PAT Members Speak Out on Housing Crisis

On Saturday, September 17th, Portland Tenants United held a rally at City Hall to call for an end to No Cause evictions and demand a rent freeze. Teachers see first hand the impact homelessness and housing instability have on our students and their families. PAT President Suzanne Cohen and Social Justice chair Rachel Hanes spoke at the rally in solidarity with PTU and tenants fighting for stable housing.

Step Up for a Better Oregon

After more than a generation of cuts to public education, we have a chance to turn things around this November. Measure 97, spearheaded by the Better Oregon campaign, will put more than 33% more money into our schools: resources for art, music, and world languages, along with the supports and services so many of our students need.

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Watch Out for the Freedom Foundation

In recent weeks, union members around the state have been approached by the Freedom Foundation, a conservative think-tank claiming they want us to “give ourselves a raise.” But their real agenda is to bust our union and silence the voice of working people. Backed by billionaires like the Koch brothers, their agenda is clear -- break our union's back and take away our voice to collectively bargain. Here’s what you need to know if you or someone from your school crosses paths with the Freedom FoundationYou can also find out more in this video from the Northwest Accountability Project.

 

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Give Your Schedule a Check-Up

Does your work schedule give you the time you need to support your students?  Make sure your schedule respects your rights under the PAT contract when it comes to duty, planning time, staff meeting time and other workday components. 

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Contribute to the Sick Leave Bank

Now is the time to donate hours to the sick leave bank. The sick leave bank provides members with serious illnesses extra time once they exhaust their own sick leave. You can donate between 4 to 24 hours each year. In the last bargain, we expanded the number of hours allowed in the bank, but PPS no longer contributes. Read the guidelines here.

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Yes on Measure 97!

Congratulations on the start of the school year! Amidst all that is going on as you begin your year, thank you for taking the time to nurture and strengthen the most important structure of our union: the members and building reps at every site.

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Getting Back On Track

Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world.  - Nelson Mandela

Welcome back to school!

After a summer filled with so much uncertainty and tragedy, in our district and across the country, we need to get back on track.  As educators we know there aren’t quick fixes to our societal ills, but done right, education is the foundation for a just and equitable society.

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Bargaining Update

As you start the 2016-17 school year, you are working under an expired contract.  State law requires that the District maintain most contract provisions during the “status quo period”.  Your bargaining team has continued to meet in interest-based sub-groups with the District over the summer. 

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Progress on School Safety and Climate

One of PAT’s standing committees is the Instruction and Professional Development (IPD) Committee.  All members are welcome to attend the monthly meetings and raise instructional/professional development issues.  The first meeting will be at the PAT office on Wednesday, September 14th starting at 4:30 pm.  A light dinner will be provided. 

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PAT Representative Assembly Materials - August 22, 2016

Thank you so much for those of you who were able to be with us for our Membership Meeting and first RA.

Here is a link to the slides for your use at your "Union 10" this week.

Here are the materials from the RA Meeting:

If no one from your school was able to attend today, your materials will be ponied to your site.

Best of luck as you begin your school year!

Proud, And Still Inspired

Our annual celebration last week made me so proud. What a wonderful chance to honor the work our activists, organizers and building reps do day-in, day-out for our students and for our profession.

Whatever my role in PAT -- building rep, chair of the Advocacy Committee, Vice-President, and now President -- I've always believed my main job is to bring people together

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Oregon Rising

As part of our 2013 bargain, PAT developed a vision for the Schools Our Students Deserve. Now, through our state affiliate, Oregon Education Association, we're developing a vision of great public education for the whole state. 

Last month OEA launched Oregon Rising together with the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators (COSA) and Oregon School Boards Association. As educators, you need to take the survey and make your voice heard, but we also encourage you to organize a discussion with parents, students and community members in your building. Find out more here.

PAT Awards

Thanks to everyone who joined us for PAT's end-of-year celebration where we recognized our retiring educators, scholarship recipients, and outgoing officers. 
 
We were also proud to honor the following PAT members for all their work making our union stronger, and our schools better. Awards were given in the following categories:

Service: Al Rabchuk
Activism: Rachel Hanes
Organizing: Mike Bauer
Advocacy: The building reps at Harrison Park

Outdoor School for All

Because of dwindling budgets, less than half of Oregon students get to experience outdoor education. PAT has endorsed an effort to try and change that. 

Outdoor School for All wants to put a ballot measure before voters this November that would give every Oregon fifth or sixth grader a hands-on week of science-based outdoor education. This initiative would create permanent, stable funding for Outdoor School. 

 

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Public Forum: Governor's Council on Educator Advancement, June 7th

Earlier this year, Governor Brown created the Council on Educator Advancement. The Council will make recommendations on how to "deliver relevant, high-quality, and culturally competent professional development for Oregon's educators."  

On June 7th, the Council will be taking public comments at the Marshall Campus of Franklin High School. Please attend and offer your input into what real support for professional educators looks like. You can find out more about the Council here, and download a flyer for the June 7th event here.

Tuesday, June 7th
5:30-7:00 p.m.
Franklin High School @Marshall Campus Auditorium
3905 SE 91st Ave.
Portland, OR 97266

Teaching with Purpose Hip Hop Education Summit, June 16th

The PAT Executive Board has agreed to sponsor registration for up to 10 members at the Teaching with Purpose Hip Hop Education Summit on June 16th at Harriet Tubman Middle School. These slots are first-come, first-serve, but any educator can attend and use their professional improvement fund to pay the cost of registration (see below). The summit will explore the links between hip hop culture and culturally responsive instruction, including guest speakers such as Columbia University professor Christopher Emdin. For more information, visit the Teaching with Purpose website. If you're interested in attending, contact Suzanne Cohen:suzannedavina@yahoo.com.

Thursday, June 16th
Harriet Tubman Middle School
2231 N Flint Ave
Portland, OR 97227

Professional Improvement and Tuition Reimbursement Funds

Are you thinking about taking classes this summer? Interested in attending a conference? The PAT/PPS contract provides funds for professional development as well as tuition reimbursement. The Professional Improvement Fund allows educators to spend $1500 over three years for transportation, meals, lodging, and registration costs to attend a conference, provided it has a legitimate pedagogical purpose. 

You will need to follow these guidelines to access the Professional Improvement Fund. The District will also reimburse professional educators for tuition cost for up to six (6) noncumulative hours in a 12-month period for which graduate credit is granted by a college or university. See the PAT/PPS contract for details and the PPS website for how to access your tuition reimbursement.

National Board Certification Workshop

Do you have questions about National Board Certification? The National Board of Professional Teaching Standards will host two presentations this month for PPS teachers. Come learn more about state and local supports (and incentives) and what it takes to become a National Board Certified Teacher. 

Tuesday, May 31st at BESC Board Room 4:30-5:30 pm.

A short presentation will be given, followed by a time to ask questions.

For further information, please contact Cindy Dulcich: cdulcich@pps.net or Stacy Meyer:  smeyer1@pps.net.

Living Up to Our Agreements

The results from this year's TELL survey are now available online. Take a look at how Portland compares with the rest of the state, and how your school compares with the rest of the District (If your school is not listed that means fewer than 50 percent of the staff responded).

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Watch Out for IP 65

Recently, Stand For Children has been trying to gain access to school buildings in order to promote a ballot measure they're sponsoring, Initiative Petition 65. The proposal promises to improve graduation rates by promoting career technical education (CTE). As educators, we all want to see Oregon's graduation rates go up, but Stand for Children's proposal will actually do more harm than good.

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Reviewing School Boundaries

For over a year, the District has been reviewing school boundaries and discussing whether and how they need to change.

Two PAT members have been a part of the formal review process, known as DBRAC, the District Boundary Review Advisory Committee. While we will not take a position on the scenarios currently being considered by the District, PAT has consistently made our priorities clear.

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