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Teachers Assigned Chapter Newsletter - Spring 2016

The fabulous work you do every day has not gone unnoticed by the union’s leadership, and it’s why we plan events at which you can share your knowledge and experiences with one another. On that subject, we are planning our next gathering — our spring meet-and-greet — and I hope you can attend. I’ll announce details soon.

Although our positions and job responsibilities vary greatly, we have enough in common that attendance at our events will help you stay connected with one another. As your chapter leader, I find speaking with you in person the ideal way to find out what’s on your mind.

I also want to take a moment to thank those of you who attended our meet-and-greet on Jan. 28. We had a wonderful showing and I was happy to get to know you better and hear about your issues of concern.

Last, if you have any special announcements or information that might be helpful to your colleagues, please let me know. I can include it in future newsletters.

Thank you for your dedication to your profession and your union. I hope you enjoy the rest of the school year!

Sincerely, 

Shelia Laval-Friedman
Teachers Assigned Chapter Leader


Join the Union Loud and Proud campaign

As you know, we await the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court on Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, a case that could have major repercussions nationwide for public employee unions.

This case was brought to the courts by union-busting billionaires and is just part of a drive to deprive public-sector unions of the necessary financial resources to effectively fight on behalf of their members. New York is one of 23 states where public-sector employees, who choose not to join a union, pay an agency fee — or “fair share” fee — because they benefit from the union’s collective bargaining, including higher salaries, better benefits and workplace protections.

The Friedrichs plaintiffs argue that the payment of these fees violates their First Amendment rights because every single thing that a public-sector union says to the government is political speech. They want to make New York and every other state a “right-to-work” state. Not surprisingly, those who live in right-to-work states make less money and have fewer job protections.

While the death of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia on Feb. 13 may have temporarily derailed Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, one thing is certain: The anti-worker forces arrayed against us aren’t going away.

We must continue to loudly and strongly trumpet the good that unions do for working men and women. To that end, the union has launched its Union Loud and Proud campaign, and all of us at the UFT urge to you join us in this endeavor. Please share your ideas for actions to build support.

Join the Union Loud and Proud campaign »

Read more about Friedrichs »

If you have any questions about all the benefits of union membership, send me an email at teachersassigned@uft.org.


A successful meet-and-greet

More than 50 teachers assigned gathered on Jan. 28 at our meet-and-greet to hone our professional skills, network and celebrate our pride in our chapter. We talked about your concerns including Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association, snow days and parking. We also provided attendees with information about staying safe at the job, and important UFT services and benefits.


Teachers assigned survey

Thank you to all of those who responded to the teachers assigned survey. More than 30 percent of our chapter — 135 members — responded. We are a diverse group with instructional coordinators, teacher development coaches, Dial-A-Teacher field coordinators, peer validators and more. We also have a number of members from the Peer Intervention Program and the Committee on Special Education.

If you have any questions about these findings, feel free to contact me by email at teachersassigned@uft.org. The survey responders were from all five boroughs, but most were from Brooklyn and Queens. Here are a few highlights:

  • 56 percent said they would like to discuss parking issues at the next chapter meeting.
  • 49 percent said they would like to learn about benefits at chapter meetings.
  • 30 percent want to participate in community outreach; and 39 percent said they are interested in learning more about community outreach.

This information will help us plan future conversations with the city and the Department of Education about our parking issues. We will keep you updated on further developments.


You should know

I am aware that a number of you are concerned about Teacher’s Choice funding, and the union is including this concern in our conversations with the Department of Education. Although we do not have access to this funding, some of your expenses — as an educator — may be tax deductible. Visit the You Should Know section on our chapter page to learn more.


Save the date!

Saturday, April 16: Join the UFT Middle School Division for the 3rd annual 5K Family Run. For more information and to register, see the event listing.

Saturday, May 7: The annual Spring Education Conference will be held from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the New York Hilton. There will be a morning panel, exciting workshops, innovative exhibits and a gala luncheon. See the event listing to register.


Teacher’s assigned postings

Please be aware that each teacher assigned position offered by the Department of Education has a position summary and duties/responsibilities.

If you have not reviewed the vacancy circular related to your job title since you were hired by the DOE, I strongly encourage you to do so. This will help you to better understand the requirements expected of you as well as your relationship to other DOE-support structures. You should also review Article 11 of our contract, which outlines guidelines for assignment as a teacher assigned, hours of service, the work year, sick leave, annual leave and more.

To view our contract online, you’ll need to make sure you are signed up on the website. Signing up just takes a minute and it’s important because only by signing up do you receive emails from our chapter and the union and get full access to our contract online.

If you have any questions regarding your individual position summary or duties, please contact the DOE’s Division of Human Resources and Talent by calling 718-935-4000.


Our chapter website

Our chapter website has been updated with a new Resources page that may be helpful to you. Please check it out and let me know of any suggestions you have for items or information that are crucial to our work. If you have not yet done so, please bookmark our chapter’s website and check back frequently for important events, news and the most-up-to-date information about our chapter and union.


Sign up for text messages

The UFT is now sending text messages to members’ mobile phones to deliver information quickly, such as to alert you about weather emergencies; remind you about rallies and other union actions; and update you on vital news. UFT text messages are only occasional. Most messages will still be sent by email.

To sign up to receive UFT text messages, text “UFT” to 30644 from your mobile phone.

Related Topics: Chapter News