JANUARY 18, 2019

Support the School Levy!

"We couldn't run a special education program without the school levy," said  Phyllis Campano, special education teacher and SEA president. "We couldn't provide nursing, counseling, family engagement, bilingual tutors - you name it."

Our schools rely on our Operations Levy and our Capital Levy, both of which will be voted on in February, to provide essential services to our students. While the Operations Levy provides direct support to the classroom, the Capital Levy continues the ongoing work to rebuild and repair our aging school buildings.

Join us in supporting the school levies by phone banking on January 31 st and February 5 th, from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM (pizza at 4:30 PM). We'll be using our SEA office (5501 4 th Ave S) and then also Phinney Ridge Community Center (6532 Phinney Ave N) on 1/31 and the Greenwood Senior Center (525 N 85 th St) on 2/5.  Sign up to join us!

Join the Martin Luther King, Jr. March!

Wear your red shirt and join us under the SEA Banner at the annual Martin Luther King Jr Day March! Rally in the Garfield Gym at 11 AM, then join the march starting at 12:30 PM.

This year's march is focusing on restoring and redefining Affirmative Action.
For more information, go to  www.seattlemlkcoalition.org.

Click here to let us know you'll be attending!

Join in Black Lives Matter at School Week, February 4th-9th, 2019

Join SEA members and educators around the U.S. in engaging with critical issues of racial justice as we kick off Black History Month with Black Lives Matter at School Week, February 4th through 9th, 2019.

Here are some of the many ways you can participate and join in solidarity with educators nationwide:
  1. Supplement planned lessons with resources, materials, or concepts that connect with the themes or the movement (resources available on the SEA Center for Racial Equity Black Lives Matter page as well as at the blacklivesmatteratschool.com website)
  2. Engage in conversations with colleagues about the ways that students know that black lives matter.
  3. Self-study topics that increase your understanding and awareness of the BLM movement and of critical race theory.
  4. Purchase a BLM t-shirt and wear it on Monday and Friday of BLM week
  5. Rally at the Seattle Public Schools' Board meeting on Wednesday, February 6th to advocate for hiring more Black teachers
  6. Become a supporting member of the SEA Center for Racial Equity by signing up for monthly contributions.
  7. SEA has a limited supply of Black Lives Matter at School tee shirts for $15 - email SEA@washingtonea.org to order.
T-Shirt sample:  


For more ideas and information, see the  SEA Center for Racial Equity.

United for Safety

Ways to Advocate for Safety in our Schools

All WEA members are invited to our one-day United for Safety:

Ways to Advocate for Safety in our Schools Conference on Saturday, Feb. 2, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., at the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel Seattle Airport. We're taking action at the bargaining table, in Olympia, and with our community to maintain and improve school safety.

Effectively maintaining and improving school safety involves the efforts of educators, parents, students, community members and elected officials working together.
The day will feature a variety of ways to learn, featuring educators, other experts and elected officials. There will be learning tracks with breakout sessions, focused on:
  • Influencing Olympia -- and what's being proposed in the Legislature this year to support safer schools.
  • Engaging parents, community members, allies, news media and others in school safety topics.
  • Learning about programs and approaches for schools to address a variety of topics including behavior programs, school discipline, immigration, bullying, etc.
  • Bargaining and best practices for contract language that make classrooms and schools safer for students, teachers and classified staff.
Speakers and guests include WEA President Kim Mead, Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and Washington Governor Jay Inslee.

Check in and continental breakfast will begin at 7:30 a.m., with the first session starting at 9:30 a.m.


State Legislature considers healthcare overhaul

A new health insurance system is on the table this legislative session. The State Employee Benefits Board (SEBB) will manage health insurance options for K-12 employees, much as the Public Employee Benefits Board (PEBB) does for other state employees. Under the SEBB, K-12 employees in every district will be covered by the same set of plans, as opposed to the separate, locally designed plans that each District currently has. The price tag is steep, however, at $900 million above the current cost to the state for K-12 healthcare.

The SEBB will increase individual premium costs while lowering family premiums and to provide full benefits for half-time or greater employees, including substitutes. The plan would begin on January 1st, 2020. For more information, see the state Health Care Authority's FAQ:  https://www.hca.wa.gov/about-hca/school-employees-benefits-board-sebb-program-faqs.


Certified Teacher Professional Development Needs Assessment

Student Support Services has developed an annual goal tied to High Quality Instruction and one element of that focus is coordinated Special Education professional development (PD) for teachers. To develop a coordinated PD plan, Student Support Services has partnered with the  Seattle Education Association to create a needs assessment for teachers that will identify the greatest shared interests and needs in the field of Special Education. The results of this anonymous survey will help our department produce targeted and meaningful PD.   Please complete the needs assessment to help us create effective professional learning!

SEA Recommends Counting "Active Abstentions" in Building Votes

When we ask members to vote each year on matters like school budgets and professional development plans, some members tell us that they don't want to vote because they are not planning to be back to that building for the following school year.

In the past, SEA recommended that those members, and any others who don't vote, should be treated as If they voted no for the purpose of determining whether the approval threshold was met.

But, following an almost unanimous vote of our Representative Assembly in December, SEA now recommends that members be offered three voting options:  approve (or yes),  disapprove (or no), and a new category:  abstain. Ballots should include all three options.

These "active" abstentions, meaning the member actually selected the option to abstain, should not be counted as no votes, and instead should be subtracted from the number of total eligible voters when calculating what percentage has approved of a measure.

Members who do not turn in a ballot will still be counted as a "no" vote.
For example, if there are 100 eligible voters in a building, and there are 65 yes votes, 25 no votes, 4 active abstentions, and 6 non-voters, how would we calculate the yes percentage? Start by subtracting the active abstentions (4) from the total number of eligible voters (100), and then use that number (96) to calculate the percentage. 65 yes votes divided by 96 members who did not actively abstain. 65/96 = 68%.

The full-year school calendar and work calendars for 2018-19 have been posted! Click here to view.

The 2018-2019 Contracts are now posted on the SEA Website! 
Click here to view.

Don't miss out 
on breaking SEA text alerts: text SEATTLEEA  to 41411 to stay informed!


Thank you all for your generous donations to those who share their need for leave. 

Bobby (Robert) Bourgette, Para at Cleveland HS had a very long battle with pneumonia in December, and he had to use all of his PTO to cover all the days of work missed. He's got a new baby at home, so the financial strain is even harder, and appreciates any sick leave you can donate to help him have the coverage in case of a relapse. 

Members can access the shared leave form to donate hours by clicking HERE. Forms can be submitted to HRLeaves@seattleschools.org or FAXED to 206-252-0021 or mailed to Seattle Public Schools, MS 33-380, PO Box 34165, Seattle, WA 98124-1165.

Seattle Education Association
5501 4th Ave S, Ste 101
Seattle, WA 98108

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