Calling All New Educators! Join Us for the New Educators Social – Thursday, October 18th

Join PAT members on Thursday October 18th for a chance to meet other colleagues new to PPS and get practical tips about teaching in our District. We’ll share a light dinner and talk informally about the following topics:

  • Understanding the Probationary Educator Evaluation Process
  • Preparing for Parent Conferences

Bring your questions!

Date:               Thursday, October 18th
Time:               4:30 – 6:00 PM
Location:         PAT Office – 345 NE 8th Avenue
RSVP:              https://goo.gl/forms/0jjwP1j2KDMoe2ru1

Come to the Northwest Teachers for Social Justice Conference!

The Northwest Teachers for Social Justice conference is returning to Portland this year for the 11th Annual Conference. It will be Saturday October 20th, 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM, at Madison High School.  The Portland Association of Teachers is excited to once again be a sponsor of this amazing event!

This year, the Keynote Speaker will be environmental activist Winona LaDuke. The conference also includes over 60 workshops, many of which are led by teachers. Learn more and register at info@nwtsj.org.

Interested in the OEA Conservative Educators Caucus?

At the 2018 Oregon Education Association (OEA) Representative Assembly the Conservative Educators Caucus met for the first time in many years. The meeting was well-attended and several OEA leaders are interested in continuing the discussion among like-minded teachers.

 Although the group is still in formation, there is a plan to hold regional meetings in the future and set up a more formal structure for membership as part of the NEA-CEC. If you, or any of your colleagues, are interested, please know that there is a political place for you in OEA, that your voice matters, and that you are not alone.

To find our more information, or be added to the Conservative Educators Caucus distribution list, send an email to OregonConservativeEducators@gmail.com.

Lets Talk! Combatting Institutional Racism - October 25th

You are invited to "Let's Talk: Combatting Institutional Racism" 

When: Thursday, October 25th, 4:30-6:30
Where: PAT Office: 345 NE 8th Ave 97232

Dinner will be served

Please RSVP

Participants will take part in a discussion about how institutional racism in education impacts youth today. Discuss different strategies for combating levels of racism and begin to embark on a shared understanding so we can co-create racial justice in education. Let’s talk, listen and learn from each other, as we discuss the roles that race plays in the education of our students, our profession and our communities. Facilitated by local leaders and NEA.

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President's Message: A Slow Boil

You are probably familiar with the parable about the boiling frog. According to the story, if you put a frog in a pot of boiling water it will immediately hop out. However, if you put a frog in cool water and very gradually heat it up, the frog will “be stuck in the comfort of its surroundings,” and stay put until it is too hot, and too late. Although modern science has proven that this is not how frogs behave, this story serves as a brilliant metaphor for what is happening to PAT members and other Oregon educators.

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Please Donate to the PAT Sick Leave Bank

Last school year, PAT members helped dozens of colleagues in need thanks to contributions to the PAT Sick Leave Bank.  These colleagues had exhausted their accumulated leave balances, but were unable to work due to extended or recurring personal illness. With the help of the Sick Leave Bank, they avoided the additional hardships of lost salary and lost insurance coverage.

Thanks to your generosity, last year we met our goal of collecting the maximum number of voluntarily donated hours allowed under our contract. Recent improvements in our contract mean that we can now fulfill almost all applications for assistance prior to running out of Sick Leave Bank hours.  This shows the District that PAT members act on their belief that an injury to one is an injury to all.

It’s a new school year, with new needs, and a new Bank to fill. We can accept up to 4000 hours and have a long way to go to reach that goal. Read more about the Sick Leave Bank guidelines here.

Please donate here - and thank you!

Power Through Collective Action: Members Organize Around Construction Delays

PAT successfully bargained new contract language requiring that members "have access to their worksites to unpack and organize their rooms as soon as possible but, at a minimum, one week prior to their first work day". When Chapman reps discovered their school would not be ready in time, they contacted PAT before the start of the school year. This added attention helped speed up the construction timelines. In response to their safety concerns, Lewis Elementary School members pressured PPS to release lead and asbestos test results to the staff and school community prior to their scheduled report date.

At Beverly Cleary, construction problems were more extreme, and unhealthy. Many members had no access to their rooms, and the staff contended with construction noise, fumes, and dust as they tried to prepare for the first day with students.  Many members contacted PAT. Members gathered stories of construction problems, and decided on a joint strategy: to present a letter to administration and to contact parents and the media through their union. The Superintendent and two School Board members visited the building and delayed the start of school. PAT will follow up with a grievance regarding these three buildings to establish protocols when the District schedules construction in other buildings in the future.

Help PAT Engage on Fridays!

The goal of the Engage! project is to have a face-to-face, one-on-one conversation with every one of our members to learn what‘s working in our schools, and what’s getting in the way of teaching and learning.

This fall, we need enough volunteers to get to every school site we didn't visit last year. We need your help to make this possible! 

Please volunteer on an upcoming Friday to take a day away from your classroom to talk to teachers in another school. OEA will pay for your sub, and volunteers have described their experience as being “invigorating and enlightening.”

You can see where we plan to be each week when you click on the link: Sign up here!

Concerns with the Guaranteed Viable Curriculum

We have heard many concerns from members about the GVC (Guaranteed Viable Curriculum) that the District is rolling out this year. The GVC includes scope and sequence, priority standards, curriculum maps, and assessments, for Math, Science, Language Arts, and Health, K-12. We have a lot of questions about the GVC, including workload, lack of PD, the timing of this and other new initiatives, and concerns about instructional practice.

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From the PAT PAC: Labor Canvass for Jo Ann Hardesty, Sunday September 16th

The Portland Association of Teachers PAC is proud to be part of a growing coalition of unions supporting Jo Ann Hardesty for Portland City Council. Join supporters from Oregon AFSCME Local 189, SEIU Local 49, SEIU Local 503, Amalgamated Transit Union 757, Portland Community College Federation of Classified Employees Local 3922, and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 8, to talk to voters about why Jo Ann is the new leader we need on the City Council. No experience necessary.  Please RSVP here for the Labor Canvass, and share the event on Facebook. 

The PAT PAC is funded by voluntary contributions by members, and does not use dues dollars to support political candidates. Your voluntary contribution gives power to the voice of teachers in local politics. If you are not already a PAT PAC contributor, please fill out this form and return it the PAT office.

New Educator Social - Thursday September 20th

Join PAT members on Thursday September 20th for a chance to meet other colleagues new to PPS and get practical tips about teaching in our District. We’ll share some snacks and beverages, and talk informally about best practices for:

  • Arranging for a substitute
  • Writing good sub plans
  • Requesting a sick or personal day
  • Reading that check stub

Bring your questions!

Date:             Thursday, September 20th
Time:             4:30 – 6:30 PM
Location:       PAT Office – 345 NE 8th Avenue
RSVP:            Fill out this form

Come to the Northwest Teachers for Social Justice Conference!

The Northwest Teachers for Social Justice conference is returning to Portland this year for the 11th Annual Conference. It will be Saturday October 20th, 8:00 AM to 4:30 PM, at Madison High School.  The Portland Association of Teachers is excited to be a sponsor of this amazing event once again!

This year, the Keynote Speaker will be environmental activist Winona LaDuke. The conference also includes over 60 workshops, many of which are led by teachers. Learn more and register at info@nwtsj.org.

PAT Member Aaron Green-Mitchell Wins National Education Grant

Aaron Green-Mitchell, site support instructor at George Middle School, was recently awarded a “Learning and Leading” grant by the National Education Association.  Aaron will share his research on the role of language acquisition as a causal factor in the growth of students’ pro-social cognition and behavior at an upcoming national conference. He will also work with Grace Rodgers, George’s instructional specialist, to provide staff professional development that will help teachers increase the linguistic and social proficiency of George students.

Congratulations Aaron!

Make Plans to Attend the PAT Picnic - Friday September 14th

Rain or Shine! Join your fellow PAT members and community at the annual picnic. Food, drinks, ice cream and live music will be provided. Families welcome!

Friday, September 14, 2018
3:30 - 6:30 PM
Laurelhurst Park
Picnic Area D

New Educator Social

Meet other colleagues new to PPS and join us for snacks, beverages, and informal talk about best practices in:

  • Arranging for a substitute
  • Writing good sub plans
  • Requesting a sick or personal day
  • Reading that check stub

Get practical tips about teaching in our district from other PAT members

Bring your questions!

Thursday, September 20th

4:30 – 6:30 pm

PAT Office – 345 NE 8th Avenue

RSVP Here

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Help PAT Engage!

The goal of the Engage! project is to have a face-to-face, one-on-one conversation with every one of our members, to learn what‘s working in our schools and what’s getting in the way of teaching and learning. Sign up here to volunteer to be a listener.

This fall, we need enough volunteers to get to every school site we didn't visit last year. We need your help to make this possible!

Please volunteer on an upcoming Friday to take a day away from your classroom to talk to teachers in another school. OEA will pay for your sub, and volunteers have described their experience as being “invigorating and enlightening.”

You can see where we plan to be each week when you click on the link above.

Top Reasons to Be a PAT Member

Read the full list here

There’s power in numbers, and one of the most important ways to safeguard conditions that support teaching and learning is to become a PAT member. Together we can ensure PPS has reasonable class sizes, professional pay, and working conditions that attract and retain quality educators. We can also strengthen classroom learning conditions and improve wrap-around supports for our students. Find our more about why it pays to become a PAT member!

 

Welcome Back!

Fellow PAT Professional Educators:

On behalf of the Vice President, our Executive Board, and myself, welcome to the new school year.  This is always an exciting time and one that offers new opportunities working with students and colleagues.  Each year, whether it was during my time at Woodlawn, King, Whitaker, or Peninsula, and whether I was about to teach 5th grade, Special Education, or middle school math and science, I knew how lucky I was to be a professional educator.   Though I miss the classroom terribly, I really enjoy the opportunities our Association offers.  I take pride in serving as PAT President and in making sure our union is relevant to our membership.

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Welcome To Portland Public Schools

August 17, 2018

Welcome to Portland Public Schools!

My name is Suzanne Cohen, and I have the honor of serving as your President of PAT, the Portland Association of Teachers. I attended Portland State University and have taught at Woodlawn, King, Whitaker and Peninsula Schools. I’ve taught 5th grade, Special Education and middle school Math and Science. Though I miss the classroom terribly, I really enjoy the opportunities our Association offers and take pride in making sure our union is relevant to our membership.

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Contract Highlights to Start the School Year

Read the full list of contract highlights here!

One of the benefits of being a PAT member is that you have a voice in shaping the working and learning conditions in PPS. Our contract spells out a number of important guarantees and protections for educators, and we'll start bargaining our new agreement with the District in January. This means its a great time to get involved in PAT and make your voice heard! In the meantime, you can review some of the most important provisions of our current contract here.

A #metoo Moment for PPS

Last week the School Board released a report detailing their investigation into the Mitch Whitehurst case. I’ve read the entire 322-page document, and there’s a lot to digest. I’m shocked and saddened by how many times principals and other high-level administrators failed to act on reports from female students and employees.  As a woman, and an educator, I can’t help noticing that it wasn’t until an adult male was victimized that serious action took place.

I’m left wondering if PPS may finally be having its own #metoo moment.

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