Archives For PEP

Wednesday, March 22: Delegate Assembly and Panel for Educational Policy

Below find MORE’s Proposed Action Plan for the UFT Delegate Assembly (DA) and Panel for Education Policy (PEP), both of which are happening this Wednesday, March 22. There are two two important issues: Stop the Closing of JHS 145 and Support for the Chapter Leader of Central Park East 1 Elementary School.

DA

At the DA we are gearing up to show support for the JHS 145 community who are faced with having their school closed. MORE/New Action will present a resolution (see below) to be voted on at this Delegate Assembly, calling on public support from the UFT as well as an early adjournment of the DA so that the delegates can attend the PEP. A group of MORE members will leave for the PEP meeting around 5. If you intend to speak at the PEP you need to sign up before 6 – the later you sign up the later you will speak. If you stay for the entire DA, please come to the PEP afterward — wear your MORE T-Shirt!

Additionally, the Chapter Leader (CL) of Central Park East 1 Elementary School (CPE1) is unfairly undergoing a 3020a hearing. Parent leaders may have stickers for UFT members to wear as an additional show of support as some will be showing up outside the DA. Recently almost 100 parents showed up in the hearing room to support Marilyn Martinez.

PEP

Please try to attend the PEP at Fashion Industries HS (225 W 24th St, NYC, between 7th and 8th Avenues). JHS 145 in the Bronx is facing a closure vote. The largely immigrant school community has mobilized to oppose the closing. As unionists committed to defending public education, we must join our voices with those of parents, students and teachers in opposition to this proposed closure. Those who are speaking need to get on line at 5:30.


Resolution on JHS 145

Whereas Junior High School 145 is a school serving a low-income, immigrant community in the Bronx with 20% of the students living in homeless shelters or temporary housing; 21% have learning disabilities, 18% have gone extended periods of their lives without any education at all and over 40% English Language Learners, but has only one full-time ELL teacher.

Whereas JHS 145 was designated a renewal school by NYC DOE two and a half years ago, but has yet to receive all the services its students were promised under that program

Whereas JHS 145 has been forced to give up their classrooms, computer labs and other resources to a Success Academy charter school

Whereas Success Academy charter school has already advertised additional seats for the 2017/18 school year in JHS 145

Whereas there has been no stability in school leadership, with three principals in recent years, including one that plead guilty to attempted grand larceny and paid $21,080.83 in restitution and a $5,000 fine.

Be it resolved that UFT take a public stance against the closing of JHS 145 by organizing and mobilizing with the chapter, parents, and community for a march and rally at DOE headquarters to pressure Chancellor Farina into halting the closure

Be it further resolved that the UFT will adjourn the March 22nd Delegate Assembly at 5:30pm and encourage all delegates to attend the Panel For Education Policy in order to voice our opposition to the closing of JHS 145.

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Dear School Staff and Allies,

We invite you to participate in our February 28th day of action to protect immigrant students.  We are pleased that Chancellor Carmen Farina responded to public support of immigrant New Yorkers by issuing a meaningful statement describing rights and resources for immigrant students on January 30th. We applaud this first step.

At the same time, we continue to ask for more because the time to stand with immigrant New Yorkers is now. We know that aggressive immigration policies will continue to affect our students’ ability to learn, so we are asking the DOE to do its part to advocate for children and families both inside and beyond the classroom doors.

Join us on February 28 as we ask Chancellor Fariña and the NYC Department of Education to:

  1. Train and provide an immigrant liaison in every school.

  1. We ask the Chancellor and DOE to expand on the initial letter by publicizing an explicit, transparent protocol for all of NYC schools that includes no ICE agents granted entry at schools unless they have received permission from the Chancellor.

  2. Fully develop the Department’s recently created web-page to support immigrant students so that schools can connect families with the information and resources they need during this important time.

  3. Collect and distribute teacher-developed tools and curriculum that embrace our values as a multicultural and multilingual community.

And join us in calling on Mayor De Blasio and the NYC District Attorneys to:

  1. Support the New York Dream Act by lobbying the State Senate, Assembly and Governor Cuomo to pass the bill

  2. Direct the NYPD to stop making broken windows arrests and for the five District Attorneys put a moratorium on broken windows prosecutions, as outlined in the #NYCdontprosecute campaign.

  3. Work with the Department of Education to invest in restorative justice positions and practices and restrict the presence and role of law enforcement officers in schools, as outlined in the Counselors Not Cops campaign

Sign up here for more information: https://goo.gl/forms/fnNGEgvswgKXwW163

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Teachers Unite

New York State Youth Leadership Council

"Immigrant Rights Day of Action" Immigrant Rights Day of Action Flyer

The School Renewal Program rolled out last November was designed to support “low performing” schools. Since then, a disproportionate number have been the targets of charter co-location proposals. While some have already been approved, more are on the way. This Wednesday three charter school co-location proposals targeting Renewal Schools will be put to a vote by the Panel for Educational Policy. This opportunism on behalf of charter operators is not only shameful but it defeats the promise of The School Renewal Program. Show your support for public schools and demand the PEP vote NO on all charter co-location proposals!

Panel for Educational Policy Meeting
WED April 29th @ 6pm
M.S. 131 
100 Hester Street, Manhattan
New York, NY 10002
Opportunism in Charter Schools  (1)

By Mindy Rosier

SA

There are many forces set to destroy public education that we must fight, but fighting this “evil” is near and dear to my heart. I received information last week that there will be a Public Hearing on Success Academy in District 1 on January 8th. I also kept seeing Eva Moskowitz in the media.

As usual, the more I read, the more angry I got. First came a link claiming the city is dawdling in their charter school plans here. So she planned a City Hall press conference which she canceled after Farina said she anticipates on accommodating up to 8 out 14 of Moskowitz’s schools, though no locations were mentioned. Farina further stated that if any of her schools could not be co-located within existing public schools, the city could seek funding for her to receive private space in the article found here. Thank you Governor Cuomo! Then a little birdie on Twitter shared this gem with me. It is of Success Academy’s 990 Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax for the period of 07/01/2012-06/30/2013. During this time period, Success Academy’s annual revenue more than doubled. Yet Moskowitz can’t afford to pay rent??? We all remember that statement don’t we?

The next day, NY Daily News Reporter Ben Chapman, who must have heard from this birdie too, put out this article. Not only does he state what I just did, he also reported that Moskowitz’s salary jumped, too.  Campbell Brown put in her two cents by saying, “she is worth every penny.” What’s that saying…. “birds of a feather flock together,” it is all so true.

By last Friday, a report on Mayor de Blasio written by Juan Gonzalez from the NY Daily News came out, and it is my opinion that de Blasio made some bold statements that he needs to uphold. He should not cave in to Moskowitz or Cuomo. This article can be found here. On charter schools, “We would never take our kids out of (public) school for a political purpose, and that’s what it was,” de Blasio said. “I think anyone who helped organize those protests [against Success Academy’s not being given free space] took advantage of those kids and used them as political pawns.” The city’s cooperation “comes with some rules,” he said. “We expect (charter schools) to represent the same population as in the district they are housed, meaning just as many English-language learners, just as many special ed kids, (and) not move out kids who don’t test as well.” Finally on this issue, “there was an election,” de Blasio added. “I said what I believed in. We’re (implementing) these policies. They can protest like anyone else, but we’re following through on a vision that I put forward to the people of this city.” I know many have a problem with our mayor for so many things. I personally do not agree with everything he says or does. However, in general, I have found that it is impossible to please everyone, but we either have to make do or fight back. I choose to fight back.

So now we get to why this issue is near and dear to me, I will start by saying that I know what it is like to be in co-location with Moskowitz. Her chain of Success Academy schools began in my building eight years ago. She has gutted my District 75 school over and over. During these eight years, we lost our art room, the music room, the technology room, the science room, a library, and classrooms, so she could expand and have a block room, a karate room, and a dance room.

Moskowitz’s school has become the “haves” while my school along with another general ed. school in my building became the “have nots.”

Last year her plan, pushed through via Bloomberg and his stooges would have essentially kicked out my school. If we had lost this space, federal, state, and local laws that were put in place to PROTECT these most vulnerable children would have been violated. What about Section 504 that protects children with disabilities? Why was that was so blatantly ignored?

We fought back in every way we could, with the help of  AQE, CEC3, local leaders, and elected officials and organizations. Plus, de Blasio said even before he was our mayor, and many times since, that he would not displace any special needs children.

Then came the media blitz brought to everybody by Families for Excellent Schools. They spent over $6 million with ads that were full of lies. You saw the faces of 194 students and some of their families begging not to be thrown away over and over again.

The reality was, Success Academy wanted to expand in a building that had NO free space. Moskowitz’s students were NOT getting kicked out. This was a planned move on their part and the general public had no idea what the truth actually was. Even when de Blasio did find space for Success Academy, much to our relief, Moskowitz still had to make a dig by saying the original space was still ideal.

Even months later, she still had no qualms about almost kicking out and disrupting the lives of our students and their families. She still claims she was the victim in this article. Moskowitz was quoted as saying, “they are trying to kill us.”

I will end with this, the original purpose of charter schools were to enrich the schools they co-locate with. This has NEVER happened. When asked to help out and to share their methodologies they flatly refused. While my school and the other schools in our building make do with what we have, we know that while we struggle, they have fancy bathrooms and all that extra enrichment space that our students are denied. Charter school advocates have proven to us over and over again, that what they have is never enough. They have taught their students that if you bully a school long enough, you can get your way.

By the grace of God, we are protected from Moskowitz now that we are a Community Learning School. But it doesn’t mean she won’t try again. What she did to us she has done and will do to other schools.  That is why we have been and will continue to fight back.

I will be speaking up at the upcoming hearing in January along with other MORE members, and you can count on us to be at any other Success Academy Public Hearings that will no doubt come forth like the hearing in January in D14 in Brooklyn followed by this PEP in the Bronx. We need to let our voices be heard. It is not acceptable for our schools to be invaded by an entity that does not educate “all” as they claim, that steals our students’ resources, and misinforms the media and the general public. If space is not found within a school, we as taxpayers should NOT have to fund their rent and certainly not their renovations. #EnoughIsEnough! These are OUR public schools, OUR students and this lunacy needs to stop now!

Please take a moment to sign and share the following petition. By signing this petition, you are telling Moskowitz that we do not need her “Success” in the District 1 community and that you support the schools that TRULY serve our children. Also, please join MORE at the January 8th hearing by RSVP’ing to this link.

"organize agitate educate Susan Anthony MORE"

@MOREcaucusNYC

@MindyRosier

stopclosings-logo

The Movement of Rank and File Educators stands in solidarity with parents, teachers, and students defending their schools against charter co-locations and closures!

We are the Social Justice Caucus of the UFT-New York City’s teachers’ union. We are a positive alternative to the current union leadership.

Stand with public school parents, students and teachers!

Once again, we are attending Panel for Educational Policy (PEP) hearings to Say No to the displacement of public schools by charter schools. Again, we will tell the PEP not to be a rubber stamp for the Mayor and instead, listen to what parents, teachers, administrators and students say. Will the PEP continue to build Mayor Bloomberg’s legacy of dismantling public education, which has seen record overcrowding and a narrowing of curriculum to a test prep focus?

Will the PEP approve decisions to expand or impose new co-locations at 23 sites, thereby significantly impacting students’ learning conditions and teachers’ working conditions?

Or will the PEP SCARE US and do the right thing?
VOTE NO ON ALL CO-LOCATIONS

WHAT CO-LOCATION MEANS:
*Public schools with limited financial support, forced to compete against charter schools with ample funds for the newest resources
*Overcrowding as schools deal with fewer rooms
*Competition between schools for access to the school’s libraries, gyms and cafeterias
*Parents pitted against parents in the same neighborhoods due to inequitable funding between charters and the district public schools
*Increased importance of high-stakes tests to determine the future of students and teachers
*Excessing of quality staff into the ATR pool of rotating UFT members, as fewer rooms mean fewer classroom teachers, librarians or guidance counselors

*Separate and Unequal Schooling for our students!

MORE stands opposed to the proliferation of charter schools crowding out district schools for teachers, rooms and other resources.

MORE stands for equitable funding and more resources to the schools that need them the most.

Stop School Closings Everywhere!