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Local News

Mary Jean Vigilante wins GFT Treasurer

GFT would like to congratulate Mary Jean Vigilante on winning the election for Treasurer. Vigilante currently teaches Math at Oceanview Middle School. She also serves as John Hopkins Talent Development Site Coordinator, Curriculum Coordinator, Instructional coach, National Junior Honor Society Advisor, Curriculum Leadership Team member, Teacher Mentor, and GFT Site Steward. Previously, she taught at George Washington High School.

“It is with sincere gratitude for all of your support that I accept this position of Treasurer for the Guam Federation of Teachers. I will execute my duties to the best of my abilities. Thank you,” Vigilante said.

The uncontested winners from this election are Timothy Fedenko (President), Sanjay Sharma (Vice-President), and Corazon Mucho (Secretary). All officers will be installed at the 13th Annual GFT Convention on March 21.

 

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Local News

GFT T-SHIRT CONTEST WINNERS SELECTED

The winners from the GFT t-shirt contest have been selected.

1st place: Lucia Atienza- George Washington High School

2nd place: Ivory Usana- Tiyan High School

3rd place: Leonilyn Matsunanga- Tiyan High School

The winning t-shirt design will be unveiled at the GFT 13th Annual Convention on March 21st.

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Announcements Local News

SUPERINTENDENT & EDUCATION BOARD FIGHT FOR MORE FUNDING

Guam Superintendent of Education Jon Fernandez and the Guam Education Board (GEB) are advocating in the legislature for more funding. In a meeting Friday, February 21, Superintendent Fernandez and the GEB presented the Fiscal Year 2021 budget to the Guam Legislature.

In January, the GEB approved a $365,019,030 FY budget request for the DOE. That was $21,060,105 more than what was requested for FY 2020.

Over the past several years, the GDOE has faced significant budget cuts resulting from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, and has implemented cost-cutting measures to manage the reduction in resources. Despite the cuts, the GDOE has continued to move forward with its mission and achieved a historic graduation rate of 87.3% in 2019.

The main drivers of the budget request include but are not limited to $269,839,517 to effectively staff and operate 41 schools at the department’s current level of operations; $29,644,975 to further advance and accelerate student achievement inclusive of $15.7M to address the backlog of textbook reorders, to restore substitutes at 10%, and to address the needs for assessment tools and instructional supplies; $51,023,436 to improve student health, supervision and safety, which includes $23M in deferred maintenance/repairs at various school sites; $10.6M for a new central middle school; $4.6M in classroom collateral equipment outlay; $7.3M in personnel (179 school aides and Head Start aides, 8 allied health professionals, 9 school resource officers and interpreters); and $7,477,306 in personnel costs associated with public mandates (to include prior year Merit Bonus and BRIP).

“Our budget request takes into account the needs expressed by our principals, teachers, families and employees over the past several months,” GDOE Superintendent Jon Fernandez said. “Our request also aims to address important funding considerations, including sufficient personnel to keep our schools safe, funding for textbooks and supplemental instructional materials, as well as support for facility improvements, to include the Simon Sanchez High School rebuild and the conversion of Chief Brodie Memorial Elementary School into a central middle school.”

“We have struggled with a reduction in resources over the past two years, and recognize the challenging budget climate faced by the entire government,” Fernandez said. “However, we would like to ask that senators prioritize public education, and provide the resources necessary for our department to continue serving our students and to make progress to improve public education on Guam.”

“I want to thank our budget department for the time they put in to ensure our request reflects the needs of our school system and for their due diligence in ensuring we provide our senators with an accurate picture of the needs of our students,” Board Chair Maria Gutierrez said. “We hope our school system will be provided the resources it needs.”

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Local News

GUAM EDUCATION BOARD APPROVES 173 SCHOOL DAY CALENDAR

In a meeting Tuesday, February 18, the Guam Education Board voted to adopt the 2020-2021 and 2021-2022 school year calendars. In accordance with Public Law 31-019, the approved school calendars are inclusive of 173 School Days, 2 Teacher Work Days, 2 Parent-Teacher Conference Days, and 9 Professional/Staff Development Days.
The revised school calendars come as a result of proposals by the Guam Federation of Teachers and management. The change allows for sufficient makeup time in the event of natural or man made events that result in interruptions to normally scheduled school days and it supports the request of teachers for more professional development, collaboration, and preparatory time.
The full press release and school calendars can be found here.

 

 

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GFT 2020 Election

The GFT At-Large Election will take place Friday, February 28, 2020. The candidates for the Treasurer position are Lisa Mosher and Mary Jean Vigilante. Candidate information can be found at gftunion.com.
In order to vote, you must be a member in good standing on or before February 28, 2020 and bring a valid ID. Absentee voting will be permitted from 8am-5pm Monday, February 24 – Thursday, February 27 at the GFT Office.
To best accommodate all voting members, the election will take place at various work sites throughout the island. For additional information, voting times and locations, please contact the GFT office at 735-4390, contact your Union Steward, or visit gftunion.com.
Uncontested winners from this election are Timothy Fedenko (President), Sanjay Sharma (Vice-President) and Corazon Mucho (Secretary). Officer installation/Delegate election will take place at the 13th Annual Convention.