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Latest updates

Time off for boosters and children's vaccines: Members may take up to four hours off for travel and receipt of a booster vaccine, or to accompany a child to receive each vaccine dose without a charge to CAR balances. Read the memo »

Digital classroom setup pay issued: The $225 that the DOE agreed to pay teachers and related service providers for setting up their digital classroom for the 2021–22 school year is being issued. Many members will see the money in their bank account on Nov. 4, while it will appear for others between Nov. 5-8, depending on your bank. As a reminder, because this money is considered income, it is taxable. 

Agreement reached on social-emotional screenings: We were able to negotiate time during your regular workday for you to complete the DESSA SEL screener — and your ability to do this work off school grounds at your discretion. The SEL screening should be completed by Saturday, Dec. 4. Read the email to members »  Read the full agreement »

Updated teacher evaluation agreement: The DOE has agreed to change its position that the lack of ratings in 2019-20 should be a determining factor in the number and type of observations that teachers are required to have this school year. Read the DOE's summary of this year's policies. »

Procedures and rights related to temporary emergency staffing: If a school faces an emergency staffing situation as of Oct. 4, amendments to contractual job responsibilities may be made on a temporary basis, as outlined in Article 7N of the DOE-UFT contract (pp. 46-47). This agreement will remain in effect for five school days, starting on Oct. 4. The agreement was not renewed for an additional week. Read more »

New deadline for DOE vaccine mandate: The mayor is giving DOE staff until Friday, Oct. 1 to get their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. Only employees with proof of at least one dose will be permitted to work starting on Oct. 4. A federal appeals court lifted the temporary restraining order it had imposed over the weekend and gave the city the green light to proceed with the mandate. UFT members should make sure they have uploaded proof of vaccination to the DOE’s vaccination portal by the Friday deadline. Employees who do not have an approved exemption and have not submitted proof of vaccination will be removed by the DOE from payroll and placed automatically on unpaid leave starting Oct. 4. See our FAQ »

Deadlines for NYS Emergency COVID-19 Certificate and edTPA Safety Net extended: State certification requirement deadlines for the Emergency COVID-19 Certificate have been extended from Sept. 1, 2021 to Sept. 1, 2022. Some candidates may also be eligible for the edTPA Safety Net, and may pass the Assessment of Teaching Skills-Written (ATS-W) exam in lieu of passing the edTPA. See the NYSED website »

Temporary restraining order on city vaccine mandate has been lifted: A judge has removed a temporary restraining order, which had stopped the city from moving ahead with a vaccine mandate for DOE staff. A final decision on the case is expected over the next few days. Read the court order »

Union calls on members to raise questions about new DOE quarantine policy: In an email to members, Michael Mulgrew noted the many unanswered questions about the city's updated quarantine policy for students (see below) and asked members to direct their own concerns about the policy directly to Mayor de Blasio. Read the email » 

Mayor announces increase in COVID-19 testing and new quarantine policy: As of Sept. 27, all elementary, middle and high schools will move to weekly COVID-19 onsite testing, an increase from biweekly testing currently in place. The mayor also announced that unvaccinated students who are close contacts to a positive student will not have to quarantine as long as they are masked and keep three feet of distance, also starting Sept. 27. Read Michael Mulgrew's statement » 

DOE releases policies on COVID-19 related absences and leaves: Absences related to COVID-19, such as time off for vaccine and booster side effects, CAR balances, required quarantine periods and leaves, are detailed in the DOE's personnel memo of Sept. 10. Read the agreement »

Arbitrator rules in union’s favor on medical accommodations: The city must offer work outside school buildings to immunocompromised members who—even vaccinated—are at high risk of serious illness from COVID-19, and exemptions for those unable to take the vaccine for medical or religious reasons. Application forms will go live on SOLAS on Monday, Sept. 13. Members will have until Sept. 20 to apply. See more information » and Read the arbitrator's decision »

Agreement regarding remote instruction: The UFT and the DOE reached an agreement on members' rights and responsibilities regarding remote instruction for this year only. We made sure that you would be appropriately compensated for the work of setting up your digital classroom or platform. We also finalized guidance on remote instruction for quarantining students that minimizes the disruption to your workday and provides compensation for holding office hours and doing other work that supports these students. Read the full agreement »

DOE releases health and safety guide for 2021-22 school year: The guide outlines COVID-19 school-based health and safety protocols, covering areas like masking, PPE, quarantines, testing and tracing, ventilation and remote options. Read the full plan »