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April 2011 FEA Stateside Update

April 2011


Government Shutdown? The determination has been made that DoDEA teachers and support staff are considered essential and will work IF there is a Federal government shutdown. Since the pay period ends this week, the next paycheck (April 15th) should come uninterrupted.

Performance Appraisal Working Group: Last week the work group convened at Peachtree City to conclude the task of updating the performance appraisals for all educators. Once the documents have been drafted in the final form and forwarded to FEASR, we will be given the opportunity to I&I bargain any changes to expectations for educators. A training module is also being developed for administrators to conduct with the faculty to ensure an understanding of expectations for performance.

UDDI: There has been a name change for UDDI. Ms. Fitzgerald, acting DODEA director, has determined the name of the Differentiated Instruction development will now be called "Tomlinson's Model of Inclusive and Responsive Teaching". A summer workshop program has been developed to begin training for this program and FEASR has submitted a request to bargain the implementation of the workshop.

CSI/AdvancEd: As each district faces AdvEd certification, the list of unnecessary tasks continues. AdvEd does not dictate tasks to be completed. There are AdvEd standards; however decisions as to how to meet those standards should be determined locally based on the school needs. Unnecessary labeling of boxes of data and other meaningless tasks are not an AdvEd requirement. Please notify your local Association leaders immediately of any new requirements that are supposedly required by "AdvEd".

School Improvement Survey: Because of the requirements and misunderstandings, the Association has worked with DODEA HQ to develop a survey to gather information about how AdvEd/CSI is impacting all staff in the schools. Please take the time to complete the school improvement survey

Summer Enrichment: An MOU has been signed for the Summer Enrichment program. A new selection process for this year has been agreed upon, with a review for future years to be discussed during SY 2011-2012. Members can find this MOU as well as the DDESS MLAs [for certified staff and support professionals] and MOUs at http://www.feaonline.org/passport/legal/fea_ddess.htm. You will need your FEA member ID number to log in.

Leave Charged for Missing a Faculty Meeting? In the case of a teacher not able to remain for a meeting for the one extended day of the week, that teacher should not be charged for the time beyond the normal 7.5 duty day. This was a grievance filed and resolved a few years ago. If this is happening in your schools, please notify your local president immediately.

Campbell ESP: Congratulations to ESP local president Mitzi Blanton and her members for the persistence at bringing to light the dangers for those ESP required to perform crosswalk duty. Members were faced with hostile conditions, suffering not only verbal abuse, but dangerous conditions by drivers. The requirement to do crosswalk duty has ceased and we are thankful Community Superintendent Dr. Blease recognized the terrible situation these members had to face.

School Psychologists, Assessors and Counselors: FEASR has requested clarification about a number of rumored changes occurring within the PPS realm that impacts the duties of school psychologists, assessors and counselors. These changes may also be impacting the way SST (Student Support Teams) are conducted within the schools. While FEASR has a signed MOU about SST and the SST guide, if schools have not been following the guidelines, FEASR has requested that changes be held in abeyance pending discussion in order to bring schools into alignment. This time of the school year is NOT the time to make these changes.

Bargaining, Mediations and Negotiations: Bargaining of new and proposed programs/initiatives is scheduled with DODEA HQ April 18 -- 20. Mediation of grievances with DDESS has been scheduled for the end of April (29th and 30th). Contract negotiations for the MLA for certified educators has been scheduled for May 1 -- 13th.

MONTH OF THE MILITARY CHILD -- April is the Month of the Military Child. For DoDEA, every month is the Month of the Military Child as we face daily the distinctive needs of our students. Take the time to stop and consider their special needs, particularly in this time of continued deployments and the stress our students and families face.

Japan earthquake relief donations: While many of you may already know this, it does not hurt to provide this information once again. To donate, checks should be made out to the National Education Association, with "Japan Earthquake Solidarity Fund" in the memo line.
Checks can be mailed to:
Japan Earthquake Solidarity Fund
National Education Association
1201 16th Street NW, Suite 614
Washington DC 20036
All funds will go directly to Education International to support relief work in Japan.

FEA Membership Award: Hearty congratulations go to MaryBeth Arnot, Guam Education Association president, and her local leaders for continued growth and increased membership. The decision was made at the Spring FEA Board of Directors meeting. As we recognize MaryBeth for her continued efforts, we all want to acknowledge the hard work of our local leaders as they continue to encourage and maintain membership and support our members on a daily basis.


Terry