Skip to main content
Full Menu

Hearing Education Services Newsletter Summer 2014

As the school year ends, I am very happy to report that it has been an exciting year. Finally, we have great people supporting us: Mayor Bill de Blasio and Chancellor Fariña. We went through a long hard era of constantly fighting with the previous administration. That is over!

We have a new contract that gives us the respect we need as professionals and gives our students the support they need. There will be no more disregarding of teachers.

As your chapter leader, I have visited almost all self-contained classes for hearing education services. I heard all the teachers' concerns. I had consultation meetings with Ms. Kaufman every month, and we resolved the issues that came up. I also spoke to the H.E.S. related services providers and had their concerns heard. In addition, I provided UFT speakers for our monthly chapter meetings.

I want to thank Danna Kafko, a Brooklyn related service provider who is also my delegate, for coming with me to all the meetings and delegate assemblies every month and for taking all the notes. I also want to thank all of you for the help and support you give me all the time.  Whenever I asked for something, H.E.S. members responded immediately. It is a pleasure to serve you. 

My goal for next year is to continue working with all of you and to expand participation in the consultation process. I also want to continue working on issues that we didn't resolve this year. I look forward also to making progress in planning more professional development for our chapter’s members and improving learning conditions for our hearing impaired students.

Have a wonderful summer!

Rest. Relax. Recharge.

Cecilia Cortez
Chapter Leader


Lesson plans

An arbitrator has ruled in the UFT’s favor that lesson plans are for the personal use of the teacher and that principals may not mandate specific elements of lesson plans. While the arbitrator acknowledged that all teachers are required to write lesson plans, she noted that the specifics of the plan will be left to the professional judgment of the teacher. Supervisors can dictate the elements of a lesson plan only for teachers who have received an Ineffective or Unsatisfactory rating or who have been formally warned that they are in danger of receiving one of those ratings.

In addition, the arbitrator emphasized that lesson plans cannot be reviewed in isolation but only as part of a formal or informal observation. Recognizing that the lesson plan is only a part of the whole process of planning a lesson, the arbitrator noted the lesson plan could serve as a starting point for a conversation on planning. Read the full story on

The actor Richard Thomas describes the kind of collaborative environment that can benefit our work in the schools:

If people work together in an open way with porous boundaries - that is, if they listen to each other and really talk to each other — then they are bound to trade ideas that are mutual to each other and be influenced by each other. That mutual influence and open system of working creates collaboration.

— Richard Thomas

Related Topics: Chapter News