From Your Counsel, 2015

Uncovering the truths of liability insurance

Originally printed in the October/November 2015 issue of the Education Focus

Questions about how much liability insurance coverage an education employee really needs come up frequently. There are myths, rumors and flat out misrepresentations that permeate faculty lounges, e-mails and even some websites – all in an attempt to lure education employees into believing they need a specific amount of liability insurance coverage to protect their employment. Here is the truth. Full Article


A legal checklist for all teachers

Originally published in the August/September 2015 issue of The Education Focus

In beginning the new school year, there are a number of basic issues every teacher should address that can save a world of headache down the road. Rather than seeking our assistance to make up for what you’ve forgotten at year’s end, it’s much easier to take a few moments to address the following basics when the year begins. Full article.


The bill that does nothing

In spite of its intent, HB 1749 applies to no organization

Originally published in the June/July 2015 issue of The Education Focus

Most of you are aware by now of HB 1749, which passed during the recent legislative session. There were several media reports shortly after the passage of this bill indicating that it was the intent of the Oklahoma Legislature to silence the voice of the Oklahoma Education Association and her members by prohibiting the payroll deduction of professional organization dues for the OEA. Full article.


Take care of this pesky detail

Is your teaching certificate set to expire June 30?

By Richard Wilkinson, OEA General Counsel

Originally published in the April/May 2015 issue of The Education Focus.

It’s that time of year again; time to worry about those pesky housekeeping matters that, if left unattended, can cost you your job.

First on that list is the renewal of your teaching certificate. Standard teaching certificates are valid for a five-year period and expire on June 30 of the fifth year. You are required to have a valid teaching certificate on file with a school district and you can check with your school administration to determine the expiration date of your teaching certificate if you don’t already know or have a copy of your certificate. Full article.


Documentation = Protection

4 things all teachers should track to cover themselves prior to being evaluated

Originally published in the February 2015 issue of The Education Focus

Regardless of your view on the Oklahoma Teacher and Leader Effectiveness Evaluation System (TLE), there are some gaping cracks in the system ready to pull even the most capable teacher down to the “INEFFECTIVE” depths. To help quality teachers avoid this trap, or at the very least assist them in preparing to correct evaluation inaccuracies, we’ve compiled a list of four things every teacher should track. Full Article.


Muskogee’s Kate Frank started the Association’s long legal history

Originally published in December/January 2014-15

In recognizing the 125th Anniversary of the OEA, this article focuses on the history of the OEA Legal Services Program and the legal battles that have been instrumental to the OEA and her members. The OEA provides legal services for employment-related matters to members through the NEA Kate Frank/DuShane Legal Services Program (ULSP) – a cooperative NEA-state association program designed to ensure members receive appropriate legal assistance in matters pertaining to their educational employment. That program was started by an Oklahoma teacher. Full article.

 

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