Archives For January 2017

education-not-deportation

 

New York State Youth Leadership Council (an undocumented-youth led organization fighting for immigrant rights) and members of MORE, Teachdream, and NYCORE have been discussing how we will bring our letter to Chancellor Farina. We are:

• calling for an immigrant liaison in every school, 

• asking the DOE to declare all schools as safe zones where student and employee data is secure, 

• asking the DOE  to build a web-page and hotline to support immigrant students, and consolidate curriculum developed by teachers that embraces our values as a multicultural and multilingual community,

• calling on Mayor DeBlasio and DOE, to support the New York Dream Act and actively lobby the state senate, assembly and Governor Cuomo to pass this bill.

 

The UFT passed a resolution on May 26, 2016, stating that the union would ask the Department of Education to require that each school with immigrant students appoint an ‘Immigration Advisor’. MORE’s UFT Executive Board members inquired as to the status of this resolution and UFT leadership responded that they have recently brought this up to DOE representatives and those officials were “intrigued.”

 

We are organizing teachers and students to appear at the February 28th Public Education Panel (PEP) with Chancellor Farina, who is the daughter of immigrants and has sent emails to DOE employees indicating she is a strong supporter of immigrant rights. This PEP is taking place at a member of the International High Schools network – a group of schools that serve almost entirely immigrant students.

 

Students, teachers, and parents will bring our proposals to Chancellor Farina and panel in hope that they will take immediate action. We believe the mayor, chancellor and PEP panel members share our vision and will support our proposals.

 

We are also planning a day of action on February 28th. You and your students can participate in your respective schools to support these proposals by wearing shirts with a supportive message, distributing fliers, sharing social media messages, lesson plans, and/or other actions. Follow our Facebook event for more info

 

Contact us here if you’re interested in joining us on our day of action on February 28th and would like to bring yourself or students to the PEP at Prospect Heights High School campus 883 Classon Ave, Brooklyn NY at 6:00pm.

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At the January 18th UFT Delegate Assembly, UFT officers from Unity Caucus spoke against the following resolutions

This first resolution on protecting our immigrant students and members was raised on behalf of MORE and Teachdream by Mike Schirtzer  our representative on UFT Executive Board High School Division and Delegate from Goldstein HS in Brooklyn.

The second resolution on two observations was not on behalf of an organization, but proposed by James Eterno MORE’s candidate for VP of High Schools and Delegate from Middle College High School in Queens.

Resolution to UFT Delegate Assembly pre-inauguration in support of immigrant New Yorkers

 

WHEREAS, policies affecting immigrant communities directly impact our students– as over 41% of NYC public school students speak a language other than English at home, and an estimated third are immigrants themselves,

 

Whereas the xenophobic and racist rhetoric during the 2016 presidential election campaign, and the appointment of white nationalists to positions of importance in the Trump administration since has caused many of our students and members to feel fear about their future and that of their families,

 

Whereas school boards across the nation (Los Angeles, Portland, San Francisco) have passed similar resolutions in the weeks since the election, be it

Resolved, That the UFT lobby the Chancellor to provide the necessary outlets for expression, learning, communication, and information by the District family community, which may include:

  • Programs, discussions, presenters, articles, and persons that reflect the diversity of our schools and embraces our values as a multicultural and multilingual community;  
  • A day of understanding across the District which will encourage students, families, staff, and community partners to explore student and individual rights, the history of civics and coalition building, as well as the struggle to make progress in light of adversity, empowering and recognizing the importance of student leadership and Activism;
  • A dedicated web page or hotline so that any member can reach out for assistance, clarification, or understanding;
  • Activities determined by the school site;


Resolved further, That the UFT urge the Chancellor to  reaffirm the authority of the DOE to continue to protect the data and identities of any student, family member, or school employee who may be adversely affected by any future policies or executive action that results in the collection of any personally identifiable information to the fullest extent provided by the law;


Resolved further, That the UFT reaffirms its support for every individual embracing education and that NYC DOE campuses will continue to serve as safe zones from ICE and resource centers for students and families threatened by immigration enforcement or discrimination to the fullest extent provided by the law; and, be it finally

 

Be it further RESOLVED, that the UFT take visible and public steps to follow through on the resolution passed in May of 2016, and ask the Department of Education to immediately require that each school with immigrant students appoint an ‘Immigration Adviser’ (similar to the ‘sustainability coordinator’ or ‘anti-bullying liaison’) to ensure that schools and school processes are welcoming of immigrant students and families.

 

Motion for Delegate Assembly on observations
January 18, 2017
Whereas, State law now mandates 2 observations per year for teachers; and
Whereas, many teachers would benefit from fewer observations than the minimum 4 UFT agreed to; be it therefore
Resolved, that the UFT will demand for 2017-18 and beyond 2 observations per year for most teachers.
Full report from the DA By James Eterno

LIVE BLOGGING FROM JANUARY DA (unedited)

President’s Report
I came in when President Mulgrew was talking about inauguration. Might be more people protesting. DC buses filled to women’s march. Rally in NYC Saturday. March to Trump Tower.State
Michigan and Indiana are labs for what will happen nationally. Total free market in education. Education does not matter. Indiana has vouchers. Public schools left for special ed mostly in those two states.

Parent leader and Board of Ed president from Michigan came to Albany. State went from top 20% to bottom 20%. Rural, suburban and urban all ruined. Cyberschools hurt too. Legislators need to know we are not talking about conspiracy theories. It is reality. DeVos coming to DC. She will more than likely be Education Secretary and she thinks education is just about making money.

DeVos talking about people in schools needing guns because of possible grisly bears is a national joke. DeVos didn’t do well at confirmation hearing according to pundits. Talking point is to say something is fake news. Grassroots campaign highlighting public schools.

Positive campaign needed for Albany. Not just NYC. Need people to stand up and fight for their public schools.

State budget
Decent starting number for education. Governor now our friend. Asking him to protect public education. He says he will work to keep Millionaires tax. Money tight in Albany. Eva Moskowitz in Albany today pushing for more per pupil funding.

Waiting to see if there is an opening on evaluations to keep moratorium on common core testing going. DeVos funded tuition tax credit to take money from public schools in NY.

New evaluation system
900 chapter leaders showed up at evaluation training. We advocated for a fair system. Looking to phased in student learning measures.

Make sensible changes. Tell principals: my kids learn, you lose.

Not more observations. If we are working as teams, we would want intervisitations. Danielson now a dirty word. Need no new paperwork with intervisitations.

DOE
9 schools set to close this year or are consolidating. Does that mean renewal schools are failing? Politically dangerous to say schools are failing, particularly when other schools with same demographics are doing fine. DOE has to tell principals that principal autonomy is not working. One paperwork arbitration is because principal defied central paperwork committee.

Positive Campaign called Public School Proud
We are learning from field. Design something transferable from NYC to rest of country. Celebrate neighborhood public schools. Public wants strong neighborhood public schools. Champion public schools, honor student accomplishments.  “Show your love for public schools” is the slogan.

We need to talk about our classrooms, our students, and our school communities. Many ways to tell our story. Things like holding a showcase fair, or holding a school spirit rally, or making videos. Positive messaging.

Steps
Sign up on UFT website, figure out what to do and then share story with UFT. Populate UFT website with activities and then spread it nationally. Inspire country.

Mulgrew then showed an anti-DeVos commercial made by a chapter leader. 300,000 hits on video. Need to show friends and colleagues around the country how it is done.

Resolution on public school proud was proposed. It passed unanimously.

Staff Director’s Report

Leroy Barr gave a bunch of dates including next DA Feb 8.

Question period
Questions on the save room, evaluations and more were asked. Nothing earth shattering in answers.

Motions
Mike Schirtzer from MORE made a motion for next month to further support immigrants. He said we need to do more for immigrants. He said we should not call the kids illegals. (see above)

Leroy Barr spoke against saying resolution was poorly worded.

The motion received many votes but failed.

I raised a motion to push for 2 observations per year for UFT members for 2017-18 and beyond. (See above)

Howie Schoor spoke against saying basically the new observation system is great. Fewer ineffective ratings now. My motion was voted down by Delegates. Mulgrew said for the record we pushed for two observations per year.

Special Orders of Business
A resolution opposing vouchers and one in opposition to DeVos both passed unanimously.  Finally, a resolution to get a staff loung/cafeteria in every school passed.

More later.

UFT Delegate Assembly–You Get FOUR Observations, Not Two, and No You CAN’T Hear That From Anyone Who Actually Gets Observed

Additional report by Arthur Goldstein- UFT Executive Board HS Division (MORE) and Chapter Leader Francis Lewis High School

President’s Report:

Michael Mulgrew
—holds moment of silence for first year teacher in horrible traffic accident.

National—speaks of attack campaign. Doesn’t know what to say about hearing. Asks if we brought guns to ward off grizzlies. DeVos doesn’t know much, particularly on special ed, but supports guns in schools. Says we must have fun with it or it’s depressing like Cathie Black with fangs and more money.

Normally would report on state budget process, but must focus on DC. Said we would support people for both DC and NY marches. Buses to DC are full. Still don’t know where they can drop people off, believe it’s being done on purpose. Want more people at march than inauguration. Over 1,000 people with UFT on Saturday. Rally point 47 between 2 and 3. Will rally and march to Trump Tower.

State—Said our strategy is build defense around our state and attack what happens in DC. In Albany I met with leaders to talk about possibilities for DC. Said we have research on Michigan and Indiana, bad situation, open market, no accountability, transparency, or regulations. Cannot close schools because they aren’t educating, only if they don’t make money. That is basis for state policy. Destroyed public school system except for special ed. Children are dollar amounts, special ed. students cost too much for voucher schools.

Albany looking at business as usual, but we went back. We reached out to state of Michigan. We brought their people to Albany. Quite a few volunteered. We chose policy person and parent leader. We basically had a breakfast conversation with legislature. They told people that they first thought choice was a good idea. Four or five years later they realized it was market choice, not parent choice. Political money killed any chances of relief, schools are now among worst in country, privatizers got them all. Once they lost 15% in public school was tipping point and they started to fail. Cyber schools opened up and things got even worse.

These are not conspiracy theories. Charters are just a tool to do what they want to do, to make education an open for-profit marketplace with no accountability. Person who pushed Michigan agenda will probably be next Secretary of Education. DeVos focused on making money, not educating kids. We will push transparency in Albany to keep them in line.

Michigan rep said they didn’t know that what they were pushing wasn’t actually public education. NY must protect against such activity.

Hearing last night—texts and emails all day about grizzly bears. Says technically one could come after a school. We will get cartoons about this. Last night we launched Thunderclap 1600 members and we need more. Reached many more. Tweeting during hearing was impressive.

Pundits say she didn’t do well because staff didn’t prepare her, and unions made Democrats ask tough questions. This is work AFT has been doing for last month. Didn’t know it would be so easy. Didn’t think she wouldn’t know difference between growth and proficiency. Will probably just label it fake news, which they say about everything.

We have to make a positive campaign, and it can’t just be NYC. We need to get people to stand up and fight, not just hope nothing bad happens. Stand up for your school. We have to push this.

State budget—will be details we don’t like. Starting base for education not to bad, but not where we want it. Governor will be tested, as he’s being our friend right now. We will ask him to protect it. Glad he’s keeping millionaire’s tax. We pushed for that. We must support that. Are other revenue ideas. We need to see proposals from governor and legislature. Senate will have a lot of charter stuff. Eva had rally today. Heavy duty production. Will want space money and rent because she’s broke.

Education—idea is to push through and make moratorium permanent. Right now they won’t focus, much infighting on governmental affairs. Lobby Day March 14th.

Since last DA, new evaluation system. Heard it was end of world, but said it was alright. Amy Arundell and Jackie Bennet trained 800 CLs. How do you like matrix now? You love it. We didn’t get away with anything, but advocated for fair system. Student learning measures not nailed down, moving toward them that aren’t test based so we build in safety nets. People need to feel someone’s watching them. We don’t want change that will screw us or our kids. We need to know which changes make sense and which don’t.

How did principals react? Bad day, just say matrix. My kids learn, you lose.

There are not more observations. If you’re HE or E you have more choices for less. Intervisitation not observation. Will it be bad word later? We’ll see. To learn, better other people come in.

Danielson equal to 4 letter word. Charlotte didn’t intend it this way. But we have to own this. Ask principal to work out intervisitation policy. No paperwork. We have 100 schools with resolved paperwork issues. You have to file.

Chalkbeat wants to know if Renewal program is failure. Lots of people want to focus on failure. Why do some work and some don’t? We need a plan, everyone to understand it, we need to collaborate and move forward. Schools were losing 25% students, 60% staff, but other Renewal schools where people want to get in. Principal autonomy should be gone. We need teacher autonomy. We need to design and implement our lessons, but admin has right to say we want things differently.

We need DOE to overlook admin when kids and staff leave. We don’t need this with DC environment. Paperwork committee directed principal to do something, and DOE won’t make her do it. We are in arbitration. Principals work for DOE.

Positive campaign—#PublicSchoolProud 2017. Thanks team for work it’s done. Celebrating neighborhood schools. Honoring educators, students and parents. Want campaign transferable. Says people will express freedoms and creativity. We can get buttons, bumper stickers. People love neighborhood schools. That’s what public wants, except millionaires.

We want strong neighborhood schools, accessible to all. Illustrate joys of teaching and learning.

Bumper sticker—show your love for public schools. That is our vision. Asks us to talk about classrooms and kids. Talk about projects, how students inspire you, why teaching is important, and how you make a difference. Talk about our students, why they love their schools, how they’ve surmounted challenges. Says hands around schools photo gallery was thousands.

Says nothing is written in stone, these ideas can change, we hope you will change them. Wants hearts to show why kids love school, school spirit rallies, videos. Get school community involved. Sign up for campaign on UFT website, discuss within school, share stories with UFT.

Want to make this model for AFT, build grassroots groundswell up, get people off of floors where they are worrying about what will happen to them.

Shows video—Attack on Devos, never spent time in classroom or taught, billionaire, not ed. experience or school admin, kids never went to public schools. Applause—video made by CL.

People in Michigan said don’t let what happened her happen in NY. They influenced with simple messages, then used might and money and it was too late. Says UFT goes all out in this campaign and shares across country to win this war. Calls for resolution. Moves to suspend rules. Passes.

Motion—Mulgrew says his report has motivated it. I have not even seen motion. Being passed out, Resolution to support UFT Public School Proud Campaign. UFT refuses to give in to privatization, for-profit charters, and vouchers. Quotes Diane Ravitch. Unopposed. End of Report. 5: 18

LeRoy Barr—Women’s March—buses full, waiting list. Emails on DC and NY tonight.

UFT Black History Month, next month, three films. Chisolm, 13th, Rising from the Rails. Discussions to follow. Open to non-UFT.

National school counseling week, February, Guidance counselors conference, High school awards, next DA February 8th.

Mulgrew—Paras aren’t supposed to do lunchroom duty. Principal’s weekly says unless it’s on IEP that child needs para, lunchroom duty is off for paras, who get duty-free lunch.

Questions

Retired teacher—HS often not neighborhood schools. need other phrase.

Mulgrew—Most people believe HS neighborhood schools, will take under consideration.

CL—I took teachers to PROSE seminar—PROSE doesn’t mean contract changes, but school is collaborative. If school has great idea DOE will let you try it. Why can’t everyone be collaborative? My principal is recovering dictator, now doesn’t send memo unless I’ve seen it. How do we get to point where we can talk that way about all principals? I’d leave if I worked in some schools.

Mulgrew
—political implications, more schools with improper leadership, no coffee cutter model. Good principals believe in respect. When that’s not case, principal shouldn’t be in position. We complain about how teachers are trained, but isolation is not cooperation, and doesn’t make good principal. We know difference between friction and bad management. As long as we need lawyers, system not being run properly. We should have good teachers rise through ranks.

CL—What was your feeling in bipartisan reaction to Michigan people in Albany?

Mulgrew
—Was bipartisan audience. We asked folks from very small regions of state. They heard it because both parties always talk about public schools. Charters came from Democratic party. We realized there were bad players and educated folks. Bloomberg made people angry. Charter industry full of privateers. Dumped money into state races. Hope something good comes.

Delegate—Evaluation system—best I’ve seen in 20 years was s and u, why can’t we go back.

Mulgrew—principal had total control. Who wants to go back? I don’t believe in unfettered control based one whether principal likes you or not. People who had problems don’t like it. Since we started using new system fewer teachers rated badly. We can push back on morons who talk about testing. We are point A to point B, and now looking at growth.

CL—Principal on record at safety meeting we don’t need SAVE room. NYS says all schools need them.

Mulgrew—We will have people at your school. Principal doesn’t get to reject regulation. Must be plans around SAVE rooms. Implemented properly makes sure classroom process not impeded.

Motions—5:38

Mike SchirtzerMORE—For next month’s agenda—Resolution in support of immigrant New Yorkers. Body approved immigration liaison, for those of us with undocumented students, they will have rough day Friday, will get worse. These are our kids. You’ve seen students and family members at a loss, so this is personal. We want like Portland and SF, to lobby chancellor to do programs and discussions. Even radio uses term illegal immigrant, no such thing as illegal human being. Want to protect students and want DOE to protect student data. Want DOE campuses to be safe zones. We want to do all we can to protect students.

LeRoy Barr
—Rises to speak against. Over months have had conversations and voted to support our fight for immigrant students. Have already discussed immigrant liaisons in every school. Want to know what type of info we will give. Have done some of this. We have to be careful about words like every. Have implications. We will work with whoever brought this forward to find things we can agree upon but please vote down.

Resolution does not pass.

James EternoMORE—Asks because state law mandates two observations, asks UFT demand 2 observations for most teachers. Teacher observation process broken beyond repair, used as scare tactic. People petrified of drive by observations with cookie cutter rubrics used to bludgeon teachers. Vast majority of us learn nothing from them and they are waste of time. Most NY teacher unions settled on 2 observation minimums. This year we went with four, Next year we should go with two, which will make teachers and sane admin happy. Argument is more makes them do their job, but reality is they get better at it. My wife has been under relentless attack but they learn and do better. Why give them that. We could just put in clause that 2 is minimum and more for teachers with particular needs. This would make them do it right. Also Friedrichs 2 is coming. Union dues won’t be mandatory. We can show our members we’re looking for what they want. Asks speaker against be someone who is evaluated under Danielson.

Howie SchoorYou don’t get to pick who speaks against it. 2 is not mandate but minimum. We’ve been pretty successful. Before this we had 3% U. Was upheld. We don’t have that anymore because principals have to do some work. Fewer than 1% rated ineffective. We think this model even better because of the matrix. We will see at end of year or two. Urge you to vote no.

Mulgrew
—We tried to get two.

Resolution against school vouchers—

passes unanimously

Rich Mantel
—Resolution against DeVos

passes unanimously

Sterling Roberson—Resolution for creation of cafes for UFT members in every school—

Amendment—delegate adult ed.—Let’s also look for one room dedicated to adult ed. classes taught by adult ed. chapter teachers.

Gregg Lundahl—These are two different things..

Mulgrew calls him out of order.

Dave Pecoraro
—not germane, and we need to extend debate. 6:02.

Extends to end of reso.

Mulgrew says he can rule it isn’t germane, and does.

Point of order—Isn’t it true there is already an order from DOE that there is supposed to be a lounge for only teachers, but that cafe aspect is not a law from DOE?

Mulgrew
—don’t believe it’s true, will research, but cafe is not.

Resolution passes.

Time for raffle.

UFT Executive Board January 9, 2017

By Arthur Goldstein UFT Executive Board-HS division and Chapter Leader

Secretary Howard Schoor—welcomes us,

Approval of minutes—accepted.

President’s Report—Mulgrew is in Albany.

Schoor—Mark Twain said “No man’s life, liberty or property is safe while the legistlature is in session.”

Staff director’s reportLeRoy Barr—Mayor’s committee met, will meet again this week, will come back with reservation. Will be video series on Black History Month at 52. Will show movie 13, discussion about A. Phillip Randolph and something on Shirley Chisolm.

Says Cuomo spoke positively on education. Speaks of Randi Weingarten’s speech, against DeVos. Next EB the 23rd. DA January 18th.

Questions

Jonathan HalabiNew Action—We have an issue with a principal, Sean Mengar, came in as Teaching Fellow at Truman, became principal in NE Bronx. Among worst turnover, 50%, much untenured staff, Sent all staff home one day except new teachers, discontinued large portion of staff.

I was horrified to see this principal’s picture on subway wall as model, place by DOE and Teaching Fellows. Can we stop this?

Schoor
—We didn’t have approval, of course. I’m concerned about what’s going on at the school. Please inform me so we can investigate. We are focusing on a group of schools to bring to attention of DOE

Arthur GoldsteinMORE—I recall coming here to vote on an evaluation system, and Bloomberg scuttling it. I don’t recall being asked to vote on any subsequent agreement. I would like to know how many rank and file directly affected by this agreement had a voice in crafting it. I know high school reps on this body weren’t surveyed or asked anything whatsoever.

This notwithstanding, it’s likely there would be a broad consensus among membership for fewer observations than we currently require. It might make sense, and certainly would in a large school like mine, for administrators to adhere to the state minimum of two, and reserve further observations for members in need of support. I grant this will be unlikely to help in cases with supervisors who are insane lunatics, but that is another discussion.

Are MOTP revisions coming, and if so will we be consulted, and how?

Schoor
—will be report later, you may ask questions.

Ashraya Gupta
MORE—  What about immigrant liaison and paid parental leave?

Schoor—nothing on liaisons, no union has negotiated paid parental leave as of yet. They cannot impose system on us as they did for non-union employees. First union to agree with set a pattern. Right now they are saving money when we go on leave. We would prefer to set our own pattern.

Gupta—Are we advocation for paid family leave or parental leave?

Schoor—We will get, likely, what they’ve offered others.

Amy Arundell—This is parental leave.

Mike Schirtzer
MORE—I asked about ICT classes out of compliance. Do you have any data and is there anything we can do?

Carmen Alvarez—DOE doesn’t exactly track it. We may do surveys of our own. We’re trying to figure it out and work with DOE.

Schirtzer—How many complaints have been filed?

Alvarez
—We can do general numbers, but complaints confidential.

Amy Arundell—Update on evaluation.

UFT has prepared an evaluation guide, emailed link to members. Guide covers evaluation system for next 6 months. We will prepare a more comprehensive guide for next school year. We have offered CL meetings to update them. Began last week. 80 CLs came to 52. Have trainings in other boroughs this week. We have 450-500 CLs getting info. Also providing training in districts, for CLs who can’t attend otherwise.

Feedback generally positive. Questions about matrix and MOSL.

We cover changes to MOTP for 2017-18 school year. We’ve tweaked options three and four. Rank and file wants to know why option 4 unavailable to them. 3 for HE and 4 for E. 4 now available to HE and E.

We’re not interested in reducing number of for stakes observations. Principals are. Does everyone remember drive bys with S and U? We wanted to overrule people giving judgments based on little data. We want to hold admin accountable. States that answers my question.

Jackie Bennett

Will be guidance on MOTP. Many things will stay the same. Guidance is coming and selections will be easier because there will be only one measure. Our final scoring is better because now we have the matrix, and benefit of doubt that will push people higher.

There is a question about an asterisk. Law gave us two options and we opted for lower stakes. If you use a certain option it will be more rigorous. This is only if you choose optional learning measure—simpler and lower stakes. E and H combinations gave you E. They will now give you H.

State tried to correct for that. In NY, 3.25 or up was H. State law tried to counterbalance that by raising 3.25 to 3.5 or up. That was, like other things, an attempt to reduce the number of HE teachers. We don’t think it will have much of an effect. State would have allowed for difference between E and D to move to 2.75 but we kept it at 2.5. That was crucial to us.

There is less than 1% ineffective in NYC. We don’t expect that to go up. We expect that teachers will now get benefit of doubt.

Schoor—Peer validator has been successful

Mike ShirtzerMORE—You said people got one or two drive bys in past. We know most locals got two. Was there any consultation? For those teaching 20 years, why 4, why not two?

Arundell—I’m not sure it’s a waste of time. We now require observable evidence. We get many arbitrary and capricious reports overturned. We’ve raised bar. With very few rules it was worse, now you can’t make it up. More teachers are engaging and pushing back. Level of discussion around teaching in my estimation is that we’re shifting how we thing, people empowered. Research shows people observed more bet better ratings.

Schoor—This is negotiated. Not UFT’s plan. We don’t get everything we want. CSA also wanted fewer observations.

Ellen Driesen—D28 rep—I want to support Amy. ESL teacher used what she learned in DOE training. Admin marked her lower for it. Went back in with training info and rating was changed. Win for her.

Arthur GoldsteinMORE–I didn’t simply ask for fewer observations. I asked for fewer when well-rated people didn’t need more. Also, I’ve seen evidence of supervisors making things up. Wouldn’t be actionable until I rating. In fact they can make it up.

Jonathan Halabi—New Action–What percentage are getting D?

Schoor
—About 7%

Bennet
—Many D will go to E. Expects decrease, but doesn’t want to predict.

Schoor—Used to represent people with U ratings. Principal would go first, say they stand on the record, though there was nothing in teacher’s file. I’d say nothing was in the file, there was no documentation. That used to happen. They can’t do that anymore.
Reports from districts

George Altomare
—On Saturday February 11th social studies conference. We have an excellent honoree, pres of  central labor council.  Would like good showing. If you can’t make it, please get some really good social studies teachers.

Glad to hear there was bargaining. In 1962 when we had just won first election, we were ready to negotiate. Didn’t have collective bargaining. On January 10, 1962, no one had ever been to 10th floor Livingston St. We went in and there was this long oak table. When we walked in that room, we sat on one side and faced others with equal power, not because they gave it to us, but because we earned it.

Think of that anniversary. It’s something you can’t buy or get any other way than fighting for it.

Legislative Report

Paul Egan

Cuomo looking more friendly. Special election in Bronx.

LeRoy Barr—requests we vote on NYSUT resolutions as block.

Zika virus, ELLs, Consent education, opposing constitutional convention, new teacher induction. We’ve done them before.

Schoor—favor of voting as six—no opposition.

Barr—Speaks to them. 500 cases of Zika in NYC, 50 in pregnant women. Appropriate instruction for ELLs. Support consent ed.—1 in 5 women, 1 in 59 men reported rape. Constitutional convention—urge no vote—Respect for All—communities have suffered hate, locals will show support—Meaningful new teacher induction.

Schoor
—asks vote.Passes.

Janella Hinds—Resolution on scoring of Regents. Should be in school, not outside of school. Exams have been lost. Inconvenient to students. Time and money wasted. There is another way. We are pushing DOE to change policy.

Mike SchirtzerMORE–I am sent out regularly. Depends on leadership structure in building. Some places have been good, others disasters. We know we can grade one another’s Regents. All US History exams last year were graded per session. We would like to add a resolved, that CLs stay in schools and represent visiting scorers until this is fixed.

Hinds—Important that we have union representation in all sites. Informally, we visit sites, and ID CLs in site. Would be dangerous to support this because we are not responsible for assigning members to sites. We do not have authority to do that, though it is important we have representation. We, the UFT, do not assign people. We may negotiate it but cannot mandate it.

Stuart Kaplan—Agrees with Janella.

Jonathan HalabiNew Action–Resolution important. There are state standards but not state curriculum. Geometry taught differently school to school. Have seen kids marked wrong for doing things not accepted in their schools. This is a big deal, teachers and students hurt by this.

We should endorse home school CL supporting everyone in building. Have run into difficulties with crazy APs imposing stupid regulations. We need representation in buildings.

We should support this and perhaps modify it. Reps are great, but there for short time

Eliu Lara—All DRs go around and cover every single site. Strange for people to say there is no representation. We have borough offices. We have nothing to do locally on Regents days. Opposes change.

Vote on Schirtzer amendments—fails on party lines

Resolution passes.

We are adjourned.

 

In May 2016, a resolution was brought to the UFT Delegate Assembly by TeachDream that called for an Immigrant Liaison in every school to advocate for our students and advise them of their rights. That resolution passed, but no concrete action has come from it. MORE High School Executive Board members have raised this issue and we still have not been given any assurance this resolution is being moved forward with the DOE. Add your name to the ranks of other NYC educators who support MORE-UFT´s letter to UFT President Mulgrew and DOE Chancellor Carmen Fariña stating that New York City’s public school teachers can and should play a critical role in educating, organizing, and mobilizing its members to fight for those in our communities who are most at risk in the current political climate.
Please sign on and have members from your chapter do so ASAP.
https://morecaucusnyc.org/2016/12/08/join-the-educators-standing-up-for-nyc-immigrant-students/

At the first UFT Executive Board meeting of the school year MORE’s newly elected representatives to the board brought forth a resolution calling for aggressive actions against abusive administrators. The UFT leadership of Unity Caucus tabled the resolution, but agreed to meet with our representatives to “work together” to address our members that are under attack. After two meetings with Unity, one that included rank and file members that are fighting these terrible administrators, they would not agree to work with us on any of our requests. We asked at a minimum that UFT publish the names of abusive administrators in our union newspaper and social media, they even refused to do that. A report written by our own James Eterno titled “Multiple Principals from Hell”  has been read thousands of times and spread through-out the schools.

MORE will bring resolutions to the January UFT Delegate Assembly demanding the UFT do more to protect our members under attack from abusive administrators and immediately place Immigrant Liaisons in every school. We ask that all our chapter leaders and delegates attend the January 18th DA. All rank and file members are welcome to attend and view the proceedings from the 19th floor at 52 Broadway NYC and the post DA happy hour at Blarney Stone 11 Trinity Place (one block west of UFT HQ)

At the UFT Executive Board MORE/New Action raised a resolution urging the UFT to “vigorously enforce existing contractual class size regulations.” This too was voted down by leadership. Please read UFT Executive Board and Chapter Leader Arthur Goldstein’s article published in the Daily News on oversized classes in our public schools.

By: Marcus B. McArthur, UFT Executive Board, City-As-School High School

Trump’s Presidency is an opportunity for progressive educators to articulate and mobilize a vision for 21st century public education.

The jury is in on neoliberal education reform. Standardized testing, common standards, union busting teacher evaluations, school closure and charter privatization schemes have failed. These policies delivered zombie schools, soul crushing test prep and a demoralized teaching force. It is out of this vacuum of destruction from which a 21st century vision of progressive education must emerge.

Educators are well situated to be leading players in a new progressive movement as our profession is located at the nexus of America’s most pressing political struggles. There is wind at our back with grassroots support in the streets and courageous union leadership emerging. Chicago teachers deployed the strike to preserve neighborhood schools, equitable resources and basic dignity for workers. Seattle teachers proclaimed their commitment to movement politics through public expression of solidarity with #Blacklivesmatter. Teachers of conscience in New York City and across New York state have engaged in civil disobedience by refusing to administer the standardized tests that perpetuate inequality and justify our nation’s sorry state of feudal affairs.

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