3/5/2021 – AMP Issues, Budget Cuts, and Workload… Oh my!

CEA Collective Bargaining Session #3

Joint Communication: March 3rd, 2021

JCEA and the District met this evening to discuss several articles/proposals and offer several counter proposals. Both teams were allowed time to ask clarifying questions about the proposals and to answer these questions.

JCEA proposed a new article to address AMP (Art, Music and PE) concerns, and there were several AMP representatives present to introduce the potential language. The District presented new language for Article 17-Compensation. Each team described several counterproposals.

The District

  • Article 1 – Definitions
  • Article 2 – Reservation of Management Rights
  • Article 3 – Association Relationship

JCEA

  • Article 13 – Leaves
  • Article 4 – Negotiation Procedures and Successor Agreement

Nicole Stewart, Jeffco CFO, shared a Budget Presentation and there was a robust discussion around the proposed budget for next year.

The District’s team recognized and appreciated the efforts of the JCEA team and the late Robert Hawkins in writing the Commitment to Equity language. The teams will be discussing the language in the coming weeks.

Both teams agreed to end the evening after the Joint Communication statement was crafted and will work with their respective teams to prepare for the next meeting, which is scheduled for Thursday, March 11th at 4:30 pm.

You can find copies of all the proposals and counter-proposals at https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1GEu2L7HCr3DszdBaXUeVcBYlNvCGfQ3c?usp=sharing

See you next time,

Your JCEA bargaining team

Report from the BOAT

We were so proud of JCEA members and Article Bargainers, Jenn Baker and Colleen Turner-Keefe, for their presentation of the AMP article. They were articulate, passionate, and illustrated the need for this language beautifully. Stay tuned for the District counter. Many of their questions showed that they do not understand the world of elementary AMP educators.

The District’s counter proposals for Articles 1-2-3 didn’t always make sense. They are important articles about definitions and management rights and Association rights, but a little wonky and in the weeds. A lot of back and forth, at times a little heated. District is hesitant about the right of ARs to talk to members during the day as long as instruction is not interrupted.

They also didn’t want to guarantee JCEA participation in District committees that we have had representatives on for years, nor to JCEA language providing access to new hires at District induction. Does anyone remember having the police called when we were at induction on public sidewalks, holding signs, welcoming new hires? That was with the 2013-2015 BOE that was recalled. We NEED this guarantee of access. Who knows what the future holds?

The District made their financial presentation starting at about 8:00pm. The questions began at 8:21. Things got testy at times from our new Interim Chief Financial Officer who refused to give details about the proposed cuts at central administration. JCEA wants to know which positions are recommended for cutting.

Other potential budget cuts included 4 day weeks (4 days of 10 hours work-not sure how long the student day would be.), school consolidations, furlough days, increasing class sizes, etc. Things we’ve heard talked about before like during the last recession. In 2011-2013 class sizes were increased, we had some furlough days, and many other budget cuts. Unfortunately the board members who were elected in 2013 did nothing to restore cuts. We’ve been behind ever since. Sounds like “here we go again.”

As for the school consolidations, JCEA is not for closing schools, but right now they are “starving” small schools to death and if we continue letting them “starve” they will totally fail. So, are we going to fund them appropriately (real equity) or consolidate schools (while considering equity)? These schools are having to make cuts that are not contractually allowable like no DtL or going over class size ranges. We have to have a solution for small schools, many of which are title school serving our neediest students.

We look forward to seeing you on our Facebook Red for Ed page OR watch the District livestream next week! WATCH HERE

Next week on Thursday March 11th

  • Counter proposals from District
  • Proposals from JCEA
    • Article 9 (student discipline)
    • Article 15 (temp contracts)
    • Waiting to counter Article 17 (compensation)
    • Possible counter to their latest proposal for Articles 1-2-3.

Thursday March 18th

  • Article 12 (hiring and displacement)
  • Article 18 (position hold)

**Action Needed**

Share your story with the team! Any topic… consider this question: Why does something in the contract need to be changed? SUBMIT STORY HERE

Coming soon

Your team would like members to keep a “time card” for a week to demonstrate the need for more planning time. Stay tuned and check in with your AR after Tuesday’s Council meeting!

After Spring Break: Survey on salary, District budget cut proposals, and actions YOU are ready to take on money issues!

JCEA parent and community conversation

JCEA’s Community Outreach Action Team (COAT) is hosting their THIRD small group conversation for parents and community members who want to partner with our members to continue to advocate on behalf of student and educator safety. There are parents and community members across Jeffco who support this cause and it is our work to provide space for this community to connect and grow. If you are interested in getting involved in parent and community outreach generally please email Elizabeth Kantner at esbluestar@gmail.com

Join us and bring a Jeffco parent with you! Thursday, March 25th at 7:00pm
You must register in advance to attend – REGISTER HERE

CMAS Testing: Go or no go?

Today a new bill regarding CMAS (HB21-1161) passed out of the House Education Committee on an 8-1 vote. While HB 11-1161 does not do everything that we wanted, it is a bill that meets the guidance put out by the US DOE and therefore will meet their requirements for a waiver and does provide some relief from CMAS testing. HB11-1125 (the original bill) was killed in committee today.

As a reminder, here is what HB 11-1161 does in a nut shell:

  • Suspends the Science CMAS for Spring 2021
  • Suspends Social Studies CMAS for 2021
  • Students in grades 3, 5, and 7 will take the ELA CMAS assessment (only)
  • Students in grades 4, 6, and 8 will take the Math CMAS assessment (only)
  • Parents will have an option to request their child take both ELA and Math assessments but districts will have flexibility on how they offer the second test
  • Accountability waived for 2021-2022 No CMAS scores will be used in educator evaluation for 2021-2022
  • Ability for schools and districts to ‘on the clock’ to appeal their rating even with accountability waived

Not part of the bill but an additional piece of flexibility that was discussed at part of the negotiations:

  • Districts will notify families who have chosen remote learning for the school year of the option to come in to take the CMAS for their grade level, but they are NOT required to take the CMAS Districts will have similar flexibility when it comes to the administration of make-up tests

The bill will now go to the Appropriations Committee on Monday, March 8th and then will be on the floor of the House. We expect the bill to be in Senate education mid next week.

We would like to lift up, acknowledge and thank JCEA member, Ang Anderson, for her testimony to the House Education Committee today which undoubtedly helped move this bill forward. #JCEAproud

JCEA Leadership elections

JCEA Vice President candidate Dale Munholland

My name is Dale Munholland and I would like to be your next JCEA Vice President.

I have been a teacher for 22 years and joining JCEA was literally the very first thing I did when I attended induction for JeffCo schools back in 1998.

During the past 22 years, I have been witness to some of the most turbulent and trying times in our district’s history. From the fallout and aftermath of Columbine to the desperate times of the bad board, to our current reality of virtual teaching. I was highly involved in the Recall of the School Board in 2015 as the Political Action Chair on the JCEA Board. I am a member of the CEA FUND Committee helping fund campaigns around the state in support of public education. Currently, I’m a member of the JCEA negotiations team as well as the Vice President of JCEA.

Looking forward, I think it goes without saying that our profession and education, in general, will never look the way it once did. Teaching will be forever different, learning will be different, schools will be different. I want to help ensure that those differences are beneficial for our classrooms and our teachers. Beyond overcoming our current struggles there are several other challenges that must be surmounted; an entirely new contract, budgetary limitations, and a new board majority, as well as other as of yet unknown obstacles that we will need to overcome in the future. I want to help lead this organization into this new frontier. Together we can meet these and any future challenges and overcome them.

I humbly ask for your vote as JCEA’s Vice President.

JCEA Treasurer candidate Ernest Garibay

I’m Ernest Garibay, your JCEA Treasurer, and a teacher at Standley Lake High School. This is my 10th year teaching secondary math and my 5th year teaching in Jeffco. I have been a leader in JCEA for almost two years, and have worked evenings, weekends, and summers in order to build power in our Association.

In my role as Treasurer, I have helped guide our Association’s direction as part of the Executive Committee, helped oversee our Excellence Fund scholarships, and have assembled a Financial/Budget Advisory Committee, which our Association has been without for many years.

In addition to my role as JCEA Treasurer, I am also a member of the JCEA Bargaining Team, our EMOAT Team, and am involved in supporting other action teams and strategic teams at district-wide, articulation area, and building levels.

Virtual NEA RA for self-funded candidates

What is the NEA RA?

The National Education Association Representative Assembly–the RA–is the highest decision-making body within the over 3 million-member NEA. With over 8,000 delegates, the RA is also the world’s largest democratic deliberative body.

Over the course of eight business sessions spanning four days, RA delegates debate the vital issues that impact American public education and set Association policy and activities for the year ahead.

JCEA members Christine Trujillo & Ami Prichard will be seeking election to represent JCEA members at the 2021 NEA-RA.

JCEA Officer elections are nearing!

The vote for Vice President, Treasurer, and NEA-RA representatives will open on the evening of Tuesday, March 9th after Council and will close March 16th at 5pm. VOTE LINK WILL BE SENT TO YOUR @jeffco.k12.co.us EMAIL ADDRESS!

ARs Don’t Forget!

This Tuesday, March 9th is the next JCEA AR Council meeting. Check your emails for the Zoom registration link. Can’t attend? Ask another member to go in your place!