Minutes were sent digitally on March 24, 2008
MINUTES OF THE JOINT LABOR-MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE MEETING
JLMC SUMMARY RECORD
PUBLISHED EXCLUSIVELY BY THE OVERSEAS FEDERATION OF TEACHERS
Vol. 28 No. 3 Ankara, Turkey March 18, 2008
OFT Participants: Eileen Kless, OFT European Director; Jim Sagle, Bahrain Unit School; Linda Hogan,
Incirlik Unit School; Sharon Merrill, Ankara Unit School; Marie Sainz-Funaro, OFT President, Chief
DoDDS-E Participants: Jeanne Scharch, Labor Relations Specialist, DoDDS-E; Carl Albrecht, Assistant
Superintendent, Mediteranean District; Linda Curtis, Deputy Director, DoDDS-E, Chief Spokesperson.
This is the third of this year’s regularly scheduled Joint Labor-Management Committee Meetings. The next
meeting of this school year will be held in Sigonella, Italy, on May 8, 2008.
LQA and COLA Rates. OFT reported that there is report showing living quarters expenses for all
some confusion about how LQA and COLA rates employees at the post receiving LQA who have initially
change. Teachers would like to know the procedures occupied economy quarters or changed economy
for raising COLA and LQA rates in specific locations. quarters within the past twelve months.
In the past, local CPOs conducted the survey. OFT
was told that local surveys are still being done in The next regularly scheduled report for Bahrain is due
Bahrain. Sigonella and other locations are very to the Office of Allowances in April. The regularly
anxious to have a survey conducted. DoDEA notified scheduled report for Italy that was due in February was
OFT that DODEA conducts the survey. Please submitted to the Office of Allowances at the end of
provide a definitive answer on the procedure for raising February 2008.
LQA and COLA.
OFT responded that we are not seeing consistency in
Management reported that the maximum LQA rates for this process. Some schools are included in surveys
Government civilians stationed in posts in foreign others are not. Lenoir Graham, Chief of Human
areas are set by the Department of State. Annually, Resources at HQ reported that new contracts from a
each post is required to submit a quarterly expenditure twelve month period are extracted by DoDEA and
report to the Department of State, Office of provided to the State Department who review the
Allowances. The report reflects the quarters and utility information. The answer provided by management is
expenses for employees who initially occupied still contradictory. OFT is asking for further clarification
economy quarters or changed economy quarters and a clear description of the process to determine
during the past twelve months of the reporting period whether LQA should be raised.
as reported on the employees’ SF-1190 and LQA
Worksheet. Once the review for a post is completed, Management responded that they would seek further
the rates are revised annually so the majority of the clarification next week and provide it to OFT.
employees at the post who are within the authorized
space standards are fully covered for their allowable Copiers at Naples. OFT reported that the copiers at
LQA expenses. In addition to the annual review, the Naples are old and constantly breaking down. OFT
rates are adjusted quarterly by the Office of asked when funds would be available to replace much
Allowances to reflect exchange rate changes. In needed working copiers at Naples. This was raised
addition to regularly scheduled reports, locally and the LUR was told that funds would not be
posts may, when they believe the LQA to be available until 2010. It was reported that one of the
inconsistent with current quarters costs, file an interim copiers is being held together with duct tape.
JLMC March 18, 2008
not the official avenue to notify the union of a change
Management reported that copiers are under a 5-year in working conditions. Any issue related to conditions
lease contract. Copiers for all of DoDDS in Italy will be of employment or personnel, e.g. classroom
replaced en masse 1 Oct 2010. interruptions and changes in bell schedules, must be
raised with the OFT local union representative.
Any copiers needing repair will be fixed. Copiers have
always been fixed as needed/required within 24 hours Management responded that they know of no
of the request. Until late January the DSO was not committees that are actively endeavoring to change
aware that there were recurring problems with some of work conditions of bargaining unit members.
the machines. Upon notification the contract manager Management acknowledges that the participation of
was contacted. There was a delay in the identification unit members as designated representatives of the
of the copiers for the contract work-- now that the union does not obviate the responsibility of
copiers have been identified repair work will Management to deal with the Union on any substantive
commence, if in fact it hasn’t already been completed. changes to conditions of employment. Management
would like to remind the LURs to work though the
There was a breakdown in the report process, which chain of command. Management would like to remind
hopefully will not occur again. LURs to work through the chain of command. A
reminder to all Administrators will be sent out on this
OFT noted that teachers certainly reported that copiers matter.
were not working and hopes that a system will be put
into place that insures the timely reporting of problems OFT thanked management for sending out reminders
with copies so that repairs can be made quickly. to local administrators on this matter.
Health Care. OFT recognizes that the current Policy Grievance: College Credit For DoDDS/DoDEA
procedure to determine if the military clinic is a Workshops. OFT filed a policy grievance and is
preferred provider, the employee must call the health awaiting a response. If a response is not received by
insurance company. It seems cumbersome because it the time of the JLMC meeting, we will be well beyond
means that in order to select an insurance company an the 25 days required by management to respond to the
employee would have to call all the companies. OFT grievance. When will management provide the OFT
asked whether or not there is a way that DoDEA can with a response for the grievance? We would prefer
help facilitate to find a way to get this information in a not to invoke arbitration without a decision.
more efficient manner. This would assist everyone, not
just OFT unit members. Management denied the grievance but OFT reported
that DoDDS-E, in fact, granted the grievance. The
Management responded that each carrier contracts policy grievance specifically addressed management’s
with the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to reason for not offering a course as “double dipping” but
provide certain health benefits to all persons who in the response noted that there is no statutory reason
enroll in its participating plan. . Agency responsibilities that would prevent DoDDS-E from offering courses.
include but are not limited to providing eligible persons As such the grievance was granted. Management also
with information on their rights and responsibilities noted in the response that the workshop under
under the FEHB Program. Management provided a dispute. the recent Foreign Language workshop, did
resource and an attachment for further clarification. not meet the rigor necessary to offer credit.
OFT thanked management for this information. Manpower Documents, POM and Staffing Changes.
OFT requested an update on the POMs including
By Passing the Union - A New Way. OFT reported which ones have expired and the impact on staffing.
that in several schools there are various kinds of Many schools are concerned with a loss in staffing.
committees, including grade level, department and SIP Naples and Sigonella have maintained enrollment but
committees. Principals raise issues at these meetings have suffered a loss in staffing. Rota ES and others
to include subjects that are conditions of employment. have lost special education slots though the caseload
OFT requests that management notify all is the same. Other schools lost clerical staff.
administrators that conditions of employment and other
personnel matters should not be addressed at these
types of meetings. Although an OFT member may be
representing the union during these meetings, that is
JLMC March 18, 2008, 2
Management reported that it is a fact that school Aviano MS/HS Funding for Repairs. OFT reported
staffing at any moment may be out of sync with actual that there are several maintenance projects awaiting
enrollment. This is because current staffing is based funding at Aviano MS/HS to include doors, locks on
on enrollment figures as of September 30 of the exterior doors, and gym floor care. The principal
previous school year. Therefore, actual reported that she is awaiting funding. OFT requested
increased/decreased enrollments during the current a timeline on when funds will be available.
school year will cause staffing changes for the
following year. Both the District and DoDDS-E take Management responded that DoDDS-E has not
these changes into consideration when allocating received funding for this quarter. The current budget is
individual school staffing, via the Staffing Authorization funding “must fund” items like bus transportation.
Document (SAD). The SPED positions are determined Management hopes to see the money before April 1st
as of active cases listed in EXCENT, although that for all budget items.
would not always be the sole determinant, as co-
location of schools could facilitate an adjustment in OFT will continue to monitor repairs in Aviano.
Management reported that in the past Sigonella Services for Ankara Educators. OFT requested an
MS/HS and Naples MS/HS were provided with update on services in Ankara. Access to the American
positions from the DSO from a reserve pool which Embassy ends on 1 April, leaving unresolved issues.
meant that they had more staff than was authorized.
As such, the current reduction is to bring it into line Management responded that they signed off on I-
with where it should be prior to the additional staff. CAST until October 1. Teachers will receive services
Additional staffing is reflected in previous staffing at the Embassy. Management, base officials and
documents that are no longer available for future union will continue toward solutions for services
staffing at the local schools. beyond October 1, 2009.
OFT responded that clarification about the special OFT thanked management for their assistance.
education staffing needs to be communicated more
clearly to all. OFT will contact Lorrie Sebastyn at DoDDS-E School Closings And Material Sharing. OFT
DoDEA headquarters for clarification on how staffing reported that Ankara Elementary teachers would like to
was done for certain schools within the Med. be able to get supplies, including construction paper,
and our information specialist would like to ask for
Itemized Travel Vouchers. OFT noted that local books to update our aged collection and asked how
finance provided educators with a travel voucher this can be done.
itemizing the expenses being reimbursed. OFT
requested that this information be provided again Management responded that Ankara ES should send a
under the new DTS system. consolidated list of requested supplies to Jonathan
Harris, Logistics Division. When the request is
Management responded that travelers will be receiving received, items that can be sent to Ankara ES/HS will
a copy of the settlement voucher once it has been sent be identified at closing schools. The school's
to DFAS. DoDDS-E is currently establishing a process Information Center Specialist should work with Jeanie
to ensure that all travelers will be provided with a copy McNamara to determine their needs. Anything that
of the settlement. The District Travel Assistants requires commercial shipping may be problematic due
(DTAs) will send it electronically to the traveler to Turkish Customs requirements.
confirming that the DoDDS-E Resource Management
Office (RMO) has sent it to DFAS. This process Behavior Policies on Student Trips. OFT is concerned
cannot be automated because our accounting system with the excessive bending of school policy.
does not communicate with DFAS. Once the voucher Educators are concerned that they are not being
has been sent to DFAS it will then be emailed to the supported by administration when discipline issues
traveler. arise on student trips. In Vicenza, a student was
caught shop lifting while on a sports trip. The parents
An itemized voucher is sent to DFAS and the were present yet the student was allowed ride the
employee will be copied so he will know what school bus home with the team. The sponsor was told
payments can be expected. (not asked) to allow the student to ride the bus back
with the team. The school’s athletic handbook clearly
JLMC March 18, 2008, 3
states the process for infractions during student travel. vulnerability gaps in the network and provides the
OFT requests an explanation of why school policy was foundation and control required for the IT Division to
not adhered to and why the sponsor was directed to be able to do their job and consistently manage
supervise this student on an 11+ hour bus trip back to student computers across DoDDS-E.
OFT further clarified that the IT changes have made
Management responded that when the principal alterations to computer rights of teachers. Lab
assessed the situation, many factors were considered teachers are unable to access student work. In some
allowing the student to ride home on the bus with the cases student work is no longer authored by the
team. These factors were provided to the union to student but rather there is a generic author. The local
substantiate the decision including mitigating AT cannot create new student accounts. The librarian
circumstances. cannot set a time to back up the system; the thirty
minute security where the work station locks disables
OFT noted that this is not the first time that the policy the backing up system for the library.
has not been adhered to by management. The bigger
issue and the concern of educators is what lesson is Management briefed OFT that DoDDS-E was
being learned by all students when they see that the inspected by a DOD agency and changes were
policy does not apply to all. Educators were not told implemented to comply with certain rules. DoDDS-E is
whether or not anything was told to the team. OFT working on a waiver that will allow users and/or
noted that the individual cases are not the issue. software. Management responded that IT will look at
making some of the suggested modifications.
IT Policy. OFT raised a recent change in IT Policy
which requires that teachers will have rights to their OFT thanked management for looking into the
computer downgraded to “user rights”. OFT is possibility of making the suggested changes and OFT
concerned that this change has a big impact on lab, would also like to thank Jeff Sutton and his office for all
computer, business and other teachers who manage of their work and efforts to meet the needs of
student computers. educators, especially with assistance in aiding primary
school log in problems.
Management reported that the IT Division must keep
the network and user data as secure as possible while Incirlik Science Labs and classrooms. OFT requested
ensuring all DoDDS-Europe computer users have an update on the condition of the science labs at
appropriate computer rights required to perform their Incirlik and information on Beth Pond’s visit together
jobs. This “least privilege” access configuration was with the engineer’s estimate for an upgrade and any
recently implemented school-wide at Bahrain with very other information that can be provided. Management
few issues. The teachers and staff were at first reported that Beth Pond did not visit Incirlik and
skeptical, but once they realized all their programs provided the following:
would function as before, they were more than
receptive to the changes. Many were relieved that The Science Lab in the existing portion of school
their perceived responsibility to install software and would be considered a modernization process. Steve
configure printers fell into the hands of local IT Arn, DSO Engineer, will be going to Incirlik in April
professionals and not themselves. This change also 08 to assess the feasibility of the Incirlik Science
significantly improved the performance of computers Lab project, formulate engineering requirements
and the network. and assist in getting project on the fast track. Host
Nation approval (HNA) will be required for this project.
The DoDDS-Europe network is a DoD network and
HNA would take approximately 4 - 8 months, if there
must follow the security regulations to protect data and
are no changes. Any change would require HNA
the people using that data. Management briefed OFT
approval, thus extending the overall time before the
on the requirements pertaining to user privileges.
project could even be executed. A time table is
unknown due to the politics involved in the Turkish
The goal of the IT Division is to provide the best
Host Nation Process and availability of products within
possible network services and computer support to
facilitate the education of our students. Conversely, it
is the IT Divisions’ duty to secure the network services
While a scope of work will be identified, the cost
against internal and external attacks. Implementing
(estimate) for this work will not be given, due to the
the “least privilege” access for all users prevents many
JLMC March 18, 2008, 4
sensitivity of this information given to potential Management reported that the recent transfer of data
contractors. from the current program into the online version was
Funding availability will depend upon DoDDS-E and successful. As a result, DoDEA is preparing to
DoDEA Facilities. disseminate a memorandum outlining the
requirements for the 6 week long Excent pilot to take
OFT thanked management for any assistance on this place this Spring in Vicenza ES, Wiesbaden and Lajes
since the labs are very much in need of repair. MS schools.
Incirlik Science Labs in the Education Center. OFT Staff members will need to use and maintain the
reported that the use of the lab was cumbersome and current Excent program for routine special education
inefficient and asked management for any further business for the entire 6 weeks of the pilot.
information on the use of the science lab in the
education center? The purpose of the pilot at the selected schools will be
to check the functionality of the program and to receive
Management disagrees that the use of the Lab at the feedback from the Excent users to determine areas of
Education Center is cumbersome and inefficient. The improvement needed to support the successful
Ed Center laboratory and the chemical room are implementation of the web-based Excent. The
located in the same building --an improvement from feedback will be reviewed at the end of the pilot period
the previous condition. The students need only travel to determine any additional needs. Full implementation
from the classroom through a gate to the science lab. of the web-based Excent is expected to occur at the
beginning of SY 08-09.
Management reminds OFT that teachers expressed
disappointment that this particular location was not OFT asked that Eileen Kless participate in the Lajes
previously made available and OFT officers training as the OFT representative.
encouraged the principal to make this particular facility
available. Online Applications at DODEA / Visas/TOPS. OFT is
monitoring acquisition of visas for Italy and is
While it would be ideal to have a brand new state of concerned that DoDEA is taking over a month to
the art laboratory adjacent to the teacher’s process PCS orders. OFT is extremely concerned that
classroom(s) that is not feasible at this time. Until such visas will not be provided in a timely fashion to
time as a new laboratory is built into the present school educators moving to Italy and that this will have a
structure, the use of the Education Center lab, as an negative impact on the education program since it is
interim measure, will continue. possible that teachers may not be available at the start
of school. OFT asked what is being put in place by to
It should be noted that the Education Center was a prevent the problems we had last summer especially
part of the Incirlik HS up until the end of SY 2005. Due given the delays in processing PCS orders.
to a drop in student population, and the cost of
maintaining that portion of the facility, that section was Management reported that DoDEA HQ is currently
transferred over to the Base Education Center. The working on resolving the backlog of orders that they
transferred section included the science labs and have. They are working with Fiscal to expedite the
music room and other General Purpose Classrooms. funding and approval of these orders. There have
been some internal changes within the Customer
OFT disagreed with management’s response and is Operations Team staff to avoid further delays in
requesting a less cumbersome procedure. Carl processing orders. HQ has already been in contact
Albrecht, Assistance Superintendent, will be visiting with the State Department and Italian Consulate
the school this week. Linda Hogan, LUR in Incirlik, will offices to ensure that we don't encounter the problems
coordinate a walk through with the Science we had last school year. HQ will be tracking Passports
Department, Carl Albrecht, Reynard Eddings, Principal and Visa applications as they are processed to avoid
and the SLO to look at the science labs. They will also any possible delay.
discuss streamlining the scheduling of the space.
Additionally, individuals will be advised that if they are
currently overseas and an Italian Consulate is
Excent. At the last JLMC management reported on a
available to them that they may request their visa from
pilot on a new version of Excent. OFT asked for a
timeline for Excent piloting, a review of the data from
the pilot and possible full implementation.
JLMC March 18, 2008, 5
OFT responded that we will continue to monitor this have a plan in place that has been developed locally
issue. by the principal and the LUR.
Fire Drills at Naples ES. OFT requested a follow-up
It is planned that all Mediterranean District principals
on the problem of the dysfunctional fire alarms at
will be provided the attached SOP that has been
Naples Elementary school.
developed by the DSO to be used at all schools.
Management responded that the Naples ES fire alarm
OFT will provide comments.
system is not dysfunctional. The Navy has reported
that the Fire Alarm system in the school is functioning
properly. Over the past 2 months, there was one false
Update on Base closures/realignment/moves for
alarm at the ES caused by dust in the sensor. There
Europe. OFT requested an update on transformation.
were no false alarms in the HS. The Navy has
Management provided the following:
reported that maintenance is being performed as
Summer 08 Transformation Actions
The Administrators have confirmed that maintenance
is being performed and the system is functioning better
than it has over the past 4 years.
Netzaberg MS (current Grafenwoehr MS will become
OFT responded that it should not take 4 years to repair
a fire alarm system and will continue to monitor this
issue and have it back on the agenda if the problems
Update On School Maintenance And School
Construction. OFT asked for an update.
Management provided updates to the school
construction projects. Facilities received funding for
the following projects within the MED District during
the 2nd Quarter. Programmed amount for these
projects - $623K.
Aviano MS and Aviano HS will become Aviano MS/HS
AFNORTH ES and AFNORTH HS will become
Sigonella MS/HS--Repair HVAC system
Incirlik Complex--Redesign roof to include
replacement of roof trusses
Verified administrative changes
Sigonella ES--Paint exterior Bldg 213
Stuttgart schools (Patch ES, Patch HS, Boeblingen
Aviano Complex--Repair HVAC
ES/MS, and Robinson Barracks ES/MS) moved from
Bavaria to Heidelberg District
Med DSO--Repair fire alarm/notification system
Vicenza HS--Replace Bldg 390A HS LAN (first
Defense Travel System. OFT reported that it
Lajes Complex--Replace exterior doors
continues to be concerned with the lack of timeliness
Lajes Complex--Refurbish Multipurpose Room
of receipt of orders and the TOT of TDY payments.
Sigonella MS/HS--Correct drainage around
There seems to be a time lag between DoDDS-E
receiving the voucher and sending it to DFAS.
Vicenza ES--Electrical repairs - ES computer
Med DSO--Refurbish Existing front steps Management responded that the goal for the Travel
(handicapped) Office is to get the travel orders to the traveler five
Heat and Cold in Buildings. OFT reported that it days prior to traveling. The time for processing of
continues to be concerned about the lack of any travel orders varies depending upon when the request
contingency plan for each school when rooms are too is received, if the traveler is already registered in DTS,
hot or too cold. OFT believes it is a good practice to and if the traveler has provided all the necessary travel
JLMC March 18, 2008, 6
information. Travel orders for both individuals and in place prior to implementation. The early release
group travel are prioritized in order of the calendar days can be used for any activities agreed to locally,
date of the travel or event. Those events that occur not just professional development or SIP.
soonest will receive first priority.
DoDDS-E is currently processing travel vouchers from Sick Leave at Incirlik. OFT reported that educators at
11 February. The goal is to process travel vouchers Incirlik are not permitted to request a sick day the
within two days of receipt as long as all receipts are previous day. The principal requests that educators
attached, get it through the routing process and off to call the school secretary at 7:00 am on the day the
DFAS within two days of approval, and the itemized educator is out sick.
settlement voucher back to the traveler. The
completed process should take no more than 10-15 Management responded that there would be follow up
days from the time the traveler submits the SF 1351-2. with the local principal.
OFT will continue to monitor the timeliness of orders Substitute Usage. The Union reported that several
and payments and noted that DTS is still not working. schools are looking for ways to provide coverage
rather than hire a substitute. Teachers cannot be
Defense Travel System MOU on Advance. OFT noted asked to substitute during their prep periods unless
that it was still awaiting Management’s proposal and under extraordinary circumstances. If teachers are
TDY advances. The proposal was due 1 March. directed to provide coverage during preparation time,
Management reported the following: they should be paid at their hourly rate to complete
classroom preparations after the duty day. In another
Below is the information received from James Hooks, school, teachers take on double classes for a morning.
DFAS-Indianapolis: OFT objects to the way some administrators present
Requests for advances are provided to DFAS Indy, the issue of substitute shortages to teachers. OFT
along with the manually computed advance request noted that teachers should not be led to feel “guilty” for
according to the JTR. DFAS Indy processes the taking appropriate leave.
advance and DoDDS ensures it is posted to DTS so
that it is deducted from the final payment. The DFAS Management reported that we must be good stewards
policy is what is in the JTR and the DoDFMR of our resources. DoDDS-E went over 1.2 million
concerning advances. Forms were provided. dollars to provide coverage. Upper management
asked the DSOs to monitor substitute usage.
The following are the procedures for requesting an Management has asked local principals to look at
Advance from Active Travel, DFAS Indianapolis: substitute usage specifically for GS positions such as
Orders must state "Member does not have a aides and clerical substitutes.
government credit card". Orders must state "Advance
Authorized". An advance is paid at no more than 30 OFT gave examples of how teachers are very careful
days at 80% of the lodging and meals (per diem). The with being absent and are concerned about lost
first and last day are travel days and are paid at 75%. instructional time; however OFT also noted that
For the advance DFAS will pay 80% of the 75% for the teachers have the right to use their leave.
first and last day. For Invitational Orders the amount
will be specified in the orders, and will be paid specific Management responded that a communication would
to that amount. DFAS will pay transportation go out in the Friday packet clarifying substitute usage.
expenses with the advance.
Professional Development. Management requests
OFT will continue to monitor DTS and the advance that teachers support the professional development
process. opportunities provided by DoDDS.
Professional Development – Early Release days. OFT OFT concurs with management. DoDDS-E
reported that there was a concern that early release sponsored professional development is an opportunity
days that are a result of teachers volunteering to which we would like to see continue.
extend the instructional day are being misconstrued as
SIP days only, particularly at Sigonella ES. OFT Schedule in Incirlik. An MOU on the Incirlik schedule
reported that all agreements for extending the school was signed by Linda Curtis, Deputy Director of
day for early release must be negotiated and an MOU DoDDS-E and Marie Sainz-Funaro, President OFT.
JLMC March 18, 2008, 7
NEWS BRIEFS * NEWS BRIEFS * NEWS BRIEFS * NEWS BRIEFS
Orders and TDY Payments. Educators are still reporting delays for TDY orders and claims for
payment. If you are having trouble with TDY orders, obtaining tickets or payment, please contact
firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com
LQA Updates. Please update your form 1190 in DAPPS even if you are above your housing
allowance. Two reasons to do this. 1) If LQA is raised, you will receive higher payments as
reflected in your application and 2) Data extractions from 1190’s are used to make determinations
about increasing LQA rates by the DoDEA and the State Department.
Membership Cards. Many OFT members have NOT received their membership cards in the
mail. OFT is working with AFT to solve the delay.
JLMC – May 8, 2008, Sigonella, Italy
OFT Convention – May 17, 2008, Tirrenia, Italy
OFT Graduate Institute for Teachers (GIFT)
Summer Masters degree program in Naples and Rota
contact Marr Cagle firstname.lastname@example.org
OFT Membership APPLICATION
To enroll, contact your OFT local/council rep in your school or complete this form and forward to:
Overseas Federation of Teachers, Unit 31301, Box 65 , APO AE 09613
Checks should be made payable to OFT and sent to the above address.
Please check applicable box:
[ ]$510. Full time teacher in bargaining unit [ ]$510. Full time teacher not grandfathered
[ ]$275. Half time teacher in bargaining unit outside unit
[ ]$300. Full time teacher grandfathered [ ]$150. Substitute or aide
outside unit [ ]$35. Retired member. First year free.
Membership includes $1,000,000 liability insurance and $25,000 accidental insurance
JLMC March 18, 2008, 8