An important update announcement for elementary schools:

Dear Elementary FRS:

UPPER ELEMENTARY REPORT CARD TRAINING. Last May, FEA and management signed an MOU on the upper Elementary School report card and this was shared with schools in the June 1 President's Update (and posted on our website). The MOU provides that training occur prior to implementation. FEA believes that teachers need as much time as possible for setting up their classroom during the first 3-days of the school year; and recommended the training be accomplished at another time (such as the half-day early release of students that will occur next month). The MOU states: In general, such training will not be performed during the first 3 duty days of the school year.

It has come to our attention that management had inadvertently distributed a communication plan saying: Training will be held during the first three days of Teacher-in-Service for School Year 2008/2009.

HQ's has assured FEA that a clarifying message had been sent to all building principals this week. If a concern arises, please let FEA know immediately.

SURESTART/SPECIAL EDUCATION PRE-SCHOOL START DATE. FEA has negotiated agreements and worked with management on allowing Surestart and Special Education Pre-school teachers the necessary time to set up their classrooms, conduct meetings, do home visits, and check records of incoming students. Our past agreements have a start date of:

September 11--for existing Surestart programs
September 16--for new Surestart programs
September 2--for Pre-school handicapped programs

DoDDS-Europe is pressuring schools to disregard the negotiated agreements and "start earlier," knowing that teachers will work on their own time to get things done. It is also clear that DoDDS Europe will use any change in dates to argue that next year that teachers should give up their negotiated right to have adequate time to set up a proper educational program. FEA asks educators not to be coerced into doing something, that in long run does not serve parents or children. Please let us know immediately if you are required to change these dates.