Nurturing Black Children: Black Mothers Speak About Raising and Teaching Black Children in White Spaces

Friday, February 22, 4:00 PM - 6:30 PM at the PAT office 

Featuring Special Guests: Dyan Watson, Natalie Labossiere, and Kara Hinderlie Stroman.

Three Black mothers who are also educators will share their experiences about raising, educating, and supporting Black children in mostly white spaces. Through storytelling and prose, these moms will provide glimpses into the conversations they have with their own children as well as Black students in their care. Participants will leave with more understanding about the dilemmas these moms wrestle with as parent-educators and with insight into how to keep Black lives safe in schools. Participants will have time to discuss, ask questions, and plan for their own classrooms. The highly acclaimed Rethinking Schools book, Teaching for Black Lives, will be for sale at the event.

RSVP: Please let us know that you are coming by registering here

For questions, please contact Linda Christensen at lmc@lclark.edu. 

Cosponsored by PAT, Rethinking Schools, and the Oregon Writing Project.

Creating Pathways to Racial Justice: Symposium February 23rd

Join us for a transformative circle involving educators, parents, students, legislators, organizations representing Oregon’s communities of color, state level education partners, higher education advocates, and social justice groups from around the state. On February 23rd the Oregon Education Association is hosting a very special convening centered on transformation, featuring students’ projects that highlight contributions to our schools and their cultural voices.

 

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Get the Facts About PERS!

PERS is the retirement system for Oregon teachers, firefighters, nurses and other public employees. We work hard and are proud of our public service. Even though many of us earn less than we would in the private sector, we believe in serving our communities.

Unfortunately, some lawmakers and special interest groups continue to blame teachers and firefighters for Oregon’s budget problems. They are pushing cuts to PERS, despite the fact that current employees are not cause of the state’s financial woes, and further reductions to our pension benefits will do nothing to solve the problem. The Portland Association of Teachers, and our statewide union, the Oregon Education Association, will continue to stand up for our members and defend against these unfair attacks.

It’s important for educators to get the facts about PERS. Download and share this PERS factsheet from the Oregon Education Association.

Music and Arts Grants from California Casualty

The California Casualty Music & Arts Grant was established to provide support for K-12 public schools negatively impacted by reduced budgets. California Casualty understands the importance of music and arts education for children. As a member of the Portland Association of Teachers and our statewide union, the Oregon Education Association, you can apply for a $250 grant award for a music or art need at your school.

 The California Casualty Music and Arts Grant program will consider grant requests for public K-12 schools whose music and arts programs are in jeopardy or in great need of funding. Requests will also be considered for individual classrooms wishing to integrate music and/or arts projects within school curriculum.

The deadline is June 30 for grant requests to be considered for the fall of the next school year. All grants will be notified of their status by September 30.

For more information about the California Casualty Music and Arts Grant or to apply online, go to: CalCasMusicArtsGrant.com or email musicartsgrant@calcas.com.

Nurturing Black Children: Black Mothers Speak About Raising & Teaching Black Lives in White Spaces

Friday, February 22 4:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Portland Association of Teachers (PAT)
345 NE 8th Ave, Portland

Featuring Special Guests: Dyan Watson, Natalie Labossiere, and Kara Hinderlie Stroman.

RSVP here.

Three Black mothers who are also educators will share their experiences about raising, educating, and supporting Black children in mostly white spaces. Through storytelling and prose, these moms will provide glimpses into the conversations they have with their own children as well as Black students in their care. Participants will leave with more understanding about the dilemmas these moms wrestle with as parent educators and with insight into how to keep Black lives safe in schools. Participants will have time to discuss, ask questions, and plan for their own classrooms. The highly acclaimed Rethinking Schools book, Teaching for Black Lives, will be for sale at the event.


For questions, please contact Linda Christensen at lmc@lclark.edu.

Cosponsored by PAT, Rethinking Schools, and the Oregon Writing Project.

Copies of Teaching for Black Lives available for purchase.

 

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Storm the Capitol - February 18th!

Join PAT members in Salem on President’s Day for the biggest education rally yet. Monday, February 18th is our opportunity to show lawmakers that our schools need funding now, and our students can’t wait. Educators from around the state will be joining us wearing red. Please sign up now for this important action. 

New Year's Resolution: Keep the Oregon Legislature Focused on Funding Follow-Through

We are all too aware of the problems that a 30-year disinvestment in education has created. But, right now, we have an opportunity to make significant change.

We know that our students are being short-changed every year. Class sizes are still huge in many schools. Elementary schools need behavioral supports to address disrupted learning. Secondary students need more electives and access to more social and mental health services. We need school buildings with fully-staffed custodial support.

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Get Your PAT RED FOR ED T-Shirt

In time for the 2019 Legislative Session, we are getting new t-shirts. They are red, in keeping with the nation-wide movement to demand adequate funding for public education. Ours will say "Fund our Future; Fund our Schools" on the back, with our PAT logo on the front.

We have shirts available for a suggested donation of $10, to defray the cost and allow us to order as many shirts as we need. We will have shirts in sizes small through 3XL, in both a unisex style and a women’s cut.

To get your T-shirt, you can order one through your Building Rep, or come by PAT to pick one up.

It's time the Oregon Legislature fully funds the Quality Education Model! Plan our wearing Red for Ed every Tuesday until Oregon meets its commitment to our students.

Join the Bargaining Committee!

In preparation for our next round of bargaining with the District, PAT is recruiting members to serve on our Bargaining Committee. The Bargaining Committee will be a larger group than the Bargaining Team, and will likely require less time than serving on the Bargaining Team. Members of the Bargaining Committee can expect to meet regularly while PAT is developing bargaining proposals, and throughout the bargaining process, but Bargaining Committee members will not necessarily be present for bargaining sessions.  The Committee will help research, develop, and vet bargaining proposals, as well as gather input from different parts of our membership. This work will guide the Bargaining Team’s work at the table.

We want to create a diverse and representative Bargaining Committee, including educators from every grade-band and from a variety of different jobs. We want our committee to be diverse in terms of race, gender, and age, and to represent educators from all corners of the city.

If you are interested in being directly involved in our bargaining process, please fill out this interest form. From the set of all who are interested, we will create a committee that is as diverse and balanced as possible.

Legislative Round Table on Funding

As part of our campaign to fully fund our schools, the PAT Legislative Committee is hosting a Round Table discussion with our elected lawmakers, on Thursday, January 10. We know our local elected leaders have already promised to fight for full funding of the Quality Education Model (QEM), the Oregon Legislature’s own model for what it would mean to fund a basic level of quality public education. But we also know the legislature has NEVER met the QEM standards, and we’re now billions of dollars short.

Our lawmakers need to understand our urgency and hear directly from educators. Educators will be sharing their own stories about class size, salary, and disrupted learning, in an effort to push our Senators and Representatives find a funding solution this legislative session.

To get involved with PAT’s Legislative Committee, join us for our January meeting, Thursday, January 24th, 4:30-6:30 PM at the PAT office.

Promising Practices Grants

Do you have a plan that could enhance your classroom skills or boost student achievement? An idea for a site-based professional development activity that could build partnerships? OEA’s Center for Great Public Schools awards Promising Practice Grants to individual PAT members.

There are two $500 grants available to PAT members. To apply, please complete the short application form available online. The completed grant application form must be sent to martin.pavlik@oregoned.org by February 4th.

Climate Justice Social - January 17th

Did you know that in 2016 the Portland Public School Board passed the most comprehensive climate justice resolution in the nation? Would you like to make climate justice a more central part of your curriculum? Are you feeling overwhelmed by the idea of starting from scratch? The Climate Justice Committee can help with that! Join us for our first Teach Climate Justice happy hour event Thursday January 17th. Please RSVP here.

Oar goal is to connect educators and community members in order to share climate justice knowledge and curriculum related to the climate crisis. We’ll enjoy food, beverage, and one another’s company as we do this important work. All invited -- including community and non-PPS teachers! The social starts at 4:00 and the program will begin at 4:30.

Date:   Thursday January 17th
Time:   4:00 – 6:00 PM
Place: PAT Office

Sign Up to Take Salem by Storm - February 18!

Join PAT members in Salem on President’s Day for the biggest education rally yet. Monday, February 18th is our opportunity to show lawmakers that our schools need funding now, and our students can’t wait. Educators from around the state will be joining us wearing red. Please sign up now for this important action. Superintendents, School Board members, parents and students will also there be there, letting the legislature know enough is enough. It’s time for Oregon to keep its promise to our kids and fully fund our schools. We hope you can join us, and bring your colleagues, family, and friends.

Retirement Seminar - January 31st

Join us for a Retirement Seminar led by Ed Foster. This event is specifically targeted at mid-career educators, but will be beneficial to everyone.

Thursday, January 31, 4:30-6:00 p.m. at PAT. RSVP here.

*Note: If you know that you will be  retiring this year, you will receive a stipend if you give the district early notice.  If you give written notice no later than January 15, the stipend is $1250, and if given by February 15, the stipend is $700. (Article 18.2.1)

President's Message: Now's Our Chance to Fully Fund Oregon Schools

In 2019, let’s give our students the gift of fully-funded schools.

The November election brought us a pro-public education legislature, and a governor who is calling for tax increases to fund public education. There can be no doubt about it: this is OUR time.

No one in Salem has spelled out where the revenue will come from, but it’s clear to us.

It should come from large corporations, who not only can afford it but haven’t been paying their fair share for years.

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Get Your PAT RED FOR ED T-Shirt

In time for the 2019 Legislative Session, we are getting new t-shirts. They are red, in keeping with the nation-wide movement to demand adequate funding for public education. Ours will say "Fund our Future; Fund our Schools" on the back, with our PAT logo on the front.

We have shirts available for a suggested donation of $10, to defray the cost and allow us to order as many shirts as we need. We will have shirts in sizes small through 3XL, in both a unisex style and a women’s cut.

To get your T-shirt, you can order one through your Building Rep, or come by PAT to pick one up.

It's time the Oregon Legislature fully funds the Quality Education Model! Plan our wearing Red for Ed every Tuesday until Oregon meets its commitment to our students.

Bargaining Update

In January, the District and PAT will start formally negotiating a possible one-year contract extension. If the District offers an inadequate COLA (like 2%), we will not extend. In the event we cannot agree on an extension, we will exchange a full set of proposals 75 days later. If we do extend our current contract, our plan is to begin negotiating the successor contract in the fall of 2019.

Either way, we need to get ready and we need your help! Starting in January, PAT will be recruiting bargaining team members and bargaining organizers. You can also support your bargaining team and show your support for additional statewide school funding, by wearing red on Tuesdays, and coming to Salem on Presidents’ Day.

A Win on Master's Degree Credit

After almost a year of deadlock and disagreement, PAT has prevailed. The District has agreed to honor our new contract language, and ensure members get paid for Masters degrees earned prior to receiving a teaching license, according to the following terms:

  1. The District is granting column salary credit for PAT members with fully completed graduate degrees.  This credit will no longer be based on whether the degree was obtained in connection with the employee’s license. In addition, the District will not limit credit to a single graduate degree.
  2. The District will grant salary column advancement for graduate credits earned after licensure and outside of a degree program. They can now be treated as “Master’s Plus” credits.
  3. The adjustments will be retroactive to the July 1, 2017.

Members should know that making these adjustments will be labor intensive and time-consuming process. However, the District has already pulled some of the necessary data together from employee files in conjunction with related salary grievances.

Promising Practices Grant

Do you have a plan that could enhance your classroom skills or boost student achievement? An idea for a site-based professional development activity that could build partnerships? OEA’s Center for Great Public Schools awards Promising Practice Grants to individual PAT members.

There are two $500 grants available to PAT members. To apply, please complete the short application form available online. The completed grant application form must be sent to martin.pavlik@oregoned.org by February 4th.

Resolution for Black Lives Matter Week of Action

Come with us to ask the PPS School Board to support a Black Live Matter Week of Action in Portland Public Schools!

As a project of our Racial Equity Task Force, PAT members are planning a Black Live Matter Week of Action, February 4-9, 2019. This is part of a National Movement, which the members voted to support at both the OEA Rep Assembly and the NEA Rep Assembly.

We are seeking the support of the PPS School Board, so that this Week of Action can positively impacts students in every school across our district, and educators in every school can know they have the support of the district in participating in activities and lessons designed to uplift and educate.  Toward this goal, we are preparing a Resolution to bring to the school board, date to be determined.

Special Education Social: December 6th

Back by popular demand, the PAT Social Justice and Community Outreach Committee will be hosting another Special Education Social, dedicated to members on the special education team! This event is open to any educator who works as a special education educator, whether in a self-contained learning center, as an SLP, or as a school psychologist. Come network with other special educators, find ways to support each other, and build community. Let’s get organized! The social will be December 6th from 4:30-6:30 PM at the PAT office. RSVP so we can order enough dinner.

The Color of Law Curriculum Workshop for Teachers: December 13th

Portland area teachers, Oregon Writing Project coaches, and members of the Rethinking Schools and Zinn Education project team have been hard at work on a curriculum based on Richard Rothstein’s 2017 book, The Color of Law. You are invited to help us workshop this new curriculum and learn more about the history of housing discrimination. You’ll leave with new ideas and resources to bring back to your classroom.

When:     December 13th, 4:30-6:30

Where:    Portland Association of Teachers, 345 NE 8th, Portland, Oregon 97232

Who:      Chris Buehler, Angela DiPasquale, Alex Stegner, and Ursula Wolfe-Rocca will lead the workshop.

Please RSVP here.