Michael Mulgrew, President of the United Federation of Teachers, highlights the crucial role UFT Teacher Centers have played both historically and during the COVID-19 pandemic, and petitions Albany legislators to increase state funding for this essential program that greatly benefits New York City teachers and students.
Now more than ever...
As our students and our schools struggle to overcome the effects of the COVID pandemic, the UFT Teacher Center has a critical role to play.
The Teacher Center, a source of professional development for New York City teachers for more than 40 years, gives our educators the insight and professional tools they need to help our students face the challenges of today.
In the last school year alone, the UFT’s Teacher Center has provided more than 126,000 hours of professional development to over 280,000 educators, principals, and even parents.
The 118 Teacher Center sites are embedded in city schools across all five boroughs. In every center, veteran teachers who have gone through special training provide seminars, workshops, lesson modeling, and other professional development to their colleagues, both new and experienced.
The topics range widely but are focused on what educators, students (and parents) need right now, whether that’s sharing academic recovery strategies, incorporating new technology into lessons, or even strategies to help students weather trauma.
During the pandemic, Teacher Center instructors have helped their colleagues build remote classrooms across multiple platforms, assisted them in crafting lessons that honor children’s cultural backgrounds, and even showed them ways to comfort the child whose parent died of COVID.
Teacher Center experts have done this work in person, at our school sites, as well as through virtual seminars and workshops that have helped tens of thousands of New York City educators.
Ninety-nine percent of the educators involved in the program in the last school year reported that their participation helped improve their teaching.
Gov. Hochul sees the value of this work. She has proposed investing $14 million this year to support both the UFT Teacher Center program and similar professional learning options elsewhere in the state.
For the sake of children in New York City and across the state, we are asking our Albany legislators to match this amount to bring the total state investment to $28.5 million.