Greetings SOTU Activists,
We hope everyone is looking forward to a relaxing and well-deserved spring break. However, there is a very exciting week afterwards to prepare for, culminating in our membership meeting on Saturday April 21st!
Also, Thursday, teachers are involved in an important action around Trayvon Martin – please check out the SOTU blog for details. `
Please see below for everything that is going on. To join the SOTU discussion group and receive emails beyond the weekly update, click here or reply to this email.
1) Saturday, April 21, 12-3PM – Membership Meeting – Location TBA. See the following proposed agenda. Proposals on Points of Unity, our name, a skeletal membership structure, as well as discussion documents about elections, will be all distributed by Saturday April 7, two weeks before the meeting.
- Process – 10 min
- Points of Unity – 45 min – plenary decision
- Membership / Name – 15 min
- Should we run in the UFT elections? – 45 min (20 minutes in breakouts, followed by reportbacks and vote)
- Action Proposals – 30 minutes
- Committee Proposals (Education, Action, Chapter Leader Campaign) – 15 minutes
- Committee Meetup and Final Wrapup – 10 min
2) Tuesday, April 17 at 5:30 PM – Grassroots Education Movement meeting: Teacher Evaluation Nightmare! a forum on testing, teacher evaluations and our schools at Murry Bergtaum High School Auditorium (411 Pearl Street, Manhattan – 4,5,6 to City Hall / 2,3 to Fulton / J to Chambers)
- Carol Burris: L.I. Principal, co-author of the letter signed by 1400 principals against test-based evaluations
- Leonie Haimson: Parent activist and Exec. Director of Class Size Matters
- Gary Rubinstein: Math teacher at Stuyvesant High School and critical analyst of the Teacher Data Reports
- Arthur Goldstein: E.S.L. teacher and chapter leader at Francis Lewis High School in Queens
3) Wednesday, April 18 – UFT Delegate Assembly – 4pm at UFT HQ (52 Broadway) – Help SOTU distribute flyers and advertise the member meeting – reply to this email if you can help make copies or distribute
4) Thursday, April 19 – Rally against School Closings – 4pm at Tweed (52 Chambers) – Based in part on a growing sense that the UFT is not doing enough to fight school closings, chapter leaders, delegates and members from seven of the 33 (now 27) closing schools have called a rally to be held in front of Tweed (DOE headquarters) a week before the Public Education Panel will vote on closing their schools.
And be sure to mark your calendar for these upcoming events.
- Tuesday, May 1 – Join an Educators Contingent on May Day! Occupy the DOE will gather at 4pm in front of the main entrance to Washington Irving HS at 40 Irving Place between 16th and 17th Streets.
- Saturday, May 5 – Coalition for Public Education citywide people’s assembly on organizing against mayoral control and for a people's board of education.
- Saturday, May 12 – Proposed date for our May membership meeting
- and don't forget the Labor Notes Conference in Chicago on the weekend of May 4-6.
The planning committee met on Monday, March 26. For minutes, please reply to this email. Next meeting is a conference call planned for Monday, April 16 at 8:30pm. The committee is open – click here to join.
Chapter Leader Campaign:
On Friday, we hosted a small but successful happy hour on Friday for candidates for chapter leader and delegate. We had three candidates delegate and one potential chapter leader. The discussion focused on a lot of the nuts and bolts of a chapter leader campaign – how to put out an initial letter, how to identify issues with coworkers, how to deal with divisions in the staff. We now have about 11 CL candidates that we have identified across the city as well as a few Delegates. This is much more modest than we had initially hoped, but it represents some real base building and a solid start. We hope to organize monthly gatherings going forward