Monday, November 19, 2012


UFT members recently received an email from President Mulgrew that included the following paragraph:
"With respect to the school system, we all understand that our students lost at least a week of instructional time as a result of this unprecedented natural disaster. Under state law, the school calendar must have a minimum number of days. In any given year, the New York City school calendar has from 182 to as high as 196 days, depending on when the holidays fall. Unfortunately, because we were at the low end with 182 days this year, there are no days to absorb all the instructional time we lost. We will have to make that time up. We have had to do this before on several occasions. Most recently, in the early 1990s, members had to give up vacation days to make up days when schools were closed because of the asbestos crisis. We are talking to the state Education Department and the city Department of Education about what needs to be done to be in compliance with the law. We better hope that we don’t get hit with a major snowstorm this winter. We will keep you updated."
Where does Mulgrew come up with the 182 number from?  We started out with 184 work days. That should mean we have 184 days where we receive state aid or what are called aidable days.
According to the NYC  Department of Education, "Calculations of aidable days incorporate Chancellor Conference/Regents Examination Days. Under Commissioner's Regulations, Chancellor Conference Days may include general staff orientation, curriculum development, in-service education, or Parent-Teacher Conferences.  They may not include routine administrative matters such as grading examinations or pupil assignments, record keeping, or lesson planning." The state allows four of these conference days per year.I do not understand how the DOE came up with 182 days for the middle schools and 183 days for the elementary schools and the high schools. We are working 184 days.
Count up our work days yourself. 16 for September, 22 in October, 19 in November, 15 in December, 21 in January, 15 in February, 16 in March, 20 in April, 22 in May and finally 18 in June.  I have added up these numbers multiple times and it comes to 184.  Subtract 3 from October and 1 from November that we lost because of the storm and that leaves 180 work days. Recall that we worked on Friday, November 2 so that can be an allowable conference day. Add two conference days in September and Election Day and that is our allowable four for the year.
For the high schools, we only need to take away our remaining conference days  (January 28, June 6) and turn those into instructional days and then we have our 180 days.  By my calculations, changing the two conference days into teaching days should put us in compliance with state law.  I don't see how the middle schools and elementary schools would not be in compliance either as they have fewer conference days (no January 28) than high schools. Since four is the maximum conference days allowed by state law, it appears we have no choice but to change these into instructional days.
If anyone has other ideas, please inform us.  I can't see why Mulgrew is talking about giving up vacation time when it is not necessary. I do agree with him that we better hope there is not a major snow storm this year or we will have to dip into vacation days to be in compliance with state law.  

Update: UFT, as usual, capitulated without a fight. We will lose three vacation days taken from the February midwinter break but continue with all of the useless staff development days.  


Anonymous said...

Because he is a quisling without a moral compass? We need him to lead our union like we need another hurricane. Is he intent on outdoing Randi Darling in seeing how many of our rights and privileges he can give away? I didn't realize there was a competition. I'll wait for the uber expensively printed brochure announcing it, with the prizes being all-expense-paid junkets to prime vacation spots for entrenched Unity hacks.

Anonymous said...

Unity hack overheard talking to another hack in the men's room,"Listen, just tell your members that since most teachers eat lunch we didn't want to take their lunch period away. They'll buy it."

Anonymous said...

Check out Brienza Educational Advantage(goole this website), Mulgrews sister is the COO. She was a teacher and has no business backround yet this company receives millions from the DOE for PD, the same PD Mike Mulgrew criticizes, hows that for feathering one's nest?

Mr. ELL said...

The More Caucus site just became blocked by the DOE on DOE computers. Someone check on that please.

Carol Lee said...

Indeed lost school days must at least be replenished during Saturdays if possible.

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Anonymous said...

Not true Carol.