1. Benecard Issues: Rep council members will be meeting with Benecard on Wednesday, March 8 to discuss issues that members have been experiencing with their services. The Benecard survey is still available here, if you haven’t filled it out yet.
2. Block Schedule: Attached is a sidebar agreement that was approved at this month’s Board meeting. I have highlighted the areas where changes were made to the contract. The majority of changes are related to the new schedule (i.e., periods being clearly defined by exact number of minutes, versus the old contract language that ambiguously used the term “period”). This will prevent schedule manipulation from year to year.
The one change that doesn’t apply to the block schedule is Article 20. This decreased the number of observations required for tenured teachers from three per year to two. The change was made to align with the state requirement, which was lowered last year.
3. Gubernatorial Primaries: This year New Jersey will elect a new governor in November. For the first time in recent history NJEA has decided to get involved in the primaries in order to throw our support behind pro-education candidates sooner than later. Thus far, Ambassador Phil Murphy has been endorsed for the Democratic gubernatorial primary. You can read more about him here. If anyone would like to support his run for governor, Mike Mannion is collecting signatures for his campaign until the end of March.
NJEA is still in the process of screening Republican candidates for endorsement in the gubernatorial primary.
4. Political Activism: Help to change the political landscape and engage with like-minded fellow NJEA members to influence real, substantial political influence on our elected officials. The event takes place on Wednesday, March 8, 2017 from 4-8pm at NJEA Headquarters, 180 West State St. Trenton, NJ. RSVP to “change @njea.org” by Monday, March 6, 2017.