Student Loan Debt Forgiveness Workshop - 3/15/18

"Degrees Not Debts" - Student Loan Forgiveness Presentation @ PAT - Thurs., March 15, 2017  - (4:30 - 7:00 PM) @ PAT Office

Portland Association of Teachers, 345 NE 8th Ave., Portland, OR 97232

Do you have outstanding student loan debt? Please join us to learn about your options to manage or erase them.

Participants will learn about:
• Federal Loan Forgiveness Programs (Teacher Loan, Perkins Loan, & the Public Service Loan Programs)
• Basic financial essentials and financial planning 

This event is free to all PAT members. A light dinner will be served


Retirement Planning Seminar 3/1/18

In the Home Stretch: Retiring in 1 to 5 Years

PAT Retirement Seminar - March 1, 2018, 4:30 PM @ PAT Office, 345 NE 8th Ave., Portland, OR 97232

         RSVP Here

TOPICS for March 1:

  • How does my pension work?
  • What can I do to prepare now?
  • What can I do with the I.A.P. account?
  • When can I access my other retirement accounts?
  • Is it too late to start saving for retirement?


Member Benefits

There are so many benefits to being an active union member. In addition to the all of the guarantees and protections from our contract, PAT members also have access to substantial discounts on auto and home insurance. There are a number of other services available through the Oregon Education Association and the National Education Association.











A Reminder of What We're Fighting For

The night we reached our Tentative Agreement with the District we bargained until 4 AM.  I didn’t go to sleep that morning. Instead, I spent my day in a Kindergarten classroom at Woodlawn Elementary with first-year teacher and proud PAT member, Brittney Whitman.

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Notice of Resignation or Retirement

Do you plan to resign or retire from PPS this Spring or at the end of this school year? If so, it pays to let your supervisor know as soon as possible. An educator who gives written notice of resignation or retirement no later than February 15th will receive a “notice stipend” of $1250. If the professional educator gives written notice no later than March 15th, the stipend is $700. 

The notice must be in writing, to the principal or supervising administrator, and payment will be made in the educator’s final paycheck. The stipend does not apply if the resignation is made in lieu of termination, non-renewal or non-extension of contract. Please note—the new contract language moves these dates up one month earlier, to coordinate with an earlier staffing process. However, for this year 2017-18, we agreed to keep the February 15th and March 15th dates, to maximize participation. 

Heads Up! Staffing for 2018-19 School Year Starts Soon

The District is now required to post the vacancies for the internal transfer process no later than March 1st of each school year. Within the next week, administrators will be receiving information about their available FTE for next school year. PAT and PPS will meet this week to review the procedures and timelines for the general staffing process, as well as the middle school reconfigurations and changes at Rigler and Scott. We will continue to provide you with additional information and concrete dates as soon as the specific phases of the process are finalized.

Performance Evaluations for Probationary Educators

Probationary educators must be evaluated each year during their 3-year probationary period. The process is described in the contract and the Educator Handbook for Professional Growth and Evaluation.  Performance ratings must align with the PPS Performance Evaluation Rubric and ratings must be based on direct evidence included in the written evaluation

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Correction on Retro Check

We are sorry for any confusion we created on the date for retro checks, but the contract language says the check must be issued within five weeks of ratification by the Board of Education. We expect retro checks to be issued around March 15th (not February 15th).

Correction: PERS Retroactive Contribution

PERS contributions for retired members/inactive PERS members will not be able to be made for our retroactive salary increases. 

We originally thought that we had found a way to do this legally.  Unfortunately, we have discovered that PERS will not accept these contributions after PERS members are retired.  The retro check issued around March 15th for salary and other retroactive compensation will not include employer or employee PERS deductions if the employee is no longer active in the PERS system. 

This does not impact members who are still contributing to the PERS system.

PAT PAC Endorsements for State Representative

The PAT PAC (Portland Association of Teachers Political Action Committee) is pleased to announce the following endorsements for the Oregon House of Representatives:

  • Mitch Greenlick HD 33
  • Jennifer Williamson HD 36
  • Karin Power HD 41
  • Rob Nosse HD 42
  • Tawna Sanchez HD 43
  • Tina Kotek HD 44
  • Barbara Smith Warner HD 45
  • Alissa Keny-Guyer HD 46

The PAT PAC Board is elected by PAT PAC contributors. It makes endorsement decisions based on responses to in-person interviews, as well as a candidate’s record. The board considers candidates’ positions on public education, their commitment to union values, and their electability. The PAT PAC Board is still in the process of making recommendations for local races on the May ballot, and will announce more recommendations in the coming weeks.

Reminder: Cast Your Vote in the PAT Election

Vote for PAT Officers, Executive Board Members, and PAT delegates to the OEA and NEA Representative Assemblies using our electronic voting process.  On January 24, a link was sent to your PPS email address directing you to the Voters’ Pamphlet (which includes the Candidates’ Statements) and Ballots.  The link also included videos of the speeches made by PAT Officer and Executive Board candidates at the January Representative Assembly.

Please remember not to vote during work time.  BALLOTS MUST BE SUBMITTED BY 5:00 p.m. on February 9, 2018, to be counted.  

Join the PAT Delegation at the OEA PAC Convention

All OEA PAC contributors are invited to the OEA PAC Convention, the evening of Friday, March 9th, and all day Saturday, March 10th, at the Benson Hotel in downtown Portland. Registration is free, and to participate you must be an OEA PAC contributor.

Please register here.

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OEA Promising Practices Grant Winners

This year’s OEA Promising Practices Grant winners are:

Paula Dennis:  Paula is a fifth-grade teacher at Vernon. Paula’s $1,000 grant will support her work organizing a gathering for around 100 middle and high school-aged students of color, together with several adults from the community. Participants will watch the movie Marshall and discuss the real-life skills presented in the film, empowering them through the real life stories of role models from their community.   

Nancy Arteaga:  Nancy is a sixth-grade social studies teacher at Lane Middle School. Nancy’s $500 grant will be used to buy materials to integrate STEM into her social studies classroom.

Congratulations to both winners and the students they are reaching through these grants.  Look for the Promising Practices Grant application next year and consider applying yourself.

Read Across American Grants Available Through PAT

Read Across America is a fun and exciting activity sponsored by the National Education Association to encourage reading and support community involvement in our schools.  On Friday, March 2, 2018, we would like every child to be reading in the company of a caring adult. PAT is accepting grant applications. Read the full post to apply.


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Lets Engage!

PAT has a goal to have 1-on-1 conversations with at least 75% of our members. We know that these face-to-face conversations are key to maintaining union strength and solidarity.

PAT needs YOU to sign up to be a listener! OEA will pay for your sub, and training on the mechanics of how to be a listener and the technology we’re using will be provided on site.

All listening will occur on Fridays, and we have Engage! Friday's scheduled throughout February, including  2/9, 2/16, and 2/23.  

So sign up on the PAT website!

Being a listener is a fun and easy way to be an active and involved union member. As professional educators, we know how valuable face-to-face time with other educators can be. While these conversations only last around five minutes, it provides a critical opportunity for member voices and stories to be heard and valued.

Do You Have a Student Loan?

Save the date to attend the Student Debt Forgiveness Workshop for PAT members sponsored by PAT and NEA.  Information will be provided to help you understand the various types of federal student loan forgiveness programs (Teacher Loan, Perkins Loan, & the Public Service Loan Programs) and how to apply for relief.  Additionally, a portion of the program will provide information on basic financial essentials and financial planning.   Thursday, March 15, 4:30 – 7:00 p.m. at the PAT Office.  Find additional information and RSVP here

Workshops are only open to current members.

Addressing Hate Speech in PPS

There have been several incidents of hate speech in our schools this year, and the PAT Social Justice Committee wants to ensure these incidents are taken seriously and addressed appropriately by administration. We are trying to better understand the scope of the problem, and how these incidents are being addressed in our schools.

If incidents of hate speech have occurred at your school, please fill out this form and let us know what happened and how it was handled. 

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"I Am 2018" Moment of Silence

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Memphis garbage workers strike, AFSCME has created the "I Am 2018" campaign. On February 1, 1968, Memphis sanitation workers Echol Cole and Robert Walker were crushed to death in the back of their truck because they were barred from seeking shelter in a white neighborhood to eat their lunch out of the rain. The tragedy triggered the strike of the city's 1,300 sanitation workers demanding fair treatment and better wages. The "I Am A Man" protests brought Martin Luther King to Memphis to support them, where he was assassinated on April 3, 1968. 

AFSCME is asking union and civil rights activists to organize a moment of silence to mark the day those workers walked off the job to fight for justice. For more information you can go to:

A Cross-Border Social Justice Conference

Teachers from British Columbia, Oregon, and Washington are coming together to connect across borders and discuss common threats to public education and ways to challenge hate, bigotry and neoliberalism. 

Date: Saturday, April 7, 2018
Time: 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Location: Sullivan Heights Secondary School, 6248 144 St., Surrey, British Columbia, Canada

The conference is seeking educators interested in leading workshops on social justice themes.  Possible topics could include immigration/border issues, privatization of schools, First Nations education and rights, Reconciliation, global climate crisis, organizing skills, rights of disabled people, women's rights, LGBTQ/ SOGI, Social Justice in our curricula, land struggles, anti-colonialism, race/ anti-racism, etc. Workshop sessions will be 90 minutes and must include active participation. Proposals due by February 17th.

To learn more, register, or submit a proposal, click here.

Bargaining Brief - January 16, 2018

After five days of continuous negotiations, this morning at 3:00 AM your PAT bargaining team agreed on a settlement framework with our District counterparts.

Significant details remain to be formalized, but we hope to finalize a tentative agreement by Thursday afternoon.

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Bargaining Brief, January 11, 2018

Your bargaining team met with their District counterparts until 8:00 this evening. We informed the District that we were prepared to work over the next five days in order to reach an agreement, and to stick with the mediation process, no matter where it takes us over the weekend.

We were pleased to receive a similar commitment from the District team.

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What Do We Stand For?

Welcome Back and Happy New Year!

As our bargaining team prepares to work all day Thursday and Friday—and straight through the three-day weekend in the hopes of securing a fair settlement—I find myself reflecting on parallels between unionism and civil rights.

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