UFT events

RTC April general membership meeting

Retired teachers chapter news

Together again

After the Annual Meetings wrapped up, the chapter got back to holding its general membership meetings in Shanker Hall, Manhattan, the first taking place on April 17.

Pasquale D'Onofrio chats with Chapter Leader Tom Murphy.Miller PhotographyPasquale D'Onofrio chats with Chapter Leader Tom Murphy.

Retiree Harriet Greenbaum reads through some of the available literature.Miller PhotographyRetiree Harriet Greenbaum reads through some of the available literature.

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District 20 Scholarship Dinner Dance

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Honoring ‘mensches’

Driesen (front row, fourth from left) with community service award winners (fronMiller PhotographyDriesen (front row, fourth from left) with community service award winners (front row, from left) Kivnick, Schiano, Chia, Moy and Hester Lavenberg, and (back row, from left) UFT President Michael Mulgrew and Oberstein. Mulgrew and Driesen with Arundell (left) and Hinds.Miller PhotographyMulgrew and Driesen with Arundell (left) and Hinds. Chia, who began her working career in an electronics factory in Singapore, has aMiller PhotographyChia, who began her working career in an electronics factory in Singapore, has always combined paid work with public service. She was emotional as she was recognized for the many ways she contributes to the community. More than 370 educators turned out for a night of honoring their own and raising money for a good cause at the annual UFT District 20 Scholarship Dinner Dance on May 2 in Brooklyn.

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Councilman Jackson to be honored at Spring Conference

News stories

City Councilman Robert Jackson, the chair of the Council’s Education Committee, will receive the union’s most prestigious honor at its annual Spring Education Conference this year.

Jackson will be presented the John Dewey Award for Excellence in Education on Saturday, May 12, at the New York Hilton for his efforts to make a difference in the lives of New York City schoolchildren. Tickets are $50 each and can be obtained by mailing in the coupon on page 21. The deadline to get tickets is Friday, April 20.

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Praise for those who ‘keep schools running’

Feature stories

26th annual School Secretaries of the Year Awards Luncheon

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Secretaries Chapter Chair Mona Gonzalez (front row, center) with award winners (holding plaques, front row from left) Sherise Mitchell (Bronx), Paula Morrison (Brooklyn), Rita Prior (Goldie Colodny Award), Cathy DeLuca (Annette Carlucci Award), Judy Pereiro (Manhattan) and Patricia Riccardella (Staten Island), and (second row, from left) Queens honoree Barbara Augstein, UFT Assistant Secretary Bob Astrowsky and Staff Director LeRoy Barr, and (top) Paraprofessionals Chapter Chair Shelvy Young-Abrams and Bronx Borough Representative Jose Vargas.

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School secretaries and flautists Riccardella (left) and Dorothy Coltrinari of PS 169 in Manhattan perform “The Star- Spangled Banner.”

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UFT Vice President for Elementary Schools Karen Alford, the keynote speaker, addresses the group.

In welcoming some 250 guests to union headquarters for the 26th annual School Secretaries of the Year Awards Luncheon on March 31, Mona Gonzalez, the School Secretaries Chapter leader, thanked her members for the year’s good work.

“School secretaries keep schools running smoothly and efficiently,” she said. “It’s important that we acknowledge their contribution.”

The annual luncheon recognizes outstanding members of the School Secretaries Chapter, but it is also a time to take note of the state of the union, Gonzalez said.

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Hellenic American Education Association/UFT Greek heritage celebration

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Independence struggle examined

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Tziligakis lectures on lessons of the 1821 Greek War of Independence. More photos >>

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Members join in traditional dancing.

The Hellenic American Education Association/UFT held its annual Greek heritage celebration on March 15 at union headquarters with a look back on the Greek struggle for independence from the Ottoman Empire, which was won on March 25, 1821. Physicist Dr. Yannis Tziligakis of the Henry George School in Manhattan was the guest speaker, dealing with the lessons learned from the independence fight. Attendees were treated to a performance by members of the Greek-American Folklore Society. UFTers then joined the dancers.

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‘We can’t do it alone’

News stories

Fifth annual UFT Early Childhood Conference

450 educators get message that collaboration is key to success in education

Karen Alford, the UFT vice president for elementary schools, welcomes educators Miller Photography

Karen Alford, the UFT vice president for elementary schools, welcomes educators to the conference, while keynote speaker Kathleen Cashin (inset), a New York Regent, shares strategies for helping children become responsible adults.

In this workshop on smartboard technology, Kavita Bharat (left) of PS 131 at PS Miller Photography

In this workshop on smartboard technology, Kavita Bharat (left) of PS 131 at PS 380 in Brooklyn and Jennie Chu of PS 171 in Manhattan learn some tips from Tanisha Franks (center), the UFT Staten Island education liaison.

The playful yoga workshop has everyone stretching, breathing and relaxing. Miller Photography

The playful yoga workshop has everyone stretching, breathing and relaxing.

The theme of the day was “Collaboration: Changing Lives Together,” and it brought 450 early childhood educators to UFT headquarters for their fifth annual conference on March 24.

“We can’t do it alone, we know it takes parents, teachers, family child care providers, administrators, politicians and advocates for children,” said UFT Vice President for Elementary Schools Karen Alford as she welcomed the educators to their day of learning, reflection and meeting their colleagues from schools across the city.

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Guidance Counselors Chapter receives City Council proclamation

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Efforts recognized

Miller Photography Barr (standing, right) and UFT Assistant Secretary Robert Astrowsky (seated, second from right) with Thompson (holding proclamation, right) and members of the chapter’s executive board.

Members of the executive board of the UFT’s Guidance Counselors Chapter received a treat at their monthly meeting on March 19: the presentation, by UFT Director of Staff LeRoy Barr, of a proclamation from the City Council recognizing the chapter’s work in honor of National School Counseling Week, which took place Feb. 6-10. Barr delivered congratulations and praised the guidance counselors for their dedication to New York City’s students. “It’s challenging times for all of us, but there are some people who still hold what we do in the highest regard,” Barr said.

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Teacher Center director, UFT vice president retires

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Sweet emotion

Miller Photography Gentile is presented a bouquet of flowers by UFT President Michael Mulgrew.
Miller Photography Colleagues express their best wishes and affection as they belt out their special lyrics.

The secret is out: Aminda Gentile, the former UFT vice president and Teacher Center director, loves Tootsie Rolls and Peppermint Patties. The scores of friends, relatives and colleagues past and present who gathered at a retirement party in her honor on March 22 learned her secret when she was presented with a large crystal bowl filled with her sweet-tooth favorites. Lauded as an architect of the UFT’s professional development outreach, Gentile began as an elementary school teacher in 1966 and became director of the Teacher Center in 1993, eventually overseeing sites at 350 schools.

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