The following email was sent on Aug. 28 from Teachers Assigned Chapter Leader Naomi Rodriguez.
I want to thank you for demonstrating resiliency, perseverance and patience during such uncertain times. I know how difficult it has been for all of us to plan our lives without definitive answers to so many questions. Now that we are about to return to work, I sense the urgency of your concerns and wanted to do whatever I can to reassure you that the union is fighting for you.
Below, you'll find the most current information regarding redeployment, working remotely and what the UFT is doing.
The UFT and the DOE are discussing our redeployment but have not reached any terms. The UFT will ensure that proper procedures are in place to protect our contractual rights.
Some of your supervisors have mentioned the possibility for excessing. The DOE-UFT collective bargaining agreement and state law govern excessing for UFT members. Excessing follows reverse seniority for all teachers assigned on a citywide basis.
Teachers assigned will work remotely until further notice. If you are told to report to an office building without proper safety guidelines and procedures in place, please notify me immediately at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The term “layoff” refers to firing personnel when the total municipal workforce must be reduced or when too few positions exist in the city school system in a specific license area vis a vis the number of employees in that license area. Layoffs occur in reverse seniority on a citywide basis for teachers assigned as per the DOE-UFT contract.
We have the responsibility to reopen school buildings because the infection rate in NYC is low but not at the risk to our students' or our health. The UFT is prepared to go to court or to ask the UFT Executive Board and UFT Delegate Assembly, the decision-making elected bodies of the UFT, to authorize a job action to ensure that school buildings are safe before we return. We must stick together in the event of a job action if we are to be successful. One union, one voice.
You can certainly help advance our cause by taking action. Please contact Mayor Bill de Blasio and tell him we need supplies, procedures and mandated testing before we can return to school buildings for the safety of ourselves and our students and all our families.
Virtual Content specialist — New posted position
The DOE and UFT have created a new role that teachers assigned may be interested in. A VCS will develop resources and class materials for remote learning. For those teachers assigned who are instructional coaches, this position may be to your liking. No one may be assigned to this position, but you have the right to apply. Please check the DOE InfoHub for this job posting.
Our union's leadership has been working 24/7 and will continue working through this weekend to try to negotiate terms to ensure our safety. I know that I can count on you to stand united if we must act. We must be diligent and strategic as we advocate for children and educators.
Please join me on our MS Teams platform to organize and discuss your rights and concerns. If you need information about this platform, please contact me.
Teachers Assigned Chapter Leader