Communications‎ > ‎BFT Action‎ > ‎Issues‎ > ‎

April 8, 2013

In this issue: April Contract Campaign Actions – Please Take Part, May 2nd Membership Meeting, BFT on Facebook, Health Wellness Survey, AFT Teacher Resources, and more….

Please Log Extra Hours Worked Week of April 15th

In an effort to clearly demonstrate how teachers go “above and beyond” every single day, BFT is asking all members to log all hours worked outside of the contractual 7-hour-and-10-minute duty day, April 15th-April 19th. Please see your site rep for the form to use, and please be sure to submit your form to your site rep on Monday, April 22nd.

April 17h- Day of Unity

To show the community that we remain unified in our fight for a fair contract, please wear your BFT t-shirt, hoody, or button on April 17th, the day of the next negotiations session. Please contact the BFT office if you need any of these items.

May 8th Action Planned for School Board Meeting

BFT members will continue to speak at every School Board meetings to champion fair compensation and highlight the key role qualified teachers play in successfully implementing programs in Berkeley. We are asking ALL BFT members to attend the school board meeting on May 8th, from 7:15 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. at 2134 MLK Jr. Way, to send a message of unity. Showing up in your BFT t-shirt tells the school board that we will continue to fight for a fair contract.

Nominations for BFT Officers Close May 2nd

Elections for BFT executive officers (President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer) will be held this spring. Nominations will close at the May 2nd general membership meeting. Nominations can be made on the form you received in your box (also on the web site). Contested elections are good for union democracy, so don’t hesitate to nominate a colleague or yourself.

BFT Membership Meeting, Thursday, May 2nd

All members are invited to attend a general membership meeting on Thursday, May 2nd, at the Berkeley Adult School multi-purpose room, 4:00 p.m.-5:30 p.m. We will discuss the next steps we need to take in our contract campaign to ensure that we receive a fair contract. We will also be discussing BFT’s draft Quality Education Agenda.

“Like” Berkeley Federation of Teachers on Facebook

Want to stay linked in to BFT actions? See photos of teachers all across Berkeley fighting for a fair contract? Remain informed about the latest educational issues? Then “like” the Berkeley Federation of Teachers Facebook page and tell your friends!

New Copy Machine Contract: BFT Advocacy Pays Off

Schools in Berkeley have received new copy machines! BUSD’s lease for the machines was due to expire in October. However, due in part to the advocacy of BFT, a lease for new machines was put into effect this spring instead.

Aesop Substitute Feedback Feature

Berkeley Unified School District’s new substitute call-in system, Aesop, includes a feature that automatically asks classroom teachers, in an e-mail, to send feedback about the substitute who accepted the assignment. This feature is in violation of the process that we currently have in place to give substitute feedback. However, we have been informed that BUSD cannot deactivate this feature, so teachers are asked to disregard any e-mail from Aesop asking for direct feedback about substitutes. Please contact the BFT office if you have any questions.

Health Wellness Initiative-Make Your Voice Heard

All BFT members are encouraged to take the short survey on the new employee wellness program being launched by the joint labor/management benefits committee. This 10-item survey will take about 5 minutes to complete. Look for the link in the e-mail you received from the Co-Superintendents on April 8th. Please respond by Friday, April 19th.

Personal Leave: Know Your Rights

BFT members can use up to 9 personal leave days per year. Personal leave can be used for such things as weddings in the family, religious observances, emergencies and appointments to see a lawyer. For more information see Article 12.6 of the BFT/BUSD contract.

Don’t Forget to Request Course Approval for Summer Courses

If you plan to take summer courses to move over on the salary schedule and increase your compensation you must submit a BUSD course approval request no later then two weeks after the start of the course. The credits you earn will not count towards salary advancement unless you get prior approval. For more information see the “Course Approval” FAQ on the BFT web site.

Consider Attending CFT Union Summer School

The CFT Union Summer School equips local leaders with the powerful skills to organize successful campaigns, expand union membership, involve members in union activities, and increase the union’s political power. This program is for anyone who wants to take their skills to the next level. The week will be filled with rigorous workshops, motivated and skilled trainers, and applied learning. It will take place in Pacific Grove at the Asilomar Conference Grounds, June 24th-28th. Please contact BFT if you are interested. BFT will pay for all costs for approved applicants.

Share a Great Lesson with Teachers Through AFT’s “Share My Lesson”

Share My Lesson is a place where educators can come together to create and share their very best teaching resources. Developed by teachers for teachers, this free platform gives access to high-quality teaching resources and provides an online community where teachers can collaborate with, encourage and inspire each other. 
Share My Lesson has a significant resource bank for Common Core State Standards, covering all aspects of the standards, from advice and guides to help with dedicated resources that support the standards.
Go to for more information.

Calendar of Coming Events

  • April 15th-19th - Contract Campaign Action-Log Extra Hours Worked
  • April 17th - Teacher Day of Unity-Wear your BFT t-shirt
  • May 2nd - BFT General Membership Meeting at 4pm, Berkeley Adult School,
  • May 7th - Teacher Appreciation Day
  • May 20th - Malcolm X’s Birthday Holiday
  • May 20th - Staff Development Make-up Day