Around the UFT

UFT Players present ‘Golden Age of Television’

Around the UFT

Going back in time

UFT Players present ‘Golden Age of Television’ - 1Miller PhotographyJanet Kaplan (left) and Marjorie Bryant as the ostensibly identical Doublemint Twins spoof the ubiquitous Wrigley Gum commercial. Other parodies included the NBC Peacock, a Prell shampoo commercial, perennially stiff Sunday night CBS impresario Ed Sullivan, a gushing Julia Childs, a Chock Full o’Nuts (“that heavenly coffee”) commercial sendup, a cloying Miss Frances of “Ding-Dong School” (OK, she was the darling of the pre-K set) and others.

Those old enough to have lived through the 1950s’ and early 1960s’ “Golden Age of Television” might remember it as more gold leaf and tin than golden, but the period got a rare shine from the UFT Players on June 9 as they reprised sketches from the era’s better comedies, goofier commercials and oversized personalities. 

Cliff Ross (left) as 328 Chauncey St., Bensonhurst, bus driver Ralph Kramden of Miller PhotographyCliff Ross (left) as 328 Chauncey St., Bensonhurst, bus driver Ralph Kramden of “The Honeymooners” mugs with Suzanne Lambert as best bud and sewer worker Ed Norton and Leona Ackerman as Kramden’s long-suffering but intensely loyal wife, Alice.

State legislators honor UFTers

Around the UFT

Contributions recognized

Ganz with both the Reiff resolution and her own proclamation.Dave SandersGanz with both the Reiff resolution and her own proclamation.

Two UFTers were honored by state legislators in Albany on May 24. The late Janice Reiff, former District 28 representative, was remembered fondly in a resolution mourning her passing. The resolution, issued by both state houses, cited Reiff as “an outstanding teacher” and union staffer who “distinguished herself in her profession and by her sincere dedication and substantial contribution to the welfare of her community.”

The late Janice Reiff.Dave SandersThe late Janice Reiff.

New York State Spanish spelling bee

Around the UFT

Gran competencia

Gran competenciaHolding the trophies are first-place winner Ruth Senmache from the West Street School in Newburgh and second-place winner Noella Carabajal from PS/IS 218/Rafael Hernandez Dual Language School in the Bronx. The first-place prize was a Dell laptop, donated by McDonald’s, and two round-trip airfares anywhere in the world that JetBlue flies; the runner-up received a cash award donated by McDonald’s. Every participant received a medal and prizes donated by an array of organizations. Seventy-six deletrea­dores — or spellers — from throughout New York State came together on June 3 at UFT headquarters for a marathon, nail-biting Spanish spelling bee. The event is an annual celebration of the study of Spanish in public schools, with winners from spelling bees in each school or district competing against each other.

32nd annual New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health Awards

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Important anniversaries remembered

Chatting before the ceremony are (from left) Linda and Joseph Zadroga, UFT Vice Miller PhotographyChatting before the ceremony are (from left) Linda and Joseph Zadroga, UFT Vice President Sterling Roberson and UFT Director of Safety and Health Chris Proctor.

The 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and the 41st anniversary of the enactment of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Act were commemorated at the 32nd annual New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health Awards celebration on June 2 at UFT headquarters. Among those honored were Joseph and Linda Zadroga, parents of Joseph Zadroga, the police officer who died from prolonged exposure to Ground Zero’s toxic chemicals and after whom the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act was named.

Celebrate Inclusion

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Teachers, paras honored

Maria Reynoso, a special education art teacher at IS 218, Manhattan.Bruce CotlerMaria Reynoso, a special education art teacher at IS 218, Manhattan, displays the event journal graced with cover artwork by her student as she stands in front of the work. 

Special education teachers and paraprofessionals were recognized for their work in valuing students with disabilities at the “Celebrate Inclusion” event staged by the Department of Education’s Division of Students with Disabilities and English Language Learners and the special education group Parents for Inclusive Education on May 26 at Baruch College’s Mason Hall, Manhattan. Students were also honored for their talent and creativity.

Bronx teachers Dianela Firpo (left) of PS 176 and Jody Stracci of PS 178 with onBruce CotlerBronx teachers Dianela Firpo (left) of PS 176 and Jody Stracci of PS 178 with one of the creations.

Community Education Councils, parents meet at UFT

Around the UFT

Standing up for kids

Among those to turn out for the meeting are (from left) George E.M. Gibson, the Miller PhotographyAmong those to turn out for the meeting are (from left) George E.M. Gibson, the president of the NAACP - Corona East-Elmhurst; T. Elzora Cleveland, president of the District 2 CEC; Denise Sullivan of the Citywide Education Council on High Schools; Almeta Trammel of CEC District 7; and William McDonald of the NAACP, and (seated) Bronx parent Constance Asiedu.

New York State Spanish spelling bee

Around the UFT

Gran competencia

Holding the trophies are first-place winner Ruth Senmache from the West Street School in Newburgh and second-place winner Noella Carabajal from PS/IS 218/Rafael Hernandez Dual Language School in the Bronx. The first-place prize was a Dell laptop, donated by McDonald’s, and two round-trip airfares anywhere in the world that JetBlue flies; the runner-up received a cash award donated by McDonald’s. Every participant received a medal and prizes donated by an array of organizations. Click here to view more photos.

Seventy-six deletrea­dores — or spellers — from throughout New York State came together on June 3 at UFT headquarters for a marathon, nail-biting Spanish spelling bee. The event is an annual celebration of the study of Spanish in public schools, with winners from spelling bees in each school or district competing against each other. For the first time, grades 4-8 competed against each other rather than in elementary or middle school divisions. Gloria Flores-Lugo, a dual-language coordinator at PS 161 in the Bronx, came with student Rasmel Batista.

Humane Education Committee workshop

Around the UFT

Ruff love

Patricia Kazas of PS 14, Queens, gets up close and personal with Shelby. Miller Photography

Patricia Kazas of PS 14, Queens, gets up close and personal with Shelby.

Shelby the pit bull, now a certified therapy dog after being rescued from a life of abuse and abandonment, was a star of the “Humane Books, Humane Classrooms” workshop held by the UFT Humane Education Committee at union headquarters on May 21. Shelby’s rescuer, Joe Dwyer, was one of the presenters. Dwyer, the author of several books including “Shelby’s Grace,” explained how bullying and adversity can be overcome from the perspective of a dog.

The president visits: PS 54, Staten Island

Around the UFT
A pair of meetings in the staff cafeteria were jam-packed.
Bruce Cotler Contractual issues such as maternity leave and pedagogical issues such as problems with mandated curriculums were on top of the list for 4th-grade teacher Jennifer Azim.
Bruce Cotler Vivian Barone, a school enrichment model specialist, wants to know how much of the city budget surplus is earmarked for education.

The staff at Staten Island’s PS 54 brought many questions and opinions to the table during UFT President Michael Mulgrew’s May 23 visit to the school. The talks focused on the budget surplus, proposed layoffs, the state of contract negotiations between the union and the city, school budgets, ATRs and teacher evaluations. The two packed sessions were hosted by Co-Chapter Leaders Laura Kessler and Cynthia Vesce, with District 31 Representative Sean Rotkowitz on hand to address and follow up on concerns specific to the school.

UFT Veterans Committee Memorial Day tribute

Around the UFT

Honoring the warrior

UFT Veterans Committee members with the wreath.Miller PhotographyUFT Veterans Committee members with the wreath.

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