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May 31, 2024

Updated: May 30

We have come to the final newsletter of the 2023-2024 school year! We hope that the end of the year goes well for you and that everyone has a relaxing and recharging summer!


This marks the last of the 23-24 school year newsletters.  Unless there is a very important and timely piece of information to pass on to all of membership, the next EPEA Newsletter will arrive near the start of the 24-25 school year.


Eden Prairie Schools will soon be introducing an Option D to receive state required READ Act training.  Option D provides those who desire this option the opportunity to fulfill all training hours during designated PD days over the next two school years (during the designated Workshop PD days, Fall PD days, and Spring PD days). Since these training times fall completely within the contract day, additional stipend (training rate) will not be applicable to those who choose Option D.  


Anyone who would like to change from Option A, B, or C to Option B, C, or D may do so.  Instructions/timelines for this will be forthcoming.  Since Option A begins next week, that option is not enrolling any more staff.  


The EPEA’s work around the READ Act is almost complete.  As new legislation appears to clearly spell out the requirement for an MOU on the use of the funds for the training, negotiators will be coming together to finalize that piece as soon as possible. More info to come regarding the Read Act MOU if needed.


Please look for communication from the Learning and Innovation department regarding the new training option, the opportunity to change your option designation, and the default option (Option D) if you have not chosen your option by June 7th.

STEPS to Consider if Non-Renewed:

     Those who were released from their contracts (non-renewed) have the opportunity to apply for unemployment insurance July 1, 2024.  Additional information can be found using the link below.

     Unemployment Insurance:


     Please consider transferring your EPEA membership to the EdMN Reserve MembershipReserve membership ( is intended to allow persons who have been active members to continue eligibility for all member benefits even though they are no longer eligible for active membership. For example, you might want a reserve membership if you:

  • Are being placed on unrequested leave of absence or are being laid off from employment with a district or other educational institution where you have been an active member.

  • Are going on an unpaid leave of absence (voluntary or involuntary) of more than six months from employment with a district or other educational institution where you have been or could have been an active member.

  • Are terminating your employment (voluntarily or involuntarily) with a district or other educational institution where you have been an active member.

Benefits of membership – Reserve membership preserves eligibility for all member benefits including:

  • Employment related legal services

  • Field staff assistance

  • National and state member services programs

  • National and state publications

More information, including fees, can be found at:

End of the Year EPEA Survey:

     Each year the leadership of EPEA likes to solicit feedback to make improvements to the service EPEA staff provide membership as well as ways to unify and engage all members for a strong education association.  If you have not already done so, please engage in the provided survey with your thoughtful responses.  EPEA leaders will carefully consider the responses to apply to our work for the 2024-2025 year.

     Here is the EPEA End of Year Survey:

President Position Transition:

As stated in our EPEA Constitution and Bylaws, the EP Vice President assumes the President role in the President’s absence.  As such, Charles Cooper will assume the role of President for EPEA for the 24-25 school year, finishing Dominic Kirkpatrick’s third term. 

 Dominic has prepared all components of her role for a smooth transition and thus, to benefit all of EPEA membership.  As of July 1, 2024, Charles officially assumes the role of President and all communication will go to him.

 In order to have a full executive cabinet for the EPEA, the EPEA Constitution and Bylaws allow for the vacated VP seat to be filled.  Through the Rep. Congress approval process, Mike Woizeschke (Eden Lake) will assume the VP role for the 24-25 school year.


     We want to pass on a heartfelt gesture of gratitude for all the EPEA leadership time and effort that was provided during the 23-24 school year.  It takes a large team of executive cabinet leaders, site representatives, member rights advocates, negotiators, meet and confer reps, insurance committee reps, QComp steering committee reps, relicensure reps, EPEA Ambassadors, and audit committee reps to make for a successful school year in all things EPEA.

     Thank you for your leadership, your wisdom, and sharing of your time and talents.  If you have not reached out to the EPEA leader(s) who represent your voice at your site to thank them, please make a point of doing so before the end of the year.  A little gratitude goes a long way. 😀

     Here is a list of all who stepped up this year to be the voice of EPEA-- THANK YOU, THANK YOU!:  

Anna Alberto (EHSI- Site Rep)

Anthea Amsler (EPHS - Meet and Confer)

Patrick Andrus (PV - Meet and Confer)

Josh Axtman (EPHS- Member Rights Secondary)

Cassie Ayub (CR- Action Team)

Jill Baller (CR - QComp Steering)

Brent Bovitz (EPO- EPEA Treasurer, Site Rep, ReLicensure)

Jill Boyd (EPHS- Site Rep and Action Team)

Steve Brothers (EPHS - Site Rep)

Blair Butler (FH - Site Rep)

Kamee Butler (OP - Site Rep)

Kristin Cayo (FH - Meet and Confer)

Yzolde Chepokas (EHSI - Meet and COnfer and ReLicensure)

Charles Cooper (EPHS- EPEA VP, Negotiator, Labor Management, Meet and Confer)

Max Ginsberg (PV- Insurance Committee)

Katie Foley (EPHS - QComp Steering)

Laura Halloran (DW- Member Rights Elementary)

Dawn Head (FH - ReLicensure)

Shelly Kassid (FH - Site Rep)

Dominic Kirkpatrick (DW - EPEA President, Negotiator, etc)

Lindsay Klaverkamp (CMS- ReLicensure)

Kevin Koetke (EPHS - ReLicensure)

Karen Linscott (CE - ReLicensure)

Andy Malone (CMS - EPEA Audit Committee)

Kristen (Strauss) Mantel (CMS- Site Rep)

Stacy Marek (CMS - Member Rights Secondary)

Wendy Mendoza (EHSI - Site Rep)

Andrea McCarty (CR - Meet and Confer)

Susan Michael (CMS- Site Rep)

Rich Mills (CMS - Meet and Confer)

Leif Mostrom (CMS - Action Team)

Marcus Moten (CMS- Site Rep)

Roxy Myhre (EPO - Meet and Confer)

Dharmisha Narayanan (CMS - Member Rights Elementary)

Sara Nelson (CR - Site Rep)

Beth Pederson (PV - Site Rep)

Vic Pengilly (PV - EPEA Audit Committee)

Joanne Peterson (EPHS - Site Rep)

Jessica Premo (PV- EPEA Secretary/Communications)

Michelle Rada (EPHS - Negotiator, Insurance Committee, Labor Management, EPEA Audit)

Natalie Richard (FH - QComp Steering)

Sara Rowan (CMS - QComp Steering)

Kadee Ruhland (CR - Site Rep)

Emily Salley (PV - Site Rep)

Lauren Seashore (EL - Site Rep)

Natalie Sell (EPHS- Member Rights Secondary)

Liz Taylor (EL - ReLicensure)

Carla Thompson (CMS- Member Rights Lead)

Mike Woizescjke (EL- Site Rep and Meet and Confer)

Dan Wright (PV - ReLicensure Lead)

 As EPEA heads into the 24-25 school year, we want to provide a glimpse of your EPEA staff.  If you would like to take on a leadership position in the future, please reach out to Charles Cooper.  There are positions that pop up during the school year for which we would love to add new leaders.

     Please see the graphic below for our anticipated leaders of next school year (note:  some open spots have not been confirmed yet)

 Please see the graphic below for our anticipated leaders of next school year:

Access to the 23-25 EPEA contract can be found in 2 places:  1) on the website on the resources tab.  2) on the district website under the Human Resources Page.


If you are in need of support at an administration meeting, believe there is a contract violation, or have a performance/conduct-related support request, please connect with Carla Thompson (Lead MRA) or 952-240-6577)




Over the summer EPEA leaders will be working toward the goal of vetting and promoting candidates ahead of the August 1, 2024 candidate filing period.  There will be a screening and endorsement process for the 3 tree candidates that best fit the EPEA’s overall mission.   Those teachers who are interested in being a part of the School Board Screening process should reach out to Jessica Premo.


On Monday, August 19th, the EPEA will host a new teacher luncheon.  Those of us who are serving as a mentor to a new teacher for the 24-25 school year will be invited to attend with their mentees.  Our goal during this time is to provide a positive event that encourages new teachers to join the EPEA during our time together.  If you are a mentor this coming school year, please feel free to wear your EPEA shirt or lanyard to promote our unity. 

"They may forget what you said but they will never forget how you made them feel." -Carl W. Buehner

In Solidarity,

Dominic Kirkpatrick, EPEA President

Charles Cooper, EPEA President

Brent Bovitz, EPEA Treasurer

Jessica Premo, EPEA Secretary

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