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Audiologists Chapter Newsletter - January 2016

Welcome back! I hope you had a restful break. The weeks will fly by as we go from school to school, supporting our hearing-impaired and deaf students. For those of us at CSEs, our cases along with parent and student advocacy keep us busy at our desks and on SESIS. I’d like to thank you for your hard work and dedication in ensuring that our hearing-impaired and deaf students receive the support they need.

I would like to take this opportunity to share some information with you. Please take a moment to read this newsletter and follow up on some of the suggestions below.

If you, or any chapter members you know, haven’t already done so, I encourage you to sign up on the UFT website for email alerts. It’s the best way to receive important news, updates and action items from our union.

Sign up on now »

When you sign up on the website, you gain access to a number of features, including a searchable version of the contract, online health benefits forms, online enrollment in UFT courses and our “Have a question? Ask the union” feature.

As you know, the UFT has made a big push in recent years to use social media to communicate with members. To help you stay connected with our union, I encourage you to:

  • Sign up for text messaging Be the first to hear about school closings due to weather emergencies and other important information and helpful reminders. Sign up on or text “UFT” to 30644.
  • “Like” the UFT on Facebook – “Like” the UFT Facebook page to read, share and comment on UFT posts on education and labor issues. Please be sure to follow the DOE guidelines on social media.
  • Follow @UFT on Twitter – Twitter is the new face of advocacy, where you and your members can help educate policy makers and elected officials about the most important issues in education and the challenges that UFT members face. You can follow the UFT on Twitter at @UFT, encourage your members to join the conversation, and participate in the union’s campaigns on Twitter.

Please remember that I am here for you. Feel free to contact me with any issues, concerns, questions or suggestions. You can reach me at

I wish you a healthy and happy new year!


Susan Kavanagh
Audiologist Chapter Leader

Teacher’s Choice

Teacher’s Choice for teachers has increased to $122 this school year. We audiologists often spend our own money on materials to do our jobs. I hope that the increase this year will help offset some of these personal expenditures. As in prior years, to participate in Teacher’s Choice, you need to submit receipts as proof-of-purchase. These receipts must accompany a Statement of Purpose/Accountability form, which you will find under key documents on the DOE’s Teacher’s Choice website. To qualify, purchases must be made between Aug. 1, 2015 and Jan. 8, 2016. If you receive the Teacher's Choice funds in your paycheck and do not file an accountability form with required receipts by the Jan. 15, 2016 deadline, you must refund the money to the DOE.

For more information, please see the Teacher’s Choice section of the UFT website.

The walk for hearing

Susan Staal, audiologist

Audiologist Stephanie Levine, far right, was among hundreds who gathered on Sept. 27 to raise money to benefit students and others with hearing loss.

Audiologist Stephanie Levine participated in the NYC Walk4Hearing on Sept. 27, 2015 along with many of her colleagues from the Hearing Education Services Chapter.

Each year, UFT members from the Audiologist Chapter and the Hearing Education Services Chapter participate in the walk to raise funds for research, consumer education and advocacy. Every step taken, and every dollar raised, helps the organization assist students and others with hearing loss.

I am proud of our efforts as UFT members to raise awareness and funds for this annual event, which is the largest walk for hearing loss awareness in the country. I thank everyone who participated this year and hope many more will come out in support next year.

See more photos from the walk »

Murrow HS: A 2015 school in action

Susan Staal, audiologist

Susan Staal, CSE audiologist, Edward R. Murrow HS

Congratulations to Edward R. Murrow High School, which was was one of seven schools recognized at Teacher Union Day on Nov. 1. The school’s staff was honored for its work defending public education against Gov. Cuomo’s attacks last spring. Murrow HS is also very dear to us, as it hosts our own Susan Staal, an audiologist for CSE 6 in Brooklyn.

Susan has been based at Edward R. Murrow HS for 20 years. While she was once one of three audiologists, along with a full Hearing Handicapped Visually Impaired team, at the high school, she now works by herself. (At one time, Edward R. Murrow HS even had a self-contained class for deaf and hard-of-hearing students as well as a hearing resource room!) Now, the audiology booth is situated within the dean’s office. The school’s administration is aware that Susan is bringing children in with their families for testing and they are respectful.

The administration is also very supportive of her work, allowing her full access to faxing and copying facilities. Security guards are also particularly helpful, directing families to her office, and making sure that they don’t get lost in such a large building.

As one of only two CSE-based audiologists in the borough, Susan's work keeps her mostly in her office. Occasionally, when she can find the time, Susan also enjoys attending performances at the high school, which enrolls approximately 4,000 students year-round and is known for its outstanding theater program. We honor Susan for her commitment to her work and Edward R. Murrow HS for all the support that it provides.

Chapter calendar

Please review our chapter calendar for upcoming meetings and events:

Upcoming events include:

UFT Men in Education Symposium
Date: Saturday, Jan. 30
Time: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: UFT headquarters, 52 Broadway. Directions »

9th Annual Early Childhood Conference
Date: Saturday, March 5
Time: All day
Location: UFT headquarters, 52 Broadway. Directions »

Related Topics: Chapter News