Around the BEA
BEA Bargaining Update
Our next bargaining sessions are scheduled for the following seven dates: 4/13, 4/24, 4/28 5/14-15, and 5/30-31. The joint bargaining team is confident that we will continue to reach consensus on the identified issues during the future scheduled dates.
The Other 3% FICA Tax Form
As you know, the BEA sought legal advice from the MEA r Friegarding the district’s requirement of the “Opt out/Opt in form,” Please be assured that MEA legal reviewed the document and agrees that teachers should sign this form and return it to this district for tax record purposes.
BEA Mixer April 27th
Save the Date! The BEA will be holding a get together for all members at Vinotecca Birmingham from 3:30-6pm on Friday, April 27th. Appetizers provided by the BEA and your first drink is on our new Executive Director, Grat Dalton. Bring along your colleagues. Come out and relax and. See the linked flyer for details.
Elect Your Executive Board
It is time for the annual election of your BEA Executive Committee. This is an opportunity for members to become actively involved in the leadership of the BEA. We encourage members to seriously consider the contribution you could make to the betterment of the profession and education of our students through advocacy. We are a democratic organization that operates through a membership driven process. If you want to see change, the best way to carry that out is to become a leader in your union. (See the linked flyer for detail on open positions and the nomination form.)
- Nominations from the floor of the Representative Assembly are also in order.
- Uncontested positions may be filled by acclimation through a motion from the floor of the Representative Assembly on April 18, 2018
- Contested positions will be elected by secret ballot in the buildings on Friday, May 11, 2018
BEA Teachers of the Year Nominations Due May 7th
The BEA Teacher of the Year Award is our chance to recognize the excellence that surrounds us every day, by honoring one of our colleagues. This is a prestigious award that is an acknowledgement from teachers who know the complexity, difficulty, and demands of the job. We know the “real story” of what the honored teacher does in the classroom and in the building.
Don’t wait until someone is retiring to offer encouragement and a “pat on the back” for a job well done. Please take the time to nominate a teacher in your midst who cares about students, demonstrates subject area expertise, takes pride in promoting our profession, is in good standing and involved with the BEA, and has been teaching five years or more.
The BEA Teacher of the Year will receive $1,000 from the district and a two-year lease on a vehicle from Suburban Collection, a co-sponsor of BEA teacher of the year.
In addition to the above award, we are very fortunate to be able to offer three more awards to recognize our outstanding educators. Meemic Insurance, the Randahl Agency and the BEA have partnered together for the 4th year in a row, to create the Randahl Agency/BEA Educator Excellence Award. For this award an educator can be teaching in the district for any amount of years and must be in good standing with the BEA. Please take the time to nominate an educator who exemplifies excellence in teaching, cares about students, demonstrates subject area expertise, and takes pride in promoting our profession. We want to recognize outstanding teachers who serve as role models for their colleagues and are leaders who positively affect the educational experience.
This award will be awarded to one high school, one middle school, and one elementary school educator. Each recipient will receive $500.00 from the Randahl Agency-Meemic and BEA.
On the Legislative Front
Union Release Time Threatened Again
The two Senate Bills 795 and 796 introduced by Sen. Knollenberg (Republican-Birmingham/Troy school districts) would put an end to union release time. Both bills were voted out of the Education Committee and are on the Senate floor.
Here is what each would do:
SB795 would prohibit any public school employee from accruing MPSERS retirement credit while on union released time or leave.
SB796 would prohibit a public employer from entering into a bargaining agreement that allowed paid release time for a bargaining representative to conduct union business.
Inside the MEA
How to Get My Dues Statement for Tax Purposes
First, go to www.mea.org Click on the PAY DUES ONLINE link
Once you log in, click on the third tab down on the left “My eDues”
Scroll down to the bottom to “annual dues payment statement” and click on the blue link 2017 Annual Dues Payment Statement. A downloadable pdf file will pop up.
MEA Assistant with Student Loan Debt
Do you feel like you are being smothered by student loan debt? Kevin Marvin and Grat Dalton will familiarize members with a variety of options to reduce and/or eliminate their student debt. Members will be provided information and parameters regarding student loan forgiveness as well as financing and refinancing options. Our Executive Director, Grat Dalton, is offering Student Loan Training Wednesday, April 18, 2018 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm at our SOMEA office at 17500 West 11 Mile Road Lathrup Village, Michigan 48076.
Special Screening of Backpack Full of Cash Movie
There will be a special screening of the film Backpack Full of Cash for MEA members on April 17, 2018 at 5:15pm at John R. Armstrong Performing Arts Center 24600 F. Pankow Blvd. in Clinton Township, MI 48036
The film is narrated by Matt Damon and explores the growing privatization of public schools and the resulting impact on America’s most vulnerable children.