Bellevue Education Association

BEA Exec Board Election Results

Secretary:  Patricia Gilbert

Treasurer: Jennifer Rivera

Middle School Rep: Sara Clarke


Eastside Pathways Equity Pledge

On September 23, 2021, our BEA Representative Council voted to sign the Eastside Pathways Equity Pledge as a Partner Organization. 

Eastside Pathways Equity Pledge participants believe that:

  • Race is a human-invented social construct and a classification system used as a tool for oppression and violence.
  • Racism is designed to privilege White people and set “Whiteness” as the norm.
  • Acknowledging racism and its impact on all people, particularly people of color, is foundational to doing racial equity work.
  • Courage, accountability and collaboration are key leadership skills to reimagine our community and how we operate within it.
  • Addressing internalized, interpersonal, institutional and structural inequality (particularly racial inequity) leads to more diversity and inclusion.

Community Coalition Letter 6/11/21

Dear Bellevue,

In an effort to unite our community and move forward, we have joined a coalition of parent, student, educator, and labor groups to collaborate on a resolution ensuring direct and equitable community involvement in selecting the next BSD superintendent. This resolution calls for the School Board to empower a committee, representative of Bellevue’s diverse community, to directly select candidates for consideration as the next BSD superintendent.

The resolution has already been endorsed by:
Members of the BSD Equity Advisory Group
SEIU 925 - AISP
Bellevue Educators of Color Network
SEIU 925 – Nutrition Services
Educators for Justice
Bellevue Education Association
BSD Asian American Pacific Islander Affinity Group
Parent Alliance for Black Scholars (PABS)

We the undersigned, representing multiple stakeholder and affinity groups across the Bellevue School District, are upset, dismayed, and disappointed with the recent resignation of Dr. Ivan Duran the former BSD superintendent and the role that the Bellevue School District School Board has played in that decision.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, escalating over the course of the 2020-2021 school year, the BSD School Board has taken an increasingly hostile stance and disrespectful tone in School Board meetings towards BSD leaders and educators who make educating our children possible. Among other things, we believe the micromanagement leadership approach this School Board has taken when interacting with district leaders on issues of operations and policy implementation has created a demoralizing culture of distrust and frustration that detracts from the essential work of serving students and families. In addition, we believe the BSD School Board has failed to live up to several Washington State School Directors’ Association (WSSDA) Washington School Board Standards and guiding principles, in particular those that demand they “create conditions for district-wide student and staff success,” and several benchmarks including:

·        Standard 1a, b, and c – “Conducting board and district business in and fair, respectful, and responsible manner”; being “open and accountable to the public including seeking divergent perspectives”; and “respecting and advocating mutual understanding of the roles and responsibilities of board members and the superintendent”.

·        Standard  3d – “Creating conditions district-wide for student and staff success” by “ensuring management of the organization, operations, and resources for an efficient and effective learning environment”.

·        Standard 5a, d – “Collaborating with families and community members responding to diverse interests and needs” and “soliciting input from staff and a wide spectrum of the community so that a diverse range of interests and perspectives on issues is considered”.

We believe these actions are unacceptable and increasingly fostered a culture of division and hostility in the BSD community.

Over the course of the last 12 months, the BSD School Board has consistently demonstrated failures of leadership in ways that violate the WSSDA governing standards. In some cases, these failures have been demonstrated by the behavior of individual School Board members. In other cases, those failures were demonstrated by inappropriate statements or actions by one or more School Board members to which others on the Board did not object. Those failures have been most evident in the following areas:

·        Actions and behaviors that have created a culture of toxic and punitive accountability that erodes the spirit of collaboration that is essential for shared school district governance

·        Hostile behavior in School Board Meetings that furthers feelings of invisibility, fear, anxiety, and harm in district leaders and educators, in particular those who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC)

·        Failure, either individually or as a collective, to acknowledge, examine, and disrupt how their actions and behaviors further norms, rules, practices, and procedures that sustain systems of White supremacy and institutional racism, especially in ways that contributed to the resignation of the superintendent

·        Actions taken that willingly and knowingly jeopardized the progress the district has made in a number of crucial areas, in particular equity and racial equity, through their interactions with the superintendent, staff, and community members

·        Interactions between some School Board members and BSD educators and staff mostly demonstrated in School Board meetings, has eroded any trust or faith that they are acting in collaboration with BSD educators and leaders and for district students, in particular those who identify as BIPOC, to make them feel safe, valued, affirmed, heard, or seen

·        Sustained efforts to micromanage district operations which has disempowered and demoralized district leadership, district educators, and district staff, and has damaged the reputation of the district in a way that will make recruitment and hiring of an excellent superintendent problematic and challenging

·        Sustained behaviors on the part of some School Board members that have evidenced they lack the wisdom, courage, care, and expertise to choose a superintendent to lead our district in such a way that exemplifies our values of equity, equality, academic excellence, and belonging.

For all of these reasons and in a good faith effort to start to re-establish trust within the district and community, we demand the BSD School Board defers its’ authority to choose a permanent superintendent, as stated in RCW 28A.400.010, to a committee of district leaders, educators, staff, students, parents, and community members. We require the committee be chosen through a selection process led by the acting superintendent, Eva Collins, which will include representatives from the School Board, the Bellevue Educators Association and other district labor groups, parent and community groups, and the acting superintendent’s cabinet and leadership team as follows:

The composition of the committee shall include:

·        A diverse representation of 20-30 members from key district stakeholder groups including, but not limited to: district leaders, district staff from multiple departments, district educators, students, parents, community members, and no more than two School Board members

·        A diverse representation of membership that achieves parity with the current enrollment demographics for students in the district who identify as BIPOC

·        A diverse representation of membership that prioritizes stakeholders representing expertise that speaks to the needs and unique abilities of students with disabilities, students who qualify for free and reduced lunch, students who receive Multi Language Learner services, bi- and multi-lingual students, students who identify as LGBTQ+, and students who identify as BIPOC

Committee decision-making:

·        Each member of the committee shall have an equally-weighted vote in all decisions concerning the process of identifying and selecting the permanent superintendent

·        All decisions concerning the process of identifying the permanent superintendent candidates shall pass with no less than a 50%+ majority

The responsibilities of the committee shall include:

·        Providing continuous, equitable, and thorough access and support to community and committee members whose work schedule, language of preference, and/or other circumstances are known to have traditionally posed barriers to equal participation

·        Actively designing and building supports for committee members including equitable meeting schedules, translation services, and other necessary supports for broad participation and access

·        Developing a job description which will guide the search and hiring process for the permanent superintendent that aligns with the mission, vision, and values of the district, in particular those that reflect the district’s recent work on issues of racial equity

·        Working with any external consultants charged with identifying prospective permanent superintendent candidates

·        Providing predictable and regular updates to the larger BSD community regarding the process and progress towards choosing the next permanent superintendent

·        Choosing the candidate to put forward as the next permanent superintendent of the Bellevue School District

Only through these actions, focused on equitable inclusion and shared decision-making, can we hope to begin repairing the harm caused in the last 18 months by securing a strong viable candidate for Bellevue School District’s next superintendent.

Signed,

Members of the Equity Advisory Group

SEIU 925 - AISP

The Bellevue Educators of Color Network

SEIU 925 – Nutrition Services

Educators for Justice

The Bellevue Education Association

BSD Asian American Pacific Islander Affinity Group

Parent Alliance for Black Scholars (PABS)


Letter from BEA President Allison Snow 6/1/2021

Dear BEA members and Bellevue community,

I am a 5th grade teacher.  For most of my professional career I have specialized in science, and I have come to believe that the best way to help kids learn is to create an environment where they love to do it.  In my classroom I make space for building and launching rockets, setting things on fire, and exploring topics and questions chosen by the students themselves.  By sharing my own love and passion for learning, I hope to inspire the same in others.

Maintaining that passion within our education system can be tough.  In my 14 years with the Bellevue School District, I have worked in three different schools with five different principals and four different superintendents.  We have adopted multiple new curriculums in literacy, math, science, social studies, and social-emotional skills, as well as numerous new assessment tools.  We have seen continually changing standards and ever-changing structures for evaluating our effectiveness at reaching those standards.  We have also seen a consistent increase in unique student needs and behaviors that show the way we are doing things is often not meeting those needs.

I grew frustrated with the ways it seemed the system itself was making the job of educators harder than they needed to be, so I turned to the strongest tool I know of to drive change in education – the Union.  I have been elected twice as BEA President – both times running unopposed.  I am compelled to do this job out of a very deep belief that public education is the most powerful resource we have for creating a more just, equitable, and kind society.  Learning to work together with all the individuals we share this space with, treating one another with dignity and respect – that is how we build a better world.  As a union leader, I am responsible for championing the needs of our educators in this system.  By nurturing, valuing, and inspiring them, we equip them to do the same for our students.

At the start of the COVID pandemic, there was a real sense of hope and opportunity in our district – a chance to create schools as they could be, not just as they have always been.  Within days of building closures, we successfully created an entirely new way of experiencing school.  Together we learned to use technology, tools, and structures many of us had never imagined.  We prioritized connections with students and families, and we saw shared leadership and problem solving across our district like never before.  Through the spring and summer teams of educators, administrators, and community members worked to generate new systems and approaches to help us meet the needs of each and every student amid a global health crisis that impacted each of them in different ways. 

As the summer and fall progressed, however, I watched that opportunity for innovation begin to falter.  There was a strong and growing pressure to recreate the status quo and get back to “normal” – a normal that did not meet the needs of every student.  This was presented by some in the community as the only “right way” to move forward, and a common narrative began that criticized any who disagreed as not caring about children and demanded the situation was too urgent to accept any compromise.  Comments in public meetings and social media became increasingly polarized and pitted groups against one another - either you supported students, or you supported teachers.  As individuals and groups became increasingly defensive of their positions some turned to power tactics to try and force their way. Mistakes and imperfections of individuals were seen as personal failings, and many people were attacked with hurtful and hate-filled criticisms.  These characteristics of our culture existed long before COVID, but the pandemic brought them to a whole new level of visibility.

Perfectionism, sense of urgency, defensiveness, only one right way, either/or thinking, power hoarding – these are elements of what I have learned to describe as White Supremacy Culture.  I understand that when I use that term it is very triggering to some.  To many people it feels like an attack on their humanity, an accusation that they themselves are racist.  Many feel that by using that term I am shaming them and creating division and exclusion, and to do that as a white woman myself is hypocritical.  It has never been my intent to attack, trigger, or divide, but where that has been my impact, I do own it, and I apologize.  I commit to finding and using language that feels more inclusive.  I commit to creating structures that allow for more understanding, engagement, and communication between people.  I want to build a community where we even when we disagree with one another’s ideas, we still value and dignify one another as human beings.  I believe that is the kind of culture we want in our schools, our Union, and our community. 

On May 19, members of the Bellevue Education Association overwhelmingly endorsed a Collective Commitment to restore and deepen the community we all want and deserve. To support positive change for students, staff, and families, we commit to engaging in open and respectful dialogue with all affected parties.  We will be working to establish a community-wide process to identify our shared values and the structures needed to uphold them.  We will be working together to create and participate in spaces where student, family, staff, administrator, and educator voices can be heard to establish better understanding and communication with one another. 

I invite all our community to join with us in this effort.  By modeling the way and leading by example, we will work together to create the schools and community our students deserve.

In Partnership,

Allison Snow


BEA Collective Committment 

May 21, 2021

Hello BEA Members,

At our General Membership meeting on Wednesday, May 19, the BEA membership overwhelmingly endorsed a statement of Collective Commitment:

We value our diverse community and care deeply about our students and families. As an Association, we seek collaborative partnerships with community stakeholders that help us further the work of providing the best possible education for all our students. This year has presented challenges for all members of our community and has created unprecedented hardships and obstacles. Our community has experienced hurt and division, and we share a collective responsibility to restore and deepen the community we all want and deserve. To support positive change for students, staff, and families, we commit to engaging in open and respectful dialogue with all affected parties.

To that end, the members of the Bellevue Education Association will:

  • Establish a community-wide process to identify our shared values and the structures needed to uphold them in our union, district, and community,
  • Create and participate in spaces where student, family, staff, administrator, and educator voices can be heard to establish better understanding and communication with one another, and
  • Engage in a community-based process to identify School Board candidates who uphold these values and use our collective power to mobilize widespread support for their campaigns through phone/text banking, donating to campaigns, posting to social media, doorbelling, participating in get-out-the-vote activities, sign waving, writing letters to editorial boards, and other means that foster connection and understanding throughout our community.

By modeling the way and leading by example, we will work to create the schools and community our students deserve.

Compromiso Colectivo del BEA:

Nosotros valoramos nuestra comunidad diversa y nos preocupamos profundamente por nuestros estudiantes y familias. Como una Asociación, buscamos asociaciones de colaboración con las partes interesadas de la comunidad que nos ayuden a crecer el trabajo de completar la mejor educación posible para todos nuestros estudiantes. Este año ha presentado problemas para todos los miembros de nuestra comunidad y ha creado dificultades y obstáculos sin precedentes.  Nuestra comunidad ha sido herida y dividida, y compartimos la responsabilidad colectiva de restaurar y fortalecer la comunidad que todos merecemos y queremos. Para apoyar un cambio positivo para los estudiantes, el personal y las familias, nos comprometemos a tener un diálogo abierto y respetuoso con todas las partes afectadas.  Para obtener estos resultados, los miembros de la Asociación de Educación de Bellevue haremos:

  • Establecer un proceso en la comunidad para identificar nuestros valores compartidos y las estructuras necesarias para defenderlos en nuestro sindicato, distrito y comunidad.
  • Crear espacios de participación donde podamos escuchar las voces de los estudiantes, las familias, el personal, los administradores y los educadores para que podamos establecer comprensión y comunicación entre nosotros.
  • Reunirse con la comunidad para identificar candidatos a la Junta Escolar que defiendan nuestros valores. Usaremos nuestro poder colectivo para movilizar un apoyo generalizado para las campañas a través de la banca por teléfono / mensajes de texto, donando a campañas, publicando en las redes sociales, tocando los timbres de las casas, participando en actividades de promoción del voto, agitando letreros, escribiendo cartas a los consejos editoriales y otros medios que fomentan la conexión y el entendimiento en toda nuestra comunidad.

Mientras que modelamos el camino y damos el ejemplo, trabajaremos para crear las escuelas y la comunidad que nuestros estudiantes merecen.

由BEA支持的集体承诺的提议:

我们非常重视我们多元化的社区也深切关心我们的学生和家庭。作为一个工会组织,我们寻求与社区利益相关者的合作伙伴关系,帮助我们能够进一步为所有的学生提供最好的教育。这一年以来,所有社区的成员们都面临空前的挑战,并造成前所未有的艰难与困境。我们的社区经历了许多的伤害与分裂,我们都有共同责任来恢复并深化一个我们希望拥有也应该拥有的社区。为了支持我们的学生、教职人员以及家庭成员们一个建设性的变革,我们承诺将会与所有受到影响的人员进行公开、尊重的对话。为此,BEA的成员将会:

  • 建立一个全社区性的进程,以确认我们的共同价值观,并在我们的工会,学区和社区里维护这些价值观所需的结构
  • 建立一个让所有的学生,家庭成员,职员,行政主管以及教师们都可以表达想法的空间,进而能够让彼此互相了解与沟通。
  • 通过以社区为基础的进程,来确认学校董事会成员候选人能够贯彻这些价值观。我们将运用集体的力量来动员、支持他们的竞选活动。支持的方式包括打电话/短讯银行、为竞选活动捐款、社交媒体发帖、上门、积极参与投票活动、签名、挥舞标语、给编辑委员会写信以及其它可以促进社区联合并互相了解的方式。

通过以身作则,我们将努力创建我们学生应得的学校和社区。

In Solidarity,
Allison Snow


Election Results

Constitution Change (2/3 voting members in favor needed to pass) Failed

  • 64.97% yes
  • 35.03 % no

High School Rep: Anna Silarski

Middle School Rep: Regen Lorden

Elementary Rep: Kyle Reimergartin

ESA Rep: Michelle Mordaunt

Sammamish UniServ Council: Regen Lorden, Patricia Gilbert

  • Additional two positions will be filled in accordance with BEA Governing Documents

MLK Labor Council Reps: Brooke Weber, Rachel Tochiki, Megan Moreno


Certificated MOU: Regarding the Impact of the Pandemic of Coronavirus for Spring 2021 and the Remainder of the School Year  Link to PDF


Resolution in Support of Asian Communities

Bellevue Education Association representative council unanimously voted to endorse the following resolution in support of Asian Communities:

WHEREAS, there has been a rise in anti-Asian hate crimes in our country, including in the greater Seattle area; and

WHEREAS, the former president's racist rhetoric fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a rise in xenophobia; and

WHEREAS, both union and educational structures need to continually work to advance racial and social equity in our communities; and

WHEREAS, immigrant communities nationwide, like Chinatowns, have faced economic devastation; and

WHEREAS, the Bellevue School District has the highest representation of Asian students in Washington; and

WHEREAS, we acknowledge the biases of the model minority myth, among other biases including anti-Blackness, anti-Indigeneity, and Hispanophobia in our country's history; and

WHEREAS, our histories and futures are all connected,

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the Bellevue Education Association Representative Council denounces the violence against Asian Americans and supports any efforts to educate about the history, cultures, identities, and experiences of Asian and Asian American communities.


Resolution in Solidarity With SEIU Local 925

Bellevue Education Association representative council unanimously voted to endorse the following resolution in Solidarity with SEIU Local 925:

Whereas, the Bellevue Education Association believes that Bellevue students, especially our students with the most need deserve quality, supportive, before and after school services currently provided by Bellevue Out of School Time (BOOST),

Whereas, the Bellevue Education Association acknowledges that access to child care is one of the most crucial infrastructures needed for families in our community,

Whereas, the Bellevue Education Association believes that access to unionized child care, which provides good paying, benefited jobs, with adequate training for staff to serve our students, uplifts our community,

Whereas, the Bellevue Education Association acknowledges the relationships that educators and schools have built with our union partners in the BOOST program, in order to provide the best outcomes for Bellevue students,

Let it be resolved that the Bellevue Education Association stands in solidarity with our union partners of SEIU Local 925, and we do not support the Bellevue School District’s attempts to eliminate the BOOST child care program and/or replace it with non-union third-party vendors.


Congratulations!

Eve Chan for Classroom Based Student Services Rep on the Exec Board 

Elizabeth D'Antonio for Elemenary Rep on the Exec Board


Counselor Appreciation Week

Dear BEA Members,

As the BEA ESA Executive Board representative, it is my privilege to represent and work with the BSD counselors. I am taking this opportunity during National School Counseling Week to ask you to join me in recognizing our BSD counselors in all they do for students, for us and for the community.

Throughout this pandemic, counselors have been responsible for reaching out to students and families unable to access the virtual learning. Counselors were instrumental in making sure Seniors graduated under new and trying circumstances. Before school started in Fall 2020, counselors spent countless hours, often up until the early hours of the morning, to be sure our students had the class schedules they needed. Once school started, the adjustments and modifications to the schedules continued, and the counselors kept on working.

Throughout everything, counselors have served our students as they have struggled with mental health issues. Counselors not only continued helping students with identified and ongoing issues, but they reached out to students who had new concerns brought on by the isolation caused by this pandemic. Counselors have always provided a very personal service to our students and during this time of virtual communication, counselors have succeeded in maintaining that same level of personal connection using a very impersonal platform.

There have been many heroes recognized throughout this pandemic, and our BSD counselors should be counted among them. All BSD educators provide compassion when working with students, but our counselors go the extra mile to not only support students, but their fellow educators and our entire community. Please join me in thanking our many counselors for all they do, and all they have done during this unprecedented situation. Our district owes a huge debt of gratitude to every single one of them.

With deep appreciation on behalf of the BEA Executive Board,

Michelle Mordaunt
Speech Language Pathologist
ESA BEA Executive Board Representative


Representative Assembly Election Results 

The following BEA members have been elected as delegates to the WEA-RA:

  • Nick Marmolejo
  • Jill Rock
  • Eve Chan
  • Terry Jess
  • Santasha Dhoot
  • Don Burress
  • Stephen Miller
  • Kelye Kneeland
  • Anna Silarski
  • Michelle Mordaunt
  • Daphne Tu
  • Corrine Larsen

The following BEA members have been elected as delegates to the NEA-RA:

  • Allison Snow
  • Nick Marmolejo
  • Jill Rock
  • Stephen Miller
  • Santasha Dhoot

Successors to NEA-RA (in the event that elected delegates cannot attend):

  • Terry Jess
  • Kelye Kneeland
  • Michelle Mordaunt
  • Scott Norton

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Message to BEA Members - February 1, 2021


Dear BEA Members,

In my message last Tuesday, I called on district leaders to learn from their mistakes and do better, and I hold myself and our association to this same standard as well. A letter of dissent has been drafted by educators of color and accomplices that believe the process which led to the passage of the Tentative Agreement by the BEA General Membership last week was steeped in white supremacy. I encourage all BEA members to read it and reflect. As an organization, we will be taking the time to do the same and discuss how we can move forward in addressing concerns and making real change.

As a start, this week we will surrender space to the organizations and individuals in our community who are doing this work. This week, members and partners throughout our union will be using our platforms to share their experiences, resources, and reflections. Our work, as always, is ongoing. And our power to guide that work to the outcomes we as educators know will lead to better conditions for all -- BIPOC and white alike -- rests, as always, in our commitment to do so together, united, in union.

In solidarity,
Allison


Facebook – Bellevue Education Association @BellevueEA
Instagram @bellevueea
Twitter - @BellevueEAUnion

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Message From Allison Snow - January 26, 2020

Dear BEA Members,

The tentative agreement narrowly approved by our membership on Monday night represents a compromise. It addresses many of the concerns so vocally raised by our educators — which, until our collective action over the past weeks, had gone largely unheard. The agreement grants rights to our educators that should have been in place many months ago and enables us to begin providing more services for our students in a way that better protects them and our staff.

Your BEA Executive Board, after hours of consideration of all that we held reservations about, voted to recommend approval of this agreement. We acknowledged the hard work and tireless effort of our bargaining team to secure for us the best possible outcome they could. We acknowledged that in this agreement the district has failed to address our central concern of forcing staff back to buildings before they have access to a vaccine and ignored once again our call to pause district plans until more provisions can be put into place. Despite these omissions, we also acknowledged the wide range of needs and opinions among our membership and the challenges before us in uniting on continued action. We concluded that there are ways to use our existing provisions to ensure that no member is abandoned by this agreement, and we ask any member who feels they are in such a position to contact us directly.

There is a lot in this agreement. And once again, even as we debated whether to accept it, District leaders chose to send predetermined information to the community — a continued breach of trust and respect. Our debate on this issue was closed after hearing from just one member of color, with more than 20 still in line to speak against it. Because of this, although in many ways this agreement represents gains for our association, progress has rarely felt so painful.

I implore our members and our district leaders to consider: at what cost? Who has been privileged by this agreement? Who has been burdened? Per district policy, these questions should be central in all decision making, yet in our haste to escape the discomfort of our current reality, we once again have forgotten to pick up our lenses and see the racial disparity in front of us. Once again, we have asked our BIPOC community to bear the burden — unfairly and unjustly.

We must commit to move beyond the use of an equity lens that we can pick up whenever it is convenient or comes at no cost to those in power. We must commit to permanently correcting our blurred vision. We must commit to reparation of our limited sight — to, as Bernardo Ruiz, local equity leader and founder of Racing 2 Equity, names it: equity Lasik. We must commit to seeing the racial component to every action, and every inaction.  

To our BIPOC members who feel abandoned or betrayed by the work that has been done: I see you. I hear you. I value you. If we are to call ourselves a union, we must do better by you. As your union President, I commit to doing all I can to support those this compromise left behind and to build a better system that will not fail you again. Steps are already being taken to reflect on, modify, and improve our process to live by our values.  

Monday, January 25th marks the first time in nearly a year of global chaos that we as a district have taken a pause to consider where we are — as educators, and as a community. At Sunday’s car rally I witnessed unity of purpose unlike anything I have ever seen before in Bellevue. Hundreds of educators, students, and families coming together to use their collective voice to call for necessary change. I call on us all to sustain that commitment. At Monday’s general membership meeting I watched our unity of purpose falter as a small majority of members got enough of a deal to decide they could live with it, and no airtime was left to hear from those who legitimately fear they may die from it.

I call on us to examine: who can’t breathe in the conditions we have chosen to create? And how can we, as a union, build a network strong enough to support them? We have each played a role in the system that has brought us to this point, and we each have the power to choose how we will use that role moving forward.

To our District leaders: consider yourselves on notice. You had the opportunity to do the compassionate thing — as our neighbors in Northshore, Lake Washington, and a rising number of other districts have done. You rejected that opportunity. You chose to sow division, hate, and distrust. And for what? At what cost? We will no longer tolerate such leadership at the head of our nation, and we will not tolerate it from you. With this compromise we offer you a chance to learn from your mistakes and show you will do better to live the values of our district and model the way. If you are unable to do so, please make way for leaders who can.

In Solidarity and Commitment,

Allison Snow

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Election for WEA and NEA Representative Assemblies Opens Tomorrow (Tuesday, January 26)

You will receive your ballot through Ballotpoint via email.  All candidate statements that were received will be accessible via a link in the ballot.  Elections will close on Friday, January 29.  You can also see the candidate statements here:

WEA-RA Candidate Statements

NEA-RA Candidate Statements 

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School Board Email Campaign for Educators 

Bellevue School Board needs to hear from us loud and clear.  Our goal is to send 1,000 emails to the board this weekend!  Use this link to send your email. There is a pre-written message but you are free to customize and make it your own. Union strong!

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Family or Community Member in Support of BEA - Let your voice be heard!

Use this link to send a message to Dr. Duran and the School Board letting them know that you support Bellevue Educators. Washington Education Association (washingtonea.org)

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Press Release: Bellevue educators vote to stay the course

Members of the Bellevue Education Association (BEA) overwhelmingly voted Friday night to continue the course they have taken this week. Without a proposed tentative agreement being reached with the school district, Bellevue educators will continue to provide uninterrupted instruction and fill job responsibilities through independent asynchronous work.

On Tuesday, BEA members called on the Bellevue School District to pause its plans for expanding in-person schooling. The district refused, opening in person to second-graders Thursday and Friday with most classes being staffed with temporary employees. BEA members switched classes to asynchronous instruction on Thursday and Friday. Those currently providing necessary in-person and mental health services continued to provide in-person services.

Friday’s vote, which came after nearly three hours of discussion, showed an increased commitment of BEA members to ensure students, staff and the community stays safe. In addition to the pause, BEA members continued to ask school district leaders to return to the negotiating table to address unresolved safety questions. The BEA members also authorized the BEA Executive Board to call for a general membership meeting to address bargaining and other related actions.

“I am immensely proud of the solidarity of my union and my members,” Bellevue Education Association President Allison Snow said.

Despite working collaboratively on finding answers, the school district took BEA to court on Thursday. A King County Superior Court Ex Parte Commissioner, however, denied the district’s request for a temporary restraining order to force educators back to in-person learning.

Bargaining is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday.

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A message from BEA President Allison Snow

Your public educators have been sounding the cry for months. We have given our all to provide for our students, and we live daily with the heart-heavy knowledge that even that is not enough. We know that so many are suffering in the conditions the COVID-19 pandemic has created, and we have done all we can to build supports and provide resources to enable our kids to learn and grow in this unprecedented time.

Case numbers and infection rates have reached all-time highs, and nearly every one of us has lost family members or friends to the disease or the conditions we have created in our response to it. As we learn more about COVID-19, we also learn of new strains, new side effects, new impacts. In addition, we are confronting the deep seeds of racism throughout our systems and nation and have been forced to recognize the very inequitable impacts it has on the Black, Indigenous, and people of color in our community — staff, students, and families alike. Public fear, exhaustion, and demoralization are at record highs.

It is in this context — complex and fraught with uncertainty — that we have sought to establish parameters for the safe and sustainable functioning of public education – a system that cannot exist separate from the people who run it. People with human needs and human fears. As a Union we have worked to voice these needs and concerns and seek collaborative ways to address and resolve them. Although we may disagree on what should be cause for concern, we must understand that to dismiss, belittle, or ignore it is dehumanizing behavior — something that should never be acceptable in a profession committed to shaping and nurturing the hearts and minds of our children.

I call on the leaders of the Bellevue School District to acknowledge the humanity of the staff who work for them. Though you may disagree with their perspective on our current situation, please seek to understand them. Please remember our shared interests and commitments, and please reject the hateful, divisive rhetoric that would have us view each other as enemies. Your educators want to do all they can to support our students, but they should not be asked to needlessly risks their lives — or their human dignity — to do so.

We remain committed — as we have been from the outset of this pandemic — to finding collaborative solutions to the complex problems before us. We invite the BSD leadership to do the same.

Message in Korean - 한국어로 된 메세지

Message in Chinese - 中文留言

Message in Japanese - 日本語のメッセージ

Message in Vietnamese - Tin nhắn bằng tiếng Việt

Message in Turkish - Türkçe Mesaj

Message in Azerbaijani - Azərbaycan dilində mesaj

Message in Hindi - संदेश हिंदी में

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Regarding Lawsuit

A King County Superior Court Ex Parte Commissioner has denied the district’s request for a temporary restraining order. That means he is not ordering teachers back into the classroom. A King County Superior Court judge will hold a hearing a week from today to consider the preliminary injunction request. 

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BEA Call to Action- This letter was sent to all BEA members on December 16, 2020

Back in December, the Bellevue Education Association Executive Board called on BEA members to engage in action in response to Bellevue School District's announcement to expand in-person services for K-2.

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Many of your colleagues have shared letters to the Superintendent and the School Board urging them to prioritize health and safety for students and staff. 

SPREAD THE WORD!

Facebook – Bellevue Education Association @BellevueEA

Instagram @bellevueea

Twitter - @BellevueEAUnion

Bellevue educators call on the district to pause in-person expansion until vaccination

On Tuesday, members of the Bellevue Education Association (BEA) overwhelmingly voted to pause on the expansion of in-person schooling as proposed by the district until full vaccination for COVID-19 is made available to all educators. All currently operating in-person and virtual services will continue as they have been operating if the district agrees to the expansion pause.

Tonight’s vote means that if the district refuses to announce this pause on Wednesday, Jan. 20, all Bellevue educators not currently providing necessary in-person and mental health services will instead continue providing uninterrupted instruction and job responsibilities through independent asynchronous work through Thursday and Friday, Jan. 21-22. If the district refuses to announce this pause by the end of the workday Friday, Jan. 22, BEA will hold a special general membership meeting Jan. 22 to discuss further collective action.

“We stand by our commitment to providing in-person services to our students in safe ways that support individual needs,” said Allison Snow, Bellevue Education Association President Allison Snow says. “Nobody wants to be back in the classroom more than educators, but only when it’s safe.”

“We have a vaccine on the horizon and we need to use every protection possible to keep our students, staff, and community safe,” Snow says. “It doesn’t make sense to return more students and staff to school buildings without taking every measure we can, which includes offering vaccines to educators.”

Many school districts throughout the state are continuing to delay returning to classrooms for safety reasons.

The Bellevue Education Association represents more than 1,450 educators in the district. Bellevue educators’ vote comes as a bipartisan group of state legislators, school districts, medical experts, and school employees have echoed the call to provide educators with access to COVID vaccination as soon as possible. When paired with the state Labor and Industries requirements, the vaccine can provide the community with the trust and confidence it needs that schools are safe.

Additionally, new variants of the COVID-19 virus are emerging that studies show may be more easily spread and may have greater impacts on children.

#BEASafeStudentsSafeStaff

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The Bellevue Education Association is a professional association and union that serves as an advocate for its members and empowers the individuals it represents.  It promotes positive educational working environments, safeguards members' rights, informs and works with the extended community, provides representation on educational issues and acts to obtain the resources necessary to insure excellence in public education.

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