4/13/2020 – DRAFT MOU for online learning

Dear JCEA Members,

I wanted to reach out to you today and present the entire JCEA membership with DRAFT of a potential Emergency Remote Learning Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Jeffco Public Schools. Please let me reiterate this is a DRAFT based on what we have heard from our members over the last four weeks.

Over the past two, JCEA has been working diligently to draw up an MOU that addresses the current challenges with remote learning and craft specific protections for educators moving forward.

From your feedback, the JCEA Operational Board of Directors took your thoughtful questions and concerns, and constructed an Emergency Remote Learning MOU.

On April 9th 2020, we presented our DRAFT language for the Emergency Remote Learning MOU to Jeffco Public Schools Superintendent, Jason Glass and Chief Human Resource Officer, David Bell.

Currently, the District is reviewing the MOU language and our hope is that by the end of this week the Emergency Remote Learning MOU will move forward.

We feel strongly that this DRAFT MOU is reasonable and warranted to support you all in our new online world. I want to be clear – we have heard wide spread concern about the evaluation process this year and in addition to the language in the DRAFT MOU we are working on more specific language and agreements around evaluations.

Please take some time with the DRAFT MOU included below. I want to be frank with you – it is going to take work for us to ensure that this DRAFT MOU will be signed. Please keep an eye on your emails and texts for our next steps.

Lastly, you are an impressive group!

The work we are doing now will pay huge dividends in the future with our community. During these trying times, several of our parents have reached out to me, thanking me for what you are doing. Jeffco educators have been highlighted and celebrated in the news both locally and Nationally. The common theme from parents is that they believe they are lucky that their children are in Jeffco Schools and they are thankful to have you in their child’s life.

Remember, you are heroes and your efforts are making an impact.

Keep up the good work!

John Ford


April 9, 2020

A Memorandum of Understanding: Jeffco Public Schools (JPS) and the Jefferson County Education Association (JCEA)

Emergency Online Instruction

Part I Educator Work Environment and Safety

A. No educator shall be required to engage in work outside of their regular forty hour workweek. Schedules will remain flexible to provide time for personal needs such as caring for other family members during this stay at home period, educators will have the discretion to create a schedule that meets student needs as well as their own personal needs. Overall workload will not exceed the normal workload and all applicable contract provisions will apply.

B. Virtual collaboration and meeting options will be provided to all employees.

C. Educators may be required to take student attendance, assess work, and assign grades, but educators shall not penalize students for failing to complete the learning and enrichment activities during school closures due to inability to consistently access needed technology. Educators will contact parents if a student is not engaging, but will not be required to make multiple contacts. Educators will not be required to track their time online, nor shall they have to document student engagement over and above the ability of the technology platforms to document such engagement.

D. Special Education educators may be required to document student progress and the service minutes, but the documentation should be commensurate with regular documentation requirements. They will not be required to document in multiple ways.

E. Educators may be asked to attend virtual meetings with administration, as needed, during school closures, but the length and frequency of such meetings should follow standard building schedules. Buildings should utilize part of the Monday planning days for staff meetings.

F. Educators shall not be required to share their personal email or phone numbers to students, parents, or colleagues. Educators may use digital platforms for messaging students which hide the identity of personal phone numbers.

G. Educators without access to necessary resources to engage in work from a remote location, including but not limited to equipment, software and internet access shall be provided such access by the District or be held harmless. Educators will be offered the opportunity to enter their workspace on a limited basis to gather equipment and preparation materials.

H. When working remotely, educators will continue to ensure professional and timely communications with administrators, colleagues, parents and students.

I. Preparation for COVID-19 from the closure of schools from March 16, 2020 through reopening: All Mondays will be teacher planning and professional development days.

J. Classroom educators shall have the freedom to use their professional training and judgment to determine the scope and method to be utilized in providing appropriate learning and enrichment activities in alignment with a school’s instructional plan. (Jeffco’s Best Practices)

K. Non-classroom educators shall assess their current work in consultation with their supervisor to prioritize the most essential functions which can be done during school closures due to COVID-19. Non-classroom educators shall have the freedom to use their professional training and judgment to determine the scope and method to be utilized completing their work tasks.

L. Leave Provisions for the duration of the emergency proclamation related to COVID: the following leave provision adjustments shall be followed: Sick Leave MOU Language

M. Per the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) should an educator need to care for a family member who is ill due to COVID-19 or in a high-risk category, they may use their paid sick leave or utilize the sick leave bank. Educators who are sick or caring for family members will not be forced to work at the same time, but will take their sick days as allotted.

N. Clean and Sanitary Workspace. All workspaces will be cleaned and sanitized prior to any required reporting to work including to clean out their classrooms for the end of the year. Workspace access will be restricted for at least five days prior to reopening to ensure no possible exposure to the COVID-19 virus. This would include classrooms, offices, workrooms, libraries, bathrooms, and other areas in which employees perform work.

O. Educators at high risk for COVID 19 will be excused from having to return to the building during the pandemic.

P. Cleaning Supplies: Upon return to buildings, the District will ensure that each worksite has adequate cleaning supplies, including disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer. Educators will not be required to clean or sanitize classrooms; however, these supplies will be available for their use. If supplies are not available, with supervisor’s approval, employees may purchase such supplies with their own money, and they shall be fully reimbursed when receipts are submitted.

Part II Educator Evaluation

  1. Evaluations will be finalized with data available before March 13, 2020. If sufficient data for a single indicator, or the entire evaluation is unavailable, according to contractual provisions, the default rating for the indicator or the final evaluation will be effective.
  2. The 50% student growth portion of evaluation will not be included. (i.e. IEG’s)
  3. Educators on Performance Improvement Plans will have their evaluations finalized with data available. PIPs will be suspended for the rest of the year with no observations or PIP required activities on the part of the educator.

There will be no observations of online teaching that result in evaluative data.

Part III

This agreement will remain in effect while the emergency school closures due to COVID-19 are in effect. Either party may request revisions to this document during the time it is in effect.