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FEA President's Report

TO: FEA Members Worldwide
FROM: Chuck McCarter, FEA President
RE: FEA President's Report
DATE: April 1, 2015

BACKGROUND CHECKS

In order to comply with public law (41 U.S.C. 13041) and applicable OPM regulations, DoDEA has initiated a Background Check process. Notice about the start of this process, as well as sample forms and guidance for completing the forms has been sent out in some areas. Employees will be notified individually when they need to begin the process. You will receive an email with instructions on how to login into e-QIP and reset your password to something only you know. When you receive that email, you will have 14 calendar days to log into e-QIP and begin the process. You will then have 30 calendar days after the initial login to complete the process on e-QIP. Please note that these timelines will be held in abeyance over the summer, winter and spring break periods.

Although we realize this is time consuming and some may have privacy concerns, please be aware that FEA worked very hard to ensure that the forms used are the most minimal, least invasive possible to satisfy the requirements of Federal laws and government-wide regulations. We also worked to make the guidance and directions as clear as possible so HOPEFULLY this will not be confusing or difficult.

Employees who are retiring/resigning at the end of this school year should not be asked to complete these forms.

The MOU for our overseas bargaining unit that we signed is available on the FEA Website. You can find it at this link (member login required)

TRANSFER PROGRAM UNDERWAY

The DODDS Transfer Program for School Year 2015-2016 began as scheduled on March 31. FEA's resident Transfer Guru, Connie Shanaghan, and our Pacific Area Director, Randy Ricks, are at DoDEA headquarters to monitor the transfer process. As always, FEA is unable to answer any questions or provide any details about transfer placements until the transfer round is completed and all transfer notifications have been sent out. We do not know how long the transfer round will take, so thank you in advance for everyone's patience as the process plays out.

PRESIDENT'S TRAVELS

I recently visited our members at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Luckily, this time the weather was good and the hospitality was even better. We had a great dinner meeting, and I was able to speak with a large percentage of the members while I was there. Many thanks to the local leadership for helping me with the necessary paperwork and arrangements. Also, thanks to all of those who took time from their very busy schedules to speak with me. I will be working with FEA leadership to address the concerns and issues which were raised.

In April, I will be attending the Stateside Area Council as well as traveling to Europe to do some school visits. I am currently working with European leaders to finalize my schedule for those visits.

TEACHING AND LEARNING

Recently, I was lucky enough to attend the Teaching and Learning Conference here in DC, cosponsored by the NEA. One of the sessions I attended was presented by the Newseum. They have GREAT educational resources, including lesson plans, primary source documents, and more…Registration for the site is free….go to this site.

LOCAL GOOD WORKS

At this time of year, many locals hold fund raisers and present scholarships, etc. Be sure to let your local community newspaper know about your good work. Too often, we are too busy to "blow our own horn," but this type of publicity helps us to build good community relations. Please share your good work with us too at fea@feaonline.org

COLLEGE AND CAREER READY COURSE

We have been getting excellent feedback from the class FEA sponsored in Kaiserslautern last week on the new College and Career Ready Standards. This course was made possible by a grant from NEA's Great Public Schools Fund. FEA recognizes that members want opportunities for good professional development and to earn graduate credits. Additional sessions are already planned in other locations and we hope to expand this offering. Thank you to FEA Secretary/Treasurer Anita Lang who created and facilitated the class and to NEA Director Brian Chance who assisted in presenting this information to members!

MILITARY CHILDREN

Last, but by no means least, I want to remind everyone that April is recognized as the Month of the Military Child. Of course, our members know as well as anyone the incredible strength, character and resilience of military children. They inspire us every single day! Every moment in our schools is dedicated to these outstanding young people, and I know all of our members join me in saluting them during their special month.