1 2 5A 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 8 PUBLICATION FOR MEMBERS OF 2 9 THE 4 7OREGON 5 6 4EDUCATION 7 5 8 6 9ASSOCIATION 4 24 7 5 8 3 9 1 5 3 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 4 2 5 3 6 5 8 6 9 0 7 0 9 4 8 5 6 3 3 8 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 9 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4 0 9 6 4 5 2 8 4 9 6 8 3 76 2 1 76 2 5 3 4 5 76 8 7 9 0 9 3 8 6 4 5 3 4 24 1 67 4866837852875979865623658075397565487872386 4257 1 1 2 5 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 6 2 9 4 7 5 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 24 7 5 8 3 9 1 5 3 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 4 2 5 3 6 5 8 6 9 0 7 0 9 4 8 5 6 3 3 8 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 9 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4 0 9 6 4 5 2 8 4 9 6 8 3 76 2 1 76 2 5 3 4 5 76 8 7 9 0 9 3 8 6 4 5 3 4 24 1 67 4866837852875979865623658075397565487872386 4257 1 1 2 5 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 8 294756 475869424758391536 47586944253758690709485 6 3 3 8 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 9 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4 0 9 6 4 5 2 8 4 9 6 8 3 76 2 1 2 6 2 5 3 4 5 76 8 7 9 0 9 3 8 6 4 5 3 4 24 1 67 4866837852875979865623658075397565487872386 4257 1 1 2 5 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 7 2 9 4 7 5 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 24 7 5 8 3 9 1 5 3 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 4 2 5 3 6 5 8 6 9 0 7 0 9 4 8 5 6 3 3 8 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 3 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4 0 9 6 4 5 2 8 4 9 6 8 3 76 2 1 76 2 5 3 4 5 76 8 7 9 0 9 3 8 6 4 5 3 4 2 4 1 67 4866837852875979865623658075397565487872386 4257 1 1 2 5 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 5 2 9 4 7 5 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 24 7 5 8 3 9 1 5 3 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 4 2 5 3 6 5 8 6 9 0 7 0 9 4 8 5 6 3 3 4 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 9 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4 0 9 6 4 5 2 8 4 9 6 8 3 76 2 1 76 2 5 3 4 5 76 8 7 9 0 9 4 4 6 4 5 3 4 24 1 67 4866837852875979865623658075397565487872386 4257 1 1 2 5 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 2 2 9 4 7 5 6 4 7 5 8 6 9 4 24 7 5 8 3 9 1 5 3 2 9 7 5 8 6 9 4 4 2 5 3 6 5 8 6 9 0 7 0 9 4 8 5 6 3 3 8 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 9 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4It’s 0 9 6Your 4 5 2 8Turn: 4 9 6 8Engage 3 76 2 1 76 3 4 5 76 8 7 9to 0 9address 3 8 6 4 5 3 4 24 1 67 in2a5 campaign 4 8 6 6 8 3 7 8 5the 2 8 7class 5 9 7 9size 8 6 5crisis 6 2 3 6 5in8 our 0 7 5 public 3 7 7 5 6 schools 548787238642551 1 2 5 4 7 9 0 2 5 4 7 3 0 5 7 5 9 2 0 9 3 6 9 2 0 5 0 3 7 2 8 4 5 0 6 0 3 74 1 6 3 74 8 3 0 2 94756 475869414758391536 475869442536586907094856 3 3 8 5 7 5 6 3 5 24 3 5 6 3 8 9 5 9 6 0 7 0 7 0 9 8 6 5 1 3 5 67 8 9 0 5 1 4 3 6 5 8 6 9 7 0 9 1 2 3 4 0 9 6 4 5 2 8 4 9 6 8 3 76 2 1 76 2 5 3 4 5 76 8 7 9 0 9FEBRUARY 3 8 62013 4 5| VOLUME 3 4 24 1 674 87 : NUMBER 2 866837852875979865623258075397565487872386 4257 19
WHAT’S YOUR NUMBER?
A FRESH PAIR OF EYEGLASSES. NEW SCHOOL CLOTHES. A WORKING HEARING AID. WARM WINTER COATS. AN INCREDIBLE EDUCATION. ALL BECAUSE OF YOU. OEA MEMBERS IMPACT THE LIVES OF OREGON students in profound ways – in the classroom, on school grounds, and at home. Through the OEA Foundation, you can contribute to the wellbeing of students whose basic needs – like clothing and medical expenses – are unmet by our state’s social service programs. This year, and particularly in this economy, consider making a tax-deductible donation to the OEA Foundation to ensure all public education students have the resources they need to succeed in school. The Foundation is unique in that 100 percent of all donations go directly back to our students – no overhead cost involved. Make an online donation today (or sign up for monthly payroll deductions if you’re able) at www.oregoned.org/oeafoundation. In their own unique way – Oregon’s students thank you.
DO YOU KNOW A STUDENT IN NEED? Apply for a grant from the OEA Foundation. Call 800.858.5505 to request an application, or download one at www.oregoned.org.
CONTENTS / 02.13 VOLUME 87 : ISSUE NO. 2
Departments President’s Column
05 / get involved
By Gail Rasmussen, OEA President
06 / Events for OEA Members Newsflash
24 On the Cover
18 / What's your number?
OEA members launch a campaign to lower class sizes and improve learning conditions for our students
10 / Arming Teachers Won’t Make Schools Safer Licensure
12 / avoid falling through the cracks
20 / The Education Crew
Teaching & Learning
14 / ALL you need to know about Achievement compacts
Oregon’s new Chief Education Officer believes transforming our schools begins with building better relationships By Julia R. Sanders
Politics & You
16 / What to expect from the 2013 legislative session
24 / Early Start
Oregon heads into a new biennium with higher hopes, funding and expectations for early childhood education By Jon Bell
07 / addressing the Safety of our schools o9 / Exclusion Day for Immunizations Approaching
30 / OEA board candidates Sources + Resources
36 / Books and Opportunities On the Web
38 /a new day for oea online!
Credits: Thomas Patterson; iStockphoto
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
OEAâ€™s Annual Education Symposium
The Power of Collaborative Leading and Learning Featuring Dr. Rudy Crew, Oregonâ€™s Chief Education Officer, and Lily Eskelson, NEA Vice President
Saturday, March 16, 2013 CH2M Hill Alumni Center Oregon State University Corvallis, Ore.
Focused on shared thinking and understanding between Oregon policy leaders and practitioners about the direction of Oregon education, the OEA symposium will provide a forum to connect, engage and learn from each other on the issues that directly impact our ability to help each and every student achieve.
9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
SPACE IS LIMITED! To register, go to: www.oregoned.org/symposium
PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE / 02.13 Gail Rasmussen OEA President
hew — if we thought we would have any down time at the start of the year in our work, we were sadly mistaken! Now that the holidays are over and hopefully spring is somewhere in the near future, we can only rest for a moment before we move toward the next thing on the plate. We can rest if we must, but we can’t quit! I have had several opportunities in the past months to converse with Dr. Rudy Crew, Oregon’s new Chief Education Officer, about his vision for public education as he leads the OEIB process. During these conversations (one of which we feature in our profile of him in this magazine), I have appreciated his candor and his passion for making sure all students have the opportunity to be successful — it’s a passion and commitment that we both share. And, I have also watched him interact with students and teachers and observed his joy in being immersed in the world where real learning takes place. I hope all educators in Oregon — including you — will reach out to Dr. Crew, invite him to your classroom or worksite, and share with him your concerns and joys of being an educator. I think you will find we have a lot in common and share similar values for educating students in Oregon. The 2013 Oregon Legislative Session begins this month. Many of our OEA-recommended candidates will take their place in the
OEA President Gail Rasmussen joins Dr. Rudy Crew and Principal of SabinSchellenberg Technical Center Karen Phillips for a recent tour of the technical high school in the North Clackamas School District.
chambers of the Capitol in Salem. Please continue to reach out and build relationships with your elected officials as they begin difficult deliberations and decision-making in the coming months. In addition to our profile of Dr. Crew, in this issue of Today’s OEA we’re highlighting some of the important work being done on your behalf as an Oregon educator during this session. From changes coming to the world of early childhood education as a result of Gov. Kitzhaber’s new Early Learning Initiative, to the launch of a campaign to lower class sizes – there is a lot of work you can help engage in on a statewide level over the next few months. To start, we invite you to join us in the class size campaign and “share your number” (read more about it on page 18). The voices of every single OEA member are needed! I know how busy life can be, but I also know how vitally important it is to bring your voice and experiences to Salem. During this session, I ask that you keep in contact with local elected officials and continue to share your stories about your current realities in the classroom and workplace. Talk to our policy makers about class size and how that impacts your student’s ability to learn. We see first-hand the chaos that is created in classrooms and districts because of the continued disinvestment in education, and I think we can all agree — it's no longer acceptable.
I ASK THAT YOU KEEP IN CONTACT WITH LOCAL ELECTED OFFICIALS AND CONTINUE TO SHARE YOUR STORIES ABOUT YOUR CURRENT REALITIES IN THE CLASSROOM AND WORKPLACE. Credit: Thomas Patterson
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
UPCOMING / O2.13 MAR. 1, 2013
NEA’s Read Across America Day n What: NEA provides all the resources and tools you’ll need to plan and implement a reading
celebration in your school, classroom or community on March 1. n how: For more information and resources, go to www.nea.org/readacross. MAR. 8-10, 2013
2013 NEA ESP Conference n What: The 2013 NEA Education Support Professionals (ESP) Conference is designed
to provide professional development opportunities for participants to help them gain the skills they need to build stronger locals, build strong internal and external relationships, organize members, and enhance NEA ESP members’ ability to positively influence student achievement. n WHERE: Louisville Marriott Downtown Hotel, Louisville, KY n how: For more information and to register, go to www.nea.org/grants/31430.htm. MAR. 16, 2013
OEA Symposium on Transformation in Public Education n What: Focused on shared thinking and understanding between Oregon policy leaders and
practitioners about the direction of Oregon education, the OEA symposium will provide a forum to connect, engage and learn from each other on the issues that directly impact our ability to help each and every student achieve. Featuring Dr. Rudy Crew and Lily Eskleson. n WHERE: OSU, Corvallis, Ore. n how: Go to www.oregoned.org/symposium to register to attend. MAR. 25, 2013
OEA Lobby Day n What: Are you passionate about advocating for your students at the state capitol? OEA
Lobby Day is your opportunity to make a mark on key pieces of legislation this year. Sign up to attend and become a more empowered political activist for our public schools. n WHERE: State Capitol, Salem, Ore. n how: Register online: www.oregoned.org/whats-new/lobby-day. save the date! APR. 19-20, 2013
OEA Representative Assembly n What: OEA member-delegates from across Oregon gather at OEA’s annual Representative
Assembly (RA) to elect new leaders, review OEA programs, reform bylaws and policies, propose new business items, attend caucus meetings, and celebrate member achievements. n WHERE: Red Lion Hotel on the River—Jantzen Beach, 909 N Hayden Island Dr., Portland, Ore. n how: To learn more about OEA Representative Assembly, visit www.oregoned.org/ra. save the date! JUL. 30-Aug. 1, 2013
OEA Leadership Academy n What: The OEA Leadership Academy (formerly, Summer Academy) will be held at the
Riverhouse Hotel and Convention Center in Bend, Ore. n how: Keep your eyes on www.oregoned.org — information will be posted soon.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE OREGON EDUCATION ASSOCIATION FEBRUARY 2013 VOLUME 87 : ISSUE NO. 2 OFFICE HEADQUARTERS 6900 SW Atlanta Street Portland, OR 97223 Phone: 503.684.3300 FAX: 503.684.8063 www.oregoned.org PUBLISHERS Gail Rasmussen, President Richard Sanders, Executive Director EDITOR Meg Krugel PRODUCTION ASSISTANT Janine Leggett CONTRIBUTORS Janine Leggett, Becca Uherbelau, Teresa Ferrer, Erin Whitlock, Colleen Mileham, Julia Sanders, Thomas Patterson To submit a story idea for publication in Today’s OEA magazine, email editor Meg Krugel at firstname.lastname@example.org PRINTER Morel Ink, Portland, OR TODAY’S OEA (ISSN #0030-4689) is published four times a year (October, February, April and June) as a benefit of membership ($6.50 of dues) by the Oregon Education Association, 6900 SW Atlanta Street, Portland OR 97223-2513. Non-member subscription rate is $10 per year. Periodicals postage paid at Portland, OR. POSTMASTER Send address corrections to: Oregon Education Association Attn: Becky Nelson Membership Processing 6900 SW Atlanta Street Portland, OR 97223-2513
> TRAGEDY AT SANDY HOOK:
ADDRESSING THE SAFETY OF OUR SCHOOLS Three Keys to Keeping Our Schools Safe n Increase access to mental health
services. Proper diagnosis can and often starts in our schools, yet there is a huge shortage of school counselors, school social workers and school psychologists in public education. We need more school-based health centers that diagnose and treat mental health disorders. Legislators must close loopholes that allow state and local governments to opt out of providing mental healthcare as stipulated by the Mental Health Parity Act of 1996. n Provide a safe and secure learning
environment for all students. Our school facilities must be equipped with an updated structural and technological support foundation to help protect students and educators from danger. We must invest in school personnel to provide diagnostic and counseling services, such as counselors, school psychologists and nurses. Students need more exposure to peer mediation programs, diversity and inclusion curriculum or programs, and character education in order to minimize conflict and harmful behavior. n Take meaningful action on gun
violence prevention. Last month, in response to the crisis at Sandy Hook Elementary, President Barack Obama unveiled the most sweeping legislation in generations aimed at preventing gun violence in America. To that end, our kids and communities deserve common sense laws that protect our safety—and that starts with ensuring that guns don’t end up in the hands of people who shouldn’t have them.
Students gather outside Sandy Hook Elementary School for a candlelight vigil.
The Sandy Hook Memorial Scholarship Fund
ollowing the devastating tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Conn., the Connecticut Education Association (CEA) has created a Sandy Hook Memorial Scholarship Fund. With a fundraising goal of at least $1 million, the CEA hopes to offer a brighter future to students within the devastated community. CEA President Sheila Cohen explained, “This is a tribute that we hope will be meaningful and lasting to the families in the devastated community of Newtown. In the long-term, we hope to help a number of young people pursue their academic goals at UConn (University of Connecticut).” Donations to the fund can be made by educators and the public at www. cea.org. In addition to the scholarship fund, the CEA will memorialize the heroism of the Sandy Hook victims by commissioning a bronze sculpture, created by artist Marilyn Parkinson Thrall.
Ridgefield School District Hires Armed Guards
n the aftermath of the shootings at Portland's Clackamas Town Center and Sandy Hook Elementary School, Ridgefield School District in Washington responded to the recent tragedies by hiring armed guards from a private firm. The district will be the first in Clark County to take this step. The contract with Phoenix Protective Corp. will cost the district $39,000 and requires that at least two guards patrol the district’s three campuses for the
remainder of the school year. Because they are not sworn officers, the guards will have authority that most police do not have. For example, the guards do not require probable cause to conduct searches of students on school grounds. Eric Jacobson, a spokesman for Ridgefield School District said, "Up until this point, we were comfortable with our procedures, but when an incident happens that brings other issues into light, there's a review."
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Newsflash DID YOU KNOW? » Today’s OEA’s best story ideas come from you, our readers! Is your school working on a cutting edge concept, or do you know an educator who should be featured? Email your suggestions for articles to email@example.com.
I > BOOK REVIEW
Let’s Talk About Race by Julius Lester
uring Black History Month in February, many educators struggle to find meaningful methods of discussing race in the classroom. While many teachers find ways to explain the history of racial tensions and social justice, it can be challenging to get students to think about the role race plays in their own lives. Let’s Talk About Race, a book by Julius Lester, gets at the heart of racial identity in this beautifully illustrated book that is appropriate and meaningful for students of all ages. Lester invites his readers into the book with his first words, “I am a story. So are you.” He explains that race is a part of every person’s story and goes on to examine why people find race so important by discussing some of the true and untrue stories people tell about race. This book is a great way to start a discussion about race within the classroom.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Seattle Teachers Take a Stand Against Testing
n perhaps the first instance anywhere in the nation, teachers at Garfield High on Jan. 9 decided unanimously to refuse to administer a state-mandated test to their students, saying it corrupts teaching and learning. Teachers at other Seattle-area schools have followed suit and joined the boycott. The boycott of the district-mandated Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) standardized test by Seattle A Garfield High School student stands in solidarity with her teachers, teachers has attracted national who refused to give the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) test. attention and an outpouring of support from educators, students, field of education, including Diane Ravitch and parents across the country. and Jonathan Kozol, called the action a In a public letter of support, more than “blow against the overuse and misuse of 180 educators and renowned experts in the standardized tests.”
> TAX TIME
Dues Tax Deduction for OEA Members
embers may be able to deduct their union dues for 2012 income taxes. This includes NEA, OEA and Local dues. The deduction must meet the limitations on miscellaneous itemized deductions (deductible when “Miscellaneous” itemized deductions exceed two percent of adjusted gross income). To claim union dues as a deduction you must use the long Form 1040. Union dues are reported on line 21 of Schedule A (Form 1040) – Itemized Deductions (2012 forms are not yet published so the specific line may differ). The amount of the deduction will be based on the actual dues paid in 2012. You will likely be able to find this amount on your final 2012 pay stub listed as dues. If your
district provides a detailed Form W-2, you may also find the information there. The $250 Educator Expenses deduction was extended through 2013 by the “fiscal cliff” legislation. The deduction for K-12 educators can be found on line 23 of Form 1040 and line 16 of Form 1040A. Each form refers to specific instructions that explain the qualification for the deduction. The simplest tax return, Form 1040EZ, does not provide for this deduction. If you have qualifying expenses, be sure to use one of the other forms to file your 2012 taxes. OEA does not provide tax advice to members, but you can find more information on the official IRS website: www.irs.gov or by contacting your tax consultant.
Newsflash CHECK IT OUT! » OEA has a great new website, designed just for you! Take action on important issues, find resources related to your profession, and sign up to attend OEA events! All this and more at your fingertips... check it out: www.oregoned.org.
Would You Take a “Bonus”?
Exclusion Day for Immunizations Approaching
he exclusion day for students who do not have required vaccinations is Feb. 20 this year. Oregon parents whose children need immunization updates will receive a letter of warning, but all parents are encouraged to check their children’s immunization record before exclusion day.
Kitzhaber’s Bold Education Agenda
overnor Kitzhaber has released a bold plan to encourage Oregon’s students to pursue an education after high school. Kitzhaber envisions that by 2025: n 40 percent of adult Oregonians will have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher. n 40 percent will have earned an associate’s degree or post-secondary credential. n 20 percent or less will have earned a high
school diploma or its equivalent. The Governor has proposed in his new budget the creation of a Department of Post-Secondary Education that would be in charge of distributing state funds to public universities and community colleges. The budget does not address the major barriers to attaining college education, including the rising cost of post-secondary tuition.
It costs $10,000 a year to keep a child in school; it costs $30,000 a year to keep someone in prison. If we are unwilling to act on this issue in this upcoming legislative session, we will by default be choosing prisons over schools. – John Kitzhaber on January 14th, 2013 in his State of the State speech
‘Priority’ and ‘Focus’ Schools in PPS Close For Teacher Training
n Jan. 9, 2013, more than 4,000 Portland-area students attending schools designated as ‘Priority” or “Focus” schools by the state stayed home. As part of an effort to close the achievement gap, these schools will be spending a total of four days (one every month for the rest of the school year) to take the time necessary to improve and refine their practices.
Credits: Seattle Education Association; Syringes: iStockphoto
ix school districts have been awarded over $2.7 million to teachers based on their performance in the classroom. The payments are required as part of a federal grant called the Teacher Incentive Fund. Teachers can earn the bonuses individually by receiving better evaluations than their peers, or as a school by improving student performance school-wide. Individual bonuses ranged from a few hundred dollars up to five thousand dollars. Principal bonuses were higher. The fund sparked controversy because of its inclusion of merit-based pay, leading Oregon City district to withdraw from the program. According to Pat Weidmann, a middle school principal in Albany, in his district teachers were more enthused about their students’ performance than the extra money. Would you agree to take a bonus based on your students’ performance, or would you rather those funds be dedicated to schoolwide professional learning opportunities? Weigh in on our Facebook page: www. facebook.com/OregonEA.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
ARMING TEACHERS WON’T MAKE US SAFER Curbing our culture of violence is key to protecting our students and schools BY PAT ALBRIGHT / Retired Teacher and OEA Member
ecent events involving shootings in schools have led to suggestions that teachers and administrators be armed. Such discussion has caused me to reflect on my 30-year-plus career in education, most of it at Springfield High School. In each of my three experiences with guns in school, I doubt that having armed employees would have made any difference. Taking multiple steps to curb a culture of violence would make more sense. Violence in schools or among school-age youths is not new. Disputes are common and sometimes lead to violence. In my time as a teacher I defused a threatened knife attack and have been slugged while trying to break up a fist-fight that drew a throng of curious onlookers. But when guns are introduced into the mix, the potential for permanent tragedy is compounded. Many years ago, a student in my department came to class with a loaded gun and held a class of his fellow students hostage for several moments. The teacher was able to convince the gun-wielding student to allow the class members to leave. That student, though, eventually would slip away from authorities and take his own life in a nearby restroom. The teacher used his intellect, not a gun, as his best weapon to protect his other students from harm. The tragic events at Thurston High School in 1998 brought the word “mass shooting” to our community, when Kip Kinkel slipped through the school’s open passageways to open fire in the crowded cafeteria. Courageous students, not an armed security officer or teacher, subdued the shooter. One Thurston teacher who raced to the cafeteria that tragic morning told me he 10
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
64% of NEA members polled feel gun laws in the U.S. should be made stricter.
7% of NEA members believe they should be less strict.
was effective in using his trigger finger to plug a bullet hole in an injured student, but he was not in any position to have prevented the attack. Lastly, I am reminded of one morning when I was approaching school and saw a small group of students huddled near the entrance to the parking lot, much like I encountered each day. That day proved different, though. As I turned into the parking lot I realized one of the students had a gun pointed at me. Admittedly a bit shaken and unable to locate an administrator, I immediately called 911. Springfield police got back to me later that morning to say the “gun” was a look-alike replica of a Glock. However, the student was also found to be carrying a long-bladed knife. The officer volunteered that had it been him facing a gun barrel coming into the parking lot, he might have taken deadly action, not knowing or having the time to determine the gun to be a toy.
What if I had been armed? I grew up in a hunting environment and was well-acquainted with guns. I was even a member of a National Rifle Associationsponsored rifle club. I was trained to use firearms. Even with that background, though, I doubt my ability to deal effectively with such a potentially deadly situation had I been armed. My fear is that I would have exacerbated the situation. I can imagine coming around that corner, seeing the threat, digging through my school bag and grabbing for my gun. Now ridden with anxiety and apprehension, more than likely I would have clumsily drawn my weapon and shot myself in the leg — or worse. Or I might have quickly and nervously aimed at the student, missed, and potentially injured or killed one of the nearby innocents. Upon further reflection, I imagine the potential if my wife, a third-grade teacher who never has shot a firearm, had been armed and was expected to challenge a potential shooter. I shudder when I think of those possible consequences. I even get concerned with trained, armed officers in our schools. My concern was heightened recently after talking to an armed national park security agent who told me the story of his predecessor: the previous park ranger had been on patrol when he was attacked by a person, hopped up on drugs, who was able to get the ranger’s gun and killed him. Could we have similar incidents in our schools that already have armed security? Of course. A small gang of teens reasonably could surprise a trained officer, take the officer’s gun and put the incident in the next day’s headlines. Having more guns on our campuses likely will have little impact on preventing anyone intent on creating havoc. More than likely, such actions would result in
more gun violence. What might be helpful? Recent proposals for universal background checks, bans on automatic or semiautomatic weapons and their multicartridge magazines, enhanced mental health services, improved education and, ultimately, a change in our culture of violence would be reasonable steps toward a safer environment for our children. Editor’s Note: Pat Albright, a retired teacher and OEA member, is a member of the Lane Community College board. This column originally ran online at: www. registerguard.com on Jan. 17, 2013. The opinions expressed here are his own. Credits: Sascha Burkard/iStockphoto.com
Majority of Educators Support Stronger Gun Safety Laws
esults of a new poll by the National Education Association (NEA) show educators support stronger gun laws to prevent gun violence and keep children safe. The poll of the nation’s teachers, faculty and education support professionals comes one month after the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., that claimed the lives of 20 children and 6 adults, including educators. NEA polled 800 of its members nationwide during the period of January 9-10, 2013. “The senseless tragedy in Newtown was a tipping point and galvanization for action,” said NEA President Dennis Van Roekel. “As educators, we have grieved too long and too often—for the children killed, their families and heroic educators. Now more than ever we need to do what is necessary, including enacting stronger laws to prevent gun violence, to make sure every child in our nation’s public schools has a safe and secure learning environment.” Go to: www.nea.org/home/54026.htm to read NEA’s recommendations to Vice President Biden’s task force on preventing gun violence.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
AVOID FALLING THROUGH THE CRACKS Licensure Survival Tips to Keep You Afloat BY TERESA FERRER / OEA Consultant, Center for Great Public Schools
aintaining and upgrading your Oregon license as appropriate is the single most important foundational box in any teacher’s “to do” list. You cannot practice as a professional without a valid and active license. The sad fact is that some teachers fall through the cracks when they do not pay attention to their expiration date or the licensure requirements that must be met before that date until it is too late. “Falling through the crack” can be described as failing to renew in time, to losing your job, to being investigated by TSPC for working without a valid license. When is it too late? The expiration date on your license is the “cliff date” that for many is the point of no return — however, for many others it becomes too late when requirements such as coursework, Continuing Professional Development hours or passing test scores have been neglected as the expiration date approaches. Some ideas to consider here: TSPC stopped sending out renewal packets last April (previously, districts received the renewal packets to hand out to teachers because teachers would change addresses and not inform TSPC). They now send the school districts a list of the educators whose license is expiring approximately three months prior to the expiration date. They also send renewal instructions to the districts to forward to the educators. They are still sending “birthday greeting” reminders to educators to remind them that their license is coming up for renewal. An email goes out to educators 90 days prior to their expiration date letting them know that their license is up for renewal; however, we know that those email addresses are not routinely updated with
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
TSPC. n TO DO: Make sure that you update
your home address, email and name with TSPC by sending them an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
n TO DO: Calendar your expiration date
plus any deadlines for getting started and finished on requirements to renew or upgrade your license.
n TO DO: Download the C-2 application
form directly from the TSPC website and fill it out a month before your expiration date. A PEER form from the district verifying your work experience must also be sent (in a sealed envelope) along with your check and any other related documents (official transcripts and score reports).
n TO DO: If you have a Basic, Standard,
Initial II or Continuing License, make sure all of your CPD is completed and your log is into the district BEFORE they must fill out your PEER form.
n DO NOT COUNT on the 120 day
grace period that follows most (not all) expiration dates! This safety net exists only for those who submit their full and complete application with fee and district PEER form before the expiration date occurs. This grace period allows official transcripts and official score reports to come through to TSPC and allows you to continue to teach while your license is in grace period.
n DO NOT use the grace period as
a time to complete the necessary requirements that you failed to complete before the expiration date. The grace period exists to allow documents to arrive at TSPC and for additional processing time.
Your $100 licensure fee is valid for 90 days only. If your documents do not come within 90 days of submission of that fee, you will have to pay again. Bird-dog those documents to make sure they arrive within that time frame. n TO DO: Visit your license and the
processing of it at the online look-up on the TSPC website. Use your full name (as it appears on your license), birth date and last four digits of your social security number to access all licensure information and to download any correspondence TSPC has sent to you (in case you have lost those all important letters). At the top of that online look-up page you will be able to see when TSPC has received any documents and you can also see whether your license is still active or not.
Emergency licenses and the use of expedited service (paying for TSPC to process your licensure application in three business days) can only be sponsored by the employer. Emergency licenses are becoming more and more difficult to obtain as TSPC is not recognizing “failure to complete requirements” as an emergency. Extreme extenuating circumstances must be proven. Districts have discretion to sponsor any licensed employee for either of these safety net options. The most important thing to remember here is to NOT ALLOW your license to be subject to the discretionary support of the district. n TO DO: If you find yourself in the
position of needing an emergency license or expedited service, get help from your UniServ Consultant or local President. There could be some serious complications and history behind these
Licensure TSPC STOPPED SENDING OUT RENEWAL PACKETS LAST APRIL (PREVIOUSLY DISTRICTS RECEIVED THE RENEWAL PACKETS TO HAND OUT TO TEACHERS BECAUSE TEACHERS WOULD CHANGE ADDRESS AND NOT INFORM TSPC). requests in your local association. Seek support from your immediate supervisor before talking to anyone at the district level. n TO DO: Stay clear of these safety nets
in the first place. If you do not know what you have to do…or if you get conflicting advice, email me at teresa. email@example.com. (I will ask you what your TSPC letter says, so have it handy!)
Working without a valid, active license requires immediate removal from the classroom. You will not be able to substitute in your classroom or any other classroom while you are waiting for your license to clear unless you have some other valid, active license that allows it. This has been the point of no return for many educators so DO NOT stumble near this experience. If this happens to you, call your UniServ Consultant or local President immediately. n TO DO: Treat your teaching license
with the same or more diligence as your driver’s license and taxes. Life as you know it cannot continue without it being done correctly and ON TIME.
n TO DO: Contact Teresa Ferrer at
firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions!
This article is first in a two-part series on licensure survival tips. Stay tuned for the next issue of Today’s OEA, coming out mid-March!
Licensure Survival Tips Know your license (If you don’t know, visit the TSPC website at www.tspc.state. or.us to run a search): n The authorization level(s) n The specialty area(s) or endorsement(s) n Find the exact courses (down to the NCES codes) that you are authorized to teach by searching under “License Guide” at the TSPC website n The renewal date n The renewal requirements and requirements to upgrade to second stage licensure Keep in a safe place the following: n Your license n The letter from TSPC that came with your license (contains requirements specific to your license) n Transcripts, score reports from ORELA/ NES or PRAXIS tests n CPD plan (for Basic, Standard, Continuing and Initial II licenses) n Copies of PEER forms (that districts send to TSPC verifying your teaching experience). Teachers do not routinely get these (except occasionally in a sealed envelope to submit with your application) but it can be helpful to verify that your experience was accurately reported (time, subjects and authorization levels) When renewing or filing a licensure application: n Renew BEFORE your expiration date — we recommend 60 days before your expiration date and in avoidance of the grace period. n Be sure all requirements (including fingerprinting) are completed well in advance n Send in paperwork and fee before your renewal date n Be sure to send in a complete application (submit all required forms, fill out each form completely) n Submit PEER form (verifying teaching experience) from the district in a sealed envelope, or the district can send it separately to TSPC (ask for a copy for your records)
n Submit all official academic transcripts in
a sealed envelope Start early on any requirements that you have for additional coursework or exams: n Exams need to be taken at the earliest opportunity (in case you need to retake it). Visit the website for the exam and access all prep materials and information to get started on studying. n Talk to other teachers who have passed this exam and find out what resources helped them. n Make sure that you are taking coursework that exactly meets the requirements that are placed on your license. (If it needs to be graduate coursework, make sure that it is 500 level or above. If it needs to be accredited or from an Oregon approved program, check the TSPC website or call/email TSPC beforehand). When calling or contacting TSPC about your license, have the following information at your fingertips: n Your social security number n Your license authorization level and specialty area endorsement n Your renewal date n Your current assignment n Licensure test score information n Information about your recent experience and/or completed academic coursework Helpful reminders: n Send in writing to TSPC any address or name change. n Answer all character questions honestly, with explanations when necessary. n Study the discipline standards of your professional license and maintain good professional judgement. n For most licenses, there is a 120 day grace period following your expiration date, but only if your application is complete and in the TSPC office BEFORE your expiration date and all requirements are met. NOT holding a valid and active license necessitates immediate removal from the classroom.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Teaching & Learning
SETTING A COURSE FOR STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT What you need to know about Oregon's new Achievement Compact process BY COLLEEN MILEHAM, P h .D / School & System Transformation Strategist, Center for Great Public Schools
ll around the state, K-12 Achievement Compact Advisory Committees are working hard to develop their 2013-14 achievement compacts and accompanying reports.
K-12 School District Achievement Compacts Achievement compacts are the foundation of Oregon’s new strategy for aligning the P-20 education system and achieving the statewide goal of college and career readiness for all Oregon students. The compacts are annual agreements between school districts, education service districts, community colleges, public universities and the Oregon Education Investment Board (OEIB). For K-12 school districts, the compacts are developed around four statewide goals, comparable student measures and a local school district goal setting process for each measure. n Goal 1 — College and Readiness: Are
students completing high school ready for college and career?
n Goal 2 — Progression: Are students
making sufficient progress throughout their K-12 experience toward achieving college and career readiness
n Goal 3 — Equity: Is each and every
student succeeding across all buildings and populations?
n Goal 4 — Local Priorities: What
other measures reflect key priorities in the district necessary for student success?
Each school district is required to have an Achievement Compact Advisory 14
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Committee appointed by the local school board, based on a joint recommendation from the school district superintendent and local Association president. The committee made up of administrators, teachers and education support professionals employed in the district is charged with collaboratively setting goals, developing strategies and determining resources needed to reach those goals.
Shared Leadership and Collaboration Preparing each and every student to be college and career ready requires creating a collaborative culture across and within public education stakeholder organizations. When an inclusive, riskfree collaborative culture is created, dedicated and committed people come together to share their knowledge and expertise to find the best path to help students achieve. The Achievement Compact Advisory Committee offers the opportunity to blend the expertise of administrators, teachers and school district support staff to set realistic and achievable goals for student learning, identify proven strategies and practices to help students learn, and address the challenges of allocating limited resources to accomplish the work. The Achievement Compact Advisory Committee also provides opportunity to collaboratively implement policy, critically examine local and state investments, and provide practical and tangible feedback to policy makers on the likelihood of accomplishing the task. The collaborative approach helps broaden leadership and deepen the knowledge and understanding of educators and community members on the strategies
and investments necessary to help each and every student achieve. In the development of K-12 achievement compacts, the Confederation of Oregon School Administrators (COSA), the Oregon Education Association (OEA) and the Oregon School Boards Association (OSBA) are modeling a collaborative approach by communicating a common message and offering support to school district superintendents, Association members and local school boards through webinars, workshops and tools to assist with their work.
Progress of K-12 Achievement Compacts Over the past months, the OEA Center for Great Public Schools has traveled the state working with Association members and administrators in developing their K-12 achievement compacts. As educators deepen their understanding of the purpose of the compact, rich discussions are emerging at the local level. Advisory committee members are critically examining their data and assessing reasons why performance over time has increased or decreased. Through the combined expertise of administrators, teachers and education support professionals, strategies are being considered that will have the greatest impact on the success of students. Goal setting for each of the outcome measures is important, but even more important is determining what practices will have the greatest impact on helping students be kindergarten-ready and progress successfully to high school graduation and post-secondary education. The focus of the work is on strategies and resources necessary to meet these outcomes:
Teaching & Learning n Proficient in 3rd grade reading n Proficient in 5th grade mathematics n Not chronically absent in 6th grade n Proficient in 8th grade mathematics n Number of credits earned in 9th grade n Not chronically absent in 9th grade n Number of students graduating/
completing high school
n Number of college credits earned and
In addition to the comparable outcomes for all districts mentioned above, some advisory committees are proposing other measures to address school district and community priorities. Examples of topics being discussed and considered for state approval include: measuring the success of students exiting English language learning services, improving parent and community engagement, examining conditions of teaching and learning and building strategies to support educator development. After setting their compact goals for 2013-14, Achievement Compact Advisory Committees are engaged in preparing a report for their local school board and community. The report is an opportunity to communicate the many factors that contribute to or hinder achievement of agreed upon compact goals and expectations, in addition to the resources and supports educators, students and families need to thrive. A number of questions are guiding the individual committee report preparation: n What worked well or what were the
challenges in setting our goals for each measure?
n What district-specific issues do we
need to address in order to achieve the goals?
n What educational best practices do we
want to implement or continue?
n Are these best practices the strategies
we will use next year? Why or why not? n What resources will be required
to meet the recommended goals?
n What challenges do we face and
what strategies will we use to deal with the challenges?
n What additional information
do we want our local school board, community and OEIB to know about in setting the achievement compact goals, selecting strategies and obtaining necessary resources?
The advisory committee submits their proposed compact goals to their local school board for approval and then submits their board adopted achievement compact and advisory committee report to the OEIB by June 30, 2013.
New Partnerships with Pilot Districts for Teacher Evaluation
he Oregon Department of Education is currently working with 12 school districts to pilot the “significant” use of Student learning and growth data in teacher and principal evaluations in order to satisfy our ESEA Waiver requirements for the 2012-13 school year. These 12 school districts were the recipients of the SB 252 Collaboration Grant. OEA's Center for Great Public Schools (CGPS) will be providing guidance and resources to those 12 districts, and is excited to partner with two school districts, Beaverton and North Clackamas, to pilot the “significant” use of student learning and growth data through the use of a teacher-created concept called the “OEA Matrix." In this pilot work, the Center for Great Public Schools was looking for school districts who:
Impact of the Achievement Compacts
1. Have an established collaborative relationship with their local association.
Helping each and every student learn and succeed is the number one goal of all educators. Achievement compacts provide the opportunity to collaboratively and strategically set goals for student success, determine a course of action to achieve those goals and clearly articulate the resources it will take to meet the expectations. No one group can accomplish the task by themselves, but collectively administrators, teachers, support professionals and local community members can be a knowledgeable force to communicate to policy makers what resources are truly needed to help each and every student be college and career ready.
2. Have a strong teacher evaluation and support system that was built collaboratively with their association and that aligns to the majority of the Oregon Framework requirements (which essentially outlines the requirements of SB 290 and the ESEA Waiver impacts on evaluation).
Find out more about this work: contact the Center for Great Public Schools at: 503-684-3300 or email@example.com.
3. Were larger in population of students than the largest SB 252 school district (Springfield).
OEA Services to Partnership Pilots CGPS will be providing various resources for the partnership pilots, including the following: n Resources (the two districts will be
receiving grant funding from ODE to complete this pilot work)
n Staffing support and coaching from OEA n Technical Assistance to align to the new
evaluation requirements outlined in the Oregon Framework document.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Politics & You
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THE 2013 LEGISLATIVE SESSION
his January, members of Oregon’s 77th Legislative Assembly were sworn into office. The 60 members of the House of Representatives and 30 members of the Oregon Senate began their work officially on Monday, Feb. 4, 2013 at the State Capitol in Salem. This session, Oregon sees a change in leadership with Tina Kotek (D – Portland) as the newly elected Speaker of the House and a chamber now holding a pro-public education majority. Our hope is that this Legislature will begin to undo damage done to our public education system and start to reinvest in our schools and community colleges. Here’s a quick look at OEA’s top issues:
Restore Education Funding The 2012 election results show that Oregonians are more than willing to fund their schools – we saw support for local bonds and levies across the state and candidates who ran on a platform to restore funding for public education came out ahead. Our hope is that the Legislature will follow Oregonians’ lead and put the highest priority on adequate education funding. K-12 school districts across the state are dealing with crisis budgets. We’re nearly $3 billion short of what we know it takes to help students succeed. We’ve lost 7,000 educators in the last three years. Class size in the elementary grades has increased by nearly 20 percent and nearly 29 percent in high schools. The state’s priority should be on lowering class size and restoring funding for our schools. Budgeting for new, “targeted investments” and programs should take a back seat to budget restoration. We must look to re-invest in Oregon’s 17 community colleges so they can continue to provide Oregonians the skills, training and education they need to get back 16
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Download our Guide to Legislative Advocacy at www.oregoned.org/stayinformed/legislatureelection
to work. This means ending the erosion of full-time faculty and renewing the community colleges’ mission of providing educational access to students and middle class families by lowering tuition. In addition to advocating for a level of funding for community colleges that improves access and affordability, OEA will also be urging the legislature to establish a post-secondary Quality Education Model, which would serve as a research-based tool to help determine what community colleges need to effectively serve all students.
Addressing the class size crisis in Oregon schools As educators, you have seen firsthand that there is a crisis in Oregon classrooms. Class size has skyrocketed and as a result, students are not getting the individual instruction they need to succeed. Currently Oregon collects inadequate data on class size that does not tell the
real story of what students and educators are experiencing. A critical first step to addressing the class size crisis is gathering accurate data that reflects true class size in our schools. OEA will ask the 2013 Legislature to enact a bill to accurately track class size in the future. We need to fully understand our students’ learning conditions. OEA is also launching a campaign to help Oregon’s elected officials and the general public have a better understanding of the reality of what is happening in our classrooms. Go to page 18 for more on our Class Size Campaign!
Fixing Oregon’s Broken Revenue System Oregon must move to end the boomand-bust budget cycles that for too long have shortchanged our students and schools. It’s time to close loopholes and consider new revenue to narrow the education funding gap. Oregonians want meaningful solutions to our flawed revenue system and they want their tax system to be more fair and equitable. Our state currently gives out $32 billion in tax breaks every biennium. We saw a $3.4 billion increase over the last biennium alone. OEA will be encouraging
Politics & You the Legislature to reverse this trend and to take a close look at ending outdated, unfair and unnecessary tax expenditures so we can reinvest in our schools.
Honoring Oregonians’ vision for public education Oregonians are fed up with overcrowded classrooms, skyrocketing tuition, and the elimination of valuable school programs. They’re also fed up with unfunded mandates and misguided ‘reforms’ that are not research-based or proven to help increase student achievement. The current policy discussions happening at the Oregon Education Investment Board are out of alignment with the Quality Education Model and are out of touch with what Oregonians want and expect from and for their schools. Oregonians believe it’s time to bring the education policy discussion back to where it belongs – in local communities and with the Legislature, which is elected to represent local communities. We need to let local school communities have a voice in setting their own priorities to meet the needs of their students. This means rejecting the corporate reform agenda and the one-size-fits-all, harmful approach that continues to over-emphasize standardized testing and completion rates as the only measures of student success. We believe there are
ways we can better support educators in their work to help students succeed. OEA will be keeping a close watch on education policy proposals that arise during the session to ensure that they align with Oregonians’ values and are the right thing to do for students.
Retirement Security Despite the sacrifices you’ve already made in wages, benefits and working conditions, we can expect the Legislature to engage in a conversation around changes to the retirement system for public employees. There are a number of proposed changes to PERS already being discussed, including the Governor’s proposal to amend PERS to place a cap on the amount of COLA benefits paid to retirees, limiting COLA increases to the first $24,000 per year of benefits. This proposal will have an impact on both current retirees as well as all active members who will retire in the future. It is estimated that for the ‘average’ teacher, the Governor’s COLA
Tired of them talking about you and not to you? Get Involved. Make a Difference.
ducators from around the state need to join together to tell their stories and use their real work experience in classrooms and worksites to help shape education policy legislation in Salem. We need you as an OEA political activist! Be in the know about what’s happening in the legislature. Get real-time updates on emerging issues that will impact your work, your students and your profession. And build a relationship with your local legislator that will go beyond the halls of the Capitol. Come to OEA Lobby Day on Monday, March 25. Register at: www. oregoned.org/whats-new/lobby-day. Join your OEA UniServ Council’s Political Action Team and get involved! For more information on connecting with your legislator, contact your local UniServ office or Ken Volante, OEA’s Statewide Political Organizer (Ken.Volante@oregoned.org) in the OEA Public Affairs Department.
proposal would cost more than $180,000 in lost retirement income over the course of their lifetime. To calculate the impact to your individual pension, go to: www.oregoned.org/pers-resources. Oregonians understand that PERS is not the cause for our decade-long disinvestment in public education. While we recognize that the unfunded liability of PERS – much of which is a result of the economic collapse - poses a challenge to the state and local school districts, our hope is that legislators will apply a set of reasonable criteria when considering changes to PERS. Our hope is that these changes: n Save actual money in the short term
while still maintaining the health and affordability of the system in the future.
n Are constitutional. We can’t go back
on the promises made to Oregonians who have worked hard their whole life. It’s wrong and it will end up costing us millions in litigation.
n Are fair. We can’t create a system
of winners and losers, and we can’t unjustly punish working and middle class families for a problem that Wall Street created.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
_______________________________________________________ SCHOOL POSITIONS
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
K-12 Schools: Mass Layoffs and Increased Class Sizes
What’s Your Number?
A CAMPAIGN TO TRANSFORM CLASS SIZES AND IMPROVE LEARNING CONDITIONS FOR OUR STUDENTS
You may have 35 kids in a second grade class, or instruct over 250 students every day as a high school teacher. You might oversee a caseload of 500 students as your district’s lone school psychologist, or transport 75 students on your school bus each day. Whatever your reality is as an Oregon educator — your number matters. Growing class sizes and insurmountable case loads impact our students in ways we are still coming to realize. National surveys of educators show that class size reduction is the most important method to improve the quality of teaching. Oregon educators have launched a statewide campaign to lower our class sizes by securing more funding for our schools. We need your help. Go to www.oregoned.org/classsize, share your class size number, and tell us how this impacts the students you work with. Find out how you can get involved in OEA’s Class Size Campaign on these pages.
Source: COSA/OASBO School District Surveys, Sept. 2009, 2010 and 2011
Oregon education by the numbers
largest class sizes in the nation
Per-pupil spending is Oregon is
less than national average
in the nation for spending on higher ed
Site: The Oregonian (May 2011, Sept. 2012); Oregon Daily Emerald (June 2008)
Class sizes have skyrocketed— I am projected to have 40 kids to a class — and prep time has decreased. This means that students get less individualized time during class with teachers as well as less feedback on assignments. Students who don't advocate for themselves are increasingly being ‘lost in the shuffle.’
Tell us your class size story Written
Go to www.oregoned.org/classsize and use the “Tell Your Story” link. Your story will be shared with fellow educators, the public and Oregon legislators.
Credit: Becca Uherbelau
Have a friend or colleague use a smart phone to film you telling your personal story. Share how class size impacts teaching and learning in your classroom. Keep it to 60 seconds or less. Upload the video to YouTube and email us a link to it: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Take a picture of your classroom (if students are in class, be sure to follow your district’s/ building’s policy). Send the picture to us at email@example.com. We’ll follow-up with you about pursuing your class size story and sharing it with your elected official.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Oregon’s new Chief Education Officer believes transforming our schools begins with building better relationships
The Education Crew
By JULIA R. SANDERS • Photos By THOMAS PATTERSON
hortly before the beginning of 2013, Oregon’s new Chief Education Officer sat down for a candid chat with four Oregon educators – individuals who brought to the table diverse perspectives about working in our public schools and community colleges. During the conversation, Dr. Rudy Crew, the newly appointed “CEO” of Oregon’s Pre-Kindergarten-Grade 20 education system, offered a window into his new vision for Oregon schools. His passion and focus for making public education more equitable and accessible to our underperforming and at-risk students was clearly at the heart of this vision. 20
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
On this particular day, Crew spoke with and heard from OEA President and Education Support Professional Gail Rasmussen, Eugene Education Association President and classroom teacher Tad Shannon, Beaverton Education Association President Karen Hoffman, and Chemeketa Community College faculty member LouAnne Whitton. Each OEA member brought to the table questions that reflected their realities working in public education. The questions also reflected the experiences of their fellow OEA members. A quick glance at Crew’s professional biography reveals an individual deeply experienced in the spectrum of public education. He began his career as an English teacher in Southern California, moved up the ranks to school administrator in
In his new role, Dr. Rudy Crew takes on the immense challenge of integrating the public education system from pre-kindergarten through college and career readiness.
Massachusetts, later to Superintendent of Schools in Sacramento, CA and then on to Chancellor of New York City’s Board of Education. In 2004, Crew took over as Superintendent of Miami-Dade County Public Schools, the nation’s fourth-largest school district. Just four years later, Crew was named the 2008 National Superintendent of the Year by the American Association of School Administrators, due in no small part to his initiatives that boosted graduation rates in Miami and became nationally recognized as models for success. His résumé clearly illustrates an ability to create change quickly within the public education system. So, what’s the key to creating change in a way that honors – rather than diminishes – the experiences of the students
and educators who’ve built the system thus far? “For a long time, [we’ve] had the conversation that this is about somebody’s fault. I’ve never thought that. This is really about the culture. My father used to say, if a twig is bent, well, so grows the tree. So, if the culture is leaning a certain direction, then we all have to lean that direction,” Crew said. He intends to create what he calls a “culture of commitment” in Oregon by reexamining and reimagining how we deliver instruction, train and support our educators, and how high we set out expectations. Reforming school culture is one thing, but as Eugene EA President Tad Shannon pointed out, doing so in our current reality of devastating budget cuts and soaring class sizes is an entirely different ask.
“I think Oregon is ultimately going to say, we have to put installments on the kind of world we want, on the kind of schooling we want, on the kind of experiences for schooling we want.” Crew said. “It means we are going to have to start talking about putting additional dollars toward class size, and we have to put additional dollars toward schools being able to maximize their focus on the kinds of content that give young people the relationships that they need.” And yet, Crew was quick to emphasize that there would not be “money for money’s sake.” His goal, he said, is to explore what makes each of our school districts unique – from Chiloquin to Coos Bay to the urban areas of Eugene and Portland. By better understanding what these different TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Even on a quick morning visit to a technical high school in the North Clackamas School District, Crew makes the most of his opportunity to engage with Oregon students.
communities need for their students to be most successful, “you get to target this money. It’s not just writ large, but rather it’s very focused kind of work.” Narrowing in on the classroom level, where the vast majority of educators focus their attention, Crew did not elaborate on how “unique” instructional approaches would be measured or compensated. On performance or outcome-based pay, Crew is focused on mutuality and accountability, and is comfortable with the idea of using pay as way to “invest” in good teaching. He discussed a change in paradigm of how we approach teacher evaluations, though: “The structure we have built in the past has been all about vocabulary, by design… all aimed at trying to figure out how to catch people being dysfunctional in the execution.” Crew acknowledges that our current structure for teacher evaluations undermines confidence rather than 22
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
builds it. While Crew touched on the idea of outcome-based reviews, he did not discuss how it might be connected to pay or funding. “Do I agree with the notion of us being able to look at performance in relation to specific outcomes? Yeah, I think that that’s an okay thing to do as long as we use it as a way of being able to give feedback to say ‘listen, what strategy might we try differently?’” Crew stressed his focus on increasing access to “human curriculum,” or the benefits of having mutually caring relationships with adults within schools, and expressed his concern that students of color are restricted in some ways from accessing that human curriculum at school. “The question to me around equity is, who has access to the human curriculum around the school? What kids have access to that?” Crew said. “I know lots of children
for whom going through school is a lonely act.” He described seeing schools in which principals walk down the hall with “no shred of connectivity” to their students. Crew believes that the loss in personal connection is in part due to a lack of diversity in Oregon’s teaching force. “I’ve looked at this in the context of a state that I’m new to, but no matter where I go, whether it’s to Chiloquin and I look at the Native American population there, or I go into Portland and look at some of the communities there, there just are too few people who look like the children. By virtue of [teachers] looking like their students, they give kids a sense of access to their future.” The way to rectify this, Crew believes, is by providing students with full access to services and opportunities to validate themselves within their communities. During the conversation, the OEA members at the table brought up the dichotomy
Each visit to an Oregon school brings a unique view into the experiences and education of students; above, Crew learns about the welding program at Sabin-Schellenberg.
between building and strengthening these relationships and the realities of soaring class sizes. Beaverton educator Karen Hoffman shared the story of a talented colleague who was “reaching kids in ways he never thought possible” … until he found himself overwhelmed by his large class sizes. Depressed by his inability to reach and impact such a large number of students, Hoffman said “he’s ready to leave the profession, yet he’s an amazing teacher." As the local Association President in Beaverton, Hoffman questioned how momentous change is possible with even further cuts to the budget looming on the horizon. “So I hear you and I love your ideas,” she expressed to Crew, “but right now my teachers are struggling to just get through the day and I know that it’s easy to say, well, we have to get past the ‘money thing’… but the ‘money thing’ is the reality.” Crew responded with a request for
HEAR IT LIVE
go to www.oregoned.org/whats-new/ crew-conversation to listen to the full audio of this conversation. patience and faith from teachers. “What I think of whenever I’ve been in very, very tough situations like this – you have to, in effect, hold onto your faith through it. It’s the faith that it’s not going to be this way forever.” He added, “the governor has put $90 million dollars toward the reduction of class size. And in this kind of a budget, it’s not enough by any stretch, but it’s a number.” What Crew made clear in this conversation is that he intends to create a momentum of change in Oregon’s public schools. To create any substantial and lasting change, one needs dedication and hard work, but equally important, one
needs to feel inspired. The hard work is already present in our schools. Yet, with outlandish class-sizes, cuts to finding, and the pressure to change a culture on their shoulders, inspiration is the piece that is often hard to come by for teachers. While both Crew and the educators in the room that day seemed to agree that our state needs a paradigm-shift in the way that we handle and fund our education system, the conversation highlighted the discrepancy of opinion on what the bottom-line is for teachers. As the educators departed the room outside the State Capitol that day, one question remained unanswered: at what point will state leaders acknowledge that, no matter how effective a teacher is, there may be just too many students in a classroom to form the powerful, motivating relationships that Crew acknowledges are a cornerstone to equity and achievement in our schools? n TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Early Start Evaluations begin at an early age for students in the InterMountain Educational Services District.
Oregon heads into a new biennium with higher hopes, funding and expectations for early childhood education
TODAYâ€™S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
By JON BELL
her more than 25 years in education, Colleen Huston has worked in just about every imaginable setting: high schools, elementary schools, middle schools, alternative schools, some in rural areas, a few in big cities, you name it. But nowhere has she seen more beneficial impacts on children than in the area she’s been working in for the past three years: early childhood education. Now a teacher and assessment team evaluator for the InterMountain Educational Services District, which serves nearly 23,000 students in Umatilla, Morrow, Union and Baker counties, Huston conducts evaluations of children up to age five who have been referred by parents, physicians or other entities anytime there’s a concern about a child’s development. Some may not be taking a bottle or eating well, others may be exhibiting problems with fine and gross motor skills, cognitive skills or simple social interactions. And still others may not be communicating effectively — or at all. One child Huston and a speech pathologist evaluated last year who was about to turn 3 had no vocabulary; instead, he screamed and threw things to have his needs met. Credit: Daniel Sharp
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Vickie Jones works with young children in Albany to improve their speech skills.
Based upon these evaluations, children are matched with services to help address their developmental needs. That could mean anything from having a speech pathologist teach some simple sign language, which can help children begin to understand the concept of language, to an occupational therapist working on fine motor, feeding and sensory difficulties. Alongside these efforts are academic and curriculum-based assistance that also helps ensure children are up to snuff by the time kindergarten rolls around. The results of these early measures, according to Huston, can be nothing short of phenomenal. “Working with early childhood education, I have seen the most changes and the quickest changes occur with these children,” she said. “It’s amazing to watch how just a few interventions can make such a difference in such a short amount of time. It’s truly dramatic.” Educators, policymakers and others have long known the value and importance of early childhood learning programs. And not just because they’ve seen results in their own classrooms or heard anecdotal success stories. Plenty of research over the past 30 years or more 26
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
45,000 Number of children born in Oregon every year
has shown that children who receive high-quality educational programs before the age of 5 are less likely to repeat grades, need special education or get into trouble with the law. One study, the HighScope Perry Preschool Study, also found that people who’d been in early childhood programs when they were young ended up making more money and were more likely to graduate from high school and own homes than those who had not.
18,000 Estimated number of those who are exposed to factors like poverty and substance abuse that have been shown to lead to challenges in school
While the merits of early childhood education may be crystal clear, how best to go about delivering it — across an entire state, for example — has yet to be fully solidified. The result, in Oregon and other states, has been a somewhat fragmented assortment of early childhood programs: well-intentioned and effective, yes; streamlined and consistent, not so much. “In early learning, there are so many different streams of programs,” said Jada Rupley, Oregon’s Early Learning System Director. “It’s really more of a patchwork than a system.” But starting in 2011, under Gov. John Kitzhaber’s massive education reform effort, focus on early childhood education began to sharpen. Legislation passed in 2011 created the Early Learning Council to guide a new effort to integrate and streamline existing state programs; it also created the post that Rupley was appointed to last August. And at the front end of another new biennium in Oregon, early childhood has assumed an even more prominent place on the state’s list of educational priorities. Kitzhaber’s proposed budget for the 2013-15 biennium includes a $48 million increase in funding for early childhood
270,000 Number of children in Oregon age birth to 5
education, bumping up the proposed total for programs and services to more than $490 million. The state’s only successful go at a federal Race to the Top grant came in December in the form of a $20 million Early Learning Challenge grant. And from implementing a new kindergarten readiness assessment in the fall to better integrating many of the state’s early learning, health, nutrition and parenting programs, Oregon is pressing ahead with an ambitious plan to make early childhood learning a seamless — and successful — part of the public education experience. “We have enjoyed a close relationship with the Governor and his staff and feel they are absolutely heading in the right direction,” said Katia Riddle, communications manager for The Children’s Institute, a Portland organization that promotes public and private investments in early childhood programs. “The fact that anyone at that level has called out early childhood education as a priority is a tremendous step for Oregon.”
Comprising the Oregon Department of Education’s early childhood learning programs at present are 28 Oregon Head Start Pre-kindergarten programs, which serve children between the ages of 3 and 5 from families living at or below the federal poverty level. The programs focus on not
108,000 Estimated number of those who are exposed to factors like poverty and substance abuse that have been shown to lead to challenges in school Credit: Thomas Patterson
Spotlight on Earl Boyles Elementary If
everything that the state of Oregon has in mind for early childhood education actually comes to fruition someday, it may very well look like what’s already going on at Earl Boyles Elementary School. The school sits in a high-needs area of southeast Portland faced with poverty, a lack of high-quality early education programs, and language barriers — some 24 different languages are spoken within its halls. But since 2011, the school has been part of Early Works, an initiative of the Children’s Institute geared toward improving early childhood learning experiences and outcomes for students and families in the community. The main piece of that initiative at Earl Boyles is a preschool that opened this year and is serving 34 children. Funded through a mix of partners, including Head Start, the state, Multnomah County and the David Douglas School District, the preschool serves a cross section of students, some of whom may have special needs. The idea is to not only prepare the children for kindergarten, but to identify any needs they may have — nutritional or health-related, for example — and then link them to the services that will meet those needs. “The focus of the program is to centralize resources and get communities and programs working across agencies,” said Katia Riddle, communications manager for the Children’s Institute. “It’s really looking at the whole child and identifying their needs earlier on.” Ericka Guynes, principal at Earl Boyles, said she has already seen remarkable results, not only in the gains that students have made in the preschool, but in how parents have become much more involved — a key component for any child’s success in school. “Because we are working with children at a much younger age, it’s shifted how parent involvement is viewed,” she said. “It’s looking at them as partners, and when you do that, the goal setting all of a sudden becomes not what can you do for my child, but what can we do?” Ahead for the program at Earl Boyles is a $7 million construction project — half funded through a bond measure and half through a fundraising campaign — including an addition that will house early learning programs and also serve as a hub for the community. The doors are scheduled to open by the start of the 2014 school year — and Guynes cannot wait. “Occasionally there are a few initiatives that come along that you feel you can really wrap your arms around because it’s going to have a long-term effect on your kids,” she said. “This is one of those.”
takes root early at
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
A large part of Colleen Huston's job includes evaluating students from birth to age five.
only education and early childhood development, but health, nutrition, and parent education and support as well. Additional offerings, known as Early Intervention (EI) and Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) programs, serve children with a range of developmental delays or disabilities. There are also Title I migrant education preschool programs, tribal programs, early childcare services designed to give parents the ability to work or teen parents the ability to attend school, and many other ancillary programs that serve children and families in every county in the state. In addition, other public, private and non-profit programs exist to help provide early education services. While these programs produce laudable results and make a difference for children and families, a 2011 report prepared for the governor by the Early Childhood and Family Investment Transition Team found that the state “does not consistently track these results” and that early childhood programs across the state “do not work in concert and some are disconnected from the K-12 education system.” Other obstacles hinder Oregon’s early learning efforts, as well. 28
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
40 Percentage of children entering kindergarten who are not ready for it
“The challenges are similar to what we see in school-age programs,” said Colleen Forbes, a teacher who does child evaluations for Portland Public Schools’ Early Childhood Evaluation team. “The first is obviously funding. Finding a way to link communities and share services rather than duplicating or piecing things together may help, and many children do not have access to quality programs.” She also said that many Head Start
2025 Oregon’s goal year to have all children entering kindergarten actually ready for kindergarten
programs are full, and working families just slightly above the income requirements for the programs find themselves faced with limited options. Vickie Jones is a speech-language pathologist for the Linn Benton Lincoln ESD in Albany who works in EI and ECSE. She regularly sees huge payouts from early learning interventions, including nonverbal children who, after six months of assistance, are well on their way to talking and communicating normally. But she also sees the strains on the system as it is, as well. For one, there aren’t as many mental health services available for children with severe behavioral problems. One child she worked with last year ended up getting kicked out of his community preschool, and because the parents weren’t able to follow through themselves, there wasn’t much else that could be done for the child. “When a kid like that gets to kindergarten, he will rock the world of a kindergarten teacher,” Jones said. “I feel like we’re kind of missing the mental health piece.” Additionally, she said a lack of caps on caseloads has a tendency to overwhelm teachers and other specialists and dilute the impact they can have on children. “Ideally, if I had 30 kids, I could work wonders,” Jones said. “When I have 60, it’s a lot harder.”
To begin addressing concerns like Jones’ and the other issues and incongruities facing early childhood learning in Oregon, early childhood education was included as an important component of the overall education reform effort that has been under way since early 2011. The initiative embraced the transition team’s recommendations to create the Early Learning Council as a way to consolidate multiple and often redundant existing efforts. The team also recommend early screening of all children, a kindergarten readiness assessment — set to be implemented at the start of the 2013 school year — and various measurable outcomes in everything from health and language to parent, family and support development. On top of that, legislation
passed in 2011 called for regional hubs that would help better consolidate all of an area’s early learning services. Rupley said the state’s approach to these hubs will be a “loose and tight” one; tight in the outcomes that the state expects from early childhood education programs and services, but loose in how communities go about achieving those results. “It’s a common sense approach,” she said, “knowing that communities know best what they need and how to deliver it.” These new movements in early childhood education from the state have sparked some excitement in educators around the state. “Everybody’s salivating,” Huston said. “We’ve heard what (the Governor’s) positions are and what he’s proposing and we’re all very excited.” The proposals — and the overall shift — also come with some funding that suggests early childhood education reform may be for real this time around. Kitzhaber’s proposed $8 billion budget for education includes an increase in early childhood funds of nearly $50 million, and he’s publicly made early education one of his top speaking points. The second listed highlight on his proposed budget touts early learning reforms, and at the annual Oregon Leadership Summit in December, Kitzhaber went so far as to set his entire education reform effort atop early childhood. “Built on the foundation of early childhood,” he said, “the (education) budget completes the redesign of our early childhood programs to ensure that all of our children have access to the childcare and health care and pre-school services to ensure they’re ready to learn when they get to kindergarten.” On top of the proposed increase in funds from the state for early childhood learning, the federal government announced in December that Oregon was one of a handful of states to receive a Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge grant. The four-year, $20 million grant will be used for workforce training, to develop a quality rating system for Oregon’s Credits: Daniel Sharp
$11,000 Amount school districts with highquality early childhood programs can expect to save per student
early learning programs and otherwise strengthen the state’s early childhood system. If this all makes it sound like there’s a lot going on in early childhood education in Oregon, it’s because there is. Change is afoot, funding is very likely to increase and some much-needed attention is finally being paid to this crucial window that has historically been isolated from the larger public education picture. The ultimate goal, aside from eliminating duplicated services, reducing foster care and trimming enrollment in special ed programs, intertwines directly with the state’s 40-40-20 goal of having 40 percent of adults earning at least a Bachelor’s degree, 40 percent earning an associate degree and 20 percent earning a high
school diploma by 2025. By the same year, Rupley said, the aim is to have all children entering school ready for kindergarten. “We know how important that is to the rest of those goals” in the 40-40-20 program, she said. Yet Rupley and others know that this is only the beginning. “I don’t believe that anyone involved in this doesn’t want the best for kids and families,” she said. “But it’s important to remember that, while it all sounds like it’s really nice, there are still so many children who don’t get the services they need early on.” Even so, every big-picture change has to start somewhere. And this starting point — the legislation, the increased funding, the federal grant — seems as likely a launch pad as any for early childhood education in Oregon. “When you’re in the trenches and you see how much early childhood education really can do, that students won’t need all these other services when they’re older, that’s what has everybody so excited,” said Huston. “It’s not just the (increase in) money. It’s the change in thinking about this. People are going to see an amazing difference in just a few years.” n
A sampling of tools in Colleen Huston's early intervention assessment toolkit.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
O EA BOARD CANDIDATES OEA MEMBERS SEEK ASSOCIATION POSITIONS » Candidates’ statements are printed exactly as submitted and have not been
corrected for spelling, grammar, or punctuation. PLEASE NOTE: Candidate statements that exceeded the 100-word limit were cut off at the
District 01a (3 year term) Judy Christensen Photo Unavailable
Education Assistant Riverside Elementary Grants Pass School District
STATEMENT My 20 plus years of leadership in OEA has given me a vital voice in representing Southern Oregon and guiding our statewide association. And as a leader is OEA it is my goal to see our Association move forward with unity and determination. I feel that this is key to our success in taking control of the education conversation in Oregon. With members giving input and listening to each other we can accomplish great things. Return Judy Christensen to the OEA Board. QUALIFICATIONS Local: Grants Pass Association of Classified Employees » President–2 terms » Secretary » Building Rep » Bargaining Team » Insurance Committee » LMC » Achievement Compact Committee UniServ: Southern Oregon » Past President » Secretary » Political Action Committee State: OEA » OEA Board » PIE Board » OEA Rep Assembly Delegate » PIE Convention Delegate » OCESP Vice Chair » Legislative Contact » 2004 Kevin Fornay ESP Award » Committees: Legal Defense Program, By-Laws, Member Benefits, Congressional Advocacy Team National: NEA » NEA RA State Delegate » NCESP Convention » 2005 Oregon Representative for NEA ESP of the year Personal: » Past President, current Secretary Josephine County Library Foundation » Past President Josephine County Historical Society » BA English University of Oregon » Past Chair Josephine County Library Board 30
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
District 01a (3 year term) Kathryn A. Huerta Special Education Paraprofessional Parkside Elementary Grants Pass School District
District 03a (1 year term) Eric E. Miller
Vice President Salem-Keizer Education Association
STATEMENT I’m a Special Education Paraprofessional at Parkside Elementary in Grants Pass Or. I would like to ask for your vote to be OEA Board Director for our Region 1. We as educators have increased challenges as school budgets are being cut. I believe in working together we can make a difference. I have been active at the local and state level for the past 17 years. I’m an intuitive listener who will represent all of our members. All educators in Region 1 can trust me to understand their point of view and concerns. Dependable–Creative–Responsible
STATEMENT OEA must continue to advocate for public education. We must continue energizing our membership so we can speak with a loud clear voice on important issues. Local associations need to be listened to and supported so they can better organize their members. We should move away from crisis management and focus on long-term sustainable strategies and solutions. Education is an investment in everyone’s future. Let’s do our part now so we and future generations can reap the dividends of our efforts.
QUALIFICATIONS Local: Grants Pass ACE » Treasurer 20002-present » Building Representative 96-02 » Bargaining Team » Grants Pass District 7–Achievement Compact Commitee
QUALIFICATIONS I have 27 years of OEA involvement in three school districts with the last 16 years in Salem-Keizer.
State » Local OEA/RA Delegate » PIE Delegate » PIE task force » OEA Minority Conference » OEA Advocacy Conference » OEA / NEA Photography Chair 08, 09, 10, 11, 12 » OEA Summer Academy » Oregon Council of Educational Support Professionals Secretary » OCESP/ Legislative Advisory Committee » OCESP Cookbook Chair National » NEA State Delegate 11, 12, 13 » NEA/RA Local Delegate 10 years » NEA Minority Conference 08, 09, 10, 11, 12 » NEA ESP Leadership Training » NCESP member » NEA Pacific Regional Organizing for Power Team 2010
Local Involvement » Vice President » Board of Director » Executive Board » Treasurer » Bargaining Team member for five bargaining teams » Budget Committee » Contract Maintenance Committee » By-Laws and Polices Committee » Organizing Committee » Building Representative » NCUEA and Promising Practices Grant Recipient » P.I.E. Member State Involvement » Current OEA Board Director » Cadre Bargainer » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate National » NEA Representative Assembly Other » Salem-Keizer Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year » Stayton Middle School Teacher of the Year » Presenter International Conference on Critical Thinking » Founder/CEO of Capitol City Medical Teams (ccMedicalTeams.org)
100th word. Elections for OEA Board Directors and NEA RA State Delegates are determined by mail-in ballots, due to OEA Headquarters received or postmarked by March 10th (Bylaws, Article 7, Section 4, C.1.)
District 06 (3 year term) Samuel H. Aley
School Psychologist South Coast ESD
STATEMENT I would like to use my critical thinking skills and association experience to represent my board district, and provide leadership in supporting the mission, vision and core values of the Oregon Education Association. QUALIFICATIONS Local » President, South Coast ESD Education Association (5 years) » Vice-President, SCESDEA (1 year) » SCESDEA Negotiations Team (2 terms) Uniserv » Past President, South Coast Education Council » Legislative Contact Team Captain Regional » NEA Pacific Region Leadership Conference Delegate State » Chair, Legislative Advisory Council » OEA-PIE Board » Re-Shaping Politics Committee Member for the Strategic Action Plan » OEA Resolutions Committee Member National » NEA Representative Assembly Delegate (4 years) » NEA Resolutions Committee Member (2 years)
District 10b (3 year term) Shannon Baker
Classroom Teacher James John Elementary Portland School District
District 10b (3 year term) Paula Fahey
Board Director Stephenson Elementary Portland School District
STATEMENT I strongly support OEA’s stated goal to be “the voice and proponent for professional excellence in public education.” Yet, last year’s OEA rep assembly was a showcase of confusing proposals, mixed messages, and lost opportunities. At this perilous time of corporate school reform, with its focus on privatization, union busting, and high-stakes testing, OEA needs to be focused and strong. PAT needs a strong liaison to the OEA Board. I am asking for your vote.
STATEMENT I have been honored representing Portland Association of Teachers on the OEA Board of Directors. My goal is to work towards the best possible public school system by working to provide optimal work conditions for employees. Through listening to, working with and organizing our members we can all advocate for the best environment to teach our students. I ask for your support of my candidacy as the Board Director representing UniServ Council #10.
QUALIFICATIONS Local: Portland Association of Teachers » Chair of PAT’s Instructional and Professional Development Committee (4 years) » member of the Bargaining Committee » Building Representative » Trained advocate for members on plans of assistance » Member of PAT/PPS team that trained at the New Teacher Institute for Mentoring New Teachers » member (and dissenting vote) of the literacy adoption team for 1st grade
QUALIFICATIONS Local: Portland Association of Teachers » Building Rep » Bargaining Rep » Local Treasurer
State: OEA » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate » Attended statewide education rallies at the Capital » PIE contributor
State: OEA » UniServ 10 Board Director » PIE Convention Delegate » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate » OEA Foundation Board National: NEA » NEA Representative Assembly Delegate » Pacific Regional Leadership Conference » Women's Leadership Training Conference » Minority-Women's Conference
Personal » Teacher at James John Elementary Since 1999 – Currently teaching 1st Grade (I have also taught K, 2nd & Reading Recovery.) » Union Steward for AFGE when I worked for the federal government. » Parent of former PPS student
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
O EA BOARD CANDIDATES District 11 (1 year term)
District 12 (3 year term)
Marsha Lincoln Photo Unavailable
President Corvallis Education Association
STATEMENT I am running for the OEA Board of Directors to represent the members in my Board District 11 during these very difficult times in education. The direction our state organization takes will impact all of us for years to come. I want to be involved in those decisions as our future unfolds. I have used my first year on the OEA Board of Directors as a learning experience to help me grow as a leader. I look forward to the opportunity to continue this growth as I advocate for the interests of OEA members. QUALIFICATIONS Local: Corvallis Education Association » President » Executive Board » Building Representative » Bargaining Team » Political Action Chair State: Oregon Education Association » Interim Board Director, Region 11 » UniServ Review Task Force » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate » Legislative Contact » Chintimini UniServ Council
Gary Humphries Photo Unavailable
7th/8th Computer/STEM Sunridge Middle School Pendleton School District
STATEMENT As the current District 12 Board Director, I have carried to and from the OEA Board of Directors, CRUC’s concerns and Board Actions/Discussions. My goal is to meet with every local president in our UniServ. With all of the challenges of politics running education, I believe that working together will make this profession stronger and more rewarding. It is going to take all of us to change education in Oregon to help every child succeed regardless of the mandates. My “door” is always open and I am willing to help out anyone needing assistance. QUALIFICATIONS Local: Pendleton Association of Teachers » Current President » Vice President » Bargaining Team Chair » Coalition for School Funding » People for Pendleton Schools » Class Project Exec. Committee » Evaluation Committee » Achievement Compact Committee » Strike Assessment Team Member • BMCC • Milton-Freewater • Nyssa » OEA-PIE Delegate » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate » Advocacy Conference Attendee UniServ: Columbia River UniServ Council » President » Current Treasurer » Legislative Contact Team Member » Political Cadre Leader State: OEA » Cabinet of Public Affair » Pacific Regional Conference Delegate » Current OEA Board Director District 12 » TSPC Commissioner » Current Licensure Redesign Committee » Liaison to ODE » Current Structures Task Force National: NEA » Current State Delegate to NEA RA
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
District 15a (3 year term) Geoffrey Hunnicutt Photo Unavailable
Teacher Arts & Communication Magnet Academy Beaverton School District
STATEMENT I am pleased and excited to be running to be your OEA Board Representative. This is an interesting and difficult time for education in our state. I truly feel that the only way we can secure the funding and work environment that we need is through strong union leadership and collective action. I have long been involved in advocating for education and teachers and I look forward to working hard for you again. QUALIFICATIONS Beaverton Education Association » Bargaining Team Member » Executive Board Member OEA » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate » OEA Board of Directors NEA » NEA Representative Assembly Delegate
District 17a (2 year term)
District 19 (3 year term)
Melody L. Antons
Instructional Assistant Lebanon High School Lebanon Community School District
STATEMENT If elected to the Board of Directors, I would feel called to make decisions that are in the best interest of students, fellow educators, and the continuation of the OEA. I will consider all data provided and opinions and thoughts of the other board members; solicit input from coworkers, other OEA members, and the community around us. And truly listen to what our students want and need from OEA and us; many hard choices and decisions will need to be made, but I intend to leave my personal agenda in the car and work for the greater good. QUALIFICATIONS Local: LESPA » President » Building Rep » Bargaining Committee Chairman » By-Laws Update Committee Chairman » Compact Committee State: OEA » Board of Directors » Credentials Committee OEA RA » Uniserv Vice Chair » Various Uniserv Committees » OCESP Member » MAC Conference participant » Summer Academy participant » Advocacy Conference participant » Leadership Conference participant National: NEA » Emerging Leaders Training participant » NEA/ESP Conference 2010 participant » Leaders For Tomorrow participant » NEA RA Local Delegate » NCESP Member
Renée Criss Photo Unavailable
Teacher Malin Elementary Klamath County School District
STATEMENT I am running for OEA Board of Directors District 19. For the past few years, I have become an active member in my Uniserv and at the state level as Board Director for District 19. I have been an engaged Board Director and want to continue moving our organization forward. I would like to continue to represent our area as well as the state as your OEA Board Director. QUALIFICATIONS Local: Klamath County Education Association / Klamath-Lake UniServ » UniServ President 2012-Present » President 2008-2010 » Vice President 2007-2008 » Building Representative 2002-2009, 2010-Present » Bargaining Team Member 2008-Present State: OEA » OEA Board of Directors 2010-Present » OEA Representative Delegate 2006-Present » President’s Training » State Advocacy Conference National: NEA » OEA State Delegate to National Representative Assembly 2012-Present » Pacific Regional Leadership Conference–3 years
District 21 (3 year term) Lynn Hill
5/6 Teacher Glide Elementary Glide School District
STATEMENT I have had the privilege of serving as an OEA Board Director for the past few months, filling the last year of a vacated position. It’s been quite a learning experience, full of challenges and accomplishments, conflicts and resolutions, long discussions and difficult decisions. Through these experiences, I have gained an even deeper appreciation for our collective strength. I believe that clear, timely communication and respectful discourse are key factors in maintaining our unity. I would consider it an honor to continue to serve as the OEA Board Director from District 21, and would very much appreciate your vote. QUALIFICATIONS Local: Glide Education Association » President » Vice President » Treasurer » Building Rep » Bargaining Team Chair » Scholarship Committee » Uniserv Council State: OEA » Board Director, District 21 » Bylaws & Policies Committee » Ethnic Minority Affairs Committee » OEA Representative Assembly Delegate National: NEA » Pacific Region Minority Leadership Conference » Pacific Region Leadership Conference Personal » Sapsikwala Scholarship Committee » Johnson O’Malley Parent Committee
Personal: » BSA District Award of Merit » BSA Woodbadge Trainer » Cub Scout Leader Training Chair
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
O EA BOARD CANDIDATES District 26b (3 year term) Brian Haliski
Teacher Metzger Elementary Tigard School District
District 30a (3 year term) Gary DEroest
Board Director Mt. Hood Community College
District 05 (2 year term)
No Name Submitted – Write-in ballot
District 08 (3 year term)
No Name Submitted – Write-in ballot
District 20a (3 year term) STATEMENT As the president of both my local and uniserv councils, I have unique access to the day to day concerns of our members. I am an advocate of spending more of the members’ OEA dues dollars directly for services that support educators in their local districts. In order for locals to have the capacity to be member driven, we must first provide them with triage from their crushing workloads and class sizes. The immediate needs of OEA members is to serve them where they work. I will be a strong voice at the state level to advocate for such policies. QUALIFICATIONS The following offices and committees on which I have served on behalf of TTEA and 3Valley members attest to my commitment to providing those members with union support in all aspects of their educator necessities. My experiences have provided me with a broad spectrum of member needs, from classroom/administration issues to debating and making statewide policy. » 3Valley President » 3Valley Vice-President » TTEA President » OEA-PIE Board » OEA-GLBT Caucus Co-President » OEA-RA Delegate » TTEA Building Rep » TTEA Bargaining: • Bargaining team • External committee
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
STATEMENT I am honored to deliver the community college and public education voice on the OEA Board of Directors. I am further honored that my UniServ Council has nominated me and supports my continued work with the Board. The next 3 years will provide many opportunities for me and other members to support public education in Oregon. Communicating with other concerned members is an important role that I am committed to do. I will also support programs that support our students, pre-kindergarten to grand adulthood. Thank you for your support creating and maintaining the best educational system in the United States. QUALIFICATIONS My name is Gary DeRoest. I have served as a OEA Board Director for the past 4 years. Previous I was the Mt Hood Community College Faculty Association President for 3 years. I have been involved in my local association and OEA since my higher at the Corbett School District in 1999. I have even participated in NEA Higher Education Emerging Leader program and would like to continue supporting my peers, all community college employees and OEA as a Board Director.
No Name Submitted – Write-in ballot
District 20b (2 year term)
No Name Submitted – Write-in ballot
NEA RA STATE DELEGATE CANDIDATES Region I Candidates 4 Positions (3 year terms)
Board Director Stephenson Elementary Portland School District
2nd Grade Free Orchards Elementary Hillsboro School District
Teacher Baker Prairie Middle School Canby School District
ACE President Clackamas Community College
Region II Candidates 4 Positions (3 year terms)
Colleen K. Hunter
4th Grade Teacher Mt Vernon Elementary Springfield School District
Teacher Centennial School Salem-Keizer School District
Region III Candidates 4 Positions (3 year terms)
Education Assistant Riverside Elementary Grants Pass School District
Science Teacher Marshfield High School Coos Bay School District
TODAYâ€™S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
Sources + Resources The following information is provided as a resource to members of the Oregon Education Association. Their publication within Today’s OEA is not to be construed as a recommendation or endorsement of the products or services by the Oregon Education Association, its Board of Directors or staff. FOR THE CLASSROOM
Children’s Clean Water Festival
WHAT: The Clean Water Festival is designed for 4th and 5th grade students to learn about water and how it relates to our world. Water experts from Oregon and Washington will work with 4th and 5th graders to explore water science and watershed ecology. n WHen: Mar. 13, 2013 n WHere: University of Portland n how: For more information, go to http://www.cleanwaterfestival.org n
Listen to a Life Essay Contest
WHAT: This contest, run by Legacy Project, gives students a chance to travel in time as they learn about the past while finding direction for their own future. The contest also helps build critical 21st Century skills. The Legacy Project also offers schools and families free online resources for building closer connections across generations. n WHen: Contest deadline is Mar. 22, 2013. n how: For free online life interview tips and questions, Across Generations activities, and the complete Listen to a Life Contest details, visit www. legacyproject.org. n
WHAT: Spend time with students from all over the country, music industry pros, and guest artists. Write and record new music, visit music sites, and finish with a concert in a professional venue. Financial assistance is available if needed. n who: Students enrolled in grades 9-12 are eligible to apply. n WHen: Video essay and career track materials are due by Mar. 31, 2013. n how: To learn more and apply, go to www.grammyintheschools.com/ programs/grammy-camp. n
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
SunWise with SHADE Poster Contest
WHAT: Students in grades K-8 are invited to help raise awareness about sun safety and win great prizes by submitting original, hand-drawn posters showing sun safety action steps. n WHen: Deadline is Apr. 1, 2013. n how: Contest details are available at www.shadefoundation.org/postercontest.php. n
Gilder Lehrman Institute 2013 Teacher Seminars
WHAT: Led by eminent historians and held at major educational and historical institutions, these oneweek interdisciplinary seminars give educators the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of topics in American history and literature while gaining practical resources and strategies to bring these subjects to life in the classroom. Books, room, and board are included; teachers may commute if they prefer. n who: Full-time K-12 history and English language arts teachers are eligible. n WHen: Submission Deadline: Feb. 15, 2013 n how: To learn more and to apply, go to www.gilderlehrman.org/programsexhibitions/2013-teacher-seminars-0. n
Black History Month: A Focus on Oregon
WHAT: Oregon has an uneven history that includes Black exclusion and discrimination and, at the same time, a vibrant Black culture that helped sustain many communities throughout the state. This is the focus of “Why Aren’t There More Black People in Oregon? A Hidden History.” n WHere: Carriage House of the Lincoln County Historical Society, 545 SW Ninth St., Newport, Ore. n
WHen: Saturday, Feb. 23, 2:00 p.m. how: For more information about this free program, please call 541-265-7509. n n
James Madison Graduate Fellowships
WHAT: The James Madison Fellowships provide support for graduate study that focuses on the Constitution—its history and contemporary relevance to the practices and policies of democratic government. The James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation offers $24,000 James Madison Graduate Fellowships to individuals. n WHen: Deadline is Mar. 1, 2013, before 5:00 p.m., central time. n how: For more information on the Fellowship and how to apply, go to www. jamesmadison.gov. n
Seminar about China
WHAT: The National Consortium for Teaching about Asia (NCTA) presents “China: The Great Tradition and the Modern Transformation”, which emphasizes key historical changes in China, the philosophies upon which the changes were grounded, and the cultural systems that emerged from those changes. Credit options are available. n who: For teachers in upper elementary, middle and high schools. n WHere: Coos Bay, Ore. n WHen: Mar. 2 and Apr. 6, 2013, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., and additional online work. n how: For more information, go to https://catalyst.uw.edu/webq/survey/ earc/183686 or contact East Asia Resource Center at firstname.lastname@example.org. edu with any questions. n
AT&T Teacher Discount
WHAT: AT&T is offering discounts for members of the Oregon Education Association. Details of the discounts are 1) Monthly Discount of 17% on qualified charges; 2) Waived Activation Fees; 3) Waived upgrade Fees; 4) Activation credits n
Sources + Resources up to $75 dollars through Mar. 15, 2013; and 5) Free phones available online along with free shipping. n how: To sign up for the discount, go to www.att.com/governmentemployees.
ING Unsung Heroes Award
WHAT: Do you or does someone you know have a creative, unique educational program that is helping students reach new heights? The ING Unsung Heroes program helps K-12 educators and their schools fund innovative classroom projects. n who: All K-12 education professionals are eligible. n WHen: Applications must be postmarked by Apr. 30, 2013. n how: For more information and to apply, go to www.unsungheroes.com. Questions regarding the program should be addressed to Scholarship America: Phone: (507) 931-1682 or (800) 537-4180, E-mail: email@example.com.
The Bully In The Mirror By Shanaya Fastje Changing Lives Press, 2012, ISBN-13: 9780984304790; $14.95 (List Price); Available online at www.barnesandnoble.com
WHAT: This website offers classroom resources for PreK-12, online professional development for teachers, and a growing library of theme-based activity packs containing links to PBS resources and activities for multiple grade levels n WHere: Go to www.pbs.org/teachers.
Bully in the Mirror can be a powerful part of the solution, blending facts about the negative effects of bullying with the author’s views. Readers learn how bullies operate and how to stop them in their tracks.
Healthy Children, Healthy Lives: The Wellness Guide for Early Childhood Programs By: Sharon Bergen, Rachel Robertson Redleaf Press, 2012; ISBN-13: 9781605540818; $29.95 (List Price); Available online at www.barnesandnoble.com This book offers a series of research-based checklists for early-childhood workers focused on six categories of children’s well-being: nutrition, physical fitness, emotional health, physical health, safety and risk management, and leadership. Each checklist provides built-in guidance for improvement, complements any high-quality curriculum, and aims to contribute to children’s ability to thrive and experience joy in life and learning.
Math Fact Cafe
WHAT: This website offers free printable math worksheets for elementary school and home use, including generators for math drills, flashcards, counting, time, money, and more, with a focus on elementary grades, K-5. n WHere: Go to www.mathfactcafe.com. n
WHAT: Teachers can sign up for a free membership, get their own homepages and have access to 25 different learning activities including spelling tests, vocabulary Flashcards, and more. n Where: Go to www.spellingcity.com/ teachers-overview.html. n
Planning for Play, Observation, and Learning in Preschool and Kindergarten By: Gaye Gronlund Redleaf Press, 2012; ISBN-13: 9781605541136; $29.95 (List Price); Available online at www.barnesandnoble.com This resource provides teachers with practical application techniques to help create a cycle of planning and observation as teachers use a play-based curriculum to help young children thrive in the classroom.
Real Classroom Makeovers: Practical Ideas for Early Childhood Classrooms By: Rebecca Isbell, Pam Evanshen Publisher: Gryphon House, Incorporated, 2012; ISBN-13: 9780876593783; $26.95 (List Price); Available online at www. barnesandnoble.com The authors provide tips for how to maximize a classroom’s potential by turning it into a space that is as conducive to learning as possible. The book also includes guidelines that are specific to a certain area (for instance, a library or math area) and before-and-after pictures.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
ON THE WEB / 02.13 » www.oregoned.org
A NEW DAY FOR OEA ONLINE!
rumroll, please…. as part of the Oregon Education Association’s Strategic Action Plan, OEA members now have at their fingertips a brand new website, focused entirely on the needs of Oregon educators! After months of memberdriven focus groups, data collection, surveying and conversations with members about their online needs and habits, the OEA website launched lateJanuary. In following the goals of the Strategic Action Plan, the new website is geared toward strong member engagement, easier to find resources for educators and a focus on telling the important story of what’s happening in our public schools and community colleges. We want to bring your attention to a few great features about the new website.
Educators are busy people, and after a long day with students, you don’t have a lot of time to spend hunting for the resources you need or the news items of the moment. On our homepage, toward the top of the page, we’ve listed our “Hot Topics” – the pages (and areas of interest) we think you should visit immediately when you come to the new site. Below the “Hot Topics” are small, boxed items that will change from day to day. Think of these like the news briefs on our website – you can scroll through them and easily access the latest education news, OEA’s upcoming events, and where to go to “Take Action” on the issues that impact you. Toggle between the different categories (member, educator, parent) to find news items specifically targeted to you.
TODAY’S OEA | FEBRUARY 2013
both!) the OEA Foundation or OEA’s political action fund, OEA-PIE. You can read more about both the Foundation and OEA-PIE, and the good work our members do through these donation opportunities (from outfitting needy students in warm coats, to electing pro-public education candidates).
In creating this website, the goal was to make it a place where OEA members could fully engage with their union and impact their professional lives. The Action Center includes different ways you can “take action” to make your union a driving force for quality public education. n Share Your Story: Over time, you’ll
have different opportunities to share your story with policy makers and impact important decisions made by our state leaders. Currently – the campaign is on to collect class size data about Oregon’s public schools. Check out www.oregoned.org/ classsize to share your number and tell your story about how class size impacts the students you work with.
n Events: Attending an OEA or featured
community event is certainly a way to be active in your Association! We have a calendar of upcoming events, as well as education opportunities (like workshops and trainings). Sign yourself up and bring a friend!
n Donate: Stretch you civic or
charitable dollar further by making a contribution to either (or better yet,
In tandem with the small boxes on the homepage, the “What’s New” section of the site is exactly that – the OEA news blog! It’s updated daily to arm you with the information you need to know about your profession and your union. We cover a wide variety of topics in our “What’s New” section – from bargaining crises to achievement compacts, and everything in between. You can narrow your focus by navigating through the different OEA Centers listed to the right on the “What’s New” page (for example, if you only want political updates, check out the “Grassroots Politics” tab). The “What’s New” section has enabled commenting, so if you have a question about any of the items you read, save yourself an email and let us know directly on the page! Please note that this commenting feature may be blocked by some school districts (trust us, though, it’s safe to use at home). As with any project of this scope, a website launch is always followed by weeks of making small changes and corrections to our content and functionality. If you see any major issues we should address, email us your feedback at: firstname.lastname@example.org. We hope you enjoy using the new website and welcome your feedback at any time. See you online!
The Official Publication of Oregon Education Association
OEA â€˘ NEA 6900 S.W. Atlanta Street Portland, OR 97223 tel: (503) 684-3300 fax: (503) 684-8063 www.oregoned.org
Periodicals POSTAGE PAID at Portland OR
Bring Your Voice to Salem OEA LObby DAy MArch 25, 2013
Sign up to attend: www.oregoned.org/whats-new/lobby-day