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Additional Questions

Blended vs remote option

What is the deadline for students and families who have been fully remote to opt-in to blended, in-person teaching?

Families have the option to switch from remote to blended learning beginning on Nov. 2 through Nov. 15, 2020. As a change from what was originally announced, the DOE plans to only offer this opt-in period for blended learning one time this school year. 

If a student has been attending school in-person, is there a deadline to choose to attend school remotely instead? 

Families can switch from blended to 100% remote learning at any time.

COVID-19 cancellations

Will the New York State Regents exams still be administered in January 2021? 

The New York State Education Department has cancelled the January 2021 administration of high school Regents exams due to the COVID-19 pandemic. No decisions have yet been made regarding the June and August 2021 administrations of Regents examinations or any other state assessment programs.  Read the full memo from the New York State Education Department »

Donating blood

How and where can I donate blood? 

Currently, blood supplies are at dangerously low levels, and healthy donors are urgently needed. Find out if you are eligible to donate blood and if so, you can locate a blood donor center near you by zip code, county or city. 

Lump-sum payments

When can I expect to receive the first half of the lump-sum payment? 

Lump-sum payments can be viewed in the DOE's payroll portal. Members can click on their Oct. 30 check stub in the check register to see the amount received as well as show the full breakdown. If a problem with your payment arises, UFT members can call the union at 212-331-6311 and a salary representative will assist you. Eligible UFT-represented Department of Education employees will receive half of the lump-sum payment on the following dates: Active Q- and H-bank employees, Oct. 30; Q-bank retirees, Nov. 16; H-bank retirees, Nov. 2; Per-session employees, Nov. 2; F-status employees, Nov. 19. The remaining half of the lump-sum payment is scheduled to be paid by the end of July 2021.

I retired in 2020 and am eligible for lump-sum payments. How do the upcoming lump-sum payment and TDA contributions affect me?

In keeping with the pattern of retiree lump-sum payment being distributed after in-service members, Q-bank retirees, should receive the lump-sum by Nov. 16; H-bank retirees, Nov. 2. Retirees who still get paper checks should expect the lump-sum up to 15 business days after Nov 16. The same TDA contribution rate will be in effect from when they retired. For 2020 retirees, no TDA contribution can be deducted from the lump-sum payment that is made next July.

Membership cards

I am waiting for my UFT membership card to arrive. When will I get a new copy?

The UFT has delayed shipment of new cards for new members and members whose cards have expired given all the other priorities right now. In the interim, please know that the UFT-Mobile app contains a digital version of your membership card with your UFT member ID number and a QR code for scanning. You can also find your UFT membership number by logging in to the UFT website and going to your "My Account" page.

School calendar

Will the late start of school extend the school year?

No, the final day of school, according to the DOE calendar released on Sept. 5, will be June 25.

Parent-teacher conferences

Will parent-teacher conferences be held in-person?

No, all scheduled parent-teacher conferences (afternoon and evening) will be done remotely.

Can a parent-guardian request an in-person meeting?

Yes, on a mutually-agreeable date and time during the contractual workday, other than the parent-teacher conference date, and such meeting shall be conducted in a manner consistent with the school safety plan. 

Can a teacher be required to participate in an in-person conference?

Yes, on a mutually-agreeable date and time during the contractual workday, other than the parent-teacher conference date, and such meeting shall be conducted in a manner consistent with the school safety plan, unless the teacher has an approved medical accommodation. 

Can schools do an SBO that will combine parent-teacher conferences to one day?

Schools may approve an SBO that adjusts the Parent Teacher Conference dates consistent with DOE policy.

Can a school supervisor require documentation regarding parent outreach efforts?

Yes. School supervisors may require that teachers keep a log of outreach efforts (date/time, parent, brief note) and logs can be reviewed and discussed during professional conversations on an as-needed basis.

Are teachers required to pre-schedule parent teacher remote conferences?

Teachers may be required to pre-schedule parent teacher conferences and school supervisors should work with their teaching staff to establish the most efficient way to schedule these conferences, and the DOE can provide additional support to do so.

How long are parent teacher conferences during the blended remote learning period?

For all schools that are on a 6 hour and 50-minute model, the evening parent teacher conference is 2 hours and 30 minutes. The afternoon parent teacher conference is 2 hours. Any school not on a 6 hour and 50-minute day should consult the DOE Office of Labor Relations.

If a parent(s) or caregiver(s) is/are unable to attend remotely and requests a make-up remote conference, when does the make-up conference occur?

Teachers shall work with parents who request a make-up remote conference to identify a mutually-agreeable date and time during the contractual work day for a make-up remote conference and such conference should be scheduled outside of the student instructional day and during noninstructional time.

Mental health resources

How do I support my students with their fears and anxiety around COVID-19 and returning to school?

Ask your chapter leader for what’s in place at their school or reach out to your borough Victim Support Program liaison.

  • Bronx: Susan Perez-Gonzalez
  • Manhattan: Christopher Verdone
  • Queens: Diane Yodice
  • Staten Island: Alain Metellus
  • Brooklyn: Katrina Foye

What kind of mental health support is there for me to deal with my fears and anxiety around COVID-19 and returning to school?

Contact the UFT’s Member Assistance Program (MAP) at 212-701-9620 or mapinfo@uft.org

What resources are available to help manage stress and trauma of the challenges I’ve been experiencing?

The Member Assistance Program (MAP) is hosting a virtual training session about managing stress and trauma recovery. It is being offered throughout the school year. Contact MAP to register at 212-701-9620 or mapinfo@uft.org.