March 1, 2019

The 10-Minute Meeting
All too often we hear, "there's no reason to hold a meeting if there's nothing to report/decide/vote on." Or, we hear, "I'm not sure we have a union because there are never any meetings." But mostly, we hear, "I don't have TIME to go to ANOTHER meeting."
You have an opportunity to keep members in the loop AND respect their time by holding 10-minute meetings! It's also a great time to get feedback from people in the building. 

If you feel like you're in a rut, why not try the 10-minute meeting?
For more details about how the 10-minute meeting works, click   here .
For previous 10-minute meeting topics:
December:  NEA Member Benefits
January: Retirement!

The March 10-Minute Meeting topic: How to Read Your WRS Statement
Understanding your WRS Statement     
Very soon you will be receiving an annual statement from the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) that reports your Wisconsin Retirement System (WRS) earnings. No matter where you are in your career, it's important to review that information for accuracy. 

Click on the image to sign up to receive an e-book, "20 WRS FAQs" from WEA Member Benefits. 

Click  here  to learn more about your retirement pension. Did you know that WRS is the 9th largest public pension fund in the US and the 25th largest public/private pension fund in the world?

The Department of Employee Trust Funds has a great website full of useful information, including videos and webinars  that are grouped according to your length of service (early-, mid-, and late-career employees).

Professional Development
Friday - Sunday

Restorative Practices
Wisconsin Dells
Political Action
Taxpayer-Subsidized Private Schools are Bleeding Us Dry!
Taxpayer subsidized private schools, so-called “voucher” schools, impact ALL school districts across the state, whether these schools are in your area, and whether your district’s students attend these schools.

• Money to pay for private school students in the statewide program comes DIRECTLY from our public school districts.

• The VAST majority of students who receive taxpayer-subsidized money would have been in private schools anyway.

• The program is set to AUTOMATICALLY expand every year until it is virtually unlimited.

• Every budget cycle ACCELERATES the expansion.

To find your school, read more here.
Wisconsin Parental Choice Program statistics for 2018-19 here.
Become a Public Education Advocate!
When it comes to our students and public schools, there's a lot going on. A new legislative session has begun and a new governor has taken office. WEAC is proud to introduce a new Take Action Website with resources to help you contact your legislators, track legislation and write letters to the editor. Visit WEAC Take Action.
When you sign up for this budget workshop, Region 3 will reimburse the registration fee!
You can be a part of the action - helping Governor Evers make a case to support his budget (that includes great stuff for Wisconsin PUBLIC schools)!
Hello all,

Today I'd like to discuss Direct Action vs. Legal Shenanigans.

There's a time and a place for "legal" recourse such as filing grievances, or filing a prohibited practice complaint. The general opinion of most members is that these are things the administration and/or school board pay attention to, and they feel this is why we pay union dues - our union reps can take care of [ insert problem here] and we'll wait to see what happens.

Legal Shenanigans: This week I sat all day in a mediation meeting that was supposed to be a prohibited practice complaint hearing. We got really close to settling the disagreement, but in the end, we're going back to have the hearing anyway. We feel good about the case and we hope that the union will prevail. By winning this case, we think more members in this Local will feel less fearful about engaging in Direct Action - - something the administration is trying to squelch.

Direct Action: In another Local, members are beating back a "bully" principal by having groups of members meet directly with the administrator to make demands about changing behaviors, offering suggestions about how to make things better, and holding the principal accountable for making the changes.

There's no question that Direct Action takes time - but I assure you, not as long as legal actions (it will be months after the hearing before we get a decision from our prohibited practice complaint). And Direct Action helps settle disputes at the lowest level - between the parties it affects. Do you have questions about this? Want to know how you and your Local can engage in Direct Actions? Give us a call!

Kathy Rohde
Region 3 Regional Director