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									                                                                               Vol. 5, May 2006

The Professional
           A Publication of the Minnetonka Teachers Association
               Members of Education Minnesota, NEA, AFT, Minnesota Local #7173
                   Editor, Mary Tingblad, mary.tingblad@minnetonka.k12.mn.us
                      MM-West, 6421 Hazeltine Blvd., Excelsior, MN 55331

     2005-2006 Minnetonka Teachers Association Governance Board
                     ~ President Joseph Ricke ~ Vice President Jan Nelson ~
                   ~ Secretary Mary Tingblad ~ Treasurer Ramona Anderson ~
           ~ DEC Susan Weber ~ Deephaven Margaret Ruffino~ Groveland Pam Wertjes ~
                  ~ Excelsior Heather Stowman ~ Minnewashta Position Open ~
                ~ Clear Springs Debra Drexler ~ Scenic Heights Kim Diekmann ~
                         ~ MM-East Sandy Gosen & Rhonda Lundgren ~
                     ~ MM-West Mary Tingblad & Jeri Goodspeed-Gross ~
           ~ MHS Doug Kennedy, Ramona Anderson, Rachel Consdorf & Mike Matthias ~

         ~~ A Note of Thanks from Vice-President ~~
                                 MTA Vice-President, Jan Nelson
        My fellow colleagues, thank you so much for the many years since 1988 that you
have elected me as a representative of the Minnetonka Teachers Association. I have
represented you in many capacities at the local, regional, state, and national levels. I pray
that I have served you with integrity, fairness, and professionalism.
        The insights and information that I have gained concerning unions over the years
has been priceless. Please know that I will always be available to help or share
information with the MTA. I leave with a heavy heart as this important part of my
professional life comes to an end. Not to worry! Not being a part of the union surely
won’t stop me from continuing to champion the rights of teachers for the good of
students! Thanks again, good teachers!

           ~~ 2006-2007 MTA Governance Board ~~
       The MTA Governance Board will have its Reorganization Meeting on June 7,
2006. This important meeting is to celebrate the work of the current Governance Board,
and to welcome the incoming Governance Board. Please take time to thank the current
members whose terms end on June 7th: Joseph Ricke (President), Jan Nelson (Vice-
President), and Doug Kennedy (MHS).
       Congratulations to the members whose terms will continue or begin on June 7th:
Mark Chalupsky (President), Julie Anderson-Simonson (Vice-President), Susan Weber
(DEC, continuing), Margaret Ruffino (Deephaven, continuing), Pam Wertjes (Groveland,
continuing), Sue Alexander (Excelsior, continuing), Kim Diekmann (Scenic Heights,
continuing), Rhonda Lundgren (MM-East, continuing), Sandy Gosen (MM-East,
continuing), Mary Tingblad (MM-West, continuing), Joel Gotz (MHS, new), Mike

                                                                      The Professional, May 2006
Matthias (MHS, continuing), Rachel Consdorf (MHS, continuing), and Ramona
Anderson (MHS, continuing).

              ~~ Contract Administration Update ~~
                        MTA Negotiators, Mike Cutshall and Anita Britton
        Although a number of important issues are currently being discussed in contract
administration, our latest contract administration meeting focused on the new concept of
Summer School that the district is trying to implement, and how those teachers should be
compensated. In the past, the summer school courses were essentially offered as classes
for remedial learning (i.e. those students who failed their classes during the regular
school year). For the first time, Minnetonka is offering summer school classes for initial
credit. The contract administration meeting essentially focused on all of the contractual
language that would be broken if such a program is implemented.
        At the Governance Board meeting, the MTA representatives were apprised of the
situation, and a plan was discussed that would require the District to negotiate all
conditions (such as pay, benefits, etc.) that would apply to these courses offered for initial
credit. If the district moves forward with their current plan without new contract
language, the MTA will likely grieve the situation. We will continue to keep members
apprised of this situation.

                     ~~ Teachers’ Rights Review ~~
               MTA Teachers’ Rights Co-Chairs, Mary Benson and Anita Otten
        We would like to thank our Teachers’ Rights Building Representatives: Sarah
Becher (Minnewashta), Brett Bernard (Clear Springs), Cathy Fitzgerald (Deephaven),
Colleen Gruel (Groveland), Jonathan Maki (Scenic Heights), Kieran Monaghan (MM-
East), Linda Morantez (DEC), and Jan Nelson (MHS) for the exceptional job they did
this past school year! We appreciate the extra time and effort all of you put towards your
building issues. We are excited about having everyone back next year.
        MTA members, have a well-deserved, relaxing, and fun-filled summer!

           ~~ Membership Information Reminder ~~
                         MTA Membership Chair, Jeri Goodspeed-Gross
       Please contact Jeri Goodspeed-Gross at any time during the year whenever your
information changes—name change, address change, phone number change, or contract
time change. It’s important to keep your membership information updated. Thank you!

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend.
Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read.
                                                                                ~ Groucho Marx

                                                                   The Professional, May 2006   2
                          News From Education Minnesota
           ~~ Visit Education Minnesota Booth at Fair ~~
        When you make your summer plans, be sure to include the Minnesota State Fair.
You can participate in Education Minnesota’s State Fair activities at the Education
Minnesota booth, located near the entrance to the Education Building.
        Education Minnesota will have several attractions to draw fair goers to the booth.
Every day during the fair, the booth will feature a different subject area group or
education organization. Volunteers are needed to staff the booth each day of the 12-day
event. Those who volunteer will receive a ticket to the fair and an Education Minnesota
T-shirt. To volunteer for a shift, contact Chris Carlin at 651-292-4875 or send an e-mail
to chris.carlin@educationminnesota.org.

             ~~ Annual Foundation Golf Tournament ~~
        Sign up now to play in the 13th Annual Education Minnesota ESI Charitable Golf
Tournament, to be held on August 14, 2006, to benefit the Education Minnesota
Foundation for Excellence in Teaching and Learning. The 2005 tournament raised more
than $35,900 for the foundation.
        This year’s tournament will be held at Prestwick Golf Club, Woodbury, MN. The
cost is $150 per individual or $500 per team, which includes greens fees, cart, lunch,
dinner, prizes, and gifts. The top-scoring Education Minnesota Intermediate Organization
team wins a traveling trophy. For more information, contact Deborah Skog at 651-292-
4856 or deborah.skog@educationminnesota.org.

                     ~~ Buying or Selling a Home? ~~
        Buying or selling a home? Get help from ESI mortgage and realty programs The
ESI mortgage and realty services programs can help you with all of your mortgage and
real estate needs. Representatives can answer questions you might have about no closing
cost/zero down purchase programs, first-time home buying, new construction loans,
determining your current home’s value, how to begin looking for a home and more. In
addition to discounted rates for members, you could get up to $500 in Home Depot gift
cards. Call Educators Mortgage Services at 952-252-4490 or Educators Realty Service at
952-322-1500. The realty program is currently available only to members in the eight-
county metro area.

                             ~~ Register to Win ~~
        A Target gift card could be yours in the NEA Member Benefits giveaway! Set for
summer? Maybe a $100 gift card from Target would help! NEA members can register
anytime during June in the Free Giveaways area of the NEA Member Benefits website.
Go to www.neamb.com for a chance to win one of three $100 Target gift cards. This
special giveaway runs June 1-30, 2006. No purchase is necessary to enter.

                                                              The Professional, May 2006   3
                   ~~ Save on Theme Park Tickets ~~
       AFT PLUS has added another benefit for Education Minnesota members just in
time for summer. You can now purchase discounted theme park admission tickets online
for Anheuser-Busch Adventure Parks, including Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Busch
Gardens Williamsburg. Visit www.aftplus.org and click on the link for theme parks.
Tickets for Busch Gardens, SeaWorld, Sesame Place, and other Anheuser-Busch
Adventure Parks are available for online purchase and can be printed out right from your

  AFT PLUS... The Benefits of Belonging

                                                             The Professional, May 2006   4
                       So, What’s New at YOUR School?
There are “good news” things happening everyday in our schools. Send your school’s
good news to mary.tingblad@minnetonka.k12.mn.us to be included in the next issue of
The Professional. I’ve been told that this is one of the favorite features of the newsletter.
It’s the way that we can share all the good things going on with our teachers!

                              News From Excelsior
         Kindergarten teacher Shane Weber and wife welcomed baby boy Porter Thomas
Weber on April 17, 2006. Porter is awake a cumulative total of three hours a day. He
eats, sleeps, dirties diapers, and already dreams of being a firefighter.
         Wedding bells will be ringing soon! Kelly Quinn, grade 1 teacher, is getting
married on July 15, 2006.

                              News From MM-West
        Special education teacher Rob Hager and wife welcomed baby boy Caleb Paul
Hager on May 29, 2006. Physical education teacher Jen Syverson and husband patiently
await the stork’s visit which should be any day now.

                          News From YOUR School!
     I’m saving this spot for your school next year! Let’s catch up with each other after
summer break. In September, you’ll get your chance to send in your news.

                                                                The Professional, May 2006   5
  Editorial/Commentary/Opinion Page
Editorials, commentary, opinions, and letters to the editor are not necessarily the position
of the MTA. All members are invited to share their unedited views, thoughts, concerns,
etc., by submitting them to: mary.tingblad@minnetonka.k12.mn.us, Mary Tingblad,
MM-West, 6421 Hazeltine Blvd, Excelsior, MN 55331.

Summer’s Almost Here!
        Ahhh, we’ve had some pleasant spring weather, and we’ve even had a touch of
the steamy summertime! Some have even made a trip or two up or over to their cabins.
Everyone is looking forward to Summer Break! The students see it as a break from
homework and more time to spend on things they want to do. Teachers also see it in a
similar way.
        For most teachers, it’s a break from homework, whether it’s lesson planning or
paper correcting. It’s also more time to spend on things we really want to do. For some,
it’s time to sleep in late and stay up late, and spend the time in between however we
decide to schedule or not schedule it. Even if it’s time to take a class or two or three, or
work on curriculum writing projects, there’s still time to fit in some relax-and-do-nothing
time. Make sure, no matter what your summer schedule holds, that you schedule in time
for you to refresh and recharge.
        After the intensity of the rush, rush, rush of the school year, teachers need a little
downtime to reflect and refresh before it starts all over again. Yes, all too soon, it will be
time to get ready to do it all over again! After all, how much of a teacher’s summer is
totally school-free? Many, many teachers end their summer breaks early just so they can
get their classrooms and lessons ready in time. How early will you return to school during
the hurry-up-and-get-you-classroom-ready-for-the-first-day-of-school-crunch?
        I wish each and every teacher a very happy, relaxing, rejuvenating, well-deserved
summer break! Enjoy it—you’ve earned it! Schedule some just-for-me-time and enjoy
every minute of it!

Mary Tingblad, Editor

                   Happy Summer!
                                                                 The Professional, May 2006   6

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