Call in right away

Last school year, our members were beset by a drastic shortage of substitutes. This year already, absent teachers’ classrooms are going uncovered even though HR continues to hire more substitutes.

If you were absent and your class was not covered, it could be that no substitute picked up the job. Available substitutes receive an automated phone call from SEMS between 5:30 a.m. and 10 p.m. to pick up vacancies for the next workday. If you report your absence after 10 p.m. the night before your absence, substitutes will not be called to cover your class until 5:30 a.m. on the morning of your absence.

Even though the contract requires you to call SEMS or your principal at least one hour and 30 minutes prior to your reporting time, notifying SEMS or the administration of your absence as soon as practicable will help ensure a sub picks up the request. Keep in mind: the earlier the better.

If you or one of your colleagues fails to obtain a sub, send an email to with your school and the grade level or subject area of the vacancy. Fore more information, consult Article 701.03 of the Master Agreement.


Health insurance: Don’t forget!

Don’t forget: Nov. 1 is the deadline to declare your enrollment for employee insurance benefits beginning Jan. 1, 2014. You must meet with a counselor and get your paperwork in order, even if you are continuing the same coverage. You also will find out about some changes. One of them: To keep insurance premiums at the 8-percent-increase cap, CCS has increased annual out-of-pocket maximums to $600 (from $500) for single, in-network coverage and to $1,200 (from $1,000) per family, in-network. Co-pays are now included in the maximum out-of-pocket costs. Pharmacy co-pays may not apply, depending on your plan.

You can schedule a time at your building to meet in person with a counselor, or you may enroll or re-enroll online with a benefits counselor. To schedule your call center appointment, you will need to complete the steps below:

• Go to

• Enter the CCS Enrollment Number: 61436

• Follow the on-screen instructions for scheduling your appointment.

• You will receive an email confirmation and reminder with the CCS enrollment phone number.

• On your appointment date and time, you will need to call the CCS enrollment phone number provided in your email.

Dependent eligibility verification is not required unless you are enrolling a new dependent on your benefit plans. In Ohio, extended dependent coverage is available for unmarried dependents up to age 28.

In order to complete your enrollment, you will need to have the birthdates and Social Security numbers of your dependents and your life insurance beneficiary.

If you are adding a new dependent, you need to contact the Benefits Department at 365-6475 before Nov. 1 to ensure that your documentation has been received.


How are your sizes?

The Oct. 1 date for reorganization has passed, and “count week” is over. Take a look at your room. Classes should not exceed the limits set in the contract.

Article 301 explains it. We amended the contract for middle school and high school teachers, changing the class load to 150 students per day. Members whose class size exceeds the limit should contact CEA immediately.

Here are the limits:

• K-3: no more than 29 students each

• 4-5: no more than 30 students each

• K & Grades 1-5: Approximately 25 pupils per classroom teacher

• Middle school: no more 35 students per class and 150 students per day

• High school: no more than 36 students per class and 150 students per day

If you have any questions about class size, call CEA Vice President Phil Hayes at 253-4731.