Dear parents, grandparents, guardians and education activists,
March is the month when we celebrate women's history and recognize the amazing work of powerful women in our lives, whether those women are our loved ones, our colleagues or ourselves! To mark the occasion, I want to highlight the work of Rima Izquierdo and Erika Gonzalez.
Rima has four children enrolled in New York City public schools for whom she models her belief in social justice and human rights through her volunteer work and her advocacy. She's organized events like a pop-up food pantry, virtual parent empowerment workshops and support groups. She is also a tireless advocate for families of students with disabilities and families whose primary language is not English, helping them access needed services.
Erika serves as the president of the parent association and is on the school leadership team at PS 86. In particular, she is passionate about supporting Latino families and students with special needs. This passion is manifested in her work collaborating with local food pantries, parks and other organizations to get food, books and other needed supplies for her neighbors.
Rima and Erika are just two of the thousands of powerful women who are parents and caregivers of children in city public schools who fight every day to uplift families in their communities. The UFT is honored to support their work and yours. Happy Women's History Month!
UFT Director of Community and Parent Engagement
Upcoming UFT events
- Tuesday, March 23: The Staten Island parent outreach committee will host a free, online workshop about how to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning in your home from 5 to 6 p.m. via Zoom. Register online.
- Tuesday, March 30: The Staten Island parent outreach committee will hold the same workshop about how to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning, this time in Spanish, from 5 to 6 p.m. Register online.
- Saturday, April 19: The Brooklyn parent outreach committee will host an online presentation about free summer camps and programs in NYC from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. via Zoom. Register online.
- Saturdays, April 10 and 24: The UFT Teacher Center will host its Saturday Academy enrichment classes for students of all ages and grade levels. These fun, engaging online activities will complement what your child is working on in school. Register online.
UFT BRAVEline is now open 24/7
The UFT's free anti-bullying mental health hotline, BRAVEline, is now open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can reach us by phone at 212-709-3222, via text by texting BRAVE to 43961 or via our anonymous online chat. Please help us spread the word to students and families!
The UFT's BRAVE campaign also offers free, online workshops for students, parents and school staff about preventing bullying. fcc To request a workshop for your child's school, talk to your PTA/PA president, principal, UFT chapter leader and parent coordinator, then fill out our workshop request form.
Ranked-choice voting in NYC
Starting this year, New York City will use ranked-choice voting in primary and special elections for city offices, such as mayor and City Council member. With ranked-choice voting, you can rank up to five candidates in order of preference instead of choosing just one.
Have you received your $420 P-EBT benefit?
Last March, the state issued a Pandemic EBT food benefit, sending $420 per child to every family of public school students. If you did not receive your P-EBT card, or if you're wondering whether there will be a second payment, check out this information sheet in English and Spanish.