Portland School Board Elections, May 2017

No elected official impacts our schools more directly than our School Board members. This spring, PAT is supporting candidates that have a proven track record for fighting to fully fund our schools; listening to teachers; and standing up against the privatization of public schools. They also have a deep knowledge of how our district works, so they are ready to address the dysfuntion and systemic inequity, and move PPS is the right direction.

PAT enthusiastically endorses Rita Moore for Zone 4, and Scott Bailey for Zone 5.

  • Help get the word out! Sign up here to phonebank with PAT.
  • Read our full press release here.
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Portland Schools Bond 26-193

The 2017 bond is part of a long-range plan to modernize and improve all of our schools over the next 20 years. Measure 26-193 will:

  • reduce student and staff exposure to hazardous materials by replacing lead pipes and fixtures and removing or capping exposed lead paint and asbestos at every single school in the district;
  • fund necessary seismic upgrades that strengthen safety for our children and our teachers, update fire safety alarms and sprinkler systems and repairs and repair or replace leaking or deteriorating school roofs, and improve accessibility for people with disabilities;
  • rebuild or replaces three outdated high schools (Benson, Lincoln and Madison) and one middle school (Kellogg) to ensure students have access to classrooms that provide them with the modern education and technology tools they need to succeed.

Learn more at www.healthyschoolspdx.com.

Sign up here to help pass the bond!

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Making National News (for the Wrong Reasons)

The proposed cuts in the state legislature are so devastating that we’ve made national news. In a recent NEA article, PAT member Sarah Spella laid out how cuts to art, music, and PE create additional workload for other classroom educators:

 

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Organizing for May Day

Since the 1800s, workers around the world have commemorated our struggles for labor rights and social justice on May 1st. Teachers nationwide are celebrating May Day this year and we hope everyone in PAT will be able to participate. We’re coordinating our efforts through the OEA and NEA, in partnership with AROS, the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools.

 

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May Election Voter's Guide

Our recommendations for the May 2017 election are listed below. Candidates share a proven track record of leadership and commitment to strengthening our public schools so that our students can receive the education they deserve. 

 

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Support the Bond for Safe, Healthy, and Modern Schools!

On March 22, the PAT Representative Assembly voted to support the Portland Public Schools Bond. This bond is the second step in a 30-year strategic plan to modernize all our schools. Specifically, this bond will provide funds to fully rebuild or modernize four schools: Benson, Madison, Lincoln, and Kellogg. In addition, it will fund much-needed health and safety projects across the district, including removing lead, asbestos, and radon hazards, repairing roofs, seismic upgrading, and improving ADA accessibility. Learn more at www.healthyschoolspdx.com.

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PAT Building Rep Elections

As the school year comes to a close, it’s time to elect your site’s PAT Building Representatives. Each site is entitled to one Rep per every nine members. 

Our building elections are how we ensure that Reps at each site are trusted, respected leaders. To run be a Rep for your sight, let you your current Head Rep know you are interested. Each site should create a ballot and hold an election at a 10-minute meeting before the end of the year.

For more information and resources, go to www.pdxteachers.org/pat_elections.

PAT PAC Elections April 26th

All active members of the PAT PAC (Portland Association of Teachers Political Action Committee) are invited to a brief meeting on Wednesday, April 26th, at 6:30 PM at the PAT office, immediately following the RA.

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Please Donate to the Sick Leave Bank!

Recent changes to the contract increased the number of hours PAT may collect from members for the Sick Leave Bank. This helps ensure that hours will be available through the end of the school year for your colleagues who have exhausted their leave and need assistance. 

Donations of hours are still needed, as there are several pending applications for grants from the sick leave bank.

Please donate here – and thank you!

Student Loan Debt Forgiveness Workshop - 4/27/17

"Degrees Not Debts" - Student Loan Forgiveness Presentation @ PAT - Thurs., April 27, 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

Workshop Materials

Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program 

Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program

Income Driven Repayment Program

Bargaining Brief - April 19, 2017

Progress, but not yet Close to a Settlement

Your PAT team met with the District on Monday from 8:30 am to 5:30 pm. We originally described the meeting as a “settlement” day, but quickly realized that both sides needed some additional financial information not yet available to the group. We therefore set up new bargaining dates on May 8th and 9th. We were disappointed that we were not able to schedule the next group bargaining session earlier, but there were several conflicts with schedules.

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Fighting on All Fronts

This weekend we wrapped up four full days of bargaining with the District, and we’re meeting again on April 17th. Be sure to read the latest Bargaining Brief to get all the details. There are lots of balls in the air, since neither the state legislature nor the District has finalized their respective budgets, but we are still trying to reach a fair settlement.

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PAT PAC Endorsements - How to Get Involved in the School Board Election

The PAT PAC is proud to announce our recommendations for the May 2017 election. Candidates share a proven track record of leadership and commitment to strengthening our public schools so that our students can receive the education they deserve.

For Portland School Board:

  • Zone 4: Rita Moore
  • Zone 5: Scott Bailey
  • Zone 6: Trisha Parks*

 For MESD Board:

  • Pos. 1, Zone 5: Susie Jones
  • Pos. 2, At Large: Helen Ying
  • Pos. 3, Zone 2: Mary Botkin 
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Applying to Transfer for the 2017-18 School Year

The transfer application process for current PPS employees will begin with the posting of vacancies on April 18th – April 24th.  Contract, Probationary 3, and unassigned Probationary 1 and 2 educators may apply in the Internal Phase. Interviews will be held from April 25th – May 1st.  Find out more from this FAQ on applying and interviewing for positions.

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Get the Facts About PERS

Several bills in the Oregon legislature will cut PERS benefits by as much as 31 percent. Find out more about the pending legislation and read this PERS factsheet to learn more about how PERS works.

Addressing School Climate Issues In the Statehouse

Educators across Oregon are seeing a rise in serious student behavioral issues and disciplinary challenges. The Oregon Education Association supports a variety of bills that would help us address these school climate issues. Find out more in this one page factsheet.

Leveling the Policy-Making Playing Field

Currently, educators don’t have enough input when decisions are made at the state level. There is only one non-voting educator on the State Board of Education, while the rest of the Board is dominated by non-educator political appointees, the majority of whom lack firsthand experience educating students in our public schools. The Oregon Education is supporting legislation that would level the playing field and give educators more voice – find out more!

Know Your Rights If You Are Stopped By the Police

This one page fact sheet from the American Civil Liberties Union details your rights if are stopped by the police, immigration agents, or the FBI. It is also available in Spanish.

Divesting From Private Prisons

Below is testimony from PAT President Suzanne Cohen in the Oregon Legislature:

Thank you Chair Prozanski, and members of the committee for allowing me this opportunity to speak in support of divesting from private prisons.

I’m Suzanne Cohen a proud public school teacher, with the privilege of serving as President of the Portland Association of Teachers, representing over 4,000 educators.

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Industry for a Day

Registration is now open for “Industry for a Day,” scheduled for April 19th from 1:00-5:30 PM. This is a unique chance to bring K-12 educators and leaders face-to-face with careers in the trades and manufacturing in an effort to shift perceptions, dismantle stigma and build awareness of these high-quality, high-growth career opportunities. Last year’s event was a big success, and this year organizers are hoping to recruit 125 teachers from across the county. See the attached flyer for more information.

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April 27th - National Retirement Security Advocacy Day

Our April 27th National Education Association members from across the country will be pushing Congress to protect our retirement security. We’re asking members to participate in local lobbying efforts or call and email your congressional representatives.

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Mobilizing for May Day

May 1st is a great opportunity for educators to stand with their colleagues and the community to fight for the schools ALL our students deserve. Educators across Oregon will be mobilizing to make sure our schools are places where all students feel safe to learn, especially those targeted because of immigration status, ethnicity, or gender identity. We have to defend the public schools that are supported by our community, defend the community that supports our public schools, and protect our students from people who see them as sources of profit. Our public schools are not for sale!

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