Now that both houses of Congress and the White House have approved funding for government operations through the summer, DoDEA has again begun to send out travel orders to its employees, allowing them to finally begin making their summer travel plans. Consistent with our past guidance on this issue, we continue to advise members to wait until they actually receive your travel orders and to read them very carefully, especially the information on page 2 of your orders where it discusses reimbursement, before actually purchasing your airline tickets for summer travel.
We know this situation has created much stress and frustration among our members and we urge everyone to proceed quickly but calmly once your orders do arrive.
In a message he put out on this topic, FEA Area Director Randy Ricks had some very good advice for those employees who will be going to military travel offices to arrange their travel:
“We have all been very distressed with this late issuing of orders as well as the pronouncement that we couldn’t purchase or obtain tickets prior to receiving orders. Heretofore, order issuance has never been this late, at least in my 32 years in DoDEA.
“But, when we go to these local military travel offices we have to remember that none of this is their fault, nor do educators have any priority over others, despite our circumstances. Yes, the sense of urgency is evident, but we need to be patient and courteous when dealing with the enlisted men and women charged with assisting us. I know that the vast majority of us understand this well, but every year we have ‘incidents’ that do not promote goodwill with our military community. These incidents have sometimes served to curtail the services and consideration that we were given in the past.
“I feel it’s necessary to say this because the frustration and anxiety level is understandably high. Breathe deep.”
Very wise words, Randy. Let’s all keep calm and not add more stress to the process than we’ve already endured.