Dear Members,

We’ve heard from many of you on a wide range of both individual and common issues this week. Please know that SEA is working daily to address these concerns, in particular:

  • We share your deep concerns for new directions given regarding our gender diverse students. We have reached out to the VEA legal department and will update you soon. In the meantime, please follow the directions of your administrators regarding this issue and reach out to SEA with individual questions or concerns. Documentation is key. Thank you to those who have already reached out to offer assistance with this; the more members we have on deck to advocate, the better.

  • While we are awaiting a full response to our official statement following the events of the Convocation, one important request is already being addressed. A report detailing the breakdown in planning and execution of the event will be presented at a Special Called School Board meeting on August 23rd at 6:30p.m. This meeting will be open to the public. We will update you as we receive answers to our remaining requests.

  • The expiration of federally funded leave for covid-19, and lack of anything to replace it, despite a continued recommendation to follow VDH guidelines (which include isolating for at least 5 days following a positive covid-19 test). We are pursuing further information, and will update you soon.

The Board of Supervisors will be meeting at 3:00p.m and 7:00p.m on Tuesday, August 16th. You can view their agenda here. As part of our shared commitment to stay informed and advocate for common issues (like recruiting and retaining county employees), we will attend with members of the Stafford Professional Firefighters Local 4012 (just as they attended our School Board meeting this week!). Please join us in your #Red4Ed to listen, learn, and sit in solidarity with our firefighter friends in their yellow.

This was easily one of the most difficult first weeks in recent history for many educators. We’re fortunate to end it by sharing this good news–on Tuesday, the School Board adopted a resolution to supplement state funding with ESSER funds, resulting in a $1000 one-time bonus for full-time staff and $500 for part-time staff, included in the December 1st paycheck.

It hasn’t been an easy week, but we celebrate the unity and momentum that we continue to see in the face of adversity. We wish everyone a happy weekend. As always, don’t hesitate to reach out if you need us.

In solidarity,

Your Executive Board