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Family and friends of IS 34 teacher Anton Updale at the renaming of the street where he grew up.

Signs of the times

Three streets on Staten Island have been renamed to remember educators who died during the Covid pandemic. Two of those streets are near IS 24 in Great Kills and honor Sharon Nearby and Melissa Kruppa, early victims of the virus. The third street, in Princes Bay, was named in honor of IS 34 teacher Anton Updale.

Teacher teaching acting

Flower power

The new retreat room at PS 146 in Howard Beach, Queens, has brightly painted walls, fluffy rugs and soft pillows and is a comfortable safe space, alternative learning environment, relaxation and de-escalation area, and club room for students in the pre-K—grade 8 school.

Snake

The cat’s out of the bag

Pets in the Classroom, a program that gives financial support to pre-K through 9th-grade teachers for small animals to keep in their classrooms, provides teachers with one initial voucher or rebate to purchase a pet and necessary supplies and then a yearly $50 “sustaining” grant for upkeep.

Art teacher Erin McCarthy stands next to the mosaic she created with the help of P369K staff and students in memory of paraprofessional Rulx Dagus.

A mosaic memorial

Colleagues and students create a mosaic mural to remember Rulx Dagus, a paraprofessional at P 369K in Park Slope, Brooklyn, who died of COVID-19. 

Schoolhouse Heroes

Schoolhouse heroes

Three New York City public school educators jumped into action when they saw their students in distress, and their help made the difference in each life-threatening situation.

Stunning Amazon upset

Stunning Amazon upset

The Amazon Labor Union wins one organizing battle and loses one at two of the company's Staten Island warehouses.

Amy Turchiaro won a grant to fund a fencing club at PS 340 in the Bronx

En garde!

Every Friday after school at PS 340 in the Kingsbridge Heights section of the Bronx, 20 students march into the school cafeteria and prepare to attack each other with swords. They are participants in the school’s first-ever fencing club, launched in February 2022 by school psychologist Amy Turchiaro.

art of collaboration

The art of collaboration

Collaboration among three arts teachers and their classes at PS 295 in Brooklyn led to a 90-second commercial. They came up with the idea and designed a product in art class, composed a jingle in music class and wrote a script and acted out the commercial in drama class. 

Clothes closet 'fills a need'

Clothes closet ‘fills a need’

PS 52 in Queens, a school with a large population of students in temporary housing, has furbished a room called the community closet fully stocked with children's clothes of all sizes. “We don’t beat the drum about it, but it quietly fills a need and allows for dignity,” said one teacher.

Doing the honors at the Longwood Academy of Discovery in the Bronx are (from left) state Assemblyman Kenny Burgos, Chapter Leader Stephanie Sangosse, Principal Victoria Najera, Teacher Center site coach Veronica Vadi and UFT District 8 Representative Karen Aldorando.

Centers of Attention

When Cara Jacofsky began her teaching career 23 years ago, she was determined to become the best teacher she could be for her students, so she connected with the UFT Teacher Center. “The first few years of my teaching career, they would plan lessons with me and give me materials,” Jacofsky said. “It helped build the foundation of my teaching.”