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In this Issue:  Substitute Coverage Improvement
1.Ongoing and Upcoming Events:  Ethnic Studies-for youth! Trunk or Treat-for kids!
2.Health & Safety COVID MOU:  Resolving a Safety Concern (reporting link included)

       October 22, 2021

Dear Supporter,

Thank you for working with your Reps and Covid Co-Captains to resolve building level concerns.  We continue to work with HR to implement strategies to reduce and eliminate the need for our educators to cover unfilled substitute jobs.  You might have heard that substitutes received a $65/day pay raise and are now starting at $211/day with a bachelor’s degree (an emergency substitute certificate does not require a teaching degree). Regular daily substitute rates are now $245/$265. Please help by referring a friend.  A listening session for substitutes in November will help us identify additional ways HPS might be able to reduce the need for emergency substitute coverage. 

Equitable coverage plans should have been developed by all SLTs and were due on October 15 for a review… that is underway.  If you are substituting more often than your colleagues, you are always welcome to check the rotation (usually maintained by your office manager) and talk to your SLT or HEA reps if the schedule does not assign coverage equitably or is missing coverage data.

Substitutes report that they are more likely to return to those buildings where they feel welcome and appreciated. Please do that by checking in to a nearby class when you know a substitute is there to introduce yourself and see if they need anything.  A quick stop during recess or a shared planning period can go a long way toward making a guest teacher feel valued. 

HR has asked me to remind members that it is a professional responsibility to have emergency substitute coverage plans available with general activities and classroom management directives.  If a colleague is out unexpectedly, substitutes really appreciate if deans, coaches, or team members can ensure they have plans for the day.  Also, please thank the district specialists, mentors and coaches who are substituting one day per week to boost coverage.  Administrators will be providing coverage for principals.

Please take care of yourselves and each other,


P.S.  With the Internet spotty at best, we continue to work with/on the district to provide more flexibility as to the best locations from which remote classes can be delivered.

1.   Ongoing and Upcoming Events

 Here are some items of note.  Please reach out if you have any questions.

  • YOU CAN’T TEACH WHAT YOU DON’t KNOWStandards in cultural competency, diversity, equity and inclusion for educators are being developed.  Join the 4:30 PM Oct. 26th public hearing to share your thoughts. Educators have asked for the tools and skills to equitably support students of every racial identity and ethnicity. Help inform the development of these standards by the Professional Educator Standards Board (PESB) by taking their online survey and registering to participate in the PESB session on Oct. 26, from 4:30-5:30 PM.
  • NEW ETHNIC STUDIES HS REQUIREMENT.  Help shape the ethnic studies requirement and counter the anti-CRT public narrative.  Register for the Wednesday, Oct. 27 5:30 PM public hearing.  Our students do their best when each sees their culture and experiences reflected in the curriculum. That's why the State Board of Education is developing new expectations for ethnic studies at the high school level. The Board of Education wants your input into the best way to implement the new ethnic studies requirement. While an educator-specific listening session already happened, there's one more public session you can join.  
  • SAFE TRUNK OR TREATING.  On Sunday, October 31st 3-6 PM our MLK King County Labor affiliates will be hosting the 2nd Annual Trunk or Treat in the Teamsters parking lot (14675 Interurban Ave, Tukwila) across and up the street from Fort Dent.  Email Sandy if you would like to help decorate a vehicle and/or pass out treats.  There is a controlled entrance so get there early to avoid the line. Masks are required.
  • HEA REP COUNCIL MEETING.  On Monday, November 1 at 4:30pm, the rep council will meet via zoom.  Reps will be making recommendations to a revision of the HEA Constitution, Article II: Purposes of the HEA.  Please email Katie Utesch for the link if you wish to attend.  Meetings are open to all HEA members. 
  • HEA EXEC BOARD POSITIONS.  Nominations remain open until filled for HEA Elementary Representative and High School Representative on the Executive Board.  Email Sandy if you are interested or would like more information and put “candidate” in the subject line. 
  • HEA COVID CO-CAPTAIN UPCOMING POP-INS.  HEA CCCs have requested regular sessions to address concerns.  Pop in anytime Wednesday, November 10 (7:15-8:00AM) or (4:00-5:00PM). (The October 27 session has been cancelled.) CCCs - check your email for the Zoom link. If you need release from a principal-directed meeting to attend, email Sandy.) Stronger protocols for reporting violations were bargained into the summer MOU (see below) so please use them to ensure issues at your site are addressed.
  • VOTE.  Please vote by Nov 2ndWEA’s Our Voice makes it easy to find pro-education, pro-union candidates in your local races wherever you live. 

üHighline School Board:  Jennifer Fichamba (Tukwila Educator/WEA Member)

üBurien City Council:  Hugo Garcia (WC Community Leader), Jimmy Matta (Mayor & small business owner), Sarah Moore (science and non-profit leadership), Krystal Marx (Incumbent, non-profit leader)

üDes Moines City Council:  Soleil Lewis (Bellevue Educator), Gene Achziger (retired Journalist and former Highline College Educator)

üSeaTac City Council:  Mohamed Egal (Social Worker), Iris Guzman (HEA Social Worker), Jake Simpson (Union Organizer) 

2.   Health and Safety – from the COVID MOU

When a staff member has a concern with Safety Plan implementation or when there is a safety problem at the site:

  • For imminent/emergency safety concerns, notify a building administrator immediately.
  • Follow up via email if the initial notification was verbal.
  • For system problems that are not imminent safety concerns, or if an issue was not immediately resolved through Step A, notify the principal and the HEA COVID co-captain (and the administrative COVID co-captain if that is not the principal) via email in order to problem-solve solutions to the issue.
    • Concerns should be tracked on a building-based safety concerns log.
    • The building safety committee should regularly review the safety concern log and may be involved in the problem-solving conversations at their regularly scheduled meetings.
  •  If the problem cannot be resolved at the building level, the concern should be escalated to the district level by completing a Safety Concern Formfound in Frontline