Reminder to show your supervisor proof of COVID-19 vaccination

Medical worker in gown and blue gloves prepares to vaccinate an individual in the arm

The following is a copy of a message emailed to all OSD staff on August 30, 2021 explaining Gov. Jay Inslee’s directive requiring all K-12 school district employees to get a COVID-19 vaccination or a medical or religious exemption by October 18, 2021 as a condition of employment.

If you are looking for a COVID-19 vaccine locally, visit the Thurston County Public Health and Social Services website for a list of dates, times and locations.

Message emailed to OSD employees on August 30, 2021:

As a condition of employment, all OSD employees must provide valid proof of full vaccination for COVID-19, or a valid religious or medical exemption, by October 18, 2021.

In order to meet this requirement, you must have received your second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine, or the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, by October 4, 2021.

Following is the process to verify your vaccination status with your supervisor, or request an exemption from Human Resources:

Verify Vaccination Status
Show your supervisor a valid proof of vaccination for COVID-19 as outlined in the Washington State Department of Health Visual Guide to Official Washington State Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination. Due to the confidential nature of this information, please do not email this information to your supervisor; rather, show it to them in person. The district will not retain copies of this documentation.

Religious Exemption
To request a religious exemption, complete the form provided by OSPI, which we have posted on the Human Resources Section of the Forms page on the staff intranet. Download the form, fill out, and make a copy for yourself. To avoid sending sensitive documents electronically, and due to the confidential nature of this information, either send the hard copy via the district mail courier to the Human Resources Department, Attention Danielle Enger, or drop off in person at the Knox 111 Administrative Center in a sealed envelope marked Human Resources, Attention Danielle Enger.

Medical Exemption/Accommodation
To request a medical exemption/accommodation, please complete the form posted on the Human Resources Section of the Forms page on the staff intranet. Download the form, fill out, and make a copy for yourself. To avoid sending sensitive documents electronically, and due to the confidential nature of this information, either send the hard copy via the district mail courier to the Human Resources Department, Attention Danielle Enger, or drop off in person at the Knox 111 Administrative Center in a sealed envelope marked Human Resources, Attention Danielle Enger.

Fundamental Course of Study Training opportunities

Person typing on a laptop computer

As most of you know, all paras in the Olympia School District (except preschool paras and bus monitors) are required to take 28 hours of training for the Fundamental Course of Study (FCS). The ESD 113 is providing some upcoming training opportunities for Olympia School District paraeducators. During the 2021-22 school year, 14 hours of training is required – 11 hours will be via Zoom, and 3 hours will be asynchronous courses.

Please note that space is limited for the Zoom sessions to 30 people per training, so sign up as soon as possible to reserve your spot. Asynchronous training can be completed on your own time, but due no later than July 31, 2022.

If you are unsure what training you need please email April Pigue at apigue@osd.wednet.edu before you sign up for any of the training.

You MUST use the registration links listed below. These are for OSD use only. You will be unable to use the “search” function in pdEnroller.

PdEnroller Sessions

September 27-30
Mon-Wed, 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Thursday 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Registration Link

November 29-December 2
Mon-Wed, 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Thursday 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Registration Link

October 4-7
Mon-Wed, 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Thursday 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Registration Link

December 6-9
Mon-Wed, 4:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Thursday, 4:30 pm – 6:30 pm

Registration Link

Training Location All training will be held via Zoom.  You will receive a link once you have registered.

Standards (First 14 hours) – New Hire to OSD

FCS01, Introduction to Cultural Identity & Diversity
FCS02, Methods of Educational & Instructional Support
FCS04, Using & Collecting Data
FCS11, Communication Basics

Please note: FCS 10 (Positive & Safe Learning Environment) will be asynchronous.
Registration Link

STandards (second 14 hours) – 2nd year with OSD

FCS05, District Orientation of Roles & Responsibilities
FCS06, Equity
FCS07, Behavior Management Strategies (including de-escalation techniques)
FCS08, Child & Adolescent Development
FCS09, Emergency & Health Safety

Please note: FCS 03 (Technology Basics) & FCS12 (Communication Challenges) will be asynchronous.
FCS 03 – Registration Link
FCS 12 – Registration Link

More dates will be added as they are scheduled.  For additional information regarding the FCS training in the Olympia School District, please view the OSD Paraeduator Certificate Program FAQ.

2020-21 Stipend Payment Update

The District recently received information from OSPI that the reimbursement to the District for those paras who completed the FCS 14 hours during the 2020-2021 school year has been delayed. Therefore, those eligible for the stipend will be paid in their October paycheck. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Reasonable assurance letters to be sent to specific classified employees by May 27

Human Resources will be issuing reasonable assurance letters to classified employees that meet the following criteria:

  • Your work calendar has less than 260 work days per year and
  • You have a continuing position for the 2021-2022 school year

Letters will be issued via Skyward no later than Thursday, May 27, 2021. Classified employees will need to check their OSD email for notification on when their letter is available for review and signature. Once available, employees need to log in to Employee Access on Skyward. There will be a pop-up with a link to the letter and instructions for each step.  Letters need to be reviewed and signed no later than June 15, 2021.

You may find step by step instructions on how to access and sign your RA Letter by clicking here.

If you plan to resign or retire prior to the 2021-22 school year, please complete the Notice of Separation form and send it to the Human Resources department. Please note: the employee is still responsible for notifying the administrator.

For questions, please contact:

Laura Emmil
Classified Contracts Coordinator (Elementary Paras, Bus Monitors, Knox Paras, OEAPA & OTPAA)
Email: lemmil@osd.wednet.edu

Aja Dale
Classified Contracts Coordinator (Secondary Paras)
Email: adale@osd.wednet.edu

Stephanie Brownell
Contracts Specialist (Transportation, Maintenance, Grounds & Food Service)
Email: stbrownell@osd.wednet.edu

Education Support Professionals Week is March 8-12

Bus driver looks at camera while seated in driver's seat with front doors open at a school stop

The Olympia School District is joining the state in recognizing Education Support Professionals Week March 8-12.

Superintendent Patrick Murphy read a proclamation during the February 25 Olympia School Board meeting recognizing March 8-12, 2021 as Education Support Professionals Week. Copies of the proclamation will be sent to leaders of the district’s Education Support employee bargaining units, many of whom were in attendance on the Zoom meeting. They include:

OTPAA
Amy McGuire and Alicia Snyder

OPA
Mario Mejia

OEAPA
Brandi Sorem

OEA-AAA
Melvin Smith

Teamsters
Shandi Cardin
William Knight (Technology)
Paul Sierra (Maintenance)
Tim Walling (Grounds)
Mary Hiatt (Custodial)
Calvin Dawson (Custodial)
Tommy Gallegos (Transportation)
Sandra Keyt (Child Nutrition Services)

More than 800 education support professionals work with and help children throughout our district. They are involved in nearly every aspect of education, including maintaining school buildings and school grounds; providing administrative support; preparing and serving meals; providing safe transportation; keeping school facilities clean; assisting in the classroom; providing a secure environment; providing information technology and media services; and offering other specialized services.

The resolution states in part that “education support professionals are instrumental in fulfilling the state’s responsibility to educate all students.” The one-page resolution, which will be posted in every school and support building from March 8-12, also states that by supporting the learning environment, “education support professionals are crucial partners with teachers, parents, administrators and school boards.”

Please remember to thank an education support professional working in our schools.

Read the full Olympia School District proclamation

Paraeducators: February FCS training is full

Paraeducators please note: The February session for the Fundamental Course of Study (FCS) through ESD 113 is full.  If you were on the waitlist, the ESD will be contacting you via email with the option to be transferred to the May session.

If you have not registered, you may sign up for the May training. Spots are reserved on a first-come-first-serve basis. The July training dates are yet to be determined.

Register for the May training by clicking the link below:

ESD 113 Fundamental Course of Study Training
May 1/8/15/22, 11am-2pm
Registration Link

ESD shares information about fraudulent unemployment claim activity statewide

With the reinstatement of the additional, weekly unemployment benefit of $300, the Employment Security Department (ESD) has notified us that new fraudulent claims are being reported around the state. The ESD has asked us to share the following information regarding fraudulent unemployment claim activity.

If you have been the victim of recent unemployment fraud:
If you have been the victim of new unemployment fraud, you will need to file a fraud report with the ESD. In addition, please also notify Human Resources by emailing Cassie Lewis at calewis@osd.wednet.edu.

To help prevent any potential fraud, you may create a SAW account with the State of Washington. View instructions for creating a SAW account. If you have been the victim of fraud in another state, you will need to contact that specific state. You may also want to create a SAW account in order to prevent a fraudulent Washington claim.

If you were a victim of unemployment fraud in 2020:

If you were a victim of unemployment fraud with the ESD in 2020 and receive a tax form 1099 from the ESD, you should contact the ESD directly. Because the ESD issued the 1099 form, they must be the one to correct the error. The ESD can be reached by email (ui1099@esd.wa.gov) or phone (866-697-4831). Email contact is preferred.

View more information

Weather-related delays and closures

Olympia Capitol building with snow-covered hillside and trees

The following is a reprint of an email shared with all OSD employees on Thursday, February 11.

Please retain this information for weather-related delays and closures. Hopefully this will be a useful reference document to make weather-related decisions clearer for everyone.

LATE START

Contractual language and past practice allow for modified schedules due to emergency conditions in which employees may, with the approval of their supervisor: 1) work regularly scheduled time on site, if safety permits, 2) arrange with a supervisor to complete their work remotely, 3) use vacation leave or emergency leave if permitted by bargaining agreement, or 4) if applicable, arrange with a supervisor to make up the time missed in regular-time status.

EARLY RELEASE

Contractual language and past practice allow for early release provisions due to emergency conditions in which employees may, with the approval of their supervisor, leave early and 1) work regularly scheduled time on site, if safety permits, 2) arrange with a supervisor to complete their work remotely, 3) use vacation leave or emergency leave if permitted by bargaining agreement, or 4) if applicable, arrange with a supervisor to make up the time missed in regular-time status.

CLOSURE/REMOTE WORK OPTIONS

For staff who work a typical school schedule, as well as year-round and other employees, contractual language and past practice allow for closure due to emergency conditions in which employees may, with the approval of their supervisor: 1) work regularly scheduled time on site, if safety permits, 2) arrange with a supervisor to complete their work remotely, 3) use vacation leave or emergency leave if permitted by bargaining agreement, or 4) if applicable, arrange with a supervisor to make up the time missed in regular-time status.

Thank you for your dedication to the Olympia School District. We appreciate your efforts and hope that you remain safe during inclement weather conditions.

State-required paraeducator training set for 2020-21 school year

Below is a reprint of information emailed to all OSD paraeducators on February 5, 2021.

The Olympia Paraeducator Association (OPA) and District have built a plan for the state-required paraeducator training for the 2020-2021 school year.

It is important to note that this requirement applies to any K-12 paraeducator staff members who assist with instruction in the classroom setting (excludes preschool and bus monitors).  This year, employees in these positions are required to complete these 14 hours of the Fundamental Course of Study (FCS) program. The first training session will be in February 2021.

The following are the FCS modules to be completed this year and when the courses will be offered:

PdEnroller Sessions
February 22-25, 4:30 pm-7:30 pm
Registration Link
May 1/8/15/22, 11 am-2 pm
Registration Link
July Training – TBD   Training Location
All training will be held via Zoom.  You will receive a link once you have registered.

Standards
FCS05, District Orientation of Roles & Responsibilities
FCS06, Equity
FCS07, Behavior Management Strategies (including de-escalation techniques)
FCS08, Child & Adolescent Development
FCS09, Emergency & Health Safety
FCS12, Communication Challenges

Please Note: You MUST register via the links above.  You will not be able to access the classes by searching in pdEnroller.  Each session is capped at 110 people; therefore, please register as soon as possible.

Included in the registration, there will be 2 hours of asynchronous training (FCS03 – Technology Basics) that must be completed on your own time. More information will be given during the zoom training session.  The asynchronous portion of the training is due by July 31, 2021.

Compensation
Upon completion of the 14 hours of training you will be issued a stipend in September 2021.

2019-20 School Year Make-Up Opportunities and New 2020-21 Hires ONLY
Those paraeducators who were required to take the 14 hours during the 2019-20 school year that missed some or all of that training and new hires, WEA is planning to offer additional options for making-up the last year’s 14 hours of training.  WEA and the District will keep you apprised of any upcoming training dates. Please prioritize these training dates and times, as make-up opportunities will be difficult to schedule at times that are convenient for all employees due to the wide variety of schedules.

WEA Sessions
February 16th, 8:30am-4pm WEA Registration
February 27th, 8:30am-4pm WEA Registration

Standards
FCS 01, Introduction to Cultural Identity and Diversity
FCS 06, Equity

WEA Sessions
February 13th, 8am-12pm & 1pm-5pm WEA Registration
February 20th, 9am-5pm WEA Registration
February 27th, 9am-1pm OR 1pm-5pm *Please note this is for FCS 11/12 only WEA Registration

Standards
FCS 02, Methods of Educational and Instructional Support
FCS 11, Communication Basics
FCS 12, Communication Challenges 

More WEA training dates to follow.  Please watch for additional communication

If you have specific questions, please reach out via the contact information below.

Sincerely,

Mario Mejia OPA President mario.mejia@washingtonea.org
Scott Niemann Executive Director of Human Resources sniemann@osd.wednet.edu

The following are links with pertinent information regarding new paraeducator training requirements:

Overview of the Paraeducator Certificate Program
Paraeducator Board Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
OSD Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)