January 2017 FEA Stateside Newsletter


Happy New Year -- Happy 2017! This year will bring many challenges for our Association and our schools. As always, we will advocate for our students, employees and schools to continue to provide the highest quality learning environments in all of our schools.

ESL Staffing -- We have received notice that staffing for ESL has been changed from 50:1 to 40:1. The Association brought the ESL staffing concern to the agency and we are pleased that the agency changed the ratio to 40:1. This change will provide some additional ESL staffing to support our students' needs.

NEA Representative Assembly Election -- Information on the NEA Representative Assembly election will be sent to local presidents on January 17. The elections will be posted and run from January 23 - 27. FEA SR members will elect five dues paying members to represent our Association at the NEA Representative Assembly held July 2017 in Boston, MA.

DODDS/DDESS Merger Proposal -- During the winter break FEA SR had a phone conference with officials at DoDEA Headquarters over an agency proposal developed to introduce legislation that would attempt to merge DODDS and DDESS into a single school system. Management provided us little information on this proposal. FEA SR and FEA strongly oppose this proposal or a concrete timeline. We voiced our opposition to this plan during our phone conference. Any proposal to change the DODDS/DDESS structure is a poor decision on the part of the agency. We will work with NEA to oppose any legislation that would change our current status as a school system. Any attempt at a merger is not in the best interest of either DDESS or DODDS.

Spring Area Council -- Spring Area Council will be held in Wilmington, North Carolina. We will meet as a Council March 9 -11. All members are invited to attend if they are in the area. Your local president will receive more details on the event in the next month.

Understanding Your Association Rights -- MLA Article 6 Section 3 - Formal Discussion Rights. The Association shall be given the opportunity to be represented at any formal discussion (which may include, for example, committees, meetings, training, and/or groups) between the Agency and one or more bargaining unit members or their representative(s) concerning any grievance, any personnel policy or practices, or other general conditions of employment. Whenever possible, prior to the Agency initiating any formal discussion involving resolution of grievance(s) or discussions of personnel policy, practices, or other general conditions of employment, the Association shall be given twenty-four (24) hours advance written notification. The Parties understand that the Association shall inform the Agency, before any meeting herein described, of the identity of the Association representative(s) who will attend the meeting.

MLA Certified - The Association met with the Agency in a mediation session over the Certified MLA at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service in Atlanta, GA. The current Certified MLA remains in full effect. The Association will keep you informed as this process moves forward.

Have a Happy New Year!