Stop crowding our schools!!
Your President speaks in the TNT:
With the growing attacks on Public Workers and their unions in states like Wisconsin, Idaho, Ohio, Illinois, and Florida it is important that we stay informed. The link Here.. to an email from Rosemary Wolf is important reading. I encourage you to read both her email and the second email Here.. from Teresa Kelly.
Many have asked how we in Washington can help Public Workers in these states. I believe making a donation to The 51 Fund is one way we can support the efforts of those fighting the battle now. The link to the 51 fund is Here.
Please read and make your own decision.
Election Results February 2011:
THE WPA FORM
As of the first of October you are able to access the provisions of Article 44, Workload for classes that are over the size limits. It is important that you ask to meet with your building administrator and use the Workload Plan of Action (WPA) form for elementary or secondary. You can find the forms here:
There are some changes in the provisions that will benefit more members this year:
1. First, the overload must exceed five days in a qualifying month. This provides time for the building administrator to attempt to resolve the overload condition. It also stops prorating the solution based on how long the condition went on in the month. If the overload is longer than the five days, the benefit to you will be for the entire month.
2. On the elementary form it asks for evidence of overload as the attached class roster. After conversations with Roger Samples, Harvey Erickson, and Todd Mitchell they have agreed that one class roster is sufficient with the five dates indicated on the roster.
3. Elementary teachers, if your class size is due to RTI, Ramp Up Math, or mainstreaming students, you must provide a class roster for the period of time you are over. Your building administrator may not know who is in your group since this decision is made by your PLC. If you have taken the largest group and are over, you are entitled to the assistance for that period of time.
4. Secondary teachers, will receive the prorated assistance for every period you are over the class limits.
5. The WPA form needs to be completed each month that your class exceeds the limits.
It is up to you to notify your building administrator!
Teacher Evaluations Pilot Program!
During the legislative session this year a teacher evaluation bill passed that will directly affect some members as early as 2013-2014. The new evaluation standards will require all teachers to be evaluated on a new four tier model with eight categories. Many of the changes are subject to our collective bargaining.
I am asking each of you to take some time and view the Washington’s Teacher/Principal Evaluation Pilot web site, http://tpep-wa.org/. Look on the right hand side of the page where you will see the following sections:
Viewing these will help inform you about the new frameworks. Please take the time to look at this material.
It is a daunting task but it is important to understand the key is not the framework selected so much as the training to implement the new frameworks and the language bargained. The Association will be working to achieve the best results to improve education.
The Washington Education Association Opposes
Consolidated Purchasing of K-12 Health Benefits under the Health Care Authority
Health care funding should pay for benefits, not growth in state bureaucracy. The WEA opposes consolidated purchasing of K-12 health benefits under the Health Care Authority because it would:
Impose higher Costs:
• Adds more than $21.5 million in NEW taxpayer costs: $12 million for start up costs in 2011-13, plus $9.5 million for additional start up costs in fiscal year 2014. The ongoing cost is then estimated to be $7.1 million per year.
• Requires an additional $25 million per year paid by employees through higher premiums and “point-of-service cost sharing” (higher fees).
• Shifts all future cost risks to school districts for costs above the state allocation.
• Abandons a system that today costs less and provides more: Currently, the state pays $768 a month per full-time equivalent K-12 employee vs. $850 per full-time state employee, yet K-12 employees get coverage that is as good or better than what state employees receive.
• Requires lower overall benefits to avoid immediate cost increases.
• Wipes out health care coverage entirely for thousands of part-time employees who work less than half time.
Eliminate competition and expand state government:
• Replaces competition among plans school districts select from with a state monopoly that selects one carrier for all K-12 employees.
• Adds another costly function to the state bureaucracy at a time when vital funding for K-12 education and other services is being cut.
Abandon K-12 employee collective bargaining and local decision-making:
• Transfers all decision-making authority to the Health Care Authority and a newly created board; the proposal stacks the board membership in favor of the administration resulting in only token membership for employee groups.
• Removes employee health benefits from the scope of collective bargaining for all school employee groups.
Reward poor customer service:
• HCA had a recent 9-month backlog in paying state employee health insurance claims.
• Courts ruled against HCA for illegally barring some Medicaid patients from emergency room care.
• Recent Seattle Times exposé highlighted how the agency’s cost-cutting practices were harming patients.
• Adding over 100,000 enrollees to a K-12 program administered by the HCA would likely mean customer service problems for K-12 employees.
• K-12 employees have had the option to enroll in the state employee health care plan since 1995, and less than one percent of the K-12 employees have made that choice.
The HCA proposal is a plan based on higher costs, bigger government, less competition, and poor customer service.
I received two pieces of information that are important.
The first one is an update from Sound Alliance about their efforts to help people whose homes are in foreclosure. Bethel Education Association is one of the founding members of the community organization, Sound Alliance. Our membership in this organization helped us in the last levy. It also allows us to assist other community groups to work for the common good. Sound Alliance provides us an opportunity to help on community issues.
Please click on the link below to find out how Sound Alliance is working for our community helping families stay in their homes.
For more information please
Second, if you follow the link below you will find the latest information from Randy. I believe you will find this informative. We have a tough legislative session coming up for our future and for the future of education in our state.
Update Coming Soon!