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Instructional issues

Remote instruction

Read the UFT-DOE agreement on remote instruction for the 2021-22 school year

Are staff required to report in-person to their school buildings on June 9 and June 28, or may they work remotely?

June 9 is Anniversary Day: Chancellor’s Conference Day for Staff Development, and June 28 is a Professional Development Day and both are 6 hour and 50-minute day for teachers.

On June 9 and June 28, teachers and mandated related service providers shall be permitted to work remotely; however, the principal may, with reasonable advance notice, direct staff to be on site. Principals should inform these employees by the end of day on May 25 if they are expected to report to work in-person on June 9, and by the end of the day on June 10 if they are expected to report to work in-person on June 28. Otherwise, principals should prepare to provide professional development remotely on June 9 and June 28.    

If a per diem substitute’s assignment includes June 9 and June 28, then they would work that day and can be directed to report in-person, as needed. Principals may choose to include substitutes in professional development, where appropriate.    

For other school-based employees (other than teachers and mandated related service providers), principals have the discretion, with reasonable advance notice, to direct these employees to be on-site or permit them to work or participate in professional development remotely. 

Will the June 1, 2022 administration of the US History and Government Regents still happen as scheduled?

The New York State Education Department (NYSED) has announced that the June 1 U.S. History & Government Regents exam has been canceled. Given the tragic mass shooting in Buffalo, content experts and educators determined that content in the exam had the potential to compound student trauma. June 1 will now be an instructional day for students. NYSED will be applying for graduation exemptions for students in light of this cancellation. Read the letter from NYSED »

Do teachers and related service providers need to create digital classrooms this year? 

Yes, for times when all or some of your students may be required to quarantine. 

Teachers and related service providers were provided a window from Sept. 9 to Oct. 1 to create and set up a digital classroom and will be paid $225 for this initial set up time. The initial set up should include materials required for the first day of an emergency closure.

Going forward, when more than half of your students are reprogrammed, teachers and related service providers will be paid an additional four hours at the per-session rate to recreate your digital classroom. 

When would teachers and related service providers use their digital classrooms?

Digital classrooms may be in use when:

  • Conducting remote Parent Teacher Conferences
  • Conducting synchronous instruction on snow days or during whole school closures (either health or emergency related)
  • Conducting asynchronous instruction for quarantining students
  • Conducting synchronous instruction if the teacher/provider has to quarantine and is able to work remotely

You are not required to upload any additional content to your digital classroom more than 24 hours prior to an emergency closure. 

When are we not required to use our digital classrooms?

Digital classrooms cannot be mandated for:

  • Regular instruction for absent students not related to a quarantine
  • Newsletter or ongoing family communications
  • Uploading or collecting lesson plans

If my entire class is quarantined and goes remote, will instruction happen synchronously or asynchronously?

In the case of a whole school closure, the teacher/provider will conduct synchronous online instruction. 

What if some of my students are quarantined but others are not required to? 

Teachers and related service providers who are not directed to quarantine themselves will engage quarantined students via remote asynchronous instruction and be available for office hours. Students not required to quarantine will be taught in person.

What work and communication will I need to provide to students during office hours? 

Office Hours may consist of: 

  • Posting asynchronous assignments
  • Individual or small group synchronous instruction, support or tutoring to students who are quarantining
  • Emailing or checking in on assignments with quarantining students 

A minimum of one to two office hours must be provided per week to quarantining students and will be compensated at the per-session rate. Middle and high school staff will also receive one additional hour of per-session pay per additional course taught (not section). You may request additional hours based on your workload. 

When will office hours occur and how will I keep records of this time?

Office hours will be conducted at the teacher/service provider’s discretion and can occur: 

  • During the school day as paid preparation or lunch periods
  • After school hours paid at the per session rate at a time decided by the teacher/provider and subject to supervisory approval
  • Time keeping procedures must be followed to record the time worked

If all of my students are quarantined and working remotely from home, must I report to my school building? 

If all students on your caseload are remote and your building has not been closed, you may provide synchronous digital instruction to students remotely as well, unless your supervisor tells you with reasonable advance notice that you must remain on site. 

Can my supervisor observe me while teaching in a digital classroom format? 

Any supervisor may observe your teaching at any time, whether in person or online. However, no evaluative observations may be conducted on the first day of an emergency closure and 24-hour notice must be given for any observation in a digital classroom that will be used for evaluation purposes. 

What recourse do I have if my administration does not honor this agreement? 

Ask your chapter leader to file an operational issues complaint if your principal violates this agreement or call the union at 212-331-6311.

What recourse do I have if my supervisor does not follow the guidelines in this agreement? 

Any issue related to pay for remote work can be settled through the DOE-UFT regular grievance process. Other issues should follow the operational issues process.