May 2012 FEA Stateside NewsletterMOUs (Memorandums of Understanding): Agreements were finally signed for the Summer Enrichment Program, the Summer Workshop/PLT Program, and the Online Summer High School. Additionally, the MOU was signed for the ASPEN SPED Phase III and IV implementation as well as the use of Re-Think Autism materials. These MOUs are available for members to review online at www.feaonline.org. You will need your member number from your membership card. We are currently waiting for DODEA HQ to sign the MOU for the new Math courses for the high schools and also for the use of the NetSupport software. Discussions are underway for continued implementation of the use of the BAS Assessment and the Creative Curriculum materials for school year 2012-2013. Other items in the queue for bargaining prior to implementation are the new ESL Standards and Proficiency Levels and Prior Written Notice (SPED).
Instructional Time for Music, Art, and Physical Education: There seemed to be a misunderstanding about the implementation of the ‘60 minutes per week requirement' in these three areas. DODEA HQ had directed the administrators to review and attempt to adjust schedules to meet the 60 minute recommended goal. In any school where the configuration of the staffing and logistics simply do not allow the schedule to accommodate this, any ‘extra time' will not be a requirement for the classroom teacher to add to their already-long list. If this were to become a requirement the Association would immediately invoke our right to bargain the impact and the implementation of this requirement.
Information Centers: Specialists continue to struggle with DODEA HQ pressure to ‘weed' books/resources from the Information Center based on criteria which appears to not take reasonableness into account. In discussions with Peachtree City, there appears to be a reasonable approach. As one educator put it: "When information is filtered down from Peachtree City to District to Principals to Information Specialist alot gets lost in translation." Scotty Govaars encourages anyone who has questions to call her to discuss. Out of DODEA HQ came this:
"I do not anticipate DDESS districts being ready for ILS training or transitioning to the new ILS until second semester SY 12-13 and full implementation of all sites expected by the beginning of SY 13-14." The Association will be prepared to bargain the impact and the implementation of the change.
ParaEducator Network: Para educators have asked about the requirement to complete online para educator courses. It is our understanding that time to do the training is being provided during the duty day. If this is not the case, please let your local Association president know.
BAS Survey: The survey is now available for educators to provide feedback.
End of Year: For some of our schools there are just a few days remaining in the school year. Because of the likely possibility that decisions based on late-signed MOUs will be made after schools are out, it is important that all staff submit up-to-date contact information with their home school prior to departing for the summer break. Any new MOU or newsletters during the summer period will be available at feaonline.org.
Have a safe and restful summer!