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In this Issue: Black Lives Matter at School

  1. Educators of Color Leadership Development (Deadline Sunday)
  2. January & February Events - Don't miss the annual RECN Equity Conference!
  3. HSD School Board Speakers Report 
  5. Substitute Data Fill Chart

January 21, 2023 [repeat of Jan. 20 edition due to technical issues]

Dear Supporter, 

There are many upcoming personal and professional growth opportunities starting as early as this evening.  We hope you will take a moment to consider the offerings below and take advantage of the amazing work your peers are putting together.  The WEA PD network has even more for you to select from so please take advantage as you create your own learning journey.  

With February approaching I have been fielding questions about carrying out Black Lives Matter at School.  The official dates this year are February 6-10, if you or your equity team are following the official calendar.  At Wednesday’s school board as well as with Dr. Duran, I have raised the topic of what the district may want to support and what organizing should come from the the union.  We know from past experience that the materials and lessons provided are not just “off the shelf” curricular products.  What you select to do with your students should reflect how you have been engaging in race and identity work throughout the school year.

For your students’ well-being, it is important to work with members of your equity team to carefully engage with the material (see links below) and consider the age and impact for your specific students.  If you do not have access to an equity team, please reach out to me and HEA will be happy to provide you with support.

Finally, the 2023 Legislative Session is underway with a number of proposed bills already getting hearings.  As co-chair of the WEA Health and Safety Committee I am working with WEA to prepare testimony against HB 1071, which would fund one security/SRO personnel on each school campus across Washington as a deterrent to mass shootings.  I encourage you to use the WEA OurVoice site to email against HB 1071 and speak to the need for counselors and social workers and other SEL supports in every school instead. Please write "AGAINST HB 1071" in your subject line. 

Thank you!


1. Educators of Color Leadership Development (Deadline Sunday)

NAKIA Academy, named for a fictional unsung hero and humanitarian whose philosophy includes lifting others up, is a mentoring and leadership academy by BIPOC and open to BIPOC. The Academy’s purpose is to keep newer educators in the field by identifying and training experienced BIPOC educators who can support, mentor, guide, and build with the next generation of BIPOC leaders. This is not a "program" but a community who is in continuous growth and support. Classified, Higher Ed, and Certificated members are eligible to participate.


  1. Session 1-February 11, 2023 10:30AM-12:30PM In Person Kickoff/Community Building
  2. Session 2-March 4 (10:00AM-12PM)  Attending Fully and Listening with Grace 
  3. Session 3-March 25 (10:00AM-12PM)  Turning Inward: Attending to the Mentor 
  4. Session 4-April 8 (10:00AM-12PM)  Mentoring in White Spaces 
  5. Session 5-April 29 (10:00AM-12PM) Building the Mentoring Relationship 
  6. Session 6-May 13 (10:00AM-12PM) Conversations Count 
  7. Session 7-June 3 (10:00AM-12PM) Conversations Count continued 
  8. Session 8-June 10 (10:00AM-12PM) In-Person Celebration! Show Them Who You Are!

2. January  & February Events

1. Human Civil Rights Leadership Conference: January 20 (evening) and January 21, 2023. REGISTER HERE. This annual conference is a collaborative effort to help member educators with issues of cross-cultural competency, social justice, and educational equity within the institutions that serve our students. 

2. WEA Guest Teacher Training: January 21 (9AM-1PM) on zoom. REGISTER HERE. Culturally Responsive Classrooms. Great for new teachers, too! 18 Free Clock Hours! Access flyer here.

3. Creating Connected Communities: Friday, January 27 (5:30PM) REGISTER HERE. In person on Capitol Hill and runs through Saturday and Sunday. Enjoy this experiential rejuvinating workshop and take away community building activities to use with your students and colleagues. HEA will reimburse member dinner receipts up to $20 for Friday night with a receipt. 18 Free Clock Hours total!  

4. 4th Annual Rainier Educators of Color Equity ConferenceREGISTER HERE! February 3 (6-7:30PM) and February 4 (8:30AM-4:30PM) on zoom. Conference Theme:  Lean In!  7.5 Free Clock Hours!

5. Financial Wellness During a Recession: February 1 (5:00-6:30PM) on zoom.   REGISTER HERE !  Attend this NEA Member Benefits Workshop and cross one thing off your New Year’s Resolution list. Access flyer here. 

6. Rainier UniServ Council Rainbow Educators Monthly Meetup: February 5, 2023 @ 4PM. RSVP hereDinner will be provided to in-person attendees.

7. RUC Pre-Retirement Seminar: February 10 (5-8PM) and February 11 (8:30AM- 2PM) on zoom. REGISTER HERE! Early, Middle, and Late Career members benefit from attending this seminar several times over the course of their careers to ensure they are lined up for a happy and healthy retirement.

3. HSD School Board Speakers Report

The next school board meeting is on Wednesday, February 1 @ 6PM.  HEA and community members are joining both to listen and to speak during school board meetings.  Speakers will be prioritized based on agenda items but you can still speak on topics of importance to you and your students for up to 2 minutes (policy change). Speakers are no longer allowed to sign up at the meeting to speak. So be sure to register by calling 206-631-3070 beginning Monday, January 30 at 9AM until 9AM on the day of meeting.  Those who call in later may be placed at the end of the queue.

Please continue to sign up and speak on how amazing our students are, and what we appreciate about school board, their policies as well as what we still need to carry out our work.  Here’s what we heard last Wednesday.

Community Workforce Agreements benefit those living in the Highline service area by providing living wage jobs and pathways out of poverty through training and apprentice programs for traditionally marginalized workers.  Thank you to three speakers:  Jerry Jordan, Director of the Pre-Apprenticeship Construction Training program; Karen Dove, Executive Director of ANEW and Jennifer Patrick, an amazing Ironworker apprentice from the Highline community for sharing why the school board should move forward with a Community Workforce Agreement on Highline's recently approved bond projects!

At this point in time, trade union leaders and HEA are continuing to work with HSD administration and the School Board to achieve an agreement for equity in the construction workforce and for the benefit of union workers who live and pay taxes in our community.

If you know any trade union members who grew up or live in the Highline Public School District, please email us with their contact information as we may need their help! 

Kristin Plischke, Learning Center Teacher at EHS, also spoke. She conducted a survey with her students and shared that 75% felt their teachers showed outward respect for their identities, knew them at a personal level, and addressed their preferred style of learning.  Over 80% felt they were growing and learning in their classes.  They support instruction on social justice standards and the incorporation of instruction on race and identity in the curriculum.  As a result, they are more comfortable with themselves and able to respond positively to differences.  They are also more able to recognize unfairness directed at themselves and others and willing to take responsibility to stand up for themselves and for others.  She and her students appreciate that the district continues to expand on this important work.  




5. Substitute Data Fill Rates:

01/09/2023- 01/13/2023