AM Brew - October 25, 2021

Here's What's Brewing Today

Tuesday, October 25, 2021

 

The most rewarding part of my job is when I visit schools and connect with members either in small groups or one-on-one. I sincerely appreciate the job that you perform under very imperfect circumstances. I understand what you experience daily with large class sizes, class coverage, and the lack of drinking water for your students. I commit to fighting every single day to improve on your working conditions and to hold DCPS accountable for its mishandling of COVID-19 protocols. Please do not hesitate to notify your building representative or field services specialist of any immediate issues that we need to attend to. 

As always, I wish you an enjoyable and productive work week. 

Jacqueline 

 

Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program 

On October 12, 2021, the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) reached a settlement in Weingarten v. DeVos. The Department of Education led by Secretary Miguel Cardona agreed to work with AFT to ensure relief for the countless borrowers who relied on the promise of Public Service Loan Forgiveness. 

According to the terms of the settlement, millions of Americans, including educators will now have their loans completely forgiven or will be properly enrolled in a forgiveness program crediting their years of past payments, putting them much closer to full forgiveness.  

As a member of the AFT, you are eligible to get help navigating the new process from AFT’s
partner, Summer. Retrieve your membership number at https://members.aft.org/members/lookup. Once you have your membership number, sign up for a free account with Summer at https://www.meetsummer.org/pslf

If you have questions, please contact AFT at https://www.aft.org/contact or by
calling (800) 238-1133.  

The WTU is planning a workshop in November to help you navigate this process and will keep you posted in the coming weeks. 

 

Dental and Vision Open Enrollment 

DC government has announced its open enrollment to run from 2022 for Monday, November 8 through Monday December 13, 2021. This is an annual opportunity to review your current benefits elections and make changes. This is also an opportunity for you to make any changes to your dental and vision benefits. Click here for details on your dental and vision coverage or if you have any questions regarding these benefits, contact Valerie Kilby at [email protected]

If you have questions regarding enrollment into the plans, contact DCPS benefits at [email protected]

 

Important Information for Related Service Providers and Special Education Teachers 

Due to concerns regarding the increasing requests for redundant documentation from the Division of Specialized Instruction the WTU reached out to DCPS regarding the required documentation of recovery planning for students with IEPs. DSI indicated the Quarterly Progress Reports and Recovery Plans are due Monday, November 15, 2021. This date is aligned Article 19.2 (Report Cards/Progress Reports shall be prepared within five (5) school days after the close of each advisory/grading period.

Given numerous reports concerning inequitable duty assignments and excessive class coverage assignments, we're requesting all related service providers and special education teachers complete the following surveys ASAP. 

Survey #1 - Coverage and Duty Assignments 

Survey #2 - Over Enrollment in Self-Contained Classrooms & Inequity in Program Assignments 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding these surveys contact Field Services Specialist, Janice Brown Parker at [email protected]

 

AM Brew News and Notices will be archived at https://www.wtulocal6.net/AMBrew.

 

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PD Highlights - October 18, 2021

PD Highlights - October 18, 2021

Sign up for “The Game Factor” (FREE)

Join Dr. Casey Collins on Saturday, October 23 @ 9am-12noon to explore an instructional design that works for both online and in-person instruction. Caution: We will talk about games, but this module will cover much more. Participants will receive 4 PLU’s.

RSVP HERE: https://www.wtulocal6.net/fall_2021_the_game_factor

 

Join the Flagway League!

The Flagway League will be launched on October 25 @ 4-5pm by coordinator Raphael Bonhomme.

"The goal of The Flagway™ Game is to create environments where students can practice and celebrate learning math. There are many different ways to create a cultural context in which mathematics emerges naturally from students’ experience. One method used by the YPP and the Algebra Project is to create mathematically rich games and experiences." Find more info about the game here: http://www.typp.org/flagway.

Register HERE to become a Flagway Coach: https://www.wtulocal6.net/fall_2021_flagway_league_section_1

 

IMPACT Professional Development Workshop (FREE)

Part 2 (EP 3, 4 & 5): Saturday, November 7 @ 10am-1pm

In many ways, your career in DCPS is dependent upon the IMPACT scoring system. Learn what the system measures, how it works and much more. Participants will take a deep dive into the scoring systems used by DCPS which include the Essential Practices, Teacher-Assessed Student Achievement Data (TAS), Community School Commitment (CSC) and Core Professionalism (CP) Participants will receive 3 PLU’s.

RSVP HERE: https://www.wtulocal6.net/fall_2021_impact_professional_development

 

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WTU’s Frustrations Boil Over with No-Confidence Resolution

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For Immediate Release
October 13, 2021


Contact:
Jacqueline Pogue Lyons
[email protected]
202-517-1477

 

WTU’s Frustrations Boil Over with No-Confidence Resolution

Membership Upset Over School Reopening Concerns, Protracted Contract Negotiations, No Action on IMPACT Evaluation Changes


WASHINGTON—Frustration with District of Columbia leadership over school building safety, protracted contract negotiations and inaction on IMPACT evaluation changes boiled over this week with Washington Teachers’ Union members voting that they have no confidence in city leaders.


“This is what happens when teachers raise legitimate concerns that affect students and teachers, but then time passes and nothing gets done. We need a relationship with city and school district leaders built on respect and mutual trust, and that means addressing problems together in a timely way,” said WTU President Jacqueline Pogue Lyons.


At a meeting Tuesday evening, WTU delegates passed a resolution of no confidence in city and school leadership, primarily calling them out for reopening schools that were not fully safe. These include reopening schools without fully functional HVAC systems and inadequate filters where students are regularly present, failing to recognize the need for a virtual option despite accommodations made for charter schools, and underfunding mental health and social and emotional support for students and staff dealing with trauma related to the pandemic and record-setting shootings in the city.


Pogue Lyons also said teachers are exacerbated by protracted negotiations over a contract that expired in September 2019 and inaction on changing the flawed IMPACT evaluation system, which research has shown is not helpful, actually hurts teachers’ well-being and is racial biased.


“Our teachers went above and beyond during the height of the pandemic to make sure their students got a quality education. They were excited to go back to school in person this fall despite their concerns regarding the continued spread of the virus, and yet the district is slow-walking negotiations. Teachers feel terribly disrespected and have had it with district leadership. This resolution reflects their deep frustration,” Pogue Lyons said.


She also said that the city is failing to work to resolve a serious teacher shortage and retention problem. “If the city refuses to recognize the problem and work with the WTU to improve it, the situation could turn into a major crisis. This is bad for students and bad for our schools and community.”

# # #

 

You can download a copy of the release here.

 

 

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AM Brew - October 12, 2021

Here's What's Brewing Today

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

 

Please join us on Tuesday, October 12, 2021, at 04:30 PM Eastern Time (Via Zoom) for our monthly Representative Assembly. The meeting is open to all members of the Washington Teachers’ Union.

Please click here to registerAfter registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Proposed Agenda:

- Updates from the President, Jacqueline Pogue Lyons

- Professional Development, Sarah Elwell

- Committee Reports, Committee Chairs

- Review and Vote on WTU Budget for FY2022, Nadia Torney

- Vendor Presentations


Air Quality Report

As a part of the MOU, DGS must provide monthly information on air quality in our schools. The September DGS School Indoor Air Quality- Monthly Report is a now available.

 

IMPACT surveys

We will be conducting a series of short surveys to get your input on a better way to use the teacher process to improve performance.  The goal is to create the framework of a system to replace IMPACT’s punitive approach. Please take 2-3 minutes to complete this survey. Thank You!

https://forms.gle/oVbpR3q1eUvsKja89

 

AM Brew News and Notices will be archived at https://www.wtulocal6.net/AMBrew.

 

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PD Highlights - October 12, 2021

Professional Development Highlights

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

 

IMPACT Professional Development Workshop

Part 1 (EP 1 & 2): Saturday, October 16 @ 10am – 1pm

Part 2 (EP 3, 4 & 5): Saturday, November 7 @ 10am-1pm

In many ways, your career in DCPS is dependent upon the IMPACT scoring system. Learn what the system measures, how it works and much more. Participants will take a deep dive into the scoring systems used by DCPS which include the Essential Practices, Teacher-Assessed Student Achievement Data (TAS), Community School Commitment (CSC) and Core Professionalism (CP) Participants will receive 6 PLU’s.

RSVP HERE: https://www.wtulocal6.net/fall_2021_impact_professional_development

 

WTU Tech Tuesdays Are Back!!!

Today 10/12 @ 5:30-6:30pm, join PD instructor Tameshia Henry for a session on PREZI.

Register HERE.

 

REGISTRATION IS STILL OPEN---WTU Professional Learning - FALL 2021 Course Offerings

Make sure you don't procrastinate on recertification requirements!!! Sign up now for amazing, engaging, and informative virtual fall professional development with the WTU ($150 registration fee; 1 FREE class for new members):

Creating and Managing a Successful School Library Program (started 10/6; limited spaces still available)

National Board Certification Support Classes (started 10/5)

Universal Design for Learning (starts 10/12)

Learn more and register for all classes HERE.

 

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AM Brew - October 4, 2021

As we go through Hispanic Heritage month, I’d like to applaud all our Spanish teachers and all the educators who work with students to recognize and celebrate the contributions and accomplishments of Hispanic Americans to the history of our country. I have seen very beautiful exhibits as I visit schools and wanted to say thank you for your hard work. 

In last week’s Morning Brew, I shared with you that the Washington Teachers’ Union (WTU) has requested bargaining over the impacts and effects of the vaccination mandate on members of our bargaining unit. While approximately 76% of the WTU membership is fully vaccinated, I encourage all members who have still not received the vaccine to do so to safeguard the health and safety of all your students and colleagues. For those who cannot take the vaccine due to legitimate concerns and have requested or will be requesting an exemption, I want to ensure that your rights are fully respected. The WTU will meet with DCPS on October 14th at 10:00 AM to discuss how the vaccination mandate will affect our unvaccinated members. 

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact your field services specialist. 

Have a productive work week. 

Jacqueline Pogue Lyons, President 

 

SBOE STAR Framework Survey for Teachers

The D.C. State Board of Education (SBOE) invites District teachers to complete a 10-minute / 22-question survey. The purpose of this teacher survey is to better understand educators’ experiences with the District’s school accountability system—the School Transparency and Reporting (STAR) Framework—as we consider what, if any, changes should be made to it. We recommend that you use a computer or tablet to fill out this survey. Thank you for taking the time to fill this out, and please know your identity will remain anonymous.

We ask that you submit responses no later than Friday, October 15 at 5 p.m. If you have any questions, please reach out to the State Board at [email protected].

Please use the following link to start the teacher survey: https://bit.ly/38ixJOW

 

The Strong Black Woman: How a Myth Endangers the Physical and Mental Health of Black Women.

Join author Marita Golden and licensed Clinical Social Worker, Dr. Pamela Brewer on the DC Public Library’s Facebook page and YouTube channel on Thursday, Oct. 7 at 6 p.m. for a conversation on Golden's new book, The Strong Black Woman: How a Myth Endangers the Physical and Mental Health of Black Women. The Strong Black Woman complex, deeply embedded in African American culture, is a response to systemic racism. It is a binding cultural code. The WTU will provide a free copy of The Strong Black Woman to the first 10 members who email General Vice President Regina Bell at [email protected]

 

AM Brew News and Notices will be archived at https://www.wtulocal6.net/AMBrew.

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PD Highlights - October 4, 2021

Professional Development

REGISTRATION IS STILL OPEN---WTU Professional Learning - FALL 2021 Course Offerings

Make sure you don't procrastinate on recertification requirements!!! Sign up now for amazing, engaging, and informative virtual fall professional development with the WTU ($150 registration fee; 1 FREE class for new members):

Classes starting soon:

Learn more and register for all classes HERE.

 

EmpowerEd Teacher Voice Summit

EmpowerEd invites you to attend their DC Teacher Voice Festival on Saturday October 23rd from 10 am to 2 pm on U Street- this is a fun and family-friendly opportunity to meet educators who care about the same things and want to make a difference and have a great time in the process!  WTU will also be showcasing our teacher leader research at the event!  We'll be joined by many DC council members and members of the DC State Board of Education.  There will be live music, food trucks, face painting and balloon twisting and you can collaborate with educators working on issues from culturally responsive teaching to teacher diversity, retention, reforming school ratings, mayoral control and much more! It's outdoors and open to the public, but for covid protocols and issue interest PLEASE register in advance here to join!

 

WTU Professional Learning Abroad (2 spaces left!)

There is still time to sign up for the WTU Professional Learning trip to Morocco in July 2022, based on travel guidance. 5% discount through the end of September!!! Check out the itinerary here: https://geeo.org/tour/wtumorocco/.

 

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PD Highlights - Sept 27, 2021

Anti-Racist Administration and School Leadership (ASL) post-graduate certificate at American University. 

The American University School of Education is offering a post-graduate certificate for educators who are interested in becoming educational administrators. For many, this means school leadership as a principal or assistant principal; the ASL certificate also bolsters careers in central office and student support, among other options. 

If you would like to learn more about this opportunity to grow your skills, please register here for a free virtual open house on Thursday, September 30th at 7 pm EST.  

 

 

REGISTRATION IS STILL OPEN---WTU Professional Learning - FALL 2021 Course Offerings

Sign up now for amazing, engaging, and informative virtual fall professional development with the WTU including these classes which start within the next two weeks ($150 registration fee; 1 FREE class for new members):

FREE WTU Workshops starting in September:

Learn more and Register for all classes HERE.

 

Virtual Teachers’ Lounge

20 teachers will engage in twice-monthly gatherings online together in large and small groups over two months. Planned meeting dates are October 9, October 23, November 6, November 20, December 4, and December 18. Because of the importance of connections, connectivity and trust, it is our expectation that participants will, absent exigent circumstances, engage in all six gatherings. The participants have the option to decide at the end of the fourth gathering whether they would like to continue the Virtual Teachers’ Lounge. Those on the waitlist will be notified when there is a cancellation or new virtual teacher rooms opening. All participants will receive a $25 Amazon gift card, an educational resource (The Feeling Alphabet Activity Set) and a certificate of participation for volunteering their time.

If you have any questions, please send an email to [email protected] Register online at http://tiny.cc/mc8iuz

or visit www.virtualteacherslounge2021.com

 

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AM Brew - September 27, 2021

Here's What's Brewing Today

Monday, September 27, 2021

 

Last week D.C. Mayor, Muriel Bowser announced that all District of Columbia Public School personnel must be vaccinated by Nov. 1. Unlike the current vaccination requirement, there is no test out option, but employees with legitimate medical and religious concerns can request an exemption. As I stated in my response to the mandate, the Washington Teachers’ Union supports the principle of a vaccine mandate, but there must be accommodations, bargained with the union, for those with legitimate religious and medical exemptions and an agreement on how to handle people who don’t fall under these exemptions.  

We conducted a poll of the WTU membership shortly after the mandate was announced and found that while approximately 76% of respondents are fully vaccinated 24% are not and will be requesting various exemptions, some of which are not covered under the mayor’s order. My responsibility is to all our members, regardless of whether they are vaccinated or not. I have made a request to DCPS to bargain over the impact and effects of the mandate, especially for members who do not qualify for any of the two exemptions. 

If you have any concerns regarding this mandate or other issues at your school, contact your field services specialist.

Jacqueline Pogue Lyons, President

 

AM Brew News and Notices will be archived at https://www.wtulocal6.net/AMBrew.

 

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PD Highlights - Sept 20, 2021

Professional Development

 

REGISTRATION IS STILL OPEN---WTU Professional Learning - FALL 2021 Course Offerings

Sign up now for amazing, engaging, and informative virtual fall professional development with the WTU including these classes which start within the next two weeks ($150 registration fee; 1 FREE class for new members):

 

FREE WTU Workshops starting in September:

Learn more and Register for all classes HERE.

 

AETNA Wellness Webinar

The Self-Care Playbook, September 22, 3:00PM-4:00PM

What does it mean to practice good self-care? In this seminar, learn about how you can put together your own personal self-care playbook to make sure you are tending to every aspect of your overall wellbeing in order to feel happier, be more productive and support the ones you love.

Meeting Link: https://lcah.webex.com/lcah/j.php?MTID=m967b90c7fd6549bc01a35069472a3662
Access Code: 1805 56 6538; Password: J9Fcetrfu24

 

Please Congratulate our SY2021-22 WTU Teacher Leaders

  • Staci Adams, Smothers ES
  • Fatima Baig, Reed ES
  • Dawn Brodus-Yougha, Beers ES
  • Amanda D'Angelo, Seaton ES
  • Julia DiPiazza, Langdon ES
  • Dorothy Graves, Langdon ES
  • Hsuan-Ying Liu, Bard Early College HS
  • Shaunta Morris, Stanton ES
  • Joy Newman, McFarland MS
  • Daniel Osborne, CW Harris ES
  • Raymond Pyle, Murch ES
  • Katie Phillips, Anacostia HS
  • Desiree Raught, McKinley Tech HS

 

“Underreported Stories from Latin America”

During Hispanic Heritage Month, Join the WTU and Pulitzer Center for “Underreported Stories from Latin America” Series (5:30-6:30pm) featuring journalists who have extensive experience reporting on underreported issues facing communities throughout Latin America. The journalists are fluent in English and Spanish, and plan to utilize both languages for the presentations. The reporting they will feature is also available in both English and Spanish.

Underreported Stories from Latin America

  • Thursday, September 23 (Ana Maria Arevalo- Exploring the criminal justice system in El Salvador and the impact of the system on women)
  • Thursday, September 30 (Pablo Albarenga- Elevating the stories of Indigenous rainforest defenders in the Amazon)

RSVP HERE: https://forms.gle/ma9rNQwZWubQqBNAA

WTU Professional Learning Abroad

There is still time to sign up for the WTU Professional Learning trip to Morocco in July 2022, based on travel guidance. 5% discount through the end of September!!! Check out the itinerary here: https://geeo.org/tour/wtumorocco/.

 

Energy Curriculum: Energizing Student Potential

Pepco and the Exelon Foundation, in partnership with the National Energy Education Development (NEED) Project, are offering the Energizing Student Potential (ESP) program all schools in DC. Designed for grades 3-8, but flexible for early elementary or high school grades, this program brings together a standards-based energy curriculum for use by educators and afterschool program leaders. ESP is designed to help educators bring energy into the school and provide all the tools and resources necessary for students and educators to learn together, explore energy together, and teach their local communities about energy while learning about energy careers as well. The program includes teacher training, hands-on materials kits, grants for classrooms, and lots of great opportunities for networking and engaging with STEM professionals in the region. Visit www.need.org/programs/espdcmd/ to learn more and apply by Oct. 1, 2021.

 

Planet Word’s Night for Educators

Planet Word’s special evening event just for educators will be 9/30 @ 5:30pm. You can read more about the event here: https://planetwordmuseum.org/events/planet-word-loves-teachers/

 

Additional PD Opportunities are available by clicking on the PD Blog.

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AM Brew - September 20, 2021

Here's What's Brewing Today

Monday, September 20, 2021

 

As we continue to monitor the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in our communities, I want to reassure you that the health and safety of all our members and their students is front and center. We have held or supported immunization and vaccination events in wards 5, 7, and 8, and will continue until we exhaust the grant that we received from the AFT. We are also responding to issues of safety at individual schools as they are reported to us. Be sure to work with your building leaders to guarantee that the HVAC systems are equipped with Merv-13 filters. In the absence of Merv-13 filters, each classroom must have a HEPA filter in accordance with the terms of the MOA. I urge you to report any health and safety concerns at your schools using the reporting form or by contacting your field services specialist directly. I will be meeting with the chancellor or his designee every Tuesday in the Situation Room to resolve your concerns.  

I would like to thank all newly elected and veteran site based WTU teams who took the time this weekend to participate in our fall Union Leadership Institute. I hope you will use the acquired tools to organize your buildings and to engage your building leadership in resolving matters pertaining to the enforcement of our collective bargaining agreement. 

I wish you a safe and productive week.  

Jacqueline Pogue Lyons, President

Washington Teachers’ Union

 

Class Coverage Survey

Please let us know how often you are pulled from your regular duties to cover another class by completing the survey below:

https://bit.ly/CLASSCOVERAGESURVEY

 

Dunbar HS teacher, Alex Clark changing lives one bike ride at a time.

Click here to learn more: Forever Prime - Trek Blog | Trek Bikes

 

AM Brew News and Notices will be archived at https://www.wtulocal6.net/AMBrew.

 

 

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AM Brew - September 13, 2021

Here's What's Brewing Today

Monday, September 13, 2021

 

Hello and welcome to Week 3 of the new school year. Congrats on making it through the first two weeks. I hope things have gone as smoothly as possible. If you are having any problems, reach out to your WTU building representative or the WTU field representative assigned to your school. They are listed on the back of the WTU Welcome Back newsletter.

We just passed a very sad and tragic 20th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States. As many of you know, among the passengers on the flight that crashed into the Pentagon were three 11-year-old DCPS students and three DCPS teachers. The students had been chosen to participate in a trip to study ecology in California with National Geographic Society researchers. Less than 35 minutes into the flight, it was hijacked and slammed into the Pentagon. As we reflect on the tragedy and those who perished, it gives us an opportunity to remember that our schools are filled with outstanding students who are pursuing excellence and with educators who go the extra mile to help their students reach and exceed their potential. We will keep these six souls and their families in our thoughts.

DCPS employees must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Sept. 19. DCPS continues to work out the details for employees to apply for vaccination exemptions through Peoplesoft. If you need an exemption from the vaccination mandate based on medical or religious reasons, email the ADA Team at [email protected].

Have a terrific week.

Jackie Pogue Lyons, President

Washington Teachers' Union

 

General Membership Meeting

All WTU members are invited to participate in the first General membership meeting for the 2021-22 school year on Tuesday, September 14 from 4:30 - 6:30 PM (Via Zoom). Please click here to register.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

 

Union Leadership Institute - Fall 2021

Friday, September 17 from 4:30 - 6:00pm

All Newly Elected 2021-2022 Building Leaders

Please register here 

 

Saturday, September 18 from 10:00am – 1:00pm.

All 2021-2022 Building Representatives, SCAC, Personnel Committee, LSAT members, and Delegates to Representative Assembly

Please register here 

 

AM Brew News and Notices are archived at https://www.wtulocal6.net/AMBrew.

 

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