November 2017 FEA Stateside Newsletter


Staffing Concerns -- After discussions between FEA SR, DoDEA HR and Americas HR the agency is now providing a weekly update on hiring status for DDESS schools. These updates will be shared with local presidents. We have made it clear to the agency that vacant positions in our schools are affecting instruction. These long-term vacancies are impacting the students we serve. The agency must do a better job in making sure our schools are fully staffed when school begins.

Laurel Bay -- Recently the agency agreed to pay educators at Laurel Bay for working two additional days during spring break last year due to Hurricane Matthew. Our General Counsel will be monitoring the situation to make sure all affected employees are compensated by the agency.

Travel -- We recently visited Quantico Schools. Chuck McCarter, FEA President and Heather Valentine from NEA were able to visit the schools along with us. We were able to visit classrooms in both Quantico Middle High School and at Crossroads. We made an additional visit to the Virtual School hub. It is always amazing to see how the teachers in DDESS schools support our students. We were able to speak with members about concerns and address questions during an after school meeting. Additionally, we had the opportunity to visit Fort Campbell before the fall Area Council. We toured both new 21st Century schools, Barkley Elementary, which opened this year and the new Fort Campbell High School that will open next school year. An after school meeting was held with both certified and classified members. The turn out for this meeting was impressive. Many questions were addressed and concerns aired. We will visit West Point in early November and conduct a training session for the local elected representatives. Thank you to all of the members who turned out for these meetings and to Luis Rios, Venita Garnett, Chasity Reynolds, Gala Edgar and Ann Schmidt, the local presidents, for organizing the visits.

Pay and HR Contacts -- Local presidents have been provided an updated point of contact list for Americas HR and pay concerns. Please ask your local president for a copy of this contact list. If you experience pay issues or problems with HR, please involve your local president. If these problems go unanswered the Association will assist in resolving these situations.

Fall Area Council -- Fall Area Council was held last weekend in Nashville, TN. We had a very positive meeting. Dr. Judy Minor, Director for Student Excellence for Americas and Associate Director for Performance and Accountability and Dr. Emily Marsh, Mid Atlantic District Superintendent were able to join us. We met on topics involving education, communication, pay and HR concerns during our Friday meeting. On Saturday we discussed Association matters with the FEA SR Area Council and received information from leaders in FEA and NEA. Thank you to all who attended and participated in the Area Council.

MLA Certified - The FEA-SR bargaining team met with management for contract mediation on June 26, August 24-25 and on October 17-19. At the conclusion of the last mediation session, there remained a number of open issues. FEA-SR and the agency have agreed to meet again for further mediation for 3 days in January. Until there is a new agreement, the current MLA remains in full force and effect.

Professional Matters-- MLA Article 14
Section 1 Academic Freedom.
The Parties acknowledge that the Agency determines the mission, basic educational policies, curriculum, and the overall academic development of students enrolled in the schools. Unit employees are free to develop their own plans of instruction and counseling subject to the guidelines and provisions for review established by the Agency.