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Op-Eds

In schools, safety matters most

The arrival of vaccines against the coronavirus is the news we have been waiting for — the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. But we can’t let that good news lead the city to abandon a careful approach to getting and keeping our schools open.

How to fix remote learning in NYC

So far, the logistical and safety challenges of re-opening schools have been met. But despite enormous efforts by teachers, remote learning — something more than 540,000 kids now rely on all the time, and the rest rely on all or part of the time — is still lagging.

The kind of testing schools really need

The state and the city have the time in the coming months to create a thoughtful, comprehensive plan to safely reopen school buildings and bring teachers and children back together.

UFT position on Medicaid redesign

New York City cannot absorb $1.1 billion in new Medicaid costs as part of the state’s efforts to shift its own financial responsibilities onto local communities.

Excluding the Neediest Students is Key to Top Charter Schools’ Success

New York City’s charter schools have a history of shutting the schoolhouse door to many of our neediest children, such as English language learners, special education students or those from the poorest families. Charters as a group enroll a significantly smaller percentage of such pupils than the public schools.

Expand gifted and talented education

We need to expand and not contract, much less eliminate, specialized programs for high-achieving youngsters.

Stop adding new charter schools: Keep the cap and ensure that badly needed financial resources flow to traditional public schools

New York State legislators need to halt planned charter school expansions that would only solidify charters as a parallel — but unregulated and discriminatory — school system, one that is draining resources from many of New York’s neediest kids.

Testing overkill and its consequences

New York City and New York State fell prey to the movement that made standardized tests in reading and math the only important measure of student and school success.

The specialized high school controversy is a political sideshow

Current proposals to deal with the appalling lack of black and Hispanic students in the city's specialized high schools by creating even more such "exam" schools are feeding the political and media obsession with these schools; at the same time this focus distracts the system from the much larger problem -- the academic isolation that affects tens of thousands of students in roughly 20 percent of city high schools. 

The Supreme Court's Janus decision is one battle in an ongoing fight unions will win

The finding in the Janus case will make it more difficult for unions to gather the resources they need to defend the interests of workers and their families. But our union will remain strong, and we will not be silenced.