November 2018 Newsletter

President’s Notes

Not a member? Join LEA!

The LEA Compensation and Climate Committee has been reviewing last year's report to the Superintendent and School Board as well as member input collected at Association Rep meetings to develop LEA's FY20 position report.

Advocating for Compensation
LEA will continue to advocate for compensation improvements for ALL employees using these guiding principles:
  • LCPS employees should be able to afford a middle class standard of living in Loudoun.
  • LCPS employees should earn a living wage.
  • Paychecks should not be reduced due to increases in the cost of benefits.
Professional Climate
LEA believes in a professional working climate for all employees. As we meet with Administration LEA continues to bring your concerns forward to improve our working conditions. Read the Hot Topics section below to find out about our advocacy.

Our Compensation and Climate Committee will meet with the Superintendent on Monday, November 12th. I will be sharing more about this at our November 14th Association Rep meeting.


David Palanzi, President
Loudoun Education Association

My "Shero" Ally Palanzi & me

School Board Update

From LoudounEA Facebook Live Post October 9 & 23

October 9
At the School Board Meeting. Tonight’s topics include:  Disability History and Awareness Month Proclamation, Loudoun Education Foundation Gifts Campaign, Request to Name Portions of Facilities, Calendar Year 2019 Health Insurance Premiums, and Student Achievement in Loudoun County Public Schools.
For more details see the Board Docs http://www.boarddocs.com/vsba/loudoun/board.nsf
Public Comment: 
There are 6 speakers tonight for public comments. The speakers discussed the lack of LGBTQ employee protections in the Harassment and Discrimination Policy and its harm to employment, parent concerns about safety at Lucketts ES, and the lack of staff interpreters.
Superintendent’s Time:
Dr. Williams welcomed the student school board members from Loudoun County High School and Rock Ridge High School.
Action Items:
  • Calendar Year 2019 Health Insurance Premiums
    LCPS now has more recent data that would support revising the health premiums so that no increase to the OAP and POS plans is implemented for calendar year 2019.

    While LCPS continues to finalize FY18 year-end numbers, the self-insurance fund is projected to have a strong fund balance. School Board adopted plan changes, improved employee utilization management, and the Wellness Works! program are a few of the contributing factors. Passed (6-0-0) DeKenipp, Maloney, and Sheridan absent for the vote.

October 23
Public Comment: 
There are 4 speakers tonight for public comments. The speakers discussed employee concerns, communication, and underrepresented groups at Academies of Loudoun.
Superintendent’s Time:
Dr. Williams expressed his appreciation to the student representatives on the School Board.
Action Items:
  • Revision of Policy 5170, Substance Use Education (Former Policy 5-39) – revision to bring the document up-to-date and reflect current practice. Motion by Rose, Second by Turgeon. (Passed 7-0-1-1 Maloney Absent)
See the rest of Dave's notes for the SB Meetings


American Education Week

Loudoun Board of Supervisors recognize the contribution of public education to Loudoun's citizens. On Thursday, November 8th the BOS will make a proclamation supporting American Education Week.



Overcoming Barriers Together

Loudoun's Finest ESP Members, with VEA Vice President Fedderman.
Five phenomenal members represented LEA at the VEA Education Support Professional's Conference held in Richmond, October 12-13.
  • Helen Decker, Forest Grove ES
  • Laura Herring, Simpson MS
  • Heather Stillings, Frederick Douglass ES
  • Karen Tyrrell, Belmont Ridge MS
  • Shirlita West, Farmwell MS
One point made by the keynote speaker, which Karen shared with us, "We don’t always know the circumstances of a student – that kid who is always annoying in the hallway may be homeless, hungry, dealing with a parent who is incarcerated, etc – ESPs don’t have access to student records in regards to these things."  We don’t know all the issues they are dealing with every day at home; we need to keep that in mind in dealing with the students we come in contact with. They are kids dealing the best they can with real adult issues.

Why we wear #Red4ED 

We're raising our voices to protect public schools.
To support every student, we're wearing Red for Ed. 

I challenge you to also take the pledge to wear red every Wednesday to show your support for the students and employees in Loudoun County Public Schools. Tell us why you support public education, wear something red, take a photo, and post it on social media (#Red4Ed) or send it to us. We are excited to share your photos with our members. 

Send Photos to President@LoudounEA.org
Post to facebook.org/LoudounEA 
Share on twitter @LoudounEA

What is LEA - Retired

Join VEA-Retired

Your membership in VEA-Retired and NEA-Retired helps your Association achieve its goals for schools, for active school employees, and for retirees. Providing security and dignity for school retirees has always been a high priority for VEA, and you can help through your membership. We also have a growing list of active local VEA-Retired chapters that will welcome your participation and continued fellowship.

Who's Eligible

VEA-Retired and NEA-Retired are programs of the Virginia Education Association and National Education Association for those who have retired from employment in the field of public education. Lifetime membership in VEA-Retired is available to retired educators and active VEA members prior to their retirement.

Membership is open to all who worked in Virginia public schools, even if they now live out of state, and were Active Association members for at least five (5) years.

Contact the LEA Office for more information.

All Member Social

  • Saturday, November 10 @ Noon - 4 p.m.
  • For LEA members only!

Mark your calendar now!

LEA Membership Committee News

Educator for a Day Success

The following elected officials and community leaders have signed up to be an educator for a day in the month of November. Every elected official who represents Loudoun was invited to join this event. In the December newsletter we will have photos and member spotlights.

Elected Officials: 
  • Jennifer Boysko, House of Delegates 86th District 
  • Wendy Gooditis, House of Delegates 10th District
  • Eric Hornberger, Ashburn District School Board Representative
  • Joy Maloney, Broad Run District School Board Representative
  • Phyllis Randall, Chair at Large of the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors
  • David Reid, House of Delegates 32nd District 
  • Koran Saines, Sterling District Loudoun County Board of Supervisors
  • Kristen Umstattd, Leesburg District Loudoun County Board of Supervisors
Community Leaders:
  • Beth Barts, Leesburg District School Board Candidate
  • Tanika Coates, Community Leader
  • Tony Howard, President and CEO, Loudoun Chamber of Commerce
  • Charlotte McConnell, Community Leader
  • Joseph Newcomer, Leesburg District School Board Candidate
  • Atoosa Reaser, Algonkian District School Board Candidate
  • Ian Serotkin, Blue Ridge District School Board Candidate
  • Ram Venkatachalam, Blue Ridge District School Board Candidate

Membership Committee

  • Chair:  Alexa Severo, Grade 2, Sugarland ES
  • Tracy Athwal, Teaching Assistant, Smart's Mill MS
  • Christine Casuccio, Special Education, Harper Park MS
  • Angela Powner, Grade 5, Discovery ES
  • Shirlita West, Teaching Assistant, Farmwell Station MS
  • Dave Palanzi, President, LEA
  • Jake Lemann, UniServ Director
Additional Committee Information

November- Important Dates

  1 - LEA Membership Committee
  7 - LEA Board Meeting  
10 - Social @ Doukenie Winery
13 - School Board Meeting 
14 - LEA Rep Meeting
16 - 17 VEA Instructional Conference
19 - LEA Government Relations (GR) & PAC Committee
27 - School Board Meeting

LEA Open House December 6

More Dates

Member Issues

When you talk to us, your information is confidential and we do not share your personal situation without your permission.
Suggestion Box

Hot Topics

LEA President, David Palanzi's School Board Speech
Tuesday, October 23

Good evening. I rise to speak with you to ensure the voices of LEA members are heard.

Loudoun Education Association has received calls and messages from LEA members who work at Lucketts Elementary School. Members are concerned about their safety, workplace climate, and a lack of communication.

I recently attended a community presentation on school safety sponsored by the Hunt District PTA. Our trained LCPS employees believe they have the ability to keep our workplace safe; however, LEA members at Lucketts Elementary do not share this confidence based on their experience.

We have all read the accounts and heard from parents about concerns at Lucketts. What you haven’t read about is the fear of retaliation and the ineffective internal communication at Lucketts Elementary. Educators deserve an environment which promotes open two-way communication. We all teach collaboration in our classrooms and we expect this in our workplace.

I have shared with you via email an example of the poor communication at Lucketts.

Members have confidentially shared their concerns with LEA and we have communicated them to central office staff.
I hope you will support staff initiatives to promote improvements in communication and the working conditions for our members at Lucketts and throughout the division. 

I know we can do better to regain the confidence of both our employees and our community. 

This drawing will be held in December.
Only one entry per member.

Enter Here

A Special Invitation to LEA Members

Dirt Don't Burn,
A Community Celebration for
Equal Education

Dear Mr. Palanzi,

I'd like to invite you and your membership to attend our public event on Saturday, November 10th at Douglass School, 407 East Market Street, Leesburg.  Called Dirt Don't Burn, A Community Celebration for Equal Education," the event is co-sponsored by the LCPS and the Edwin Washington Project (www.edwinwashingtonproject.org).

The Edwin Washington Project was asked by LCPS to document what happened to African-American students during segregation, mainly from the advent of public schools in 1870 to 1968, when integration arrived.  We are documenting where the schools were, including white schools, who attended them, who instructed and what the curriculum was.  We also study construction files, information on schools fairs and virtually anything else having to do with education during the period in question.

One of the more interesting things which has emerged is a large packet of hand-written petitions by parents asking the government for improvements in the schools, repairs, better teachers, equal salaries and of course equal transportation.  That discovery and many others will be discussed at our event.

The event is totally free, as is parking.

Best regards,

Larry Roeder, MS
  Principal Investigator
    the Edwin Washington Project

Association Meeting Schedule

    14—Wednesday, Rep Meeting @ the Douglass School
    6—Thursday, Holiday Open House, LEA Office, Lansdowne
    16—Wednesday, Rep Meeting @ the Douglass School
    20—Wednesday, Rep Meeting @ the Douglass School
    20—Wednesday, Rep Meeting @ the Douglass School
    24—Wednesday, Rep Meeting @ the Douglass School
    15—Wednesday, Rep Meeting @ the Douglass School
    23—Annual Celebration for Reps and Retiring Members
Meetings are open to all members!

Rep Meeting
Drawing Winners

  • A Day With Dave - Dave will co-teach for a day with Elizabeth Tao, Hillside ES
  • Laminator - Megan Fay, Liberty ES
  • Office Supplies - Steve Meyer, Harper Park MS (not pictured)

We are here to support you!

Call LEA immediately at 703-858-7700 when:
  • you are contacted by Child Protective Services, law enforcement, or are placed on administrative leave.
  • a student or parent threatens you.
  • you are being disciplined, reprimanded or dismissed.
  • you are placed on an improvement plan or have other evaluation concerns.
  • you have questions about LCPS policies or regulations.
  • you think you have a grievance. Grievances must be filed within specific timelines. Waiting may void your ability to file!
Remember: If you have a concern, be sure to contact LEA. We are here to work together for the school system we all deserve.