Insurance for Combined Part-time PAT and PAT Substitute Educators

Members should know their contractual rights and possibly save money each month.  Every year PPS employs a few educators who work a .5 FTE position and also substitute teach the rest of their workweek.  Those individuals have the unusual position of being in both PAT units, and work under both PAT/PPS contracts.

If you are one of those individuals, and you have earned insurance under the PAT Substitute CBA, you are entitled to select a health benefit package from either the PAT regularly employed unit, or the PAT substitute educator unit

Recently the PPS Benefits department informed .5 FTE educators who also earned substitute insurance that they could not select insurance under the substitute CBA.  That is absolutely incorrect.

The PAT/PPS CBA for regularly employed educators states in Article 13.1.6 “The District shall make a contribution of fifty percent (50%) of the composite rate for professional educators having a work schedule of fifty percent (50%) up to seventy-five percent (75%) of a full-time professional educator.”  In addition, Article 13.1.4 also states, “Professional educators may opt out of medical, dental, vision, prescription drug benefits, and additional life insurance.”

The PAT Substitute Educator CBA offers the same Kaiser and Providence Major Medical and Dental plans as the .5 PAT regularly employed benefit package, but the monthly cost per member is lower.  Keep in mind, there are additional benefits included under the regular PAT CBA, but if a PAT member only wants medical and dental insurance, and that member is eligible for insurance under both contracts, the substitute educator health plan is an option those members may select. 

If you are one of the PAT members who is eligible under both CBAs, contact the benefits department if you were denied the option to select either plan and let them know that you might want to make a change.    

Using Your Professional Development Funds

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 costs to attend a conference, provided it has a legitimate pedagogical purpose.

In our last contract negotiations, we ensured that these funds are also available to temporary teachers whose positions are expected to exist for more than 135 days.

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) non-cumulative 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.

Know Your Contract: Overage Pay

The members of the Advocacy Committee would like to remind you to track your workload and student roster numbers.  Article 8.3.2 of the PAT Agreement has language that defines workload “thresholds” for class-size, teaching load, caseload, and the number of unique course preparations. This language requires overload pay for educators whose workload exceeds those thresholds. Overage pay for the first semester is based on workload levels on the third Monday in October (October 19, 2020).

Register Today: Northwest Teaching for Social Justice Conference

PAT is once again excited to sponsor the Northwest Teaching for Social Justice Conference! The annual gathering of conversation, idea-sharing, and inspiration is just a few weeks away.

Join us on Saturday, October 17th online. The cost is just $10 — $5 for students.

Register Now

The keynote talk this year — by Chenjerai Kumanyika and Demetrius Noble — is Revolutionary Public Education at the Crossroads of Race, Class, and COVID. 

In addition, there are more than 25 workshops lined up in 2 sessions. See the full program at

We hope you can make it!

Teaching With Purpose Zoom Conference on "What is an Anti-Racist Educator?"

Join us for the Teaching With Purpose Zoom Conference on "What is an Anti-Racist Educator?" October 9th (Inservice Day). PAT Racial Equity Committee will sponsor the first 13 educators to register! We would like to prioritize members of color and members wanting to continue working with the Racial Equity Committee and/or their school-based equity teams this year to move the work forward. Use this link to register. If all the PAT spots have been filled and you'd like to attend, OEA and PPS have also agreed to sponsor members! Your professional development funds can also be used to cover registration if neither of these options are available. 

Retirement Planning Workshop with Ed Foster

October 8th at 4:30 – 6:30

PAT is happy to host our first workshop of the year dedicated to financial wellbeing and planning for the future, led by Ed Foster. For PAT members considering retiring now or in the near future.

  • How does my pension work?
  • How does the IAP account fit into that?
  • When can I retire? Does it make a difference if I retire now or later?
  • What pension options are available when I retire?
  • How will recent changes to PERS affect me?
  • What is a “PERS Bubble” and how can I get one?

See the flyer here, and RSVP here. A Zoom link will be sent to members who are interested in attending.

It’s Latinx/Hispanic Heritage Month!

September 15th is the beginning of Latinx Heritage Month, the PAT Racial Equity Committee would like to invite you to join other Latinx/o/a, Hispanic, Chicano/a PAT educators in affinity spaces. 

Watch our series of PAT Educators reading children's books celebrating Latinx/Hispanic Culture!

You can find events, curriculum, and resources for Latinx Heritage/Cultura Latina Month on our website.


How to Be an Anti-Racist: An Evening of Art + Conversation with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi

PAT is proud to sponsor Human Solutions’ event:How to Be an Anti-Racist: An Evening of Art + Conversation with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi”. This free online event is an invitation to understand and embrace anti-racism. Here are the details:

Join us on Thursday, October 1st at 6:30pm, for a  thought-provoking evening of art & conversation, featuring performing artists, Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty and Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, author of the bestselling book “How To Be An Anti-Racist,” with performing artists curated by BoomArts.

Guests will see relevant performances by local artists, hear a 20-minute presentation by Dr. Kendi and a 20-minute conversation with Dr. Kendi and Commissioner Hardesty, followed by 15 minutes of audience Q & A.

Register today to reserve a space:

HUNGRY? Order dinner from one these Black-owned restaurants:

LERC Workshop Series: “The Intersection of Racial Justice and Worker Advocacy” 

This fall the Labor Education and Research Center (LERC) at the University of Oregon is organizing a workshop series “The Intersection of Racial Justice and Worker Advocacy.” All talks are free and open to all. Learn more and sign up on the LERC website.

Please mark your calendar for upcoming sessions:

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OEA Mediation Network

The OEA Mediation Network provides confidential, non-judgemental mediation, and conflict resolution services to OEA Members as a membership benefit. These resources help facilitate communications, promote understanding, and help union members collaboratively resolve conflict at the lowest level.

For more information about the OEA Mediation Network, call us at 541-743-4154 or e-mail

Upcoming Webinar: Dealing with Difficult People While Remaining Professional

Oct 14- Dealing with Difficult People While Remaining Professional

Register Now

Nov 18- The Neuroscience of Conflict

Register Now

PAT Advocacy Cadre

Got a question about the PAT contract? The PAT Advocacy Cadre can help! 

We are in our fifth week of operating the PAT Advocacy Cadre, a group of 10 member-educators who will work closely with the UniServ Consultants to become experts on our contracts, and to support members who need help navigating the language of our union contracts. 

PAT Advocacy Cadre Hotline Hours: 

Mondays, 5-6:30 p.m. 

Phone: (503) 495-2144

Zoom Drop-In 


Prior to contacting the Cadre Hotline, members should first speak with their building representative. You can send an e-mail or voicemail to the cadre at any time, but they will only be responding during Monday hotline hours. 

To learn more and to meet the Advocacy Cadre, go to 


Bargaining Brief- September 28, 2020

PAT Colleagues:

On Monday, September 28, your bargaining team met with PPS to try again to reach agreement on topics that directly impact PAT members’ work lives.  The meeting can be viewed here (Part 1Part 2Part 3).  

We spent the entire session exchanging proposals dealing with the evaluation procedure during this CDL year. 

On a positive note, we reached an agreement on language that directs evaluators to recognize that educators need support and assistance during CDL rather than evaluations designed to identify unsatisfactory performance. 

In addition, PPS agreed that professional educators must receive notice that an administrator will conduct a drop-in observation either by receiving a communication prior to the class starting, or by having the administrator announce their presence when they enter the CDL class. 

Finally, the two sides agreed that for any Plan of Assistance (POA) either planned or started prior to March 2020, the PAT and PPS HR would meet to determine whether or not the plan should remain on hold until we return to in-person instruction, or whether the plan can move forward.

The two sides could not reach agreement on the timeline for adjusting the current evaluation for CDL conditions, or on what could happen if the timeline isn’t met.  If a committee of PAT members and PPS administrators cannot complete modifying the current evaluation tool by the end of October, PPS proposed that it could evaluate educators using the existing, unmodified tool. 

As all of you know, the existing tool is designed for a traditional in-person educational model.  Even the quickest review of that rubric makes clear that the descriptors for distinguished, proficient, developing, and unsatisfactory performance generally don’t apply to distance learning.  Determining an employee’s career status using an evaluation tool that is specifically not suited to current conditions is simply wrong.  PAT will not agree to any settlement that gives PPS that ability. 

The agreements we reached were accomplished after almost eight hours of bargaining the same topic.  Your team simply will not allow PPS to apply a “trust us” approach to any topic as significant as your evaluations. 

The two sides meet again on Friday, October 2nd.  We hope to make additional progress then.


In Solidarity,

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Bargaining Brief, September 23rd

PAT and PPS bargained Wednesday, September 23rd from about 12:15 until 3:15; you may view the sessions here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.  Our discussion focused almost entirely on evaluations of professional educators during CDL.  

Although there were some areas of agreement, the two sides were unable to reach agreement.  PPS agreed with PAT that educators primarily need support during CDL, but they asserted that the District must retain the right to non-extend or non-renew an educator based on distance learning evaluations.  Astoundingly, they recognize that no one in the district, including administrators, is fully experienced in distance online learning, and yet the PPS bargaining team insisted on having the ability to remove a teacher from teaching because of unsatisfactory performance teaching students during CDL.  

The right and requirement to evaluate educators is part of Oregon state law, but the moments of a tone deaf approach by the PPS district-administrators was surprising.  

The two teams agreed in concept to form a committee whose responsibility is to modify the existing evaluation rubric so that it is applicable to distance learning.  The committee will have equal numbers of PAT-appointed members and District management, and the District wants the committee to complete its task by October 26th.  According to the District, if the committee can’t complete the job by the 26th, PPS administrators will be able to evaluate educators using the existing rubric.  The District is adamant about this even though they have admitted that the rubric is unsuited to current teaching and learning conditions.  Your PAT team totally rejects that position and will continue to fight to achieve humane and sensible evaluation language.  

Until we have a complete agreement on the topic, PAT professional educators may have administrators do drop-in observations, but no educator should have a formal observation conducted.  

Your PAT team meets with the District again on September 28th from noon until 4 to continue negotiations.

In Solidarity,


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Retirement Seminar October 8th, 4:30-6:00PM

Are You Considering Retirement?

Join us virtually October 8th from 4:30-6:00PM to discuss pensions, IAP accounts, PERS, timing and all the details to retiring as a PPS Educator. 

This event is free to all PAT members.

PleaseRSVP here.   Once we receive your RSVP, we will send you the ZOOM meeting sign-in information. 

Make the most of your union membership by joining this educational workshop and taking advantage of the free resources available to members only.



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Bargaining Brief September 17, 2020

PAT Colleagues,

Once again, your PAT Bargaining Team met with PPS to continue negotiations on the MOA for working conditions and common understandings under CDL.  You may view the session from yesterday (September 17) here to get the full discussion that took place: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4

Today’s negotiations lead to two major agreements. PAT and PPS agreed to language for DLI educators regarding compensation for translating student materials for instruction, as well as language for additional compensation for PAT members who have to process the backlog of IEPs and evaluations resulting from the COVID-19 shutdown between March and August. 

Based on our agreement, all DLI teachers will receive compensation of up to five hours per week for time spent translating student core content materials when the district fails to provide those materials one week prior to the date they will be presented to students.  PAT and PPS hope and believe that there will be a limited number of times that DLI teachers will have to utilize the new language because PPS has expanded the number of outside translation services producing the materials.  Still, the District finally has recognized that DLI educators have workload issues unlike the rest of their PAT colleagues. 

For Special Education and related service educators, PAT was successful in getting an agreement that grants educators 2 hours of compensation for paperwork related to each IEP or evaluation postponed due to the COVID-19 shutdown.  The two hours per IEP/evaluation is in addition to language in the current CBA for time to write IEPs.  Like the DLI agreement, the District made significant movement when it recognized the enormous workload that the backlog of IEPs and evaluations presented. 

Finally, there were positive discussions regarding securing educator-directed time for all part-time PAT members, as well as a common understanding of what are appropriate activities for educators in PLCs. 

 We will meet with PPS again on September 23rd.   

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President's Message: The Year Ahead

Over the last 9 days, we have lived through yet another real-time crisis. As fires have raged across our state and most of the Western United States, the anxiety has been as thick as the smoke.  

Many of you have had to evacuate or prepare to evacuate your homes. Others have helped friends and loved-ones move to safer ground, or have taken refugees from evacuation zones into your homes. 

As always, I am blown away by the dedication and compassion of educators in our District. In the face of staggering current events, I see educators creating spaces for students to process, inquire, and lead, while prioritizing safe and supportive communities in a time of isolation. 

And once again, I see educators shouldering the burden of a school system that is not resourced or fully prepared for the challenges we face. Despite the lack of resources and harrowing circumstances, you continue to provide students with the best experience possible.  This has always been the case, but 2020 has a way of amplifying the persistent inequities that are our duty to correct.

This is why we fight for educators to have the time and the resources we need to do our jobs. 

In our recent Memorandum of Agreement with PPS:

  •       We fought for and won the right for every educator to have an average of at least 3 hours and 10 minutes (on average) each work day as educator-directed time—to create meaningful lessons, to reach out to students and families, to give students individual feedback on their work.
  •       We are still fighting for Dual Language Immersion educators to have the materials and supports for students in the language of instruction.
  •       We are still fighting for Special Educators to be given time to meet their students’ needs, or be compensated when required to work outside of the contract day to complete required meetings and paperwork.
  •       We are still fighting for our students and families to get the support that they need to be able to equitably access education in a Distance-Learning model.

As bargaining team member Emy Markewitz said, we aren’t asking for an extra cookie—we are asking for WHAT WE NEED. 

As a union, we will not stop asking for what we need to serve our students and create the schools that they deserve. 

Thank you for all you’re doing to improve the lives of our students, and please stay safe.

In Solidarity,


Elizabeth Thiel

PAT President

PAT and PPS Making Progress on an MOA for 2020/2021 School Year

Since July, PAT and PPS have been in negotiations regarding a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the 2020/2021 school year.  The PAT has proposed sections on what constitutes a safe return to work, working conditions (including educator-directed time), and support for families of the students we serve, among other topics.  Last week we agreed on key terms for the workday that should help each professional educator as we move past the “soft” open on September 14th. 

The work schedule for all educators contains the following provisions:

  •     The schedule must meet statutory requirements for instruction time, and for educator-facilitated instructional time in compliance with the ODE’s guidance set forth in Ready Schools, Safe Learners of August, 2020.
  •     All professional educators will receive an average of no less than three hours and ten minutes per day, or at least 950 minutes per week, of educator-directed time over the course of a full school week, that shall include the following:
  •     Educator-directed planning time;
  •     Educator-directed time to communicate with students and families;
  •     Educator-directed time to provide actionable feedback to students;
  •     Educator-directed time to assess student performance, and gather, track, and enter data.

“Educator-directed time” is flexible time - - educators are required to do the activities, but educators may conduct them when they are able.  This means that if an individual educator needs to take time to care for their child/children or to provide elder care, they may flex the time.  We also agreed that times in the day where the District has indicated options such as student “support/ office hours,” or “small group instruction/ asynchronous learning/ office hours,” etc. are times where the educator (not the administrator) decides what happens when. 

Finally, both sides agreed that office hours don’t count as part of the educator-directed time or educator planning time

Advocacy Cadre

Got a question about the PAT contract? The new PAT Advocacy Cadre can help! 

We are in our second week of operating the PAT Advocacy Cadre, a group of 10 member-educators who will work closely with the UniServ Consultants to become experts on our contracts, and to support members who need help navigating the language of our union contracts. 

PAT Advocacy Cadre Hotline Hours: Mondays, 5-6:30 p.m. 

Prior to contacting the Cadre Hotline, members should first speak with their building representative. You can send an e-mail or voicemail to the cadre at any time, but they will only be responding during Monday hotline hours. 

Through this program, we hope to continuously expand our contract advocacy and contract education work so that all members feel empowered to enforce their contractual rights in their buildings.  

Meet our 2020-2021 Advocacy Cadre on our website.

Upcoming Dates in Our Contract

The PAT Advocacy Committee would like to highlight several important dates that are quickly approaching.  These contractual dates are still in effect even though we are working in a Comprehensive Distance Learning model.  Due to our remote working arrangements, it is imperative to track these dates if you are a new hire or if you are considering applying for a leave of absence in the spring.

  • October 31-   Proof of Coursework-  Art. 9.B.1.c- “In order to receive a salary adjustment retroactive to the beginning of the current school year, a professional educator must, by October 31st, provide the Human Resources Department with proof of completion of coursework.”
  • 60 days from start of employment-   Proof of Experience Credit-  Art. 9.B.2.g-  “Such salary adjustments [based on previous experience] will not be retroactive, except that experience verified within sixty (60) days of the start of employment shall be retroactive to the first day of employment.”
  • 2nd Monday in October-   Study Leave – Spring Semester-   14.D.6.b(4)-  “Such applications for study leave for spring semester must be filed by the second Monday in October preceding the spring semester.”

You find our complete contract on our website.

Work Share Update

While the majority of Work Share payments have been issued to PPS employees, there are still a handful of one-off cases where employees have not received at least 2 payments, or in some cases, where educators have not received any payments.  If you fall into this category, please complete our brief survey so we can submit your contact information to PPS Human Resources.  

Please note that the majority, if not all, PPS employees who were furloughed on the Work Share program still have not received the first payment (also referred to as “the waiting period payment”).  If you are missing only one payment, please do not complete this form.  PPS is aware that the Oregon Department of Unemployment still has not issued the first week of payments due to the computer glitch that does not allow the state to override the one week waiting period payment. As of today, the State still has not processed the one week “waiting period” checks, but we will continue to work with PPS Human Resources on this issue. 

Nominations & Elections: Run for Interim E-Board Director Seat

Interim Executive Board Position

The PAT Nominations & Elections (N&E) Committee announces that there will be an interim election for one PAT Executive Board Director on Wednesday, October 14, 2020 (term ending on June 30, 2021).

Nominations for this position will open at the September RA on September 16, 2020, and will close at 5:00 PM on Monday, October 5, 2020. To nominate yourself for this position, please use this nomination form.  Nomination forms must be submitted electronically to Jennifer Dixon ( by 5:00 p.m. on October 5, 2020.  Any PAT member in good standing may run for this position.  Non-members are not eligible to run for an elected union office. Learn more about Executive Board Director responsibilities.

In accordance with our bylaws, the Representative Assembly will elect the interim director. Voting will occur at the October 14 Virtual RA. There will be no nominations from the floor due to our online format. 

Prior to the RA, candidates for this position will pre-record their three-minute speech with the N&E Committee on Zoom on one of two dates (Thursday, October 8th or Monday, October 12th). Candidates will be contacted by the N&E Committee to arrange this. Each candidate will have one opportunity to record their speech. There will not be multiple attempts, unless there is a technical issue. 

Speeches will be presented at the October RA. The Voters’ Pamphlet and Ballots will be sent electronically to building representatives in attendance at the October 14th PAT RA.

For more information, you can refer to the PAT Nominations and Elections Handbook.    

PAT Endorses Ballot Measures on the November Ballot

In this time of crisis and uncertainty, it is crucial that we invest in supportive services for our community and in sustainable, living wage jobs to fuel our economic recovery; and that we create policies that live up to our values and ideals. PAT is proud to endorse the following ballot measures on the November ballot which all play a part in building a more just, sustainable, and supportive city.

  •     Preschool for All Measure 26-214 has merged with the Universal Preschool for All campaign. The combined package will tax high earners in order to provide preschool for all 3- and 4-year-olds in Multnomah County. The plan will also guarantee a living wage for all preschool teachers and assistants, and gives them the right to unionize.
  •     Multnomah County Library Bond Measure 26-211 will expand and modernize the library branches in the neighborhoods that need them most, and build a new flagship library in East County. 
  •     Portland Schools Bond: Measure 26-215 will invest in our schools with funds to modernize Jefferson High School, create the new Center for Black Student Excellence, update curriculum resources, and make needed safety and accessibility improvements.
  •     Let’s Get Moving: Metro Bond Measure 26-218 will improve 17 of our most dangerous and congested roadways, greatly improve public transit options, address climate and equity priorities, and provide free youth passes for everyone under 18.
  •     Portland Parks Levy Measure 26-213 will maintain our parks and natural areas and restore vital recreation services and community center offerings, while maintaining jobs.
  •     The Real Police Accountability Measure 26-217 will give our community a voice in police use-of-force incidents, ensuring that police live up to our community values. 

Register to Vote by October 13th

Are You Registered to Vote?

The deadline to register to vote in Oregon in the upcoming election is October 13, 2020. You’ll also need to update your registration if you’ve moved since you last registered. Registering is easy and can be done online.

Since it is so important that everyone participates in voting, please make sure to mention the October 13 voting registration deadline to your students, and encourage them to remind their parents.

Need to register to vote?- Register here: 

Not sure if you’re registered correctly? Check here: 

Need to update your registration? Enter your info here, then click “Update Registration”: 

Voting is a vital part of our democracy, and your power is in your vote- but you can’t vote if you’re not registered!

Get Counted: 2020 Census

The final deadline for the 2020 United States Census is September 30th. You can still participate and ensure you are counted. Please visit to complete the questionnaire and be counted.

Participation in the Census is safe, important, and necessary. The Census affects $800 billion in public education funding, and we want to make sure our community is counted and will receive its fair share of federal and state funding for schools and other critical services.

Please educate your students about the Census, and encourage them to talk to their families about the importance of getting counted. For resources and ideas, visit