December 4, 2022
As always, Wear Red on Thursdays! If you need some shirts for new members at your site, stop by the SPFE office (23 Empire Drive, St. Paul) before 4pm or contact your organizer.
Legislative Organizing for School Funding
With billions in state surplus and DFL control of the legislature now is the time to fully fund our public schools! Join us Wednesday, December 7 5-6:30 for a virtual training on Special Education funding in the state of Minnesota and then stay for a strategy meeting on how we can push as a union to fund Special Education. RSVP below- we will send the zoom link before the meeting. This is a repeat of our meeting on November 19.
Saint Paul members of the Minnesota House and Senate will be touring Como Elementary to learn from SPFE members about why we need to fully fund Special Education.
SPFE Climate Action Team
- Please join us for this year’s first SPFE Climate Team book club meeting. 12/5, 5pm at Bread and Chocolate on Grand Avenue. If you cannot make it in-person, you can join virtually as well at . Book we are discussing is “Braiding Sweetgrass” by Robin Kimmerer.
- WE NEED YOUR HELP! Please take 2-3 minutes to take this survey and share your thoughts on goals for the SPFE Climate Team and share any interest you have in supporting efforts.
- Do you ever wonder if why schools should be acting on climate issues? Check out this article to learn more about what a powerful force schools can be in striving for a healthy planet.
General Education PIC
At the general education PIC on December 1 we discussed the following:
- Ongoing sub shortages- there has been an increase in building subs hired but there are still open positions. We will be meeting with a smaller sub committee on Monday, Dec. 5 to try to come up with immediate and creative solutions to support schools dealing with high unfill rates and high numbers of absences.
- OEL in the Early Learning Hubs- they are one of three programs within the Hubs and are able to provide support to the Pre-K classrooms.
- We discussed the use of sick leave and messages being given to some buildings regarding attendance or sick leave use and doctors notes. The district leadership said they are not giving blanket directions to principals on this and it is building to building messaging.
Steward Shoutout: Congratulations to all the sites and programs that have 100% membership!! We have 13 sites and programs who are at 100%! Thank you to all the stewards who had membership conversations with their colleagues and signed people up for SPFE. Our union’s strength comes from the strength of our membership.
Contract Corner: Hiding a License
Any Licensed staff with multiple licenses may request to have a license, not currently in use, be excluded for consideration of the following school year by notifying H.R. no later than January 15th. You can submit a request of any excluded license be returned for consideration by November 15 of the following school year.
ARTICLE 15. PERSONNEL CHANGES RESULTING FROM STAFF REDUCTION, SECTION 3. PROCEDURES: SENIORITY LISTING, Subd. 4. Multiple Licenses. (pg. 45, Teacher contract)
Special Education MOA: for a copy of the new MOA that SPFE and SPPS came into agreement on as a result of members bringing the issue forward to SPED PIC. This MOA is designed for special education teachers and related service professionals who voluntarily want to take on additional work beyond their regular caseload and be compensated for that additional work. Please read through the MOA and if you have questions, reach out to your steward or organizer.
Check out the latest , Minnesota Schools at a Breaking Point: Pandemic Stories From Educators Across the State. The paper features two SPFE members: Lesley Greene and Anne Hennessey.
English Learner Professional Issues Committee (EL PIC) is this month!
2nd meeting of the 22-23 School year is this Thursday Dec 15th at 4:30pm
EL PIC meetings are held every other 3rd Thursday of the month at 4:30p.m (with the exception of June through October. No meetings in the summer and Oct conflicts with MEA) All meeting are held via zoom, the district will join us at 5 p.m. If you RSVP, you will be emailed a link on Thursday, before the meeting. Attendees who are not PIC members will be there as observers, but will not be asked to speak. https://forms.gle/Xx7wh55iQ1oaFbHw5
Parent Teacher Home Visit Debriefs: If you have completed home visits this fall following the Parent Teacher Home Visit Project model and these visits occurred outside of your contract hours, please do the following:
- Fill out the home visit tracker
- Sign-up in PowerSchool for one debrief. Debriefs will be held in the large conference room at our union (23 Empire Drive)
- -Tuesday, December 6 at 4pm course #36030
Questions? Email Mandy Perna at firstname.lastname@example.org