BEN HUNTER – FEA-SR General Counsel

Hurricane Dorian — The pending threat of Hurricane Dorian is causing evacuations in at least two of our stateside locals, Laurel Bay and Fort Stewart, which are now under a base/post commanders mandatory evacuation order. The Americas Chief of Staff has been keeping us updated on the changing situation. If you are under the commander’s evacuation order, please take action to seek a safe haven. Camp Lejeune is also closing for the rest of this week but as of now we have not seen a base evacuation order. In addition, schools at Fort Bragg and Fort Jackson will also be closed at least for Thursday. As we receive more information, we will update our members. Please stay safe!


Visits and Training — During the month of August we have been able to visit schools at Fort Campbell, Fort Benning and Fort Jackson. It is so beneficial to me to be able to meet with our members and listen to the concerns they have about the illegal contract implementation. Listening to their concerns and sharing the reality of what is happening and what FEA SR is doing to confront the bogus contract and represent members is very important. Our members deserve transparency in all matters affecting them and we need to make sure they hear the truth from us, the leaders of FEA SR. During these visits we were also able to meet with local leaders and provide training to the local Boards and the faculty representatives at Fort Stewart, Fort Jackson and Fort Benning. Thank you to all of the leaders who participated in the training. Also, thanks to local presidents, Rose Wood, Alan Danahy, Penny Wilson and Venita Garnett for setting up these visits and trainings.


Correction to the FEA September 1 Presidents Report — In the recent FEA Presidents report it was stated that…. “NEA Government Relations continues to work on a number of issues on behalf of FEA and its members, including raising awareness of DoDEA’s illegal contract implementation and the additional, unpaid 24 hours Stateside employees are illegally being paid.” …FEA SR was contacted by members about the above FEA statement. Stateside employees are not being paid for any of the additional hours added to our current duty day. The agency has directed educators to work an additional 24 hours per quarter without pay. We will be asking to be paid for this unpaid work when we go to arbitration over this matter on September 11.


Wage Theft — DoDEA has illegally imposed an unsigned collective bargaining agreement on our stateside educators. The stateside educator workforce is primarily made up of female educators, many of whom are military spouses or former military members. The DoDEA Director, Mr. Thomas Brady is forcing his stateside school level workforce, composed primarily of women, to work extra hours for no additional pay. Forcing employees to work without pay is wage theft and illegal! This additional agency directed time does not benefit the real work of our educators, which is educating military-connected students. Educators still continue to spend hours after the duty day completing the real work we need to do to prepare for our students. We are the educators that see children in our classrooms every day. We know their families and the specific needs each individual child has. However, we, (as a primarily female teaching workforce in stateside schools) are being targeted by DoDEA with wage theft. We are professionals and know how to do our jobs and have done them very well by educating the military connected students.


Illegal Implementation of MLA and Arbitration — On September 11, 2019 FEA-Stateside Region will proceed to arbitration over management’s illegal and unilateral implementation of an unsigned contract on Stateside schools and the professional bargaining unit represented by FEA SR. This arbitration will last two days. DoDEA’s illegal implementation includes forcing stateside certified employees to work extended hours without added compensation in violation of the current valid contract. We have seen many schools flip-flop on how to implement these illegal extra hours. Schedules have been changed multiple times. Among other relief, FEA-SR is seeking back pay for any additional hours assigned, restoration of any leave improperly charged, and salary adjustments and back pay owed resulting from the Agency¹s illegal implementation. The arbitrator’s ruling is not likely to be decided for several months and may only be the beginning of a drawn out legal process seeking restitution for DDESS educators. Please also remember to record any extra assigned hours worked due to the implementation of this bogus contract. The tracking form can be found at the link below.
FEA-SR Tracking Form


FEA SR Area Council – FEA SR will have our fall Area Council in Nashville on September 19 – 21. If you are interested in attending, please speak to your local president. Since Fort Campbell is so close to Nashville, I hope to see many Fort Campbell members at the Saturday meeting.


Discussion and Negotiations with FEA — FEA SR and FEA continue discussions and negotiations on how to better serve our members of FEA Stateside Region. FEA Stateside Region is affiliated with FEA but is the sole representative on all matters that involve stateside members. FEA Stateside has submitted proposals to FEA. Two of the major issues we are addressing are financial equity and more proportional Stateside representation on the FEA Board of Directors. We are working to ensure that the dues paid to FEA by Stateside members are spent wisely and on issues that concern them, while also looking for ways to increase Stateside representation on the elected FEA Board. The FEA Washington DC office has been working with us to arrange a meeting between the full FEA Board of Directors and the members of FEA Stateside Area Council, where we plan to discuss changes meant to bring about these goals.


Dues — Dues deductions will occur for fifteen pay periods for the School Year 2019-2020 beginning with the effective date September 29, 2019 (pay date October 18, 2019). Dues deductions will end with the pay period April 25, 2020, with the pay day on May 1, 2020.

  • Certified Dues — NEA $196 and FEA $455 per year (Local Dues run from $30 to $67 per year)
  • Classified ESP Dues — NEA $119.50 FEA $227.50 (Local Dues run from $30 to $50 per year)
  • FEA SR receives $30 per member of the local dues paid.

If for any reason you intend to stop dues deductions, please make sure you do this by submitting an SF 1188 to your school secretary by September 15. We cannot stop dues deductions after this date per the MLA.


Know Your Rights — MLA – Article 6 Section 2–Association Rights
Section 2 Weingarten Rights.

a The Association shall be given the opportunity to be present at any examination of a unit employee by a representative of the Agency concerning an investigation if:

(1) The employee reasonably believes that the examination may result in disciplinary action against the employee; and
2) The employee requests representation.

b The Agency shall inform unit employees of their Weingarten rights by posting a written notice, on bulletin boards at each school and by distributing said notice in either written or electronic form, to each individual unit employee during September of each school year. All new employees will receive like notice at the time of hiring.


MLA Certified -The MLA remains in full force and effect until a new agreement is legally implemented. An update about the status of contract bargaining can be found at