Welcome Back!

2019 FEA President’s Welcome Back-to-School Address 

Hi, my name is Lori Andrade and I am your proud FEA President!

Currently, we are negotiating our new contract for 2019-2022. We anticipate that we will be having another General Membership meeting to vote on the Negotiation Teams’ final proposals for ratification.  

We have been meeting over the summer and have a meeting tomorrow after our contractual hours with Administration and the School Committee. Our current contract is still in effect as we enter this school year. If you are changing pay lanes horizontally or taking a step vertically, it will be reflected in your first paycheck based upon last year’s contract. Once we have ratified a new contract, you will receive any retroactive pay that has been negotiated. Additionally, we will all receive the percent increase retroactively. Be on the lookout for that meeting date, and it is very important that you attend the meeting and make your voice heard.

The Negotiation Team

President Lori Andrade

Morse Pond    Corrine Brennan

Lawrence        Jeff Tribou 

FHS                  Stephanie Morrison 

                          Mike Campbell 

Unit B              Audra Dunn

Unit C              Maryellen Woods 

Unit D              Pam Maynard 

We are in need of 2 elementary Unit A Reps. If you are interested, please email me or get in touch with your Building Director or Rep. Thank you Rachel and the Team!

We have some current challenges as a profession:

  • Funding: This week, tens of thousands of MTA members are sitting together in auditoriums like this one, being welcomed back by their unions — just as we are today. We are part of something bigger than ourselves. We are part of the national Red For Ed movement that has swept the country. Red For Ed is a movement of educators, acting through their unions and with their communities, that has won significant victories to stop the advancement of charter schools and to secure the education funding our students deserve. Right here in Massachusetts, as part of this movement, we have had our own Red For Ed victory. We are now one step closer to winning the public schools our students and communities deserve. 

The top priority for the MTA this past year — through the Fund Our Future campaign — has been to win more state funding for our public schools. At the end of July, our campaign won a major victory with the passage of a state budget that includes $269 million in new funds for public schools. $269 million dollars. It wouldn’t have happened without your activism. 

For our district, state funding went from 

  • FY 19 budget: $6,623,382
  • FY 20 budget: $6,780,099 
  • $ Chg. $156,717 
  • % change: 2.4% 
  • $ change per pupil: $47

This could just be considered a down payment!

We, the educators in this district, are the experts on what our students and our schools need. Through the union, we have the voice and the power to improve our schools by having a say in how that money gets spent. Our job right now is to use our collective voice to ensure that the money is used to provide the things that will positively impact the teaching and learning conditions in our district. 

Despite this down-payment-on-school-funding win, there is a lot more to do. The budget provides just a one-time increase. For the second year in a row, the Legislature failed to pass a new bill that would change the funding formula into the future. The bill that we and our community partners are supporting is called the Promise Act. It would phase in more than $1 billion in new state aid over seven years. We have a good chance to pass a bill based on the principles of the Promise Act, but only if thousands of educators are involved. You’ll be hearing much more about this as the school year unfolds.

All In Campaign: We are also taking steps to make our union stronger by involving more members, seeking member input on the direction of the union and encouraging everyone to join. We have been inspired by the activism in West Virginia, Kentucky, Los Angeles and many other places where educators stood up for themselves and won major victories. It’s a reminder that we do have power if we exercise it collectively. I am proud to say that our Membership Chair Susan Baker has reported that every new hire has joined our Union.

 

Current vacancies:

Mullen Hall Building Director

Falmouth High School Building Representative (1)

East Falmouth School Building Representative (1)

Teaticket School Representative (1)

North Falmouth School Representative (1)

 

I hope you all have a great year. See me or your building rep if you have any questions. Request to join our facebook group as well as the MTA’s website and social media pages so you can keep up with what’s going on in education and our union. 

Don’t forget FEA Trivia Night Thursday from 4-8pm at the Navigator Club in East Falmouth. 

It’s at 55 Ashumet Rd. East Falmouth, MA 02536

Cold Apps/Salads/Heavy Finger Foods and Cocktail “Hour-s” (including Registration):    4:00+/- pm

Trivia Game Starts:     5:00+/- pm

Light Desserts and Coffee:    6:30+/- pm

Clean-Up:    8:00-9:00 pm

Register individually or in teams. 

So, the Evaluations Subcommittee Working Group is one of the committees I have been on the longest. This year we added 2 members from Unit C: Val Saffron and Joan Holman – please stand up and be recognized. Thank you ladies! Other FEA members on the team are: FHS Joanne Palmer, Unit B Sarah Cox, and myself as President. We could really use more diverse representation on this committee. An elementary rep, a specialist’s rep, Unit D rep, a SAC and OT/PT rep would add to this group. Please reach out if you are interested.

I have received many thanks and acknowledgements over this past year as your President. People have commended me on doing a great job and thanked me for my hard work. People have commented, “I don’t know how you do it!” I am going to tell you the secret to my success – which is truly our collective success: the only reason we have been successful is because I have surrounded myself with good, smart, hard-working people. They have supported me and have done what has been asked and worked tirelessly for us. Let’s give a round of applause for our EBoard, our Reps Council, our Negotiations Team, our Evaluations Committee, and every one of you that has listened or supported a fellow colleague… that is what makes our organization a success. Thank you to all of you. 

In closing, have a wonderful year and know that you are part of a well-respected, highly regarded organization of which I am proud to be called President!

Thank you everyone!

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