In what was a pivotal moment in its two-year organizing drive, the UFT on May 17, 2007, handed in more than 12,000 cards signed by home-based child care providers indicating these workers wanted the union to represent them.
Then-UFT President Randi Weingarten, along with elected officials and labor leaders, delivered the cards to the State Employment Relations Board in red wagons.
The action came six days after then-Gov. Eliot Spitzer signed an executive order permitting the providers to unionize.
Three months later, in August, the state board announced it had certified the cards. And following an intense door-knocking campaign, phone banks and get-out-the-vote rallies, the city’s 28,000 providers voted overwhelmingly in October to join the UFT.
Dressed in crisp, white lab coats, students gave tours of the new science lab at MS 484 in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, on March 13 and had the opportunity to see the hydroponic growing systems they had been studying in action.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
In the same way we thanked our police, firefighters and EMS workers after 9/11, we are going to have to thank our doctors, nurses and medical personnel who are on the front line of this virus worldwide.
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.
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.
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,” she said.
At the UFT’s Teacher Union Day in 2018, Pulice won the Public School Proud Award for her Twitter postings on all the wonderful things happening in public schools. “I had all that positive experience in my back pocket when I retired that year,” she said.
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