Archives For June 2012

Please help copy and distribute a hard copy of the this statement (with our summer series schedule on the back) to your coworkers
As students and teachers finish up the school year in sweltering heat, legislators in Albany closed their legislative session by passing a new law regarding the public release of teachers’ performance evaluations. In reaction to the horrific episode in February, where teachers had erroneous ratings based on flawed data splashed across the pages of the New York City press, legislators extended a protection given to some other civil servants that would prevent work evaluations from being released under the Freedom of Information Act.
Widely heralded as a victory for teachers both by the teacher union leadership and the antiunion press, this legislative move actually helps to usher in a new destructive era of standardized testing for our public school students. First of all, the legislation mandates that school districts must provide “conspicuous notice” to advise parents of their right to know their children’s teachers’ evaluation results.  While the UFT claims that parents have always had this right, it was a very rare administrator that ever released teacher’ performance information to parents.  Now, Mayor Bloomberg has vowed to call every parent in New York City to make them aware that they can access this information.
This will create a poisonous environment within schools, creating suspicion and dividing parents and teachers who are natural allies in the struggle for better schools for our students.

No More Standardized Testing!

Furthermore, the publicity surrounding the deal ignores the overall framework in which it is occurring, where teacher evaluations will soon be based in part on scores students receive on standardized tests. In a year where students have endured hours of expanded “field testing,” error-filled exams, and nonsense questions about talking pineapples, we are now moving to an era where teachers livelihoods will be determined by growth and value-added models based on tests, which are unstable metrics that have been shown to vary wildly.

Fortunately, there is a new voice in opposition to the politics of collusion on the part of union leaders that has brought us to this point. The recently formed Movement of Rank and File Educators (morecaucusnyc.org) in New York City is the social justice caucus of the UFT and force advocating within the union opposing “any teacher evaluations based on standardized tests.” MORE has supported the boycott of parents of the Pearson field tests and taken a strong position against the evaluation framework agreed to by our union leadership in February, and endorsed the national resolution against standardized testingwhich has been ratified by hundreds of organizations around the country (although not the UFT leadership).

In the fall, MORE will be launching a petition campaign calling for the right for teachers to vote on the evaluation deal, and organizing escalating protests against the testing profiteers.
If you like what you’ve read,  please consider joining MORE.

“Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions”

Hey Movement of Rank and File Educators

Happy Countdown to Summer!

MORE THIS WEEK

MORE Steering/Planning Committee Meeting

Tuesday, June 19 – 5PM, CUNY Graduate Center, Rm 5414

MORE Study Group on High Stakes Testing & Accountability

Thursday, June 21 – 5PM, CUNY Graduate Center, Rm 5414

MORE Election Committee Meeting

Monday, June 25, 5PM, at Karavas restaurant, 164 West 4th Street

MORE Summer Series

First meeting will be on July 12, Thursday, 5 PM, location TBA

See MORE Upcoming Events for more details

IMPORTANT UPDATES:

MORE’s end of year celebration 0n SATURDAY was a resounding success! Thank you to all who attended. At last count we had 40 people for good eat, drink and talk. A number of new chapter leaders were there.

Continue Reading…

 Movement of Rank & File Educators

The social justice caucus of the UFT

“Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions”

MORE

Weekly Update #11 – 06.11.12

more@morecaucusnyc.org

Hey Movement of Rank and file Educators,
Happy Countdown to Summer!

Keep your eyes peeled for information on the MORE summer series, coming soon.

IMPORTANT UPDATES:

MORE’s end of year celebration is THIS SATURDAY, June 16. Saturday, June 16th – 5 to 7 PM

736 10th Avenue     Trains: E/C/1 at 50th St.

Join MORE at our End of Year Celebration. We will gather at Druids Bar and Restaurant for Happy Hour at 5 PM. Come mingle, converse and honor all your hard work with some much deserved fun!

For more details visit: http://tinyurl.com/6o54g6h

UFT Delegate Assembly is this Wednesday. Come out and flyer for MORE!
Meet at 52 Broadway in Manhattan at 3:30 PM to hand out flyers for the MORE  caucus, and talk to your fellow Union members about the Movement of Rank and file Educators. You can download the latest version advertising our end of year celebration this Saturday here.

Continued Congratulations to those who have won their delegate and chapter leader elections! Please contact us if you need information on any issues that are coming up at your school, even as the school year winds down.

Sign onto the open letter written to Chancellor Walcott and the DOE requesting permission to not be required to participate in the June field tests. You can read and sign the letter here. The letter has already been endorsed by Movement of Rank-and-file Educators, the social justice caucus of the UFT. Please share widely with those who might be interested, including concerned parents or community members.

If you haven’t already, join MORE! And please take a moment to check out our new website at morecaucusnyc.org.

Spread the word–help build MORE!

Distribute the MORE leaflet at your school, to other schools in your building, or to other educators and community members.

Like us on Facebook: Facebook.com/MOREcaucusNYC

Follow us on Twitter: @morecaucusnyc

Check out MORE’s website: MOREcaucusNYC.org

Email us at: more@morecaucusnyc.org

We want to hear from you! Check out MORE’s online discussion forum to get the latest news and goings on, and to join in the conversation.


Upcoming MORE Events:

Saturday, June 16th – 5 to 7 PM   MORE End of Year Celebration
Join MORE at our End of Year Celebration. We will gather at Druids Bar and Restaurant for Happy Hour at 5 PM. Come mingle, converse and honor all your hard work with some much deserved fun! For more details visit: http://tinyurl.com/6o54g6h


Thursday, June 21st – 5 to 7 PM MORE Education Committee study group

Join the MORE Education Committee for the third installment in the study group series on High Stakes Testing. Participants will be working together on “Moving Forward; Working together to create discussion points.”

Other Upcoming Events:

Tuesday, June 12th – 5 PM Rally for the Turnaround Schools
Stand in solidarity with the teachers, students and communities of the 24 turnaround schools at this protest against the City’s outrageous closing of these 2 dozen public schools. Rally to be held at Tweed.

Friday, June 15th – 6PM to 8PM New York Collective of Radical Educators

Join the NYCoRE membership for the last monthly meeting of the 2011-2012 school year. This Friday’s meeting will address “The Disappearance of Black and Latino Teachers, the Experiences of Teachers of Color, and their Effects on Students, Schools and Communities.” For more information and to RSVP for the meeting go to: http://www.ittybittyurl.com/dxj


Sunday, June 17th – 2PM Protest NYPD’s Stop and Frisk Policy

Join the UFT at a Silent March to protest the NYPD’s “Stop and Frisk” policy, which disproportionately targets young Black and Latino men. The UFT contingent will be gathering on 110th Street, between 5th and Lenox Avenues, at 2 p.m. The silent march, which will begin at 3 p.m., and will end at 79th Street and Madison Avenue.
See the flier here, and for more information visit: http://tinyurl.com/6ml65xz

Wisconsin: What Happens When Movements Turn Into Campaigns

by BAR managing editor Bruce A. Dixon

Sixteen months ago the eyes of the nation and the world were on Madison, Wisconsin. Crowds in the tens of thousands surrounded, occupied and refused to leave the state capitol building. Local cops ignored orders to disperse them, and when authorities finally evicted protesters from hallways, offices and legislative chambers, their numbers grew, reaching the hundreds of thousands multiple times before the crisis was over. Local schools were shut down because teachers called in sick en masse. For a short while a general strike, localized in Madison, but with wide and visible support around the state and country seemed a real possibility.

Thousands of Americans from surrounding states converged upon Wisconsin to join the throngs around the state capitol. Thousands in those crowds, and countless others watching from far and near began to realize this was a unique political moment. They were at a place well outside the prescribed steps of America’s political dance. It was a moment in which the elite politicians, the media pundits, the bosses and the billionaires were not the only or even the decisive shot callers. The next move was truly in the hands of those tens and hundreds of thousands of working people in motion, the people in the streets.

What we saw coming together on Wisconsin street corners and in the wave of state and nationwide public support behind them was an authentic mass movement being born. We know that’s what it was because it contained, all at the same time, what we identified back in 2005 as the five necessary characteristics of such things;

  1. Mass movements have political demands anchored in the deeply shared values of their core constituencies.
  2. Mass movements look to themselves and their shared values for legitimacy, not to courts, laws or elected officials.  A mass movement consciously aims to lead politicians, not to be led by them.
  3. Mass movements are civilly disobedient, and continually maintain the credible threat of civil disobedience. They inspire and embolden large numbers of ordinarily nonpolitical souls to engage in personally risky behavior in support of the movement’s political demands.
  4. Mass movements are supported by lots of vertical and horizontal communication reinforcing its core values.
  5. Mass movements capture the energy, enthusiasm and risk taking spirit of youth. Nobody ever heard of a mass movement of old or even middle aged people.

Read the full article: http://blackagendareport.com/content/wisconsin-what-happens-when-movements-turn-campaigns


Text of MORE Leaflet which can be dowloaded here. Please print copies and hand them out in your school.

Movement Of Rank and File Educators

Like us on Facebook.com/MOREcaucusNYC & follow us on Twitter @MOREcaucusNYC

Who we are and what we stand for

·      We insist on a better educational environment for teachers and for the students whose lives we touch. We have established the MORE Caucus, which will educate, organize and mobilize the UFT membership.

·      We seek a contract with retroactive pay that is not obtained by selling off what few protections remain. MORE will defend: tenure, due process rights, pensions, and an immediate end to the arbitrary denial of tenure. We oppose any teacher evaluations based on standardized tests.

·      We insist that high stakes tests no longer deprive New York City’s children of exposure to foreign language, science, social studies and the arts.  We insist that curricula taught in our schools nurture in students the potential for active, reflective citizenship, and is committed to racial and gender equity, democracy and economic justice.

·      Schools should reflect the aspirations and diversity of those who make up its parent and student body. We will fight to reverse the trend of disappearing Black and Latino educators in our schools.

Celebrate the End of the Year with MORE!

Sat., 6/16 – 5 – 7 pm – at Druids Bar and Restaurant (736 10th Avenue)

Join MORE – Dues $10.  Make checks out to: Teacher Defense Fund

Name____________________  School / Boro ________________

Email____________________________  Phone_______________

Join or Donate online: Click JOIN tab at morecaucusnyc.org.

______ I am not ready to join MORE but want to offer support.

Twitter @MOREcaucusNYC       more@morecaucusnyc.org     Facebook.com/MOREcaucusNYC

Please help us by distributing our leaflet (text below – or on Scribd).  You can also let us know where you are distributing.

“Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions”

Like us on Facebook.com/MOREcaucusNYC – Follow us on Twitter @MOREcaucusNYC  – Join MORE – Dues $10

Who we are and what we stand for

  • We insist on a better educational environment for teachers and for the students whose lives we touch. We have established the MORE Caucus, which will educate, organize and mobilize the UFT membership. Continue Reading…
“Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions”  – more@morecaucusnyc.org

Greetings Movement of Rank and File Educators!

IMPORTANT:

Save the date! MORE’s end of year celebration will be on Saturday June 16. See Upcoming Events section for more information.

Stay tuned for details about the MORE summer series.

Congratulations to those who have won their delegate and chapter leader elections! Best of luck to those who are still running. Please contact us if you need  information on how to run an election, compose campaign literature or assistance on any other issues that are coming up.

Sign onto the open letter written to Chancellor Walcott and the DOE requesting permission to not be required to participate in the June field tests. You can read and sign the letter here. The letter has already been endorsed by Movement of Rank-and-file Educators, the social justice caucus of the UFT. Please share widely with those who might be interested, including concerned parents or community members.

Please join MORE if you haven’t already, and take a moment to check out our new website at morecaucusnyc.org.

Spread the word–help build MORE!

Distribute the MORE leaflet at your school, to other schools in your building, or to other educators and community members.

Like us on Facebook: Facebook.com/MOREcaucusNYC

Follow us on Twitter: @morecaucusnyc

Check out MORE’s website: MOREcaucusNYC.org

Email us at: more@morecaucusnyc.org

We want to hear from you! Check out MORE’s online discussion forum to get the latest news and goings on, and to join in the conversation.

Open call for MORE branding proposals!
Members of MORE are on the move, growing our base and building capacity, through collectively representing the Social Justice Caucus (SJC) at DAs, other events and schools across the city. What better way to get our name out there, than repping with a stylish MORE poster or t-shirt?

But before we can print posters and t-shirts, we need a logo! Submissions for any MORE logo designs are now welcomed. Please reply to this email with relevant ideas or images.

Upcoming MORE Events:

Continue Reading…

The Movement of Rank and File Educators invites you for a happy hour at

Druids Bar and Restaurant

Saturday, June 16

5 – 7 pm

Continue Reading…