officers. Ballots were sent directly to all FEA Active members in early March. If yours has not yet arrived, you can request a copy of the ballot from your FRS. The FEA Washington office must receive your ballot by April 22, 2013, in order for it to be counted. Don't delay; vote today!

As I mentioned above, some locations in DDESS are on break this week or next, and most of DoDDS will have its break in a little over a week. I wish all of our members a very safe, relaxing and rejuvenating spring break, whenever yours takes place.