The most critical role in the entire UFT structure is not the UFT president but the UFT chapter leader. Chapter leaders are the building block of the union; They determine if a school’s chapter meets regularly, whether regular consultations with the principal occur to give faculty and staff voice in decisions, and whether members’ contractual rights can be enforced.
Chapter elections are occurring in all schools this spring, as well as in all functional (non-teacher) chapters across the union. Chapter Leaders, Delegates and School Para Representatives will all be up for election.
You school election committee should have already been chosen, with the approval of your chapter (for example, at a chapter meeting). The election committee is charged with distributing a notice of election to all chapter members with a form and minimum timeline of three days for nominations (recommended by the UFT to be done in writing). The election committee must transmit nominations to the UFT by Monday, April 19th.
The election committee should make every effort to contact members working remotely, make sure that the list of eligible chapter members is correct, and that the UFT has correct contact information for members. This is especially important because elections will be conducted by phone. The American Arbitration Association will scheduling the election for one day between May 3rd and June 18 , and sending a PIN to mail to members to participate (members can call AAA @ 800-529-5218 if they don’t receive a PIN).
Questions? Not sure if these rules are being followed correctly? Email firstname.lastname@example.org immediately and we can help you make sure a fair election happens in your school, including helping you appeal to your UFT borough representative.
You should consider running for chapter leader if your colleagues feel your chapter should be more active. Being a chapter leader also gives you an opportunity to organize your coworkers, and to build a collective team of UFTers to help solve problems in your school. You can also connect with other chapter leaders at schools. Join us on April 18th at 12:30pm for a training on how to run for chapter leader.
Running for chapter leader can feel like a daunting task, but it is not a job for an individual superhero. We encourage you to build a team of coworkers who can help you canvass your school, to identify what the key issues are, and solidify your support. This team can then help you mobilize your coworkers and build chapter power in the future. MORE is also committed to ongoing support for chapter leaders, whether it is our dedicated WhatsApp chat and listserv for chapter leaders, regular trainings, or ongoing strategy meetings & relationships with mentor chapter leaders.