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New York TeacherDecember 12, 2019

Volume LXI, Number 3

Latest News

school supplies
National News

Teacher prep enrollment drops sharply

Enrollment in teacher preparation programs has declined across the United States by more than a third since 2010, according to a new study from the Center for American Progress

Generic school funding word cloud
National News

New Massachusetts law cuts school funding gaps

 Massachusetts adopted a law on Nov. 26 that will provide an additional $1.5 billion to the state’s school districts.

Indiana teachers march for education
National News

Indiana teachers march for education

Thousands of red-garbed educators and their supporters marched through Indianapolis on Nov. 19 for a Red for Ed Action Day to demand improvements to public education in Indiana.

On the button Bright Horizons
News Stories

On the button

Bright Horizons Day Care workers in downtown Brooklyn have triumphantly pinned their “Union Proud” buttons back on to celebrate winning a National Labor Relations Board settlement in October that ensures the UFT members "have the right to wear union buttons and other union insignia in the workplace.”

Feature Stories

Speech pathologists go through a letter sound drill

Sound initiative

As part of a speech literacy initiative launched by the Department of Education in 2014 in about 150 schools, Marjorie James pushes into the kindergarten Integrated Co-Teaching class at the East Elmhurst Community School three times a week and works closely with its teachers.

Good hang-ups

Good hang-ups

What’s a teacher to do when students are focused on their cellphones instead of the day’s lesson? 

Member Spotlight

Diana Gorda listing image
What I Do

What I do: Diana Gorda, lab specialist

Diana Gorda is a lab specialist at James Madison HS in Brooklyn, where she works to make sure that science teachers and the school’s 4,000 students have everything they need to perform safe and engaging laboratory experiments.

Anne Wine
Chapter Leader Shoutout

Kudos to Anne Wine, PS 150, Queens

PS 150 Chapter Leader Anne Wine successfully went to bat for three probationary teachers in her Queens school who were being treated unfairly.

Around the UFT

NYC Association of Foreign Language conference

NYC Association of Foreign Language Teachers/UFT conference

More than 200 participants at the New York City Association of Foreign Language Teachers/UFT’s 22nd annual conference left UFT headquarters in Manhattan “with a repertoire of materials that will keep them busy for the next few months of teaching,” said teacher Nunzia Manginelli of Esperanza Preparatory Academy in Manhattan, the group’s vice president and the conference chairperson.

LGBTQ Youth Empowerment Dinner

LGBTQ Youth Empowerment Dinner

The UFT’s first LGBTQ Youth Empowerment Dinner drew more than 300 people to union headquarters and raised nearly $21,000 for the Daniel Dromm Scholarship Fund, which awards scholarships to graduating seniors from New York City public schools to honor their LGBTQ activism.

NYCATAUFT conference

NYCATA/UFT conference

“There’s something so rewarding and magical about starting with nothing and making something amazing,” said teacher Mary Agramonte of Origins HS in Brooklyn, a presenter at the 38th annual conference of the New York City Art Teachers Association/UFT.

Karen Chambers, a parent volunteer for the Brooklyn conference, displays a 10th-anniversary cake.

A perfect 10

Ten years, 50 conferences! Every fall since 2010, public school parents and community leaders in each borough have flocked to five Saturday conferences, courtesy of the UFT. This year, the borough-specific events had an especially festive atmosphere as they marked their 10th anniversary.

Aileen Corullo (left) and her daughter, Kim Corullo

On the front line of quality health care

“The same way parents ask questions about class size, I want every patient to ask questions about the staffing ratio in hospitals,” UFT President Michael Mulgrew said as he welcomed nurses to the Westin Grand Central in Manhattan on Nov. 22 for the 40th annual Professional Issues Conference of the Federation of Nurses/UFT.

You Should Know

Grants, Awards & Freebies
A teacher with young students

Grants, Awards & Freebies

See our list of current opportunities for educators to receive funds and recognition for their hard work and dedication. 

Secure Your Future
Blue dollar, green arrow

Your passport to earning

The Teachers’ Retirement System Passport Funds are diverse investment choices carefully designed to help TRS members who participate in the Tax-Deferred Annuity (TDA) Program save for retirement. Here is an overview of the funds that will be available as of January 2020.

For Your Information
Albert Shanker College Scholarship Fund logo

High school seniors may apply for Shanker scholarships

Do you work in a high school? Make sure high school seniors in your school apply for a $5,000 Albert Shanker college scholarship.

For Your Information
Business man passing money

Teacher’s Choice spending deadline

The deadline for spending Teacher’s Choice funds is Jan. 12, 2020. You should submit your receipts for purchases made between Aug. 1, 2019, and Jan. 12, 2020, along with the Teacher’s Choice Accountability Form detailing your purchases, by Jan. 17, 2020, to your payroll secretary.

Q&A on the Issues
US Census Generic

Census 2020

The next United States Census is scheduled for 2020, and the UFT is working to encourage participation in this collection of vital data. 


President's Perspective
Men holding strike signs

The power of collective action

The Red for Ed movement continues to be a rallying cry for teachers around the country who are fed up with underfunded schools and low wages. We in New York City set the standard for public school educators about what it is possible to gain when you belong to a strong union.

Thanksgiving Luncheon for Homeless Students 2019

Helping our students in homeless shelters

The UFT Middle School Division’s annual Thanksgiving Holiday Feast and Winter Clothing Drive for homeless students demonstrates what Thanksgiving is all about.

Michael Bloomberg

He's back

Bloomberg is spinning his record furiously, trying to make his case for 2020. It’s up to those of us who remember the truth of what happened during his mayoralty to set the record straight.

Nurse Marisol Leon listens to a student’s heart at the new clinic.

Quality hospital care

Safe staffing enables patients to get the care they deserve when hospitalized — and it must be locked in by legislation.

Teaching Resources

Linking to Learning
A teacher assigns students to watch a video for homework

The flipped classroom model

The flipped classroom — which reverses the traditional model of delivering direct instruction in class and assigning practice and activities for homework — is not for everyone. Here are some of the advantages and drawbacks of the model so you can better decide if you want to give this method a try.

Teacher to Teacher
Teacher Erin Schneider

No reason to blow off STEAM

If you are an educator without any formal training or background in science, being told to teach STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics) may seem daunting. There’s the fear of the unknown, the fear of failure, the fear of not being able to tackle it all.

Building Your Career

Inside My Classroom
Classroom with two composition book rugs

A real-life composition notebook classroom

As a literacy teacher to 5th-graders, it is always my mission to develop engaging ways to influence my students to love reading and writing.

New Teacher Articles
Young woman holding up a calculator

It's a good time for a financial checkup

Take a look at your financial life and take steps to ensure you’re on the right track.

New Teacher Diaries
Girl sitting at a desk tossing a dictionary

Avoiding flying dictionaries

For students struggling with literacy in their home language, an English dictionary is more of an obstacle than an aid.

Retired Teachers News

Mature couple in costume
RTC Second Act

Loving the next stage of life

Ask Harvey Widell, age 87, about retiring and he asks, “Why?”

But he is retired, after a fashion. Widell retired after 32 years as an English teacher in the gifted program at JHS 240 in Brooklyn and moved to Florida in 1999. “But now,” he said, “I’m more active than I ever was.”

For the past 20 years, Widell has been performing in and directing two traveling theater troupes — Way Off-Broadway Players and Theater Voices — in the Fort Lauderdale area, with performances in 55 communities.

Widell is currently in rehearsal for “South Pacific,” taking on the lead role made famous by Ezio Pinza. Last year he played Henry Higgins in “My Fair Lady,” and the year before that he was Tevye in “Fiddler on the Roof.”

Widell said he got the hang of performing and directing in Long Island community theater groups while he…

Tom Murphy
RTC Chapter Leader Column

Two different worlds

People look at the same things, the same event and even the same truth differently. That includes politics — and the prospect of impeachment.

New Retiree Luncheon

New Retiree Luncheon

"You have reached the promised land,” UFT President Michael Mulgrew said, congratulating 650 cheering new retirees at the union’s luncheon in their honor at the New York Hilton in midtown Manhattan on Nov. 26.

More in Retired Teachers Chapter News