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New York TeacherApril 30, 2020

Volume LXI, Number 6

Latest News

JHS 291 Chapter Leader Catherine Rhee (left) and paraprofessional Frances Rivera
News Stories

Brooklyn school fights off charter’s expansion

The UFT helps parents and the community thwart the expansion of a co-located charter school in Brooklyn.

The delegate assembly takes place while a camera is recording to live stream the meeting.
News Stories

Delegate meetings go remote

The March and April Delegate Assembly meetings took place in unusual formats because of the coronavirus pandemic. 

the amazon logo but with the arrow flipped to show a sad face
National News

Prime peril for profit 

As consumers increasingly rely on Amazon for their shopping needs during the coronavirus crisis, the company’s workers say the digital giant is putting their health in peril to turn a profit.

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Feature Stories

Mr_Greene used Spark app

Remote control

When Lauren Nocco thinks about her successful transition to teaching kindergarten online, one thing is crystal clear: “Networking is everything,” said Nocco, who teaches at PS 66 in Canarsie, Brooklyn.

That’s what New York City public school educators have discovered as they struggle to deliver remote instruction to students in the midst of a global pandemic that has shut down schools. With only three days to prepare, teachers reached out to one another to share information and resources as they launched remote classrooms — and they continue to do so.

“It’s amazing what teachers are doing to help each other,” Nocco said.

Educators have used various software platforms to stay in touch with students and their families and to conduct school business. But in this constantly evolving environment, sometimes just when they learn one platform, they …

Providers Walking
Today's history lesson

May 17, 2007: 12,000 family child care providers request UFT representation

Thirteen years ago, home-based child care providers marked a milestone in their campaign to join the UFT.

A teacher goes through supplies from a tote bag

Supplies Party

PS 188 in Coney Island, Brooklyn, is remembering a former educator at the school by giving teachers tote bags full of supplies purchased thanks to a donation by her daughter.

Member Spotlight

Thomas Pascarella
Chapter Leader Shoutout

Kudos to Thomas Pascarella, PS 48, Brooklyn

PS 48 in Brooklyn praises chapter leader for getting entire school online for distance learning.

Kenneth McLaughlin
What I Do

What I do: Kenneth McLaughlin, attendance teacher

Attendance teachers ensure that students and their families have the support they need so students attend school every day or participate using technology during this remote-learning period.

Around the UFT

Participants in the meeting take part in an exercise. Two women in the front are engaged.

UFT-DOE curriculum focus group

UFT-DOE focus group considers how best to evaluate and implement curricula that exemplify clear standards.

School Counselors Conference

School Counselors Conference

UFT President Michael Mulgrew praised school counselors for "keeping people calm" daily as well as in a crisis during the 16th annual School Counselors Conference at UFT headquarters in Manhattan on March 7.

Your Rights and Benefits

Know Your Benefits
Woman at Computer

Health services during pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has prompted city health care providers and the UFT Welfare Fund to retool how they provide services while offering extra support for those who become infected with the coronavirus.

Know Your Rights
Salary Generic


In addition to the regular pay increases negotiated in each city Department of Education-UFT contract, UFT-represented teachers and other pedagogues receive differentials, step payments and longevity increases based on their level of education and years of service.

Your Well-being
Blue hexagon showing three figures

Our new reality

If you feel your life has been upended overnight, you’re not alone. The coronavirus crisis has changed everyone’s reality and adapting is an ongoing challenge.

You Should Know

Q&A on the Issues
The coronavirus era

The coronavirus era

Elements of the UFT-DOE contract do not translate easily to the remote era of teaching and learning, so the DOE, in consultation with the UFT, issued new guidance and created new protocols and procedures for school staff. This Q&A answers some of the most commonly asked questions.

Secure Your Future
Stack coins in front of an out of focus clock

CARES Act allows easier access to retirement funds

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act passed by Congress in early April allows easier access to retirement funds for those U.S. residents still working but in financial need.

Secure Your Future
Coins and tree

Pandemic and your pension

The coronavirus pandemic has had a serious impact on financial markets around the world. Many U.S. families have lost savings.


Sewing pattern with instructions on Instagram

Getting students career ready — remotely

When the coronavirus crisis forced city public schools to make the transition to remote learning, career and technical education teachers faced an additional hurdle: how to recreate the hands-on learning that is so important for getting students career ready.

President's Perspective
Nurses wearing PPE holding up sign thanking UFT for wrapped lunches

Pulling through together

UFT members have confronted the biggest personal and professional challenges in more than a generation, and have met them with integrity.

Map of five boroughs showing census participation

Census urgency rises

The importance of every New Yorker being counted in the 2020 Census has taken on fresh urgency in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and the recession it has triggered. Funding for New York City public schools is at stake. The Census count will determine whether New York City and New York State get their fair shares of federal funding for the next decade.

Three school nurses in PPE at a NYC school enrichment center

School nurses are vital

When school buildings closed on March 17, school nurses were assigned to the regional education centers that opened to care for the children of first responders. When hospitals were flooded with scores of sick New Yorkers, the city turned to school nurses again to help staff municipal nursing homes experiencing staffing shortages. We’re proud of our school nurses for stepping up. They unquestionably helped save lives.

Teaching Resources

Teacher to Teacher
Women sitting in front of a laptop

Assessing effectiveness of remote learning

Is remote learning effective? Here are some ways to find out.

Learning Curve
Johanna McNeal

Making connections

When schools transitioned to remote learning, I was anxious not just about schoolwork but about socialization. How can teachers maintain an engaging, interactive relationship with their students when they can no longer be in the same room? Educators share the same concerns.

Building Your Career

Inside My Classroom
Inside my home classroom

My own mini classroom at home

A Brooklyn kindergarten teacher creates a mini classroom to maintain a sense of normalcy while teaching from home.

New Teacher Articles
Many members of the union smile and pose for a group photo during a tenure celebration

Certification, tenure angst?

If you're a newer teacher with concerns about your ability to get your certification and/or tenure during  this remote-teaching time, the UFT has your back.

New Teacher Diaries
Teacher with a student

Let’s not lose sight of our ‘why’

In mid-March, all teachers were faced with the challenge of continuing to serve and support their students from a distance due to COVID-19. As a second-year speech teacher, I have struggled to figure out, with little training and guidance, how to translate a full schedule of face-to-face therapy into a full schedule of tele-therapy.

Retired Teachers News

Facebook Logo
RTC Service

Facebook keeps retirees connected

In these unsettling times, the Retired Teachers Chapter is making every effort to reach out to reassure and support its members. That means using all available avenues to keep in touch with the 70,000 UFT retirees across the country. Facebook is becoming an important part of their outreach.

The chapter in 2019 organized a Facebook group for New York retirees called UFT Retired Teachers Chapter, which has 235 local retirees as members.

Staten Island retiree Susan Pulice, who serves as the group’s administrator, said she wanted to share all the benefits of retirement with UFT retirees in the New York metropolitan area. She envisioned the Facebook group as both an information hub as well as a place to post inspirational messages, photos, travel tips, book reviews and anything “that makes our retiree life better,” sh…

Steven Sacknoff
RTC Second Act

Smooth sailing for science guru

Retired teacher uses his skill as an educator and his love of sailing on the Hudson River to transition into a captain on electric boats at a conservancy, where he teaches about Southwest Florida's ecosystem

Tom Murphy
RTC Chapter Leader Column

‘Love in the Time of Cholera’

As we navigate the uncertainty of life during the coronavirus pandemic, we still have work to do as UFT members and activists. As always, the RTC is ready to answer our union's call.

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