Focus on Educators May 2010

Focus on Educators is an award winning publication of the Pittsburg Education Association/CTA/NEA.

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on educators
long to accept the data entry because EVERYONE is also doing the same thing. Thanks for the words of encouragement to students when they need it most. Thanks for all of the extra materials you buy for your classroom because you know how much it will enhance your lesson. Thanks for staying way late for parent conferences because it is convenient for your parents even though your own family waits at home for you. Thanks for the many committees you volunteer for and don’t get paid for doing so. Thanks for the little gifts you buy for your students during the holidays. Thanks for taking extra classes after work to enhance your knowledge of the subject matter so that you can be more effective in the classroom. Thanks for buying books with your own money to add to your classroom library since money is tighter for site purchases. Thanks for cutting out a zillion circles and squares for a fantastic art project. Thanks for writing those grants to get more supplies and equipment for our classroom. Thanks for the constant teaching of Life Skills to children who lack receiving these skills at home. And a big THANK YOU for the silent hero’s out there. You know who you are! You are the ones who do SO much and no one ever knows about it. You care about children and care about the teaching profession. You are the unsung heroes. We celebrate you! While you do your “magic” in the classroom each and every day, PEA and CTA are your wing men. We make sure that you don’t get taken advantage of by lots of meetings after work hours. We make sure you have your medical and dental coverage and we fight to keep it that way. We make sure that you are working in safe conditions and file grievances, if necessary; to make sure you are safe. We make sure you get paid for required work after contracted hours. We make sure you are given a fair evaluation and have procedures in place to make sure it is done properly. We make sure you have many opportunities to improve your sites training by having contract language for site based Staff Development days. We are there sitting next to you when you have an uncomfortable meeting with an administrator. We send you to conferences and provide training opportunities for you to better your profession. We go to Sacramento to lobby on your behalf against Senate Bills that would take away your due process rights. As a national organization we fight against policies and
focus on educators is an award winning publication of the Pittsburg Education Association/CTA/NEA _____________________________________________________________________________________
Volume XIX, Number 9
In this Issue
President’s Message & Informational Items… Pgs. 1-3 NEA Election Results Pg. 4 Teacher of the Year….Pgs. 4-5 Informational Items….Pgs. 6-7 PEA Calendar……… The Last Page
PEA President’s Message
May 12th may be the official Day of the Teacher but PEA would like to honor teachers all year long and all career long. Thanks for the many hours of extra work you put in grading papers at home. Thanks for your patience during report card time when it takes the computer twice as
practices that would take away the fairness of teaching such as NCLB and ESEA. Please remember what PEA/CTA/NEA do for you and remember that you are a part of these organizations. Please continue to be fabulous teachers and we (PEA) will continue to protect and provide for you as you do so.
Wag More, Bark Less!
Chris Coan PEA President
PEA Leadership 2009-2010 President Chris Coan
Willow Cove Elementary/ PEA Office
Elementary Vice President Cindy Joy
Parkside Elementary
Rep. Council Meeting Calendar
September 16 October 21 November 18 December 16 January 20 February 17 March 17 April 21 May 19 June 9 ******************
Secondary Vice President James Vaughan
Riverside High School
Secretary Sarah Mathias
Highlands Elementary
Treasurer Vacant Committee Chairs Grievance Committee Iris Contreras
Foothill Elementary
School Board Meeting Calendar
August 26 September 9 September 23 October 14 October 28 November 18 December 16 January 20 February 17 March 3 March 24 April 14 April 28 May 12 May 26 June 9 June 23 ******************
Richard Higgins
Pittsburg High
Negotiations Team Marc Sternberger - Chair Political Action Committee Iris Contreras and Steve Longley - Chair Elections Chair Jim Goble – Chair Human Rights Committee Ruth Foster – Chair Women’s Issues Committee Deborah Cummings PEA Organizing Team Jim Vaughn and Bebe Vaughn - Chair CTA State Council Representatives Chris Rohde - Pittsburg High Denise James, Valorie Baca, Sandra Wilbanks - AEA Alternate Cindy Joy - Parkside Elementary CTA Director District C Eric Heins – Willow Cove Elementary NEA Director for California, District 3 Marc Sternberger – Special Education/MLK Technical Editor Susan Harrison – PEA Site Secretary Focus on Educators is a publication of the Pittsburg Education Association CTA/NEA 1901 Railroad Avenue #A Pittsburg, CA 94565 Phone: (925) 432-0199 fax: (925) 432-4854
Are you Getting your PEA Information???
Having the site reps attend their monthly meeting and then reporting back to you is vital in the communication chain of our Association. Roll call at last April 21 Rep. Council Meeting: Adult Ed. – absent Foothill – absent Heights – absent Highlands – present Los Medanos – present Marina Vista – present Parkside – present Stoneman – present Willow Cove – present MLK – present Hillview – present
E-MAIL:[email protected] 2
Rancho Medanos – absent PHS – present
Riverside – present
“DAY OF THE TEACHER” May 12, 2010
“DAY OF THE TEACHER” May 12, 2010
PEA Office is Moving
PEA has come to the city of Pittsburg for help in finding a more member friendly facility to have our office in. They are currently designing and building the interior of an old JC Penny building downtown and they hope to have it ready for move in by September 1st. They will be charging us the same rent we are currently paying. Please have a look in the windows of our new space which is located at 159 E. Fourth Street. It will be all brand new inside and have a reception area, work space for copying and files, larger meeting room, kitchen area, office for President and 2 bathrooms in the back. When we are settled in we plan on having an Open House for all to visit and see. Here is what we need from all of you…BOXES. Please save your boxes to aid in the packing and moving. We are having movers, but it saves time and money if we can do the packing ourselves on our own time.
SB955 is Still Alive
made it through its third reading on May 4, 2010. Here is a quick summary of the changes. If this bill passes, it could have disastrous effects on public education. We need to mobilize and call the given number.
A Quick Summary of SB 955
Permanent changes to education code (proposed by 955) are: 1. Move the decision to non-re-elect probationary employee to June 15 May 1 from March 15. 2. Permanent teachers can be suspended or dismissed with evidence or testimony older than 4 years. 3. A governing board will decide whether a three panel board or just the ALJ (administrative law judge) will advise on dismissal. The final decision to dismiss is action of the school board. 4. As soon as the board agendized the item to dismiss a permanent member they would be terminated they would be on leave without pay or could get paid during the proceedings if they produce a bond large enough to re-pay the district if dismissed. They could get back pay if re-instated. 5. Repeals the need to notice and allow for hearings of members facing layoff. The governing board would just need to act by May 15. 6. Repeals the need to layoff in seniority order. Allows all decisions to be based on district need. Whole schools could be skipped. Allows skipping based on superior evaluations. 7. Allows the School Board to determine an evaluation process if an entire class is subject to reduction in force. 8. Removes the requirement to pay laid off teachers per diem rate if they sub more than 20 days out of 60. 9. Removes the need to go in seniority order for calling laid off members to sub. 10. Lastly, allows teachers to be transferred based on effectiveness and subject matter need instead of seniority. If you haven’t called your legislator at least 5 times on this issue, then we have more calls to make. Please call
$$$ Phone Service Discount $$$
If you are an AT&T or Verizon user, you can receive a discount on your bill for being a CTA member. Call customer service (611) on your phone and tell them you are a CTA member. They will send an e-mail to your school address. Click on the link to verify your information and the teacher discount will be applied on your bill! 
Election of State Council Representative(s)/Alternate(s) Multiple Group CC-3
This is to notify you that the results of your State Council election are as follows: State Council Representative for full term to 2013: Denise James. 
CTA 2010 Campaign Update
Assembly member Tom Torlakson is our recommended candidate. He is a former teacher in West Pittsburg and has been a champion of public education in Sacramento. He is also the author of QEIA (the Quality Education Investment Act), which we in the PUSD have four (4) schools participating in.
the CTA Hotline number 1-888-202-2246. Urge everyone you know to call to protect our due process rights. It will likely make it to the senate floor this week.
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School Site Rep Council Job Description
1. As the site representative for your school, you need to attend the monthly Rep Council meetings at the PEA offices. 2. Collect the FOCUS and any other materials at the monthly meetings and distribute to your staff. 3. Hold a monthly 10 minute meeting at your site after the Rep Council meeting and gather any site concerns or questions to forward to the Executive Board. 4. Collect the email addresses of the members of your school site and have them available when a message is forwarded to you from the Executive Board. Then forward the message onward to the members at your site. 5. Distribute any mail from PEA to your members. 6. Make sure any election materials are distributed, voted, collected and returned to PEA by the required dates. 7. Take any requested surveys or data from site members when requested to do so from the PEA Executive Board. 8. Be familiar with the PEA/PUSD contract, so when a member has a question about it, you know where to find the answer. 9. When requested to by a site member, attend a meeting as their representative. 10. Support teachers at your site in any way you can. 11. If you don’t know the answer to a member’s question, make sure to forward the question onward for answers. Please choose the members who will be your school site representatives for the next school year – 2010-2011. Discuss this at your school site, make the decision and then have a vote and turn in the names of your site reps to your current reps by the June 9, 2010 Rep Council meeting. Please make sure candidates are aware of the obligation this involves by reviewing the job description. A necessary component for the flow of information to and from the leaders of PEA from and to the members of PEA requires that we have a strong and committed Rep Council force.
Congratulations WHO Award Winner “Jim Vaughan”
“Teachers of the Year”
“Teachers of the Year” Awards Reception Jim Vaughan accepted the WHO (We Honor Ours) Award at a ceremony held at Hs Lordships, Berkeley on May 8, 2010.
Alcosta Leadership Conference
By, Tammy Carr This is a very brief report on the Alcosta Leadership Conference held April 16 and 17 in San Jose. I took part in the General Conference Program, there was also an Ethnic Minority Leadership Development Program held within the Conference. The opening speaker was stimulating and presented for all attendees. His name was Dr. Alan J. Daly and I highly recommend that if anyone gets the chance you should go hear him. He spoke of the tremendous change that technology has brought to our society and how we must envision and create a new form of education that uses our collective strengths to develop in our students the social and intellectual capital the society of the near future will require. The workshop on Legal Rights of Teachers, presented by Laura Juran, was filled with many teachers from Oakland whose wrenching stories were both moving and alarming. Estelle Lemieux presented a Legislative Update about the many bills on the floor or in preparation which may affect us all. She also gave us some very up to date information on the budget process in Sacramento.
Grievance Update
Grievance 2009-6 Staff Development Day Loss Arbitration date still not set for Staff Development Day grievance. PEA/CTA sent a letter to the district (April 30) to try and reach a compromise and we have not received any response from the district as of yet. Grievance 2010-1 Safety Plan and Safety Kits. This grievance has gone to a level 2. I understand that some sites have prepared a plan, but they have yet to inform the staff of the plan which is a mighty important part of the big picture don’t ya think? Sites have had their safety supply bins checked, but many still have not had them re-stocked. Grievance 2010-2 Member Safety This has gone to a level 2 as a member has not been properly protected from an unsafe parent by the district, their school site administrator and according to the ed. code.
Finally Vernon Gettone had a most instructive workshop on School Improvement Grants, the Tier System, and the four models for restructuring. All in all an enlightening and invigorating experience.
Upcoming Conferences from CTA
www.cta/ for more information to register
Summer Institute – Sunday-Friday, August 1-6, UCLA Region I Leadership Conference – Oct. 15-17, 2010 Asilomar
GLBT Conference – Oct. 29-31, 2010 Westin Mission Hills, Rancho Mirage
Good Teaching Conference – North January 21-23, 2011, Marriot, San Jose
Equity and Human Rights Conference March 4-6, 2011, Fairmont, San Jose
Summer Institute – July 31-August 5, 2011, UCLA
MAY 2010
5 Cinco de Mayo 5 PEA Executive Board – PEA Office – 1901 Railroad – 3:45 PM 8 “WHO Award” Ceremony – Hs Lordships, Berkeley 9 Mother’s Day 12 “Day of the Teacher” – El Matador – 3:30-5:30p.m. 12 PUSD School Board Meeting – 2000 Railroad Ave. – 7:00 PM 19 PEA Rep Council – PEA Office – 1901 Railroad – 3:45 PM 26 PUSD School Board Meeting – 2000 Railroad Ave. – 7:00 PM 31 Memorial Day Observed
JUNE 2010
2 PEA Executive Board – PEA Office – 1901 Railroad – 3:45 PM 9 PEA Rep Council – PEA Office – 1901 Railroad – 3:45 PM 9 PUSD School Board Meeting – 2000 Railroad Ave. – 7:00 PM
14 Flag Day 15 Last Day of School (Instruction) 20 Father’s Day 21 Summer Begins 23 PUSD School Board Meeting – 2000 Railroad Ave. – 7:00 PM
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