Education meet and confer minutes May 15, 2018

Publish Date


Meet and Confer Agenda

May 15, 2018

Attending for MDE Executive Team: Charlene Briner, Tammy Funk

Attending for MAPE 1001: Vicky Anderson, Jackie Blagsvedt, Dan Engelhart, Deb Rose, Mike Schultz

Introductions and Engagement

Dawn Cameron and John Gimple have stepped down while Beth Chaplin, Deb Rose and Mike Schultz are joining the MDE Meet and Confer team. We discussed the collaborative culture of teams at MDE and the potential increase impact and transparency by posting committee membership, meeting agendas, and minutes on Inside MDE. Other ideas mentioned to support the collaborative environment at MDE were building team/committee group email lists and a social calendar for events like celebrations, trainings, food trucks, and wellness events.

Arranging for travel and business expenses

Good to see regular trainings available. Some members report quicker processing and helpful updates and reminders from finance staff.

Licensure and Professional Development committees

Relicensure committee had recent elections. Elected to serve two-year terms were: Renee Ringold, Paula Higgins, Cory Stai, Claire Gades, and Michael Bowlus. The Professional Development (PD) committee is working to address the variety of PD needs and interests across the department. They are focusing on determining priorities, setting up a training calendar, and helping staff be active participants in their development.

Workplace culture assessment

Information sessions were held this spring. There will be opportunities in June for all staff to participate in conversation on our workplace values and behaviors and setting priorities. All staff - at all levels and in all divisions - are strongly encouraged to participate, engage in, and own the process. Change Champions will analyze the feedback. A plan will be formalized and adopted this fall.

Bully-proofing our workplace

The online Respectful Workplace module from MMB remains in development. In the meantime, HR will work to articulate what is and what isn’t bullying as well as set and communicate the procedure, process, and timeline for when a complaint is received. Elevating our values through the workplace culture initiative might also help to inform respectful workplace practices. MAPE members encourage clarifying supervisor and employee roles, responsibilities, and rights in the employee performance evaluation process.

Building security

HR will soon send and update to MDE staff about an incident that occurred in May in the MDE staff parking lot. All safety and security issues should be reported to building security and HR immediately. Security carries a cellphone and can be reached at 612-990-6312. All MNIT at MDE and MDE staff receive RAVE messages. Some members report that RAVE texts/phone calls weren’t received immediately during a recent safety drill.

Requirements, expectations, and best practices

We discussed differences in expectations for communicating when taking unanticipated leave and best practices for balancing hours. There are questions on reporting time worked after a recent email from HR. MAPE requests that best practices for these situations are articulated. We agreed to schedule a follow up meeting with HR.

Other Updates

  • Private sector vacation accrual credit - HR has a form to streamline this process for employees.
  • Building lease and space updates - Administration is still negotiating with the building owner and will share news as soon as it is known.
  • Annual certifications and profile updates - Several required annual certifications and profile updates will open soon, e.g. Securing the Human, and (new this year) driver’s license verification for frequent drivers. Be on the lookout for emails with instructions. 
  • Telematics - HR now reviews monthly reports from state car telematics and follows up with drivers when a speed violation is recorded.
  • Budget - MDE is in a stable place as we transition to the new state fiscal year, and we will be watching the federal budget talks this fall. There are a small number of known program related layoffs and the effected staff have been communicated with.