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In this issue: ILC Opening, Elections, Vote for Chris !, Help Our Levy, School Board, Overload Mitigation, MOU FAQs, Interest Survey, Down with Student Debt, Halloween Help, Parent/Teacher Resources

October 15, 2020

Dear Members,

As you have heard, hybrid instruction will be put off until second semester except for students who are enrolled in ILCs.  School site safety plans are being developed, reviewed, and strengthened using a joint HPS/HEA process to ensure they conform with DOH, L&I, and OSPI recommendations.  Both sides are committed to addressing issues such as PPE, ventilation, and attestations via ongoing problem-solving and impact bargaining.  Our next review of building safety plans is set for October 23.  Returning staff will be given a minimum two-week notice once the district sets the start date for ILC hybrid. 

If you are a COVID Co-captain, please enroll here to ensure you get updates and support in the coming weeks. Many, many thanks to the HEA nurses who have been working with principals, with the district and with me to make these safety plans meaningful and impactful.  Please thank your school nurse and join me in thanking Stacy Harris, Madeline Patten, Angela Schuldt, Jessica Swart and Kathleen Murphy for going above and beyond this month for you and our students.  

Thank you for all you are doing.  There is much going on in the remainder of October.  A workload survey will be released from the Executive Board by the end of the month.  Please look over the actions listed in this newsletter, and hopefully you will find one that is meaningful for you to participate.

In solidarity,


Ballots in Mailboxes Sooo Sooooon.  No matter where you live, members can use the WEA Our Voice website’s handy voter guide to find pro-education, pro-union candidates on your ballot.  Are you new to the area?  Find registration information here as well.

Ballots due November 3.  Your ballot must be postmarked or in a ballot drop-box by Nov 3 to be counted!  Speaking of elections, please spread the word widely to vote for SPI Chris Reykdal and, if you live in Highline, please share your support of Prop 1 Highline Tech Levy.  

Prop 1 Highline Tech Levy

  This Levy is for you, our paras, and our students.  Regardless of whether you live in the district or just work here, I urge you to select one activity to support its passage.  

  • For the campaign literature drop, we're going to meet outside the Burien Library at 10AM on Oct 17th and the 24th. It will take about 1.5-2 hours for us to walk around to drop off literature to targeted addresses. We'll have masks, gloves and other safety equipment. 
  • Text banking to support the levy begins at 5:30 PM on 10/21 and 10/28. It's super easy to do and we'll have staff on call to help with any questions or technical difficulties. Usually people can watch TV and do this at the same time so it's even easier than phone banking.   
  • Here is the sign up form. We need all the help we can get. 

With a sun-setting levy, VOTING YES means residents will still experience a decrease in taxes. You can also digitally organize anytime by following the campaign on Facebook and Twitter @YesforHighline and like/share posts to your social networks.  

School Board Impact.  Thank you to all who advocated for a review of displacement decisions last week. This led the school board to request a review and ultimately to a reduction in two displacements.  Still, five elementary teachers and one secondary educator will be assigned to new schools next week.  Those at receiving schools, please make an extra effort to welcome and get to know incoming members. The next school board meeting is October 21 at 6:00PM. Use this district link to learn how to submit public comments or to access the zoom link to attend. 

Overload Mitigation.  All teachers in overload can and should check with your office manager to ensure correct overload pay.  All October overloads will appear on your November paycheck; November overloads are paid in December, etc.  Class size and mitigation for elementary has not changed this year and is found on page 33 of the previous contract. For this year’s class size changes to secondary, see the MOU FAQ below. Maintain your own daily records for enrollment each period and contact your office manager near the end of each month to ensure correct overload payments. Please note that several secondary schools have staffing adjustments pending to address what are currently overload situations. 

 MOU FAQ: Secondary Class Size & Overload 

Q:  What are the class size limits and daily limits for the secondary three-period day?
A:  During 2020-2021 the following class size/daily count agreements are in effect for secondary schools:
  • Individual class size should be 24-27. Individual class size maximum is 27.  Overload mitigation begins with the 28th student. High school/secondary PE class size maximum is 31. Middle school PE class size maximum is 27 when health instruction is included with PE content.
  • Daily count maximum, excluding advisory, is 73.  This includes middle school PE when health instruction is included with PE content. Daily count overload mitigation begins with the 74th student. High school/secondary PE daily count maximum is 85; daily count overload mitigation begins with the 86th student. 
  • Advisory classes may not exceed 25 students.  Advisory students do not count towards the daily count. 
  • Performance-based classes, in which class size influences the success of the class, may exceed the daily limit without overload compensation upon teacher request and notification of the HEA president.
  • Overload payment descriptions are found on page 34 of the previous contract. 

HEA Interest Survey & Needs Assessment. Training topics and teamwork of all types are in the works.  The HEA website has committee descriptions Please take a moment to complete the this HEA interest survey.  An Executive Board member will follow up with you before the end of the month.  

Navigating Your Student Debt Workshop: Please join us to learn the facts about the current federal loan forgiveness programs (including some of the changes currently becoming effective as part of new stimulus bill) and to gain access to the NEA Member Benefits Loan Forgiveness Navigation tool 

  • Date & Time:  Tuesday, October 20, 2020 (4:30pm-5:30pm) 
  • Location:  via Zoom 
  • Register here

‘Trunk or Treat’ Halloween Fun on October 31.  It’s hard to believe that Halloween is right around the corner! COVID-19 has altered how we are doing a lot of things throughout 2020, and it will impact our usual way of trick-or-treating. Teamsters and the MLK Labor Council are sponsoring a trunk or treat with local unions this year so costumed kids can safely walk from car to car in a controlled environment. It is being held in the Tukwila Teamsters parking lot.  A group of trusted adults will have decorated the trunks of their cars for Halloween to pass out candy to our labor families and community. It makes for a safer environment (with less walking) and allows us to host in solidarity with other unions. 

Join in the family fun on OCT 31st! (4-7PM)

Teamsters Hall 14675 Interurban Ave. Tukwila 

Want to help with the event?  HEA will be hosting a vehicle!  Our “trunk” can be simple or elaborate…it’s up to us.  As we’re dreaming up ideas, consider our trunk as the stage on which we will perform in coordinated costumes with fun settings and props.  A quick search of “Trunk or Treat” on the Internet and you’ll find dozens of photos that others have posted of their own annual event.  Please email me if you would like to help with decorations or on the day-of. Check out the HEA Events Calendar for more details. 

Parent Map  Helpful articles and resources for teacher-parents and to share with your students’ families.  Sign up for their mailing list to get workshop notices, too. Covers baby through teenage years. 

Seattle Art Museum Educator Resources.  Put the Vavoom into your Zoom.  Check out art education resources adapted for a pandemic!