PAT President Angela Bonilla is Featured on OPB's Think Out Loud

New PAT President Angela Bonilla was recently featured on OPB's Think Out Loud. Talking with Dave Miller, Angela discusses the challenges of last year and the supports educators need to then support their students and communities. Hear first hand Angela's thoughts on moving the union forward and the work that lies ahead.

Hear the whole interview on Think Out Loud's website (runtime 14:59).

Response to SCOTUS Decision, Roe v Wade

Educator --

As a human, a femme non-binary person, a Black Latine person, a queer person, all the ways I exist have had to mourn and feel angry this weekend. The decision passed down by the Supreme Court this week for Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturned decades of precedent around the right to privacy. These are the rights that marginalized folks have built and won. I have received communication from members and understand your urgency. I thank you all for your patience as I process this myself and figure out what to say in response. 

As US Labor Against Racism and War explains, “Make no mistake. Reproductive health care is a workers’ issue and overturning Roe v Wade is a racist attack on our sisters. The SCOTUS decision today will only affect those women of limited economic means and disproportionately impact poor and working women of color. The health and safety of our sisters are all at risk.” I would add that this decision also disproportionately impacts our trans and non-binary siblings looking for gender affirming and reproductive healthcare.

This is a union issue because our fight for justice is not for just us: It is for all working class folks. As the largest education local in the state, we help hold the line against these classist, sexist, transphobic, abilist and racist attacksI believe part of my role as your elected leadership is to make sure that whatever we ask of PAT (that's us, each and every member) is impactful and intentional. It becomes performance when it isn't rooted in community and is not led by and prioritizing those directly impacted or harmed.

In terms of our knowledge and acting in service to our community, I have tried to gather resources and support for PAT Leadership to vet and share out. That living document can be found HERE. Please let me know if there are any organizations you feel are supporting this work towards human rights and access to reproductive health that we can review and spotlight at [email protected]. I know we have a broad scope of member expertise and talent we can deploy to spaces where they are needed. 

What I know and trust is that we will never accept a world that decides that some have freedom over their bodies and others do not. We will not allow the privileged few to undo the centuries of struggle working class folks in this country have done to get closer to the promise of liberty and justice for all. The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. We may feel hopeless now, but we can and will do what it takes to make America “the land it never has been and yet must be”.

Please remember to take care of yourselves and each other.

En solidaridad y con cariño,
Angela Bonilla (she/they/ella)
President Elect, Portland Association of Teachers
[email protected]

Portland Association of Teachers
http://www.pdxteachers.org/

President’s Message: We Are PAT

Dear Educator,

It is a bittersweet task to write this, my final President’s Message. It has been my great honor to serve as the president of our union these past two years, and especially during a time of crisis, change, and uncertainty, when the united voice of educators has been more crucial than ever. For all of us, it has been a challenging time to say the least, but I am awed and humbled by what we have accomplished together.

Our union has not only survived the pandemic, we have met every challenge head on. Here are just a few things we achieved together in the last two years: 

  • Becoming a leading voice in an international conversation about the educator workload crisis
  • Strengthening ties with our PPS union partners, SEIU, PFSP, DCU, and ATU, including organizing together for safe and stable schools
  • Organizing with parents across the district for smaller class sizes and more building-based supports for students
  • Bargaining some of the strongest pandemic safety language in the country, enabling us to serve our students in-person while mitigating risk to students, educators, and the community
  • Elevating the voice of educators, through our IPC meetings with district leaders, town halls, and work with elected leaders
  • Bringing elected leaders into our classrooms, through Teacher for a Day, so they can experience the teaching and learning conditions that we live each day
  • Initiating the Advocacy Cadre, empowering members to know and enforce our contract
  • Winning ground-breaking contract language to advance racial equity in our union and in our schools
  • Building community amongst members, in our buildings and across the district through our committee work, projects, and celebrations

Educators have accomplished all this and more--despite an ongoing pandemic, distance learning, hybrid instruction, and intermittent shutdowns; while teaching through masks and over the noise of the air purifier; despite a chronic staffing shortage in our schools, and a revolving-door leadership in our district.  Despite all this, PAT members show up to fight for what our students deserve, and what our profession requires. 

Our power comes from our shared dedication to students, and our belief in what we can accomplish together as a union. 

Of course, we build PAT collectively, so there are many people I would like to recognize and thank: 

  • Gwen Sullivan, our out-going PAT Vice President, who has been a peerless advocate, leader, and partner
  • Our incredible PAT staff who consistently go above and beyond for our members 
  • Our elected PAT officers, Executive Board directors, and OEA Board directors who set and oversee our collective goals 
  • Our Committee Chairs and members of every PAT committee, who work to carry out those goals
  • Each one of our 350+ Building Representatives who are the frontline of our union, and who build solidarity and uphold our contract at every work site
  • Our Advocacy Cadre members, who have empowered so many Reps and members with the knowledge of our contract
  • Our unparalleled Bargaining Teams, both for regular certified educators and for substitutes 
  • Our Internal Organizers and External Organizers who build our unity and power
  • Our Retired members who continue to be active in PAT, whose wisdom and energy continue to bolster us
  • Every member who showed up at school board meeting in blue this year
  • And every member who has helped a colleague in need or advocated for our profession 

Our union is powerful because we share the load and do this work together. 

I am grateful to our incoming PAT leaders, and look forward to supporting them, alongside all of you, next year.

WE are PAT, and I could not be more proud to be a member of our union.

In Solidarity forever,

Elizabeth Thiel

PAT President

Know Your Contract: Can I Be Required to Work This Summer?

PPS is sending frequent communications about opportunities for summer professional development and training.  We want to make sure that everyone understands their rights. Article 6, Section 3.6 of your PAT/PPS Contract states:

“Professional educators who work beyond the 192-day work year shall be paid a daily rate of pay computed at 1/192 of their annual basic salary. With the exception of Sections 6.3.1, 6.3.3, 6.3.4, 6.3.5, 6.3.7, 6.3.8, and 6.3.9, professional educators shall not be assigned work beyond the standard work year unless there is mutual agreement between the administrator and the professional educator.” 

This is commonly paraphrased as, “summer trainings must be both paid and voluntary.” What you need to know is that you have the right to decline to participate in summer training. Anything that PPS or your administrator requires of you must be offered during your regular work-day and work-year.

Of course, if you would like to do the summer training, you should. But if you’d rather do them in the fall, you have the right to do that, and they have a duty to accommodate that preference. 

If you are feeling pressured to sign up for summer training and do not wish to work beyond your regular work-year, an appropriate reply to an email invitation might be, “I am available to participate in that training on or after August 24.”

Know Your Contract: When are Grades Due?

We have heard that at some schools, educators have been asked to submit grades this week. 

Article 6, Section 6.5.2 of our contract says, “professional educators shall have a minimum of two (2) full working days to submit grades/progress reports at the end of each grading period.” 

The fourth quarter grading period ends on Friday, June 10, so all professional educators have until the end of the day, Tuesday, June 14th, to submit final grades. While anyone is welcome to submit grades earlier than that, no one can be required to do so.

Donate to the PAT Sick Leave Bank

The current school year has seen an unprecedented need for sick leave bank requests. As a result, our hours were exhausted early in the year and we need your help to collect more hours for next year. 

Do you have unused sick leave hours? Please consider donating before the end of the school year to help support PAT members  facing serious health issues for next year. Members may donate up to 40 hours of sick leave annually. 

Are you retiring or resigning this year? Employees who have already submitted their notice of resignation are exempted from this maximum limit, and may contribute as many hours as they would like. 

The PAT Sick Leave Bank (see PAT/PPS contract Article 17.2.1.2) provides aid for colleagues who have exhausted their accumulated leave balances and are unable to work due to extended or recurring personal illness. With the help of the Sick Leave Bank, they are able to avoid the additional hardships of lost salary and lost insurance coverage during their illness. 

You can donate hours using this online form, or go to our website for additional information.

Apply Join Next Year’s PAT Advocacy Cadre!

PAT is seeking members to serve on next year’s  Advocacy Cadre. To apply, fill out this application form by June 27th. 

What is The PAT Advocacy Cadre? 

This small group of members will work closely with UniServ to become experts on our contract, and will provide member to member support.

The Advocacy Cadre will run a Zoom Advocacy Hotline, where Reps and other members can get immediate answers to questions about the contract and support to resolve problems in their buildings. 

In addition, the Advocacy Cadre will provide support with Rep Training, answering member e-mails to [email protected],org, and creating materials to help members better understand contract issues.

Learn More Here!

March for Our Lives: Saturday Action to End Gun Violence

Saturday, June 11th,  11:00 AM -  2:00 PM PT, Portland State Urban Plaza, Portland, OR

In the week and a half since the tragic mass shooting at the Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, many educators throughout the nation and in our own state have searched for ways that they can take action to pressure America’s elected leaders to take real action to prevent another senseless tragedy involving gun violence from taking place.

Since its founding in 2018, following another mass school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, NEA has partnered with the organization March for Our Lives. This student-led organization and its hundreds of local chapters around the nation push for changes at the community, state and national level to end gun violence in schools and in America.

On Saturday, June 11th, March for Our Lives chapters across the country are organizing marches, including here in Portland. Sign up here for updates. 

Join the PAT NEO Welcome Team

Volunteers needed for the PAT Welcome Team at New Educators Orientation, August 17th. Please join us!

A great way to help build a strong PAT is to welcome newly hired educators, and ask them to become members of PAT. Sign up here to be part of the NEW PAT Welcome Team

Training will be provided prior to the August NEO. We will send out more information about time and location to all who sign up. We typically need volunteers in the morning to greet new educators as they arrive, and during the lunch break.

Upcoming Events

For all upcoming events, please see the PAT calendar and OEA calendar.

PAT Action in Response to Gun Violence

PAT is dedicated to creating spaces for community connection and collective action. Please see messages below from two of our committees in response to recent events in Uvalde, TX.

Message from Social Justice and Community Outreach Committee

Message from Legislative Committee

Take care,

Portland Association of Teachers

____________________________________________________

A Message from PAT’s Social Justice and Community Outreach Committee

Tonight's Social Justice and Community Outreach Committee meeting will begin by holding space for educators to be in solidarity with one other. We will offer breakout rooms for educators to shoulder together how to process this as educators, how to be there for our students, as well as a space for meditation. There will also be time to discuss and plan concrete actions in response to this pandemic of violence against children in schools. Join the Zoom Meeting by clicking this link (Meeting ID: 832 3170 2046, Passcode: 82682).

It's hard to look beyond the horrifying news that continues to pour out of Uvalde, Texas. Next month is LGBTQIA+ Pride month and Disability Pride month. Our students whose identities intersect with LGBTQIA+ and/or disability are some of our most vulnerable, and so subcommittees will meet tonight as well, although it may be shorter than planned.

Wherever you find yourself this afternoon and evening from 4:30-5:30, we at SJCO stand with you in solidarity, hope, and action.

Warmly,

PAT Social Justice and Community Outreach Committee

Co-Chairs Alisha Chavez (she/her/ella) and Julie Whitaker (she/her)

____________________________________________________

A Message from PAT’s Legislative Committee

Dear Educators,

Our hearts are broken but we are out of tears. Our blood is boiling but we are exhausted.

When we chose to become educators, we committed to educating and serving our students and their communities. However, no course or professional development prepared us to respond to the constant onslaught of violence in this country.

There will be many calls to action, many letters to sign onto, many marches to attend, and it can be hard to decide which path to take. We want to tell you that whatever path you choose, know that your story, your lived experience in the classroom right now is important. SHARING our stories is also important. Our perspectives put students at the center; They remind policy makers that an injury to one is an injury to all, and illustrate that we have ALL had enough.

As the PAT Legislative Committee, it is our charge to communicate with local, state, and federal lawmakers, and at this time we want to uplift your voices and our students' voices. During non-contract hours, please share your stories, quotes, and reflections with us and we will pass them on to lawmakers at every level of government. 

The message we want to share is simple: Our stories matter. Our students’ lives matter. It is past time for our elected leaders to enact common sense gun laws.

When sending written comments and quotes, please redact any personal information and ensure no student identifiable information is shared (sharing grade level and age is okay). Please fill out this Google Form to share your stories. We hope to have enough by Saturday, May 28th, but if you can't send by then, send anyway. Comments and quotes may be edited to ensure student anonymity. Please let us know if you want to share your name and contact information, or if you prefer to share anonymously. Below are a few examples we have already received for reference.

Examples 

Student Quotes: 

“I’m scared, I don’t want to sit by the windows anymore.” - 7 year old, raised hand, unprompted, 5/25/22. 

Educator Story/Letter : 

To Whom It May Concern, 

Today, after not sleeping much last night, I put on my body armor (a denim dress), and prepared myself for all the questions I would answer today. How would I tell the families of the 6 & 7 year olds in my care that I will support them through this emotional rollercoaster? Many of whom didn’t have children 10 years ago, when the children of Sandy Hook were murdered. But I was an educator then, so I am now prepared for this. A parent asks me, “What do I say to my children?- I share the resources. A family asks me, “Is our school safe?- I share the protocols & my Stop the Bleed, military tourniquet training.  A caregiver asks me, “Should I keep my child home today?”- I offer advice. Teaching in this country has forced me to prepare for this, but it doesn't matter - the children still cry, the families are still scared, I am still preparing to put myself in front of a bullet for my students, while I pretend I am teaching math. I do not have answers, I do not have solutions, It should not be my responsibility. My job is to teach, my job is to create joyful learning experiences for our youngest and most vulnerable students. Of course I will protect them. But it is the job of policy makers to keep guns out of schools. Do your job, so I can do mine. 

  • Anonymous teacher of 1st grade students (6 and 7 year olds), PPS

Thank you for helping us to share stories with lawmakers. As Ida B. Wells-Barnett once said, “The way to right wrongs is to shine the light of truth on them”. It is time to share our truths.

In Solidarity, 

PAT Legislative Committee and PAT Leadership

Ami Fox, Chair 

Joanne Shepard

Jacob Jonas-Closs

Greg Burrill

Tina Lamanna

Erika Schneider

Vincent Chirimwami

Elizabeth Thiel

Gwen Sullivan

Angela Bonilla

Jacque Dixon

Portland Association of Teachers
http://www.pdxteachers.org/

Apply to Join the 2022-23 PAT Advocacy Cadre!

PAT is seeking members to serve on next year’s  Advocacy Cadre. To apply, fill out this application form by June 27th. 

What is The PAT Advocacy Cadre? 

This small group of members will work closely with UniServ to become experts on our contract, and will provide member to member support.

The Advocacy Cadre will run a Zoom Advocacy Hotline, where Reps and other members can get immediate answers to questions about the contract and support to resolve problems in their buildings. 

In addition, the Advocacy Cadre will provide support with Rep Training, answering member emails to [email protected],org, and creating materials to help members better understand contract issues.

You can read about this year's Advocacy Cadre here: www.pdxteachers.org/pat_advocacy_cadre

Cadre Members Commit to:

  • 2 days Advocacy Training on August 16th and 17th. (This will be held either live, or remotely, depending on safety recommendations at that time.)
  • 1 Zoom Hotline shift a week, during the school year, Mondays, 4:30-6:30 at PAT. 
  • Up to a half day twice a month to follow up on unresolved member needs from the Hotline shift (release time can be provided).
  • In addition to answering the hotline, this time may include ongoing training and other advocacy work with Uniserv Reps. Additional dates may be added depending on need.
  • This is a minimum 1-year opportunity and commitment, paid at the OEA cadre-rate ($33/hour)

Responsibilities

  • Assist Building Representatives and members who come to Zoom Advocacy Hotline;
  • Respond to emails from members;
  • Be a knowledgeable resource about the PAT contract and PAT systems for supporting members in different situations;
  • Follow procedure to inform UniServ reps of issues, determining next steps;
  • Potential additional release time/ pay for ongoing training or representation work;
  • Potential to shadow UniServ Reps on assignment.

Qualifications

  • Active PAT membership;
  • Experience as a PAT building rep or other similar union experience preferred;
  • Interest in continued union advocacy work;
  • Special consideration given to applicants with an interest in pursuing work as a UniServ Consultant; 
  • Special consideration given to applicants with characteristics that help create a group that represents the racial diversity of our membership, and of the job-types that our members hold.

Goals for PAT:

  • Build capacity among members to enforce our contract, support member rights, and organize and problem solve in buildings;
  • Develop leadership within PAT that represents the diversity of our membership demographics and workforce positions;
  • Create a pathway toward UniServ work for interested members.

To apply

Portland Association of Teachers
http://www.pdxteachers.org/

Teaching Against Climate Despair: A Climate Justice Teach-In

Teaching Against Climate Despair: A Climate Justice Teach-In

Monday, May 23, 2022

4:00 pm – 5:30 pm, Virtual. 

Hosted by the Portland Public Schools Energy & Sustainability Team, co-sponsored by the PPS Climate Justice Committee and the Portland Association of Teachers

REGISTER HERE

Join us online as teachers from around Portland share how they creatively incorporate climate justice topics into their classrooms, from art and activism to Indigenous knowledge to the science and economics of a green future.

Let’s share how we equip our students to recognize the breadth of the climate emergency, to probe its social and economic causes, and to come to see themselves as activists for a just society and a stable climate. 

Panelists include:

Erika Alabarca, Roseway Heights Middle School — Erika is a 7th-grade social studies teacher at Roseway Heights, where she helps organize an after-school ECO club, and incorporates soil regeneration into her classes. She is an active member of the PPS Climate Justice Committee. 

Christina Aucutt, Grant High School — Christina teaches the Climate Justice elective at Grant High School, where she brings speakers from across Portland to tie climate justice education to real world issues and grassroots initiatives. 

Caitlin Blood, MITCH Charter School — Caitlin is a former farmer and agricultural advisor. She is the Director of Sustainability at MITCH Charter School, where she works to root classroom content in an agricultural framework. Her students explore math, language arts, science, and history through hands-on agricultural observation and practice.

Treothe Bullock, McDaniel High School — “Tre” teaches Climate Justice and Chemistry at McDaniel and is an active member of the PPS Climate Justice Committee. 

Joe Ferguson, Alliance High School — Joe is the Natural Resources, Science, and Instructional Facilitator at Alliance. He incorporates climate science and sustainability lessons into his classrooms, setting up wildlife cameras at Whitaker Ponds and partnering with Community Cycling Center for bike mechanic lessons. 

Rachel Hanes, Glencoe Elementary — Rachel is a 2nd-grade teacher, member of the PPS Climate Justice Committee, and active in the Portland Association of Teachers. Her teaching aims to connect students’ lives to climate issues, such as oil pipelines and forests. 

Jesse Hunter, Woodstock Elementary — Jesse is a 2nd-grade teacher at Woodstock School in Southeast Portland. He has led efforts to establish school gardens and garden education programs at Lent Elementary and Woodstock.

Suzie Kassouf, Grant High School — Suzie has a deep background in grassroots climate justice organizing. At Grant High School, she has focused on turning her classroom into a place for connection, community, justice, and love.  

Cat Phung, Growing Gardens — Cat is the North Portland Youth Grow Educator and Community Organizer for Growing Gardens. She is a first-generation Vietnamese American, gardener and cook, with a background in environmental science and outreach. 

Gerald Scrutchions, Grant High School — “Scutch” teaches Human Rights and Environmental Justice at Grant. He has been a mentor, educator, and advocate for many of the student climate activists from Tubman Middle School protesting the I-5 freeway expansion.

Tim Swinehart, Lincoln High School — Tim teaches environmental justice and is a member of the PPS Climate Justice Committee. He works with district staff to devise and implement policies to spread climate justice education across Portland Public Schools.

President's Message: You Make Our Union Strong

Dear Educator,

With less than a month left of the 2021-22 school year, I want to recognize how much you contribute to the lives of your students, to our profession, and to our union.  

This year brought two major waves of COVID-19, a nation-wide crisis of crushing workload, transitioning in and out of CDL learning at some schools, and a critical shortage of educators and school staff. 

Because of you, it also includes countless moments of connection, joy, and growth for the 45,000 students we serve. 

Our schools are only possible because of the unparalleled professionalism, commitment, and creativity of educators and school staff. Despite the uncertainty of our world today, educators create meaning, build community, and work toward a better future, every single day. 

As we draw toward the conclusion of this exhausting school year, I want you to know, you are deeply appreciated, and you are making a difference. You make every day better for your students, and you make our union stronger. 

One of our union’s most important goals is to ensure that next year will be a better year for students, and a better year for educators. That is why we have been advocating for PPS to amend its proposed Budget for 2022-2023, which still includes a reduction in the number of classroom educators and Special Education staff serving students next year. Please watch the remarks that PAT President-Elect Angela Bonilla and I delivered to the PPS board this week, and join us in advocating for a budget that prioritizes smaller class sizes and direct support to our students. 

In Solidarity,

Elizabeth Thiel

PAT President Thiel

Donate to the PAT Sick Leave Bank

Do you have unused sick leave hours? Please consider donating them to help support PAT members  facing serious health issues.

Members may donate up to 40 hours of sick leave annually. Employees who have already submitted their notice of resignation are exempted from this maximum limit, and may contribute as many hours as they would like. 

The PAT Sick Leave Bank (see PAT/PPS contract Article 17.2.1.2) provides aid for colleagues who have exhausted their accumulated leave balances and are unable to work due to extended or recurring personal illness. With the help of the Sick Leave Bank, they are able to avoid the additional hardships of lost salary and lost insurance coverage during their illness. 

You can donate hours using this online form, or go to our website for additional information.

It's Time for PAT Rep Elections

It is time to elect your site’s PAT Building Representatives for next school year! Each site is entitled to one Representative for every nine members.

Reminders:

  • Every site must hold a Rep election every year.
  • Only PAT members can vote, and only PAT members can run to be a Rep.
  • Each site should create a ballot and hold their election as soon as possible.

What do Building Reps do? Our union works because Reps do a lot! That’s why it is important to have a full team of Reps to share the load. 

Here are some of the responsibilities Reps take on: 

  • Come to Representative Assemblies at PAT each month
  • Hold meetings for PAT members at their site
  • Educate members about our contract
  • Advocate to protect member rights and due process
  • Meet with building administrators to solve problems
  • Organize members around issues at your site or in the District 

Ideally, each school has a diverse team of Reps that includes educators from a variety of grade levels and specialties, one that mirrors the racial and gender diversity of your site. Think about who you believe would be a good representative, and talk to them about running, too.

Our building elections are how we ensure that Reps at each site are trusted and respected leaders. It is crucial that members have a voice in who is representing them, and that everyone knows the process and has access to running and voting. If you’re interested in running to be a Rep, let your current Head Rep know.

For more information (including: How to Hold a Building Rep Election, Instructions for Creating Your Ballot (and the Ballot Template), Where to Report Your Elections Results, etc.), please visit www.pdxteachers.org/pat_elections

May Primary Election: Remember to VOTE by May 17th

Election day is less than a week away! Make sure your voice is heard: Return your ballot by Tuesday, May 17th.

It’s not too late to support our PAT PAC-endorsed candidates. Let’s work together to get them into office so that they can fight for us, our students, and all Portlanders. Sign up with a campaign to knock on doors, send texts, make phone calls, or lend a hand in other ways:

Jo Ann Hardesty’s volunteer calendar

Sign-up to canvass for Jessica Vega Pederson, or find other ways to get involved

Help out AJ McCreary

Volunteer for Kaliko Castille

Here is the complete list of PAT PAC’s endorsed candidates. Learn more about them on our website.

Portland City Council

Position 2: AJ McCreary

Position 3: Jo Ann Hardesty

Multnomah County
Chair: Jessica Vega Pederson

District 2: Susheela Jayapal

Metro Council

President: Lynn Peterson

Oregon House of Representatives

HD 28: Dacia Grayber

HD 33: Maxine Dexter

HD 41: Kaliko Castille

HD 43: Tawna Sanchez

HD 44: Travis Nelson

HD 45: Thuy Tran

HD 46: Khanh Pham

Oregon Senate

SD 17: Elizabeth Steiner Hayward

Also check out OEA PAC’s endorsements for statewide candidates:

Governor: Tina Kotek

Oregon Labor Commissioner: Christina Stephenson

U.S. Senate: Ron Wyden

U.S. Congress (CD1): Suzanne Bonamici

U.S. Congress (CD2): No Recommendation

U.S. Congress (CD3): Earl Blumenauer

U.S. Congress (CD4): Val Hoyle

U.S. Congress (CD5): Jamie McLeod-Skinner

U.S. Congress (CD6): Andrea Salinas

Whomever you choose to vote for, make sure to get your ballots in by Tuesday, May 17!

The PAT PAC is funded entirely through member contributions, not through dues dollars. Learn more about the PAT PAC here.

Celebrate Asian American Pacific Islander Month

Our PAT Social Justice Committee invites you to celebrate ASIAN AMERICAN PACIFIC ISLANDER MONTH with your students. Please see our website for engagement opportunities and resources, including:

  • Lessons and Resources for your classroom
  • AAPI Read Alouds
  • AAPI Affinity Space
  • Community Events
  • And more!

Thank you to the educators who gathered these resources. Please read this note from Karen Liao, of our PAT AAPI Month Planning Committee:

I teach 2nd grade and have a student who consistently uses the word "American" when they mean "white." I'll remind them that Americans can be any race and they will apologize and change their language.. until our next discussion about race. I'm not upset with them because there is so much in mainstream culture that conflates “American” with whiteness. For me, this is the importance of AAPI Month -- when we can learn about and teach about the foundational roles AAPI have in America, not just in terms of infrastructure, labor, and culture, but also in terms of who gets to be an American. (Every elementary teacher should have I Am an American: The Wong Kim Ark Story by Martha Brockenbrough, Grace Lin, and Julia Kuo in their classroom.) If you are planning on teaching about Lunar New Year, or cultural practices and traditions from Asian or Pacific Islander homelands, STOP! Teach that any other month besides this one. May is Asian American and Pacific Islander American Month. 

Professional Learning Plan: Update from the PAT Instruction and Professional Development (IPD) Committee

On Tuesday, May 10th, Dr. Proctor’s office sent an email about a teacher professional learning plan. The same information went out in Teacher Connect earlier that day. 

When district senior leadership shared an earlier draft of this plan with us at Instructional Practices Council (IPC), our main feedback was a deep concern that school-based classroom teachers were not part of the plan’s development. While we cannot turn back time and include varied teacher perspectives from the beginning of this plan’s development, we suggested ways in which teachers can be involved going forward.

If you have read the letter from Dr. Proctor’s office, you can see that they have taken our advice and are making an effort to seek out teacher input. We encourage you to review the professional learning plan in this slide deck. You can also have a look at this FAQ and submit any questions still unanswered via this form. These are all linked in the email from Dr. Proctor’s office and Teacher Connect as well. 

And please join us at IPD Committee meeting next week, Wed., May 18th, 4:30 - 5:30 PM to hear from Kristina Howard, Interim Director of Teacher Professional Learning about how this plan has been developed so far. This will also be a time to ask about anything not clarified for you on the FAQ and give any additional feedback you may have. 

Information about how to join this meeting will be sent soon from the PAT office.

Instructional Framework Advisory Group: Another Update from the PAT IPD Committee

You may have seen the communication in this week’s Teacher Connect about the Instructional Framework Advisory Group. We wanted to share some more information with you and encourage you to share your input with our district leadership.

As with everything else, our message to senior district leadership around the Instructional Framework Development has been that teachers must be involved as full participants with agency to make decisions and shape final outcomes. When we were asked to nominate only 8 teachers for an advisory group to represent the diversity of our over 4,000 members we declined to participate in such a flawed process. Fortunately, the outcome of this was an open and honest discussion between PPS and PAT leadership about what it means to collaborate and how we can support each other to work together towards shared goals for our students.

The practical results are as follows:

  • On April 19, PPS Leadership emailed all teachers directly to ask for participants for an advisory group
  • Over 100 teachers indicated interest and 25 were invited to join the advisory group. There is also a group of 13 TOSAs and Mentor Teachers who were invited by their department heads to join.
  • To provide district-wide transparency, PPS Senior Leadership willingly agreed to:
    •  Share the names and roles of everyone on the core design team and also a summary of the work that has already been done. You can find that information here.
    • Create a google site with all documents, meeting materials, and recordings of meetings for the Advisory Group. In addition, every page on this site has a feedback form linked at the bottom and there is an FAQ which will be regularly updated.
    • Send weekly updates in Admin Connect and Teacher Connect which will also contain a link to the feedback form.

We have also shared our concerns about The New Teacher Project (TNTP) – both about the organization’s ties to corporate ed reformers and the fact that they’re outside contractors who have been hired during a time when schools are losing teaching positions. This remains an area where we do not see eye-to-eye.

Again, we encourage all members to share questions, ideas, experiences, and whatever else might help inform decisions about the development of the Instructional Framework via the pathways indicated above.

Advocacy: Deadline for Contract Exceptions May 13th

Deadline: The deadline this year is Friday, May 13th, 2022 (for Contract Exceptions for next academic year). Contract Exceptions are welcomed prior to this date. When Contract Exceptions are received before the deadline, it provides more time for documents to be reviewed and questions to be answered. At times, the Advocacy Committee needs additional information prior to making a decision. Find the Contract Exception form here

What is a Contract Exception: A Contract Exception is a process that allows a worksite to apply for an exception to the terms and conditions of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). While creating exceptions to our contract language is not encouraged, we recognize that specific worksites may have a specific need for a given year. This process allows for that need to be considered. Contract Exceptions must be approved by the PAT Advocacy Committee and the District prior to implementation. A contract exception is valid only for the school year for which it was approved. 

Who decides if my school should submit an exception for approval: Contract Exceptions are member driven, so should be initiated by educators. 

If referencing a previous year’s form, double check that you have the correct article number. Here is the current contract.

Some key things to remember:

  • The article number needs to be specific (eg 7.7.1) to the requested exception.
  • Double check your math.
  • You MUST include copies of schedules or calendars that reflect the current and proposed changes. Identify changes to teacher hours, student hours, planning time, etc. 
  • Consider and address the impact on Specialists vs. Gen Ed teachers.
  • Required: What is the option for members who oppose the exception?
  • Head reps should always be involved in the contract exception process at a site.
  • Review the FAQ’s here.

Role of the Committee when reviewing:

  • Protect member rights
  • Support member needs
  • Ensure the integrity of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) 
  • Do no harm to the bargaining process and/or open grievances

Join Us for Party in the Park, May 20

Come join us on Friday, May 20th at 3:45 PM (or anytime after school) at Laurelhurst Park to help celebrate the (almost) end of the school year! It’s been over two years since we’ve been able to hold our annual Party in the Park, so we are excited to finally be able to gather together again! Food and drinks will be provided (alcoholic and non-alcoholic). Please feel free to bring your families, too!

RSVP here today

PAT Educators of Color Social, May 27th

The PAT Racial Equity Committee is excited to host another social for PAT educators of color. Let’s toast to surviving the school year! Join us for food, fun & fellowship. Dinner and drinks will be provided at this family-friendly event at Amalfi’s, May 27th from 4:00-7:00 PM. RSVP today!

See the animated flyer!

 

PAT's Retiree and Outgoing Officers Celebration, June 8th

PAT is thrilled to celebrate and reflect on the careers of all of our retiring PAT educators. We will also be honoring the PAT officers and executive board directors and their service to PAT. Retiring educators will receive an invitation soon with more details for the celebration happening on Wednesday, June 8 at 4:30pm.