Friday, May 02, 2014


Four members of the Movement of Rank and File Educators (MORE) sat through a propaganda love fest this afternoon as UFT Chief Financial Officer Dave Hickey, Staff Director Leroy Barr and then President Michael Mulgrew explained our new contract to rousing applause from the Unity/New Action faithful on the negotiating committee. Now that the contract is done there is no need to be confidential.

I asked the President to show us a copy of the Memorandum of Agreement but there was none.  However, the UFT machine is spinning faster than any Wascomat washing machine.

UFT members in the new contract will get the 4 % + 4% salary increases that other city workers unions received back in 2009 and 2010, but we won't see the money until 2015-2020.

For the seven years from 2011 to 2018, where the UFT will set the pattern for raises that other city unions will now follow, we will be getting a total of 10% in raises for seven years plus a $1,000 signing bonus.  That works out to less than 1.5% per year.

Specifically, this is how the CFO crunched the numbers:

2009-2010 = 4% raise
2010-2011 = 4% raise
2011-2012 = 0% raise but we will get a $1,000 signing bonus if we ratify the contract.
Nov 2012- April 2013 = 0% raise
May 1, 2013 = 1% raise
May 1, 2014 = 1% raise
May 1, 2015 = 1% raise
May 1, 2016 = 1.5% raise
May 1, 2017 = 2.5% raise
May 1, 2018 = 3.0% raise *Update February 14, 2015-This final 3% raise will be deferred to June 16, 2018 to help pay for retiree lump sum payments.*
Total: 18% (compounded it will be a little more)

For those of you expecting to go back in the fall and at least have the 4%+4% added to your pay, forget it.

The 4 % + 4% that other unions received in 2009-10 will not be added to our pay until the increases kick in one year at a time starting in 2015.  Here is how the 8% will be added in:

May 1, 2015 = 2%
May 1, 2016 = 2%
May 1, 2017 = 2%
May 1, 2018 = 2%

All we get added to our salaries now if we ratify is 1% for 2013 followed by 1% for 2014 and the $1,000 bonus.

The 8% won't be added to our salaries fully until 2018 and the retroactive money the city owes us since 2009 won't be coming soon either.  Here is the schedule for the retroactive payments:

October 1, 2015- 12.5% lump sum
October 1, 2016 - Nothing
October 1, 2017 - 12.5% lump sum
October 1, 2018 - 25% lump sum
October 1, 2019 - 25% lump sum
October 1, 2020 - 25% lump sum

We will not be made "whole" for Bloomberg denying us the raises that other city unions got 5 years ago until 2020. 

Thanks to inflation, Retro delayed is really Retro denied!

UPDATE-Anyone who Retires Before July 1, 2014 Wins Big
The winners in this deal are anyone who retired from 2009 through now and anyone else who retires prior to July 1, 2014.  They will get all of their retro pay calculated and get it at once.  People who already retired will have their pensions recalculated as well as receiving retro payments for the time they worked. 

At the Negotiating Committee they said retirees up to June 30, 2015 get retroactive upon retirement, but this is what is on the UFT website now.

  • Retroactive money for the 4 percent raises in 2009 and 2010: Those who retire on or before June 30, 2014 will receive full retroactive pay for time worked in a lump sum. Those who retire after June 30, 2014 and employees who have been continuously employed and are in active service as of the date of the payout will receive retroactive pay in five lump-sum payments of roughly 12.5 percent in October 2015, 12.5 percent in October 2017, 25 percent in October 2018, 25 percent in October 2019 and 25 percent in October 2020.

  • Anyone who retires July 1, 2014 or after will get the deferred payments the same way as active personnel and will be waiting until 2020 to be made "whole".

    Only people who resigned or were terminated won't get retro.

    Top salary now $100,049 will crawl up to $119,565 by May (updated to June) of 2018.

    President Mulgrew arrived at around 5:20 pm after hanging around at the mayor's press conference and here are some of the other details he let out.

    Some union had to settle first and it was us.

    Here is a breakdown of some of the non-economic issues.

    We will go down from being rated on 22 Danielson components to 8.  (No word on the number of observations.)  Artifacts are out.

    On Measures of Students Learning if we want, we will only be graded based on students we teach.

    The DOE and UFT agreed to set up (yet another) Committee on excessive paperwork.  This one will be half UFT and half DOE with a mediator.  Cases can also be taken to arbitration.

    Extended Time
    No additional time added to the day. The extended time, faculty, grade/department conferences, open school night time will be reconfigured.  We will work two extra open school evenings which will go from 2.5 to 3 hours.

    There will be a default schedule on how to use the extended time each week and preapproved School Based Options.

    Multi session, District 75 and 79 schools will keep their current time schedules.

    Each core subject will have a curriculum that we must use.  Unit plans will be no longer than a page.

    Merit Pay
    There will be a career ladder i.e. merit pay.
    Ambassador teachers will earn $7,500 more to visit other schools.
    Model teachers will earn $7,500 more to be model teachers at their own schools.
    Master teachers will earn $20,000 to help other teachers.

    PROSE Innovative Schools
    Schools can opt in with a 65% vote to cancel major parts of the contract.  This can be up to 200 schools.

    Absent Teacher Reserves must show up for interviews.  ATRs will be sent to vacancies in schools.  There will be no termination for time in the ATR pool but there is an offer of a severance package.

    If two principals document unprofessional behavior, the documentation can be used for a special 3020A process just for ATRS.  This will not be for performance and it will be a one day hearing which could lead to termination.

    Schools will be forgiven for ATR salaries.

    $5,000 will go to teachers who go to a hard to staff school.

    There is a healthcare cost savings plan from the Municipal Labor Committee that must be approved. (We don't know how the cost savings will be achieved but we will keep our basic plans for free.)

    For teachers rated ineffective, the validators sent in the second year to validate an ineffective rating will now be educators: teachers and administrators.

    Where is the Memorandum of Agreement?
    I asked the president when we would be seeing the full Memorandum of Agreement in writing.  He said he didn't know but Staff Director Leroy Barr said it would be out soon.  Mulgrew asked for a motion to recommend the contract for approval.  I abstained as I would never vote on something I haven't seen.  The Unity faithful followed their caucus obligatons and all voted in the affirmative while the New Action people went along with Unity too.  The other MORE members abstained silently during the vote but I screamed out for my abstention to be counted.

    I leave it to you to decide what we should do.  I tried to keep the adjectives to a minimum in this piece and just report what was said.

    We couldn't lose on the 4% + 4% because of pattern bargaining (one city union settles on a percentage salary increase and all the unions follow that pattern) but allowing the city stretch it out so that money we were owed since 2009 won't be fully paid back until 2020 really lets the city off the hook.

    As for setting the pattern of 10% over 7 years, this is an abysmally low pattern to establish (we did better monetarily under the anti union Mayors Bloomberg and Guilliani).  I can understand why other labor unions in the city are angry with Mulgrew, particularly when it is considered how much surplus revenue the city has.  We should have been able to achieve non monetary gains for loaning the city our money and setting a very low pattern but instead we surrendered as usual. 

    The devil will be in the details on the ATR agreement but I see this contract as a real missed opportunity.  Here's hoping the members will ignore the Unity spin cycle and see through it.


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    Al said...

    Are you on the pension or resigned in 2012

    Anonymous said...

    Tell people you know who are still in the system to vote no.

    Unknown said...

    .....As I said earlier sign the contract before the bond ratings agencies do the math..Everyone crying about why its going to take so long get the retro better not be math teachers.....

    Jessica Rivera said...

    A layout of arguments I've heard so far. I'm voting no but everyone should educate themselves first!

    William Frias said...

    Is it possible to indict Michael Bloomberg for all the damage that he caused to teachers,parents and teachers during his administration?Mr.Bloomberg's tenure as a mayor created a culture of tyranny against teachers that forced many of us to retire.I worked for about 30 years as a school psychologist and at some point every basic rights were denied to our team by the school principal.In her effort she also engaged in open violations of rules and regulations.At the end she denied us a place to work;also firing our family worker with the DOE looking the other way.I filed several grievances;besides taking her to a local paper,bringing an investigation from the DOE;but to not avail.This principal could do that because she knew that she could get away with it.I truly believed that this major,Bloomberg,wanted to deny services to special ed. children;at the same time to maintain his vendetta against the UFT.During the process i had a stroke but could return to work to keep fighting for the kids and families that i served.I'm happily retired because i fought against that culture that wanted me to behave unprofessionally.At this moment however,this principal continues in her position and got away with murder.

    Anonymous said...

    Are people actually going to vote for this pile of garbage?

    Al said...

    Now that retiress are getting the retro in one lump sum has been verified, how about the CAR checks being retro too. I retired on July 1st 2012...I've crunched the numbers having the max days of 100 200/100
    to be about $3500 more in retro..

    Anonymous said...

    on the eve of voting, this contract is starting to stink, if one is paying attention. "Retro" doesn't really mean retro, the way it's used in the rest of the world. Could you see your credit card waiting years for its money?? So, 10% over seven years isn't even keeping up with the "cost of living"; which is a little over 2% currently.
    Another teacher asked me if the Taylor law had been brought to the supreme court to see if its legal. I don't know the answer to that, does anyone out here?
    Look at what the teachers did in Chicago two years ago. They struck for three days and the city gave them a fair contract. I just wish our leadership was more in the Chicago mold than in the business model it seems to be in. Show some back bone Mulgrew!!!

    fareeda mahmoud said...
    This comment has been removed by the author.
    Anonymous said...

    When should I retire if I am eligible to retire, but I am also an ATR? Should I retire before or after June 30 Is there an bonus if i wait to July 3 to retire?

    Anonymous said...

    we will also get retro on per session as well. everyone this contract may not seem fair at all but something is better than nothing. 1 is always better than 0 so stop complaining. if you feel it is that bad then leave the doe...go to a private school!!

    sonia said...

    Do I get a check even if I left the DOE in February of 2014. I started working in 2011?

    Anonymous said...

    Maybe you will get the money now that there is a lawsuit on this issue.

    Anonymous said...

    hi, so will teachers get the rate of pay as stated on the new contract salary schedule?

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