Skip to main content
Full Menu Close Menu

UFT 2023 city legislative priorities

FY24 executive budget

We cannot allow the city to defund our public schools 

Over the past few years, the UFT has helped secure billions in new funding for public education—including fully funded Foundation Aid from Albany - but the DOE keeps trying to cut school budgets anyway.  Advocacy by the UFT, the City Council, and parents averted one round of cuts that would have hit 585 schools this September. Because public school supporters fought back, the DOE agreed to hold these schools harmless - with no budget cuts for the start of this school year. But the UFT and parents are concerned these same schools are still at risk for mid-year budget cuts. That must not happen. 

See how budget cuts would affect students in your City Council district

The budget must support year-long guaranteed funding for: 

  • Implementation of the new class size state requirements
  • Adding social workers, counselors and school psychologists
  • Advancing an agenda for career and technical education
  • Expanding professional development opportunities for educators to help our students recover academically and emotionally from interrupted learning during the pandemic
  • Supporting newly arrived migrant students and other newcomers to our school communities with a integrated citywide effort
  • Maintaining and growing programs that work: the UFT's Teacher Center, United Community Schools, Positive Learning Collaborative, and Member Assistance Program

We are extremely disappointed: the administration's proposal shortchanges public schools, even though ample funds are available. We hope we can work with the City Council to ensure this law is implemented in a responsible and timely way and that the capital budget includes funds to build the seats we need for our students.

  • Check out this fact sheet  to see the impact of cuts to the DOE capital plan on class size reduction efforts in many of the city's Community School Districts.
Small class sizes - 2022 city legislative priorities graphic

FY23-26 Capital commitment plan 

In 2022, we successfully passed a historic class-size reduction bill at the state level that will bring our city’s class sizes in line with those in other districts around the state.

We are deeply concerned that the city’s Capital Plan does not use the coming years to build the additional seats necessary for the implementation of the class size law. The IBO found that the plan actually reduces support for Class Size reduction by over 18%. We hope we can work with the City Council to ensure the state's class size law is implemented in a responsible and timely way and that the capital budget includes funds to build the seats we need for our students. 

UFT Programs

Teacher Center

A guiding light for NYC educators for over 40 years, UFT Teacher Center accelerates learning and empowers students through award-winning embedded professional development. 

  • 140 sites across the city (30 new in 2022–23)
  • 231,000 educators, principals and parents supported in 2021–22
  • 100,000 hours of professional development provided in 2021–22

What we're asking:

  • $20 million grant to sustain our current programming and expand to up to 15 new sites

Read more about the UFT Teacher Center »
See a list of UFT Teacher Center sites »
VIDEO: PS 107 Gains a Teacher Center

United Community Schools

A recent evaluation found that students enrolled in a NYC school with a United Community Schools program during the pandemic had better attendance, high school credit accumulation and language acquisition test scores than statistically matched comparison students

  • 6:1 Community School Director’s return on investment
  • 6,000+ families fed in 2021-22
  • 14,500+ health clinic visits coordinated in 2020-21

What we're asking: 

  • $5 million grant to sustain our current network of community schools

Read more about United Community Schools »
See a list of United Community School sites »
"New York Needs More Community Schools," by Michael Mulgrew »
VIDEO: United Community Schools COVID-19 vaccine clinics
VIDEO: United Community Schools on site dental services

Member Assistance Program (MAP) 

MAP addresses the growing mental-health and wellness crisis for the union’s 200,000+ members and their families. Through counseling, workshops, support groups and more, our free services enable many educators to remain in the field. We’ve seen a 65% increase in demand for our support since the start of the pandemic.

What we're asking:

  • $2 million grant to support our program's maintenance and expansion

VIDEO: UFT Member Assistance Program Overview
VIDEO: UFT Member Assistance Program Empowers Members

Positive Learning Collaborative

For nearly a decade, this expert team of clinicians and public school educators has been using social-emotional strategies, evidence-based training and healing practices to decrease discipline incidences and improve academic performance and school climate.

What we're asking:

  • $1.7 million grant to expand our programming to school communities across the city

Read more about the Positive Learning Collaborative »
See a list of Positive Learning Collaborative sites »
Staten Island school helps kids recover from the pandemic
VIDEO: Positive Learning Collaborative & Restorative Justice
VIDEO: Sensory Tools for Healing School

BRAVE Anti-bullying Hotline

24 hours a day, 7 days a week, students, families, and educators dealing with bullying can contact our hotline for immediate help resolving these detrimental situations.

What we're asking:

  • $220,000 to sustain our anti-bullying programming for students and educators

VIDEO: Queens middle school wins UFT's BRAVE Video Contest

Dial-a-Teacher homework helpline

Fielding more than 40,000 calls in 9 languages last year, our acclaimed homework helpline is expanding to help students citywide from all grades, across many disciplines and languages.

What we're asking:

Citywide Programs

Teacher's Choice

This key initiative ensures teachers are reimbursed for supplies and materials they buy for their classrooms and students in need. We are grateful for the $20 million allocation in the FY2023 preliminary budget.

What we're asking:

  • Baseline the program in the FY24 budget at $20 million
Broadway Bridges

Every New York City high school student should see a Broadway show before they graduate, and this program provides tickets to high school students so they can experience the city’s rich cultural opportunities.

What we're asking:

  • Support this initiative in the FY2024 City Council budget

State legislative priorities

See the UFT's 2023 policy recommendations for New York State.