Fort Lee Education Association

"Fort Lee's Brightest"

September 28, 2015
Comments Off on FLEA P.R.I.D.E. Pumpkin Decorating Event – Volunteers Needed!

FLEA P.R.I.D.E. Pumpkin Decorating Event – Volunteers Needed!


FLEA will be sponsoring a pumpkin decorating event for all Fort Lee children grades K-3 and their families on October 25, 2015 from 1:00-4:00 P.M.. This is a huge event and we will need many volunteers to help. The event will be held at the Fort Lee Recreation Center (located at the bottom of Stillwell Avenue).

Continue Reading →

September 29, 2015
Comments Off on “Beyond Measure” Presented by Members from the Education Associations of Bergenfield, Fort Lee, Hackensack, Lodi, Mahwah, and Tenafly

“Beyond Measure” Presented by Members from the Education Associations of Bergenfield, Fort Lee, Hackensack, Lodi, Mahwah, and Tenafly

Beyond Measure Book Cover In Race to Nowhere, director Vicki Abeles unveiled the dark side of America’s achievement culture. In her follow up, Beyond Measure, Abeles shows what’s possible in education when we trust in the ingenuity of students, parents, and teachers. Communities transform education by putting research and proven, innovative models into practice.

From rural Kentucky to New York City, we spotlight schools that are breaking away from our outmoded, test-driven education culture and pioneering a new vision for our classrooms.

Beyond Measure fills a void that too many other education stories have left empty: a positive picture of what’s innovative and possible in American education when communities decide they are ready for change. In chorus with experts including Sir Ken Robinson, Linda Darling-Hammond, Yong Zhao, Alison Gopnik, and Daniel Pink, the change makers in Beyond Measure prove that a new vision and a higher purpose are possible for American education.


Our screening will feature a post screening discussion with guest panelists: Jose Vilson, NYC Educator and Author, Jia Lee, NYC Educator and MORE Organizer, and Mike Ritzius, NJEA Associate Director of Professional Development. Look out for additional surprises!

** We are pleased to announce that Deb Meier, Educator and Senior Scholar in the faculty of the Steinhardt School of Education at New York University, and Melanie Peralta, ninth grade student, will be joining our panel.

Friday, November 20th 6pm-9pm

Bergen County Academies  200 Hackensack Ave.  Hackensack, NJ 07601


January 13, 2015
Comments Off on FLEA Treasurer Joins TPAF Board of Trustees

FLEA Treasurer Joins TPAF Board of Trustees


Howard Lipoff

Howard Lipoff

Howard D. Lipoff, treasurer of the Fort Lee Education Association (FLEA), has started a three-year-term on the Board of Trustees of New Jersey’s Teachers’ Pension and Annuity Fund (TPAF). His first meeting was January 8th.

“I am very excited to begin my term on the board of trustees,” Lipoff said. “I feel that the pension fund is essential for the long term security of teachers in New Jersey. I will do my best to represent the hard working people who are members of the fund.”

Lipoff is one of three trustees elected from the TPAF membership. Of these three, Lipoff is the only one currently teaching; the other two are retirees.

Each member-trustee must work in or have retired from a different group of counties.  Lipoff is from “Group A” which comprises Bergen, Essex, Hudson, and Union counties.

“We are pleased and honored to have our own FLEA representative elected to the pension board,” said FLEA President Bruna Caplabo. “This will give us more information about what is going on in Trenton.”

A third-grade special-education teacher at Fort Lee’s School #1, Lipoff has long been a critic of the state’s failure to adequately fund the pension system. He is currently chairman of the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) Pension Policy Committee. In his role as a member of NJEA’s Government Relations Committee, Lipoff has lobbied for budgets that include full payments to the pension system. He also criticized moves to weaken pension benefits to new members.

Lipoff started teaching in Fort Lee in 1997 and worked at the district’s high school for 14 years before being transferred to School #1 in 2011. This is his fifth year serving as FLEA’s treasurer. From 2005 to 2010, Lipoff was the vice president of FLEA.

The Fort Lee educator is also active with the union on the county level. He is an elected member of the Executive Committee of the Bergen County Education Association.

“I have been a strong believer in the need for unions all my adult life,” Lipoff said. “Unions are essential in providing rights to workers and, in the area of education, are the driving force for quality public schools.”

November 21, 2014
Comments Off on Fort Lee trustees get earful from teachers over stalled contract talks

Fort Lee trustees get earful from teachers over stalled contract talks


Teachers on Monday night [Nov. 17] lambasted school district officials, accusing them of delay tactics and not negotiating in good faith, as teachers were ending their 565th day of working under an expired contract.

Many held signs, demanding “Settle now” and saying “Enough is enough!”

Read full article.

September 15, 2014
Comments Off on American Teachers Spend More Time In The Classroom

American Teachers Spend More Time In The Classroom

American Teachers Spend More Time In The Classroom Than World Peers, Says Report

June 24, 2014
Comments Off on Rally against injustice

Rally against injustice

An injustice to one is an injustice to all.


Left to right: Linda Casoria, Gary Novosielski, Carol Tropea, Howard Lipoff, DIane Henry, Bruna Capalbo

The Belleville Education Association held a “Rally for a Better Belleville” on June 23at the Belleville High School.  A gathering of some 500 Members and leadership from counties and locals statewide including members from FLEA, rallied to show the BEA—and their board of education that NJEA members are all united in their fight.Since early fall, the Belleville Education Association (BEA) has been faced with constant crisis.  It began with a demand to negotiate the impact of a $2 million surveillance system, complete with audio, video, and GPS tracking capability.  Now the local president, Mike Mignone, has been brought up on fraudulent tenure charges and suspended without pay for his refusal to bow to the administration and board.


Belleville EA President Mike Mignone speaking at a January Board of Education meeting.

This district is rife with issues:

  • Nearly 40 involuntary transfers have occurred within the district since September, the majority of which involved an active BEA member;
  • Four unfair labor practices and countless grievances have been filed;
  • Several BOE members are facing ethics charges for abusing their position;
  • Lack of basic school supplies and textbooks;
  • Antiquated and inoperable classroom technology;
  • District funds have been mismanaged and misappropriated;
  • Worst of all, Mike has been banned from district buildings, leaving him unable to visibly meet and represent his members.

The BEA has been faced with a huge set of challenges.  They are on the front lines, and need reinforcements.  For months, they have advocated for a quality education for their students and fair labor practices for their members.  This board and administration are trying to create a road map for busting not just BEA, but all unions—including ours—all over the state.

June 10, 2014
Comments Off on NJEA, other unions, file pension lawsuit.

NJEA, other unions, file pension lawsuit.

Hold Christie accountable for required funding

NJEA, in conjunction with other public employee unions, has filed suit against Governor Chris Christie and Treasurer Andrew Sidamon-Eristoff to prevent Gov. Christie’s proposed pension raid in the current and upcoming fiscal years.  On May 20, Christie issued an executive order announcing his intention to violate the funding requirements of Chapter 78, the 2011 pension law that he championed and signed. Superior Court Assignment Judge for Mercer County Mary Jacobson has agreed to hear arguments on an expedited schedule due to the urgent nature of the case.

Read more about the lawsuit.

Read NJEA President Wendell Steinhauer’s op-ed piece.

May 22, 2014
Comments Off on Christie drives NJ into ditch.

Christie drives NJ into ditch.

New Jersey Assembly Majority Leader Lou Greenwald (D-Camden/Burlington) released the following statement Tuesday on Gov. Christie’s plan for New Jersey’s budget crisis:Christie2

“Someone needs to call 911. Gov. Christie has officially driven New Jersey into a ditch.

“Gov. Christie’s reckless policies have left him with no viable solution to his budget crisis. Gov. Christie’s plan will make our fiscal situation even bleaker, with more credit downgrades likely and future deficits worsened. Gov. Christie built a house of cards that is now collapsing upon New Jersey’s taxpayers.

“It’s notable that Gov. Christie is once again targeting the middle-class by delaying pension payments, while continuing to protect millionaires. It’s time for Gov. Christie to put his catchphrases aside and get a grasp on reality. He has no plan for funding needs such as transportation, education, open space and college affordability, and now he is pushing costs onto future generations while proposing more than 30 tax and fee hikes. Gov. Christie, quite simply, has concocted an economic disaster for New Jersey.”

May 14, 2014
Comments Off on I Hate Hamlet

I Hate Hamlet

I Hate Hamlet

The Fort Lee High School Academy of Theatre Arts in association with the Fort Lee Film Commission is putting on a production of Paul Rudnick’s hysterical comedy “I Hate Hamlet” this weekend.

Showtimes are:  Friday May 16 and Saturday May 17  at 7pm, and Sunday May 18 at 2pm.

Admission is $5.00 for students and $10.00 for adults. The students would appreciate seeing you all there.  Thank you so much for your support of our program.

Back to Announcements

January 23, 2014
Comments Off on NJEA wins right to bargain 5-year contracts

NJEA wins right to bargain 5-year contracts

NJ StatehouseIn a major victory for all members, Gov. Chris Christie has signed NJEA legislation that will allow school districts and their employees to negotiate contracts for a term up to five years in duration.

“This is a great win for NJEA members because it will give them more options when bargaining their contracts,” said NJEA President Wendell Steinhauer.

“Over the years, we’ve seen some school districts and their employee representatives participate in lengthy contract negotiations, sometimes lasting years into the new contract period and giving neither side any break between contract negotiations,” said Steinhauer. “This bill will provide some relief to not only our bargaining teams but to communities who often feel the stress of protracted negotiations.”

The bill – S-1127 – passed both houses with broad bipartisan support, and provides NJEA members with the contract flexibility currently enjoyed by other public sector workers like police, fire, state workers, and probation officers, none of whom have a limit on the length of their contracts.

Steinhauer publicly thanked the bill’s sponsors: Sens. Linda Greenstein (D), Jim Whelan (D),  and Assemblymen Patrick Diegnan (D), Tim Eustace (D), and Benji Wimberly (D).

“This is a law with broad public appeal,” he said, “because it may yield considerable savings by districts, as attorney fees and other bargaining costs will be minimized when longer contract terms are negotiated.”