December 2012 FEA Stateside Update


CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS: Our FEASR team met in Peachtree City December 3 -- 11 to continue the contract negotiations for the certified educators. At this point we still have no agreement. The Agency has requested to convene for a third session during the March time frame.

GRIEVANCES MEDIATION: Following the contract negotiation session, on December 12 and 13, Dorothy Lee, our FEASR General Counsel, and I met with the Agency representatives and a mediator from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services (FMCS) to continue work on the mediation of grievances. We were able to come to an agreement on some of the grievances and an MOU should be forthcoming.

ASPEN SPED: In preparation for bargaining a full implementation MOU, I have gathered information from throughout DDESS about the functionality of the program. Thanks to all of you who took the time to provide that feedback. Unfortunately the information I received concluded in a very long list of what is still not working, and we will discuss this with DODEA HQ to determine what is being done to address the problems. Please continue to send the issues to your local Help Desk as well as letting your local Association president know of your continued concerns.

FEA BOD Meeting: This past week the FEA BOD met at the NEA building in Washington, DC. During this week we came together to discuss and address concerns of educators and support professionals throughout DODEA. We took a short tour of the new DODEA HQ followed by a 6.5 hour meeting with the DODEA Director, Ms. Fitzgerald, as well as the fairly new associate director for DODEA, Adrian Talley, and select staff for discussions.

ISSUES AHEAD for 2013: Many topics lie ahead for 2013. We have FEASR representatives to the CSP, 21st Century Skills, and the Rebalancing Study. DODEA HQ will begin discussions with us for the planning and implementation of Common Core State Standards. Issues surrounding the use of TelePresence (VTC) in our schools have been raised and need further discussion, as well as negotiating the MOU for the SPED pilot program for the use of tablets in some of our DDESS schools.

Have a safe and wonderful holiday! Take some time for yourself to rest, and enjoy your family and friends during this special time.