Saturday, July 30, 2016


The State Education Department released the latest grade 3-8 standardized test scores on Friday. They cautioned against using comparisons with previous years because the tests were different. That didn't stop Chancellor Carmen Farina from taking a victory lap along with UFT President Michael Mulgrew. The charter people claimed a huge win too.

Before they fall all over themselves saying how great the results are, they should have actually read this quote from Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa from the State Education Department's press release of the test scores: "While it's not possible to make direct comparisons of this year's results to past years, I'm cautiously optimistic the changes we're making will drive improvements in teaching and learning."

Further down in the State Education Department press release, it states the following:
While the content of the 2016 tests and last year's tests are comparable and similarly rigorous, it is not possible to make direct comparisons of the 2016 results to prior years' results because of changes to the test this year.

The State Ed Department then proceeds by making direct comparisons of the 2015 to the 2016 results. Go figure.

The opt out from testing movement did just fine this year. Here we can make reliable comparisons as people not taking last year's invalid test is the same as people not taking this year's invalid test. According to the State, 22% didn't take the test this year compared to 20% who were not tested in 2015. They called this 2% increase "relatively flat" compared to last year.

Don't you just love these people? Any gain in test scores is touted as a huge win, even when they admit the results are not comparable to last year, while the test refusal movement which continues to grow is called relatively flat. They don't mention the bogus propaganda the SED put out to tell people the tests were all improved so take them.

Here is how POLITICO New York reported on the opt-out numbers:

Despite the state's efforts to thwart the test opt-out movement, the number of refusals increased in the spring of 2016 over the previous year, with more than approximately 230,000 students opting out of the state standardized exams, according to data released Friday by the state education department.

Parent leaders from New York State Allies for Public Education were quoted in the POLITICO story:

"NYSAPE has been very clear from day one that tweaks and minor changes to current [state] assessments will not satisfy parents. Only substantial, meaningful, and comprehensive changes will have any impact on these opt out trends," Jeanette Deutermann, administrator of Long Island Opt Out and co-founder of NYSAPE, told POLITICO New York in an email.

"The standards need to be developmentally appropriate, tests must be shorter and not high stakes for school rankings," Lisa Rudley, a Westchester County parent who is a founding member of NYSAPE, told POLITICO New York in an email.

Since UFT President Michael Mulgrew is fully on board the testing bandwagon, New York City opt out rates are still very low but they did increase from 1.5% last year to 2.4% this year. Hey it's a start. NYC is basically the untapped reservoir for test refusal. Some UFT assistance could really help.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016


I do not pretend to be a pension expert. UFT New York City Teachers Retirement System members who retired after July 1, 2014 have received two letters: one from the Teachers Retirement System and one from the Department of Education.

They are copied below and also posted on the TRS website.

Can anyone out there explain these letters to our readers?

These are the two of the most interesting paragraphs for me:

During the summer of 2016, the DOE is expected to provide TRS with updated salary information related to the two 4% pay increases. If TRS has not yet received your updated salary information from the DOE when we begin calculating your retirement allowance, we will initially finalize your retirement allowance based on available information, and then revise your retirement allowance to reflect the full pay increases due under your collective bargaining agreement.

If you have additional pensionable earnings such as per session and class coverage, please note that the DOE is expected to send that salary information to TRS after sending the information related to the two 4% pay increases. TRS will then determine whether you are eligible for a retirement allowance revision based on the additional pensionable earnings. 

This contract was settled over two years ago. Why is the DOE waiting until the summer of 2016 to send "updated salary information?"

Is this the pension calculations the way the UFT told us they would originally be done as if we had gotten the 4% + 4% raises back in 2009-2011 so our pensions will be calculated as if we received the increases all along?


Is something else going on here?

Please someone help me out so we can understand this better.


Members who are represented by the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) must sign the attached acknowledgement letter from the Department of Education (DOE) and file it with their retirement application. Members who are not represented by the UFT should disregard this information and should not file the attached letter. The Department of Education (DOE) has directed TRS to provide UFT members the attached letter. The letter explains how TRS will calculate your retirement allowance to reflect provisions of the 2014 UFT collective bargaining agreement.

How to Complete Your Acknowledgement Letter Please carefully read the acknowledgement letter (code T01-DOE) and sign and date it in the spaces provided. In the space labeled “Pension No. /Last Four Digits of Social,” write your TRS Membership Number instead. Then, include the signed letter with the retirement application that you file with TRS. 

How TRS Will Calculate Your Retirement Allowance TRS will base your retirement calculation on the best Final Average Salary (FAS) period that results after factoring in the two 4% pay increases from 2009 and 2010 that are due you (but not fully paid to you by the DOE), as well as the two 1% pay increases that the DOE has already paid to you under your collective bargaining agreement.

During the summer of 2016, the DOE is expected to provide TRS with updated salary information related to the two 4% pay increases. If TRS has not yet received your updated salary information from the DOE when we begin calculating your retirement allowance, we will initially finalize your retirement allowance based on available information, and then revise your retirement allowance to reflect the full pay increases due under your collective bargaining agreement.

If you have additional pensionable earnings such as per session and class coverage, please note that the DOE is expected to send that salary information to TRS after sending the information related to the two 4% pay increases. TRS will then determine whether you are eligible for a retirement allowance revision based on the additional pensionable earnings. 

Additional Information TRS will send you a Benefits Letter about a week before you receive your first retirement allowance payment. The Benefits Letter will detail your retirement allowance calculation, including the Final Average Salary used. If you have questions after receiving your Benefits Letter, you may call TRS at 1 (888) 8-NYC-TRS, or the UFT Retiree Pension Department at (212) 598-9536

Please note that TRS is administering your retirement allowance revision in accordance with the agreements between the UFT and the DOE, but keep in mind that TRS and our Member Services Representatives are not experts about the specific terms of the agreements. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 T01-DOE INSTRUCTIONS (7/16) PAGE 2 CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 This page intentionally left blank. Carmen Farina Chancellor

Dear Applicant for Retirement,

In the Spring of 2014, the United Federation of Teachers (“UFT”) and the Board of Education of the City School District of the City of New York (known as the “Department of Education” or “DOE”) negotiated a new collective bargaining agreement (the “Agreement”) covering November 1, 2009 through October 31, 2018.

As part of Section 3(B) of the Agreement, the UFT and DOE agreed that two 4% increases from 2009 and 2010 that were part of the pattern for the 2009-2011 round of bargaining would be phased in to employees’ paychecks as 2% on May 1, 2015, another 2% on May 1, 2016, another 2% on May 1, 2017 and, finally, another 2% on May 1, 2018.

At the same time, Section 3(E) of the Agreement provides for a series of lump sum payments which are paid on October 1, 2015, October 1, 2017October 1, 2018, October 1, 2019 and October 1, 2020 (or for those on approved leave, upon return). Lump sum payments are also made on those dates to those individuals who retired after June 30, 2014. The wage rate increases and lump sum payments occur at different points in time, but they both represent, in different forms, the same increases from the 2009-2011 round of bargaining.

To make sure your pension does not include less or more than it would if you received a 4% increase on November 1, 2009 and a 4% increase on November 1, 2010, the UFT and DOE agreed that employee pensions would be calculated using the phased in wage rate increases.

In order to ensure that all UFT-represented employees are equally made whole and receive neither less nor more than the full value of the 2009-2011 pattern increases in their pensions, this letter has been added to your application for retirement to ensure that you understand that your pension will be calculated by applying a 4% increase in 2009 and a 4% increase in 2010 when calculating your final average salary. 

Because your pension will be calculated in this way, you understand that the lump sum payments will not be separately pensionable. 

You also agree that you will not challenge the exclusion of your lump sum payments from your final average salary calculation since you have been credited for this amount in your final average salary. 

Such challenge will result in your becoming legally obligated to return all the lump sum payments you received to the DOE. If you bring such a challenge and do not return the lump sum payments, the DOE will have a right to take legal action against you to secure the return of the payments and, if successful, will have a right to recover legal fees associated with that legal action.

Notwithstanding this acknowledgement, it is understood that you do reserve your right to otherwise challenge the correctness of your pension calculation without giving up the lump sum payments, including, but not limited to, challenging any potential incorrect application of the increases in Section 3(B) of the collective bargaining agreement to 2009 and 2010.

Date: _____________________ ____________________________ __ ____
UFT-Represented Employee/Retiree
Lawrence E. Becker Human Resources
 New York City Department of Education 

 Pension No. / Last four digits of Social

Tuesday, July 26, 2016


I read NYC Educator's latest post closely. Arthur makes a strong case that the AFT and Democratic National Committee being joined at the hip is not necessarily in the best interest of working teachers who the AFT is supposed to represent. The Democrats have done very little for public school teachers or students during the Obama years at the federal level. I would add that they haven't done much for public education during the Cuomo and de Blasio years at the state or city level either.

Why then do we continue to blindly support Democrats?

Arthur and I have a mutual friend in Harris Lirtzman. Harris is someone we both respect who is a Hillary Clinton supporter. He commented on Arthur's blog and speculated on who Hillary might appoint as Secretary of Education. Here is part of his comment:

...if Clinton is elected, I don't assume that she'll appoint a Duncan-King to be Secretary of Education. She has to strike a very careful balance between the enormous support she's received by the AFT and NEA (yes, you don't like that) and reformistas in a way that Obama never had to. My guess is that she'd appoint a Hammond-Darling kind of secretary and steer very far away from D-K lite. Just a guess but I would make no assumptions that with Clinton we get any version of D-K.

I hope and pray Harris is correct. I am skeptical that we will see any substantive change nationally for teachers or public schools under Hillary. The Clintons are the embodiment of the establishment. They are part of a political class that has not been kind to public school teachers.

On the other hand, there is room for optimism in the K-12 education part of the Democratic Party Platform. I read it today and here is my favorite paragraph:

We oppose high-stakes standardized tests that falsely and unfairly label students of color, students with disabilities and English Language Learners as failing; the use of standardized test scores as basis for refusing to fund schools or to close schools; and the use of student test scores in teacher and principal evaluations, a practice which has been repeatedly rejected by researchers. We support enabling parents to opt their children out of standardized tests without penalty for either the student or their school. 

Have Democrats Barrack Obama or Andrew Cuomo been given a copy of this paragraph? How about Secretary of Education John King?

Platforms don't ordinarily mean that much in the USA but this one isn't bad on public education except for the support for "public charter schools." Public and charter school is an oxymoron. A public school needs to be accountable to the public. Charters are not accountable in so many ways as the Network for Public Education's Carol Burris pointed out. I oppose charter schools.

I am very worried about Hillary's foreign policy but on education the Democratic Platform at least is way ahead of the Trump Republicans who public school teachers would have to be kind of self-loathing to support.

For those interested in reading the full Democratic platform, it can be found at the bottom of a piece in Education Week.

Below are the parts on K-12 education in their entirety.

 Guaranteeing Universal Preschool and Good Schools for Every Child 

Democrats believe we must have the best-educated population and workforce in the world. That means making early childhood education and universal preschool a priority, especially in light of new research showing how much early learning can impact life-long success. 

Democrats will invest in early childhood programs like Early Head Start and provide every family in America with access to high-quality childcare and high-quality preschool programs. We support efforts to raise wages for childcare workers, and to ensure that early childhood educators are experienced and high-quality. 

We will ensure there are great schools for every child no matter where they live. Democrats know the federal government must play a critical role in making sure every child has access to a world-class education. We believe that a strong public education system is an anchor of our democracy, a propeller of the economy, and the vehicle through which we help all children achieve their dreams. Public education must engage students to be critical thinkers and civic participants while addressing the wellbeing of the whole child.

We also support increased investments in afterschool and summer learning programs, which help working families, keep kids safe, and inspire learning at a time when many students are left unsupervised. We must find ways to encourage mentoring programs that support students in reaching their full potential. Mentoring is a strategy to ensure that children living in poverty have the encouragement and support to aim high and enter the middle class. We will focus on group mentoring, which is a low-cost, high-yield investment that offers the benefit of building a supportive network of peers who push one another towards success.

Democrats believe all students should be taught to high academic standards. Schools should have adequate resources to provide programs and support to help meet the needs of every child. We will hold schools, districts, communities, and states accountable for raising achievement levels for all students—particularly low-income students, students of color, English Language Learners, and students with disabilities. 

We must fulfill our national commitment to provide a meaningful education to students with disabilities, and work towards full funding of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act so that students with disabilities can receive the extra resources and services they need. With an appropriate educational foundation, children with disabilities can thrive and become adults with greater opportunities and more meaningful life experiences.

We are also deeply committed to ensuring that we strike a better balance on testing so that it informs, but does not drive, instruction. To that end, we encourage states to develop a multiple measures approach to assessment, and we believe that standardized tests must be reliable and valid. We oppose high-stakes standardized tests that falsely and unfairly label students of color, students with disabilities and English Language Learners as failing; the use of standardized test scores as basis for refusing to fund schools or to close schools; and the use of student test scores in teacher and principal evaluations, a practice which has been repeatedly rejected by researchers. We support enabling parents to opt their children out of standardized tests without penalty for either the student or their school. 

Democrats recognize and honor all the professionals who work in public schools to support students' education—teachers, education support professionals, and specialized staff. We know that good teachers are essential to improving student learning and helping all students to meet high academic standards. Democrats will launch a national campaign to recruit and retain high quality teachers. We will ensure that teachers receive the tools and ongoing professional development they need to succeed in the classroom and provide our children with a world-class education. We also must lift up and trust our educators, continually build their capacity, and ensure that our schools are safe, welcoming, collaborative, and well-resourced places for our students, educators, and communities.

We will invest in high-quality STEAM classes, community schools, computer science education, arts education, and expand link learning models and career pathways. We will end the school-to prison pipeline by opposing discipline policies which disproportionately affect African Americans and Latinos, Native Americans and Alaska Natives, students with disabilities, and youth who identify as LGBT. We will support the use of restorative justice practices that help students and staff resolve conflicts peacefully and respectfully while helping to improve the teaching and learning environment. And we will work to improve school culture and combat bullying of all kinds.

The Democratic Party is committed to eliminating opportunity gaps—particularly those that lead to students from low-income communities arriving on day one of kindergarten several years behind their peers. This means advocating for labor and public assistance laws that ensure poor parents can spend time with their children. This means raising household incomes in poor communities.

It means ensuring children have health care, stable housing free of contaminants, and a community free of violence in order to minimize the likelihood of cognitive delays. It means enriching early childhood programming to prepare children in areas such as literacy, numeracy, civic engagement, and emotional intelligence. It means supporting equitable and adequate state funding for public education, and expanding Title I funding for schools that serve a large number or high concentration of children in poverty. It means ending curriculum gaps that maintain and exacerbate achievement gaps. 

We support policies that motivate rather than demoralize our educators. We are committed to ensuring that schools that educate children in poverty are not treated unfairly, which is why we will end the test-and-punish version of accountability that does no more than reveal the many opportunity gaps facing students from low-income communities. 

Democrats are committed to providing parents with high-quality public school options and expanding these options for low-income youth. We support democratically governed, great neighborhood public schools and high-quality public charter schools, and we will help them disseminate best practices to other school leaders and educators. Democrats oppose for-profit charter schools focused on making a profit off of public resources. We believe that high-quality public charter schools should provide options for parents, but should not replace or destabilize traditional public schools. Charter schools must reflect their communities, and thus must accept and retain proportionate numbers of students of color, students with disabilities and English Language Learners in relation to their neighborhood public schools. We support increased transparency and accountability for all charter schools. 

Here is a part of what the Republicans have to say on education in their platform:

Administrators need flexibility to innovate and to hold accountable all those responsible for student performance. A good understanding of the Bible being indispensable for the development of an educated citizenry, we encourage state legislatures to offer the Bible in a literature curriculum as an elective in America’s high schools. We urge school districts to make use of teaching talent in the business community, STEM fields, and the military, especially among our returning veterans. Rigid tenure systems should be replaced with a merit-based approach in order to attract the best talent to the classroom. All personnel who interact with school children should pass background checks and be held to the highest standards of personal conduct. 

More power for administrators? Are the Republicans serious?

I guess after reading some of the Republican Platform, I can understand a little more clearly why so many people blindly follow the Democrats.

Sunday, July 24, 2016


Now that the AFT is one big happy family with former dissidents from the Chicago Teachers Union, United Teachers of Los Angeles and many others including our own Norm Scott apparently all on the same page concerning how we have to emphasize social justice, we should start a campaign for social justice for a group of the most underpaid and overworked educators: early childhood teachers.

A report was released by The Center for the Study of of Child Care Employment showing that policies in all 50 states and Washington DC are inadequate.

Early educators are among the lowest-paid workers in the country. The median hourly wages for child care workers range from $8.72 in Mississippi to $12.24 in New York. Nationwide, the median wage is $9.77. Preschool teachers fare somewhat better: wages range from $10.54 in Idaho to $19.21 in Louisiana. In contrast, the median national wage for kindergarten teachers is $24.83.

Further down in their press release they state:

According to the National Academies of Science, says Index co-author Dr. Caitlin McLean, “those who teach and care for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers require equivalent levels of knowledge and skills as teachers of older children.” Yet, the Index shows that no states have qualification requirements in line with the National Academies of Science recommendations:

I concur with the National Academies of Science; I have witnessed how skillful these teachers are with my own two children, yet we as a society believe infant and toddler care is easy, unskilled work and compensate people accordingly. This has to change.

How are all of those Pre-K teachers in our universal Pre-K Community Based Organizations in NYC being treated? I very much doubt they are receiving the same wages and benefits as Pre-K teachers in the public schoools.

How about some marches and protests for early childhood educators who deserve so much more in return for what they do?.

Saturday, July 23, 2016


There is a piece from the Washington Post Answer Sheet by Valerie Strauss that cites an academic study showing the relationship between unionization and teacher dismissal and how breaking unions leads to lowering of the quality of teachers in a state.

One of the great myths of the times is that it is impossible to fire "bad" unionized teachers. Economist Eunice Han reached a surprising conclusion in her new research paper: " What I found is that the facts are the opposite of what people think: that highly unionized districts actually fire more bad teachers."

This is directly from the EduShyster interview with Professor Han that Strauss copied:

Han: It's pretty simple, really. By demanding higher salaries for teachers, unions give school districts a strong incentive to dismiss ineffective teachers before they get tenure. Highly unionized districts dismiss more bad teachers because it costs more to keep them.

Han also found that when governments bust unions they do not improve the quality of their teaching force.

EduShyster: In 2011, four states essentially eliminated collective bargaining for teachers, which gave you an unusual opportunity to test your argument in a real-life laboratory. What did you find?

Han: Indiana, Idaho, Tennessee and Wisconsin all changed their laws in 2010-2011, dramatically restricting the collective bargaining power of public-school teachers. After that, I was able to compare what happened in states where teachers' bargaining rights were limited to states where there was no change. If you believe the argument that teachers unions protect bad teachers, we should have seen teacher quality rise in those states after the laws changed. Instead, I  found that the opposite happened. The new laws restricting bargaining rights in those four states reduced teacher salaries by about 9 percent. That's a huge number. A 9 percent drop in teachers' salaries is unheard of. Lower salaries mean that districts have less incentive to sort out better teachers, lowering the dismissal rate of underperforming teachers, which is what you saw happen in those four states. Lower salaries also encouraged high-quality teachers to leave the teaching sector, which contributed to a decrease of teacher quality.

I am not so sure I concur with how Han determined who was a good or bad teacher but it is clear that if a state busts the union, it does not improve schools. It just lowers costs which is their goal.

Should we be jumping for joy that the myth that you can't fire bad unionized teachers has been shattered or should we be blaming our unions for only protecting teachers in theory and not in reality?

I would argue that here in New York City, the city I know best, there are  relatively few so called bad teachers who have a negative impact on the students they are supposed to educate. Often, when teachers are dismissed, or even rated poorly, it is for political (union activism) or other non-performance related reasons (examples: Their supervisor doesn't like them because the they won't change Individualized Education Plans or pass kids who don't deserve to.). Most are not dismissed for their lack of teaching ability.

Why doesn't some smart researcher do a study on the impact of inadequate supervisors in New York City schools? There of course are many excellent administrators in the New York City system who create positive teaching and learning environments but in my view "bad" administrators roam New York City schools with impunity as documented by the press and bloggers repeatedly. It has to have some kind of effect.

Thursday, July 21, 2016


A comment on our recent piece on the undemocratic electoral system the UFT uses to marginalize high school teachers deserves a reaction. Someone stated:

It sounds like you want my Union dues to pay to send you to a convention.

No, the majority of the high school teachers who cast a ballot voted to send seven executive board candidates and two vice presidential candidates including me to the convention. Those high school teachers have been disenfranchised. My wife Camille (a teacher-union activist) and I are quite content to spend summers with our young children. We aren't pining to attend conventions at member expense.

The teaching gods definitely shined brightly on our family as our kids were born in June and July so both Camille and I had time off to spend with them after they were born and now we enjoy vacations around the time of their birthdays. Our daughter Kara just turned seven earlier this week and our son Matt recently hit two.
Matthew fine tuning his foosball skills.

Kara celebrates her birthday with her friend Jada next to her and some relatives in the background.

I thank Arthur Goldstein, Norm Scott, Jonathan Halabi, Jia Lee, Lisa North, Gloria Brandman and anyone else who went to Minneapolis on their own dime as observers at the AFT convention. They spread the word about the disenfranchised UFT members .

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


There is some news coming out of the AFT convention and it isn't being made by Randi Weingarten or her devotees. It is from one of Norm Scott's reports over at EdNotes.

I think the world of Norm because he has been retired for years and does not have to stay involved in union politics but he does and he does it because he believes in the cause of unionism and public education.

With that said, Norm and I have had many disagreements through the years, mainly on the issue of social justice unionism. I have sat through many fruitless discussions in MORE and ICE maintaining over and over again that the UFT-AFT in many ways are decent as social justice unions. I have continuously argued that attacking the Mulgrew-Weingarten Unity leadership on the lousy contracts they agree to with worsening working conditions is a much better way to win over the demoralized teachers in the schools. Norm and I have had countless private discussions on this topic too. Today it seems Norm may have conceded some ground.

From Norm's Ed Notes:

Lots of good stuff around the race issue. Executive Director of Color of Change is speaking -- and there's a rally and march today at 4PM around the shooting here a few weeks ago.

Am I at a MORE meeting instead of the AFT convention?

As James Eterno always says - it is hard to out social justice Randi - at least on the surface. There are also a hell of a lot of black Unity delegates here who must roll their eyes when white people in MORE run against them as THE social justice caucus.

He is now introducing Patti Crispinio as leader of LGBT community OK - I can say stuff about Patti's history as a Unity --- I won't use the word today in the spirit of the day because I support Patti's efforts in this area. I'm feeling the Unity.

Patti makes a great speech -- and introduces Kimberley Colbert, a St. Paul teacher at the school attended by Philado Castile, whose family Hillary met with yesterday before her speech. Kimberley lays on some heavy stats on the toll on black lives. She tolls through the cities that have had mass shootings as funeral music plays and reps from those cities come to the mics and say the names of the city out loud.

Some real in depth talk of white privilege - heck, is Unity/Progressive Caucus matching MORE on race issues? I think that is great - let them also be the social justice caucus of the UFT and the AFT -- their problem is they don't do the other stuff they should be doing real well - like defending the contract.

I have a three word response to the line about Unity's problem being not defending the contract:


That is why we just won the high schools in the UFT election. Make no mistake about that.

Monday, July 18, 2016


For those of you who have absolutely nothing to do or are addicted to teacher union business, the AFT Convention is live streaming here.

I actually have to admit I am watching. (I fall under the addict category.) So far it is kind of boring with a video showing how teachers should be respected. The AFT must really have time to fill. I thought I was going to see UFT President Michael Mulgrew threaten to punch someone.

Maybe Norm or Arthur who are out there in Minneapolis can tell us when to tune in.

UPDATE: Hillary-fest video is being shown now.


Norm, Arthur and Jonathan with AFT Convention news. Really nothing surprising. We get mentioned by both Arthur and Norm.


Saturday, July 16, 2016


As the July 18 Minneapolis AFT Convention approaches, it is worthwhile to point out just how disenfranchised high school teachers in New York City are. In the recent UFT election candidates from the opposition MORE-NEW ACTION won a clear majority of those who voted in the High School Division. MORE-NAC candidates received around 200 votes more than the candidates from AFT President Randi Weingarten and UFT President Michael Mulgrew's Unity Caucus, but Unity has rigged the system so even when Unity loses, they win.

The Unity minority will send all of the UFT high school representatives to the Minneapolis convention. Even though a clear majority of high school teachers who cast a ballot favored the opposition MORE-NEW ACTION caucus that I ran with, we will have zero representation at this summer's AFT convention.

Why is this?

UFT elects its 750 AFT convention delegates on an at large basis. The giant UFT with over 189,000 members is divided into four divisions: elementary schools, middle schools, high schools, functional (non-teaching including retirees who vote in huge numbers). Since UFT members vote at large for who will will represent us at conventions and who will be the divisional vice presidents, even though a majority of the high school teachers who voted in the election don't want Unity, the Unity advantages in the other divisions mean Unity will send all of the delegates to the convention, even from the high schools where Unity finished second.

Since I work in a New York City high school, I couldn't possibly get to Florida to campaign to the many UFT retirees living there. I did go to many high schools as a candidate for Vice President for Academic High Schools and won a majority of the high school votes. What does that mean? High school teachers lose based on the unfairness of the UFT electoral system.

To show the extent of the disenfranchisement of high school teachers in New York City, I thought it would be interesting to see how big a union the New York City high school teachers would be if we were a separate union local. I did a quick investigation and New York City high school teachers on our own would be a very large AFT local indeed. In fact, we would be significantly larger than the entire Philadelphia Federation of Teachers. I believe Philadelphia is the fourth largest AFT K-12 teacher union local, behind only New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago.*

Preliminary numbers from the American Arbitration Association showed that 19,539 ballots were sent out to high school members houses in the recent UFT election. Updated numbers increased that total to 19,861.

How does this compare to Philadelphia? The answer comes right from the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers website:

The PFT represents more than 16,000 dedicated women and men working in Philadelphia public schools today.

19,861 UFT high school teachers in New York City as opposed to around 16,000 total for the entire Philly local.

MORE-NEW ACTION's majority among high school teachers who voted gets us a mere 7 UFT Executive Board seats on a 102 member Executive Board but no representation at the AFT convention, no high school vice presidency and no representation at the statewide NYSUT convention. New York City High school teachers are truly marginalized by this system.

It would be great if people from outside of New York City understood how undemocratic the UFT truly is and if they would start to pressure for real change to the system since those UFT delegates from Unity are bound by caucus membership obligations to vote as the leadership instructs them to. Those 750 bound delegates are the tail wagging the AFT dog.

*Houston is the fourth largest city in the U.S.A. (Philadelphia is number 5) but I had no luck trying to find the size of the Houston Federation of Teachers. There are 65,000 AFT members in all of Texas but it is hard to say how many of those Texas AFT members come from Houston. Texas doesn't have collective bargaining for teachers but if anyone has the Houston information, please send it to us and we will be glad to add it in.

Friday, July 15, 2016


This post is a direct reaction to NYC Educator who yesterday wrote a piece that was fairly critical of PROSE schools. Here is his opening paragraph:

Politico just did a feature on the PROSE schools. After reading it I have no idea why they are an improvement over the SBO feature of the standard contract, which allows schools to change class time, rearrange schedules, and basically do whatever they need to achieve their unique goals. I also see no advantage whatsoever in allowing the program not to sunset at year's end. What it it turns out to be a disaster?

NYC Educator then cites Carmen Farina pointing out an extreme example of a PROSE school that allows 40 students in a class. NYC then correctly points out that the contract, in contradiction to media perception, does not favor teachers very much.

I am in no way an expert on PROSE schools. I can't even remember that it stands for Progressive Redesigned Opportunity Schools of Excellence. The title is ridiculous and the program is in some ways a public relations ploy to show that the UFT is flexible concerning the contract. However, as someone who has worked in a PROSE school the last two years, I can say that the program can be used to enhance what was already a truly progressive school.

Middle College High School at LaGuardia Community College had a very collaborative working relationship between administration and teachers long before it was a PROSE school but as a PROSE school, MCHS has been able to go even further in that direction.

The school has altered somewhat the absolutely awful teacher evaluation system. There are teachers who are doing other things besides having the dumb Danielson 1,2,3,4 checklists being filled out for their Measures of Teaching Practice portion of their rating. Next year, the school intends to expand on this. I doubt this would be possible as a simple School Based Option.

Teachers in Middle College are Department Chairpersons. I can say, hopefully without offending any of the assistant principals I worked for at Jamaica, that the last two years I have sat in on some of the most engaging department meetings in my long career. Having a teacher run them has freed people to open up and truly speak freely. I am not saying that we didn't speak openly at Jamaica; it is just different when a teacher is leading the discussion. The assistant principal is only there occasionally at MCHS and the tone doesn't really change when he comes in.

In addition, MCHS approved a very progressive governance system that truly empowers the staff. I don't think this would be easy to do under the School Leadership Team structure in non-PROSE schools.

There has to be a 65% affirmative vote for PROSE. When MCHS takes a secret ballot vote on PROSE initiatives, the results are usually unanimous.

My experience is just one anecdotal but if there is a truly inspirational principal and a staff that buys in, PROSE can work.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016


Party platforms in the United States don't mean that much but they do represent statements of goals.

The Democratic Platform being written now for 2016 apparently is being influenced by Hillary Clinton's friend AFT President Randi Weingarten in that it isn't that bad when it comes to education. Details are emerging on the Diane Ravitch blog.

Diane reports:
Two dedicated pro-public education advocates, Chuck Pascal and Troy LaRaviere, wrote important amendments that were adopted and incorporated into the Democratic platform.

Because of them, with important support by Randi Weingarten, the platform now takes a stand against the high-stakes testing regime, opposes school closing shift based on test scores, opposes evaluating teachers by test scores, and emphasizes the importance of democratically-controlled public schools. The platform continues to support "high quality charter schools," without defining what that means: high test scores? Or something else?

I'm not with them on charter schools but overall this is a step in the right direction for sure.

Politico is reporting that the enemies of public schools are fuming. You have to read down a bit to get to the No Candidate Left Behind part but here is what it says:

But Shavar Jeffries, the president of Democrats for Education Reform, called the amendments an "unfortunate departure from President Obama's historic education legacy" and said that these changes came about because the platform drafting committee "inexplicably" allowed the process to be "hijacked."

There was a lengthy argument between two of us at the last ICE meeting over whether or not if given the power, Randi Weingarten would do right by public school educators. I argued that she would while the opposing position is that she is fundamentally a neo-liberal who favors competition even in education. I guess the platform gives us both something to use in our next discussion.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016


I have normally recommended that UFT members use the grievance process when it is available for contract violations. However, the process, except for programming reorganization cases, is extremely slow and whether it is fair or not, is certainly subject to debate.

As a response to the Gretchen Carlson firing by Fox News, Carlson sued Fox News head Roger Ailes. Fox News has responded by invoking the mandatory arbitration clause in Carlson's contract. This clause says that she must use arbitration rather than the courts to settle employment disputes. The arbitration would fall under the American Arbitration Association, the same AAA that handles UFT arbitration proceedings.

What is interesting about the Carlson case to me is not so much some of the salacious details of the lawsuit (well they are kind of interesting), as the way the suit has shed light on the arbitration process and how it is skewed toward the bosses and against employees. According to a report by the Economic Policy Institute, employees are more likely to lose in arbitration as opposed to court.

Granted, Fox News and other mandatory arbitration employment contracts addressed by the Economic Policy Institute are from non-union work places. However, since we use the same American Arbitration, the UFT needs to come forward and tell the members how we are doing with the American Arbitration Association in both the grievance process and in dismissal hearings (AAA provides the list of arbitrators that we must agree to for the dismissal hearings according to the contract).

The UFT should crunch the numbers and release them to the membership so our members know the chances of prevailing in arbitration or dismissal hearings.

At the Executive Board and/or the Delegate Assembly, these questions should be addressed:

1-How many grievances were filed at Step I over the last three years by UFT members?

2-How many grievances were resolved at Step I?

3-How many grievances did members want appealed to the Chancellor's level (Step 2)?

4-How many grievances did the Union take to Step 2?

5-How many grievances were won or resolved at Step 2?

6-Of the grievances not won or resolved at Step 2, how many did the Union take to arbitration?

7-How many grievances were won or resolved at arbitration?

8-How many were lost at arbitration?

9-How many UFT members faced dismissal hearings in the last three years (3020a/3012c)?

10-How many UFT members won their dismissal hearings outright?

11-How many UFT members were terminated in dismissal hearings?

12-What were the results of the cases that were not won or lost outright (fines, suspensions, classes)?

13-How many paraprofessionals were subjected to firing appealed through the grievance process?

14-What were the results of the paraprofessional dismissal cases?

Feel free to add or subtract from the list or change it as you see fit.

Monday, July 11, 2016


Everyone should look at Jeff Kaufman's other blog called EdLawFaqs because it is very informative about teacher rights or lack thereof.

EdLawFaqs has posted regularly over the last couple of weeks. Unfortunately, all of the cases Jeff has written about have gone against teachers. The one I found most troubling was on the new evaluation system where the burden of proof shifts from the Board of Education to teachers in termination hearings after two ineffective ratings.

From Jeff:

The petitioner received observations in the secod year of the HEDI ratings by both her principal and an independent validator who both confirmed her overall ineffective rating even though petitioner was rated effective for her student performance measures.

An arbitrator, after a hearing of three witnesses, an assistant principal, the validator and the petitioner herself, found petitioner to be ineffective and ordered her to be terminated from DOE employment.

Petitioner appealed to the Supreme Court, New York County. Petitioner argued that the arbitrator's use of the presumptions which shifted the burden in the new expedited termination cases based on two consecutive ineffective ratings was improperly applied in her case. The Court found that while the arbitrator was not exact in her statements about the new evaluation scheme, overall it could not be said that her decision was irrational or that it violated public policy and lacked merit.

Justice Edmead found that the new evaluation scheme was proper and was properly applied in this case and affirmed the termination.

It's great to have Jeff back blogging regularly. I wish he would put stuff up here at ICE too. I also hope he writes about some teacher victories soon.

Saturday, July 09, 2016


NYC Educator has a piece in which he nails Chalkbeat NY for their bias toward the education groups that want to privatize education.

I seldom even look at Chalkbeat these days however they do cover some education issues that nobody else is looking at at so I occasionally do pop over there. While reading their stories, I will usually be turned off by the anti-public school slant of their writing.

They do not deserve to be called anything but what they are: a biased advocacy group that is against public schools. I suggest we call them Charterbeat New York. It will show we know where they are coming from. No need to pretend we think they are an unbiased education reporting news site.

Does anyone have a better name?

Friday, July 08, 2016


The trend around this area in union contract settlements is that raises are heading upward, particularly after the Verizon strike victory. The latest settlement from Con Edison and their unions provides new confirmation. Con Ed unionized workers are receiving 3% a year for four years without givebacks.

More corroboration, as if anymore is necessary, that Michael Mulgrew made a huge mistake when he agreed to a nine year contract which provided for teachers to receive the last city pattern raises (4%+4%) that other city unions received from 2008-2010 piecemeal through 2018 while we loaned our retroactive pay for the work we did from 2009-2011 to the city interest free, not to be paid back in full until 2020.

The UFT also set a pattern for city workers of 10% raises over 7 years. 12% over 4 years for Con Ed or 10% over 7 years for teachers and other city workers while the city has billions of dollars in surplus revenue. You be the judge on what is better.

I am fully aware that Verizon and now Con Edison are private sector companies and we work for the government but union settlements in the New York area are clearly on the upswing and we are missing the trend by being locked in on a nine year contract through 2018.

Con Edison details are from their union, Utility Workers Union of America Local 1-2. I really enjoyed the What is a Strike video on their home page.


  •  4 year contract
  •  Wages Increase 3% each year
  •  Total Wages is 12.55% Compounded
  •  Wage Acceleration Plan is now permanent – No Sunset
  •  Pension Plan remains intact
  •  Increase in 401K match
  •  Roth IRA now available
  • Auto enrollment and auto escalation now available for 401K plan
  • Medical Increase held to minimum – average less than $8/week over life of contract – some plans cost have ecreased. Telemed available
  • Healthcare survey credits continued – potential savings of $6/week on weekly premiums
  •  ½ day off with pay for physical continued
  •  8 hours off for colonoscopy with pay
  •  Improvements to grievance proceedures – Accelerated RWLB process – improved Info Request language
  •  Improved Maternity Leave
  •  New Parental Leave – up to 30 days for birth or adoption of child
  •  Personal Holiday after 1 year
  •  Multiple new job titles and wage increases

They wanted to implement a layoff clause for CFRs

They wanted to increase job duties to multiple titles

They wanted to make drastic changes to sick pay policy

They wanted major increases in medical premiums – to make it the same as Management and other Locals

They wanted changes to pension for new hires

They wanted a surcharge for smokers


Thursday, July 07, 2016


It has been confirmed from the UFT that "There is no new agreement" on Absent Teacher Reserves concerning extending the disastrous 2014 ATR contractual provisions (Rule 11A). Therefore, Rule 11A has expired and Article 17B Rule 11B takes over. We first reported on this on Saturday.

Rule 11B is the 2011 ATR agreement. It includes weekly rotation but does not include one day rapid fire termination hearings for ATRs or automatic resignations if an ATR misses two interviews or second class status for an ATR who survived a termination hearing. It is a step up.

Here is Rule 11B in its entirety from the contract:

B. Excessed Employees/ATRs

  1. General Provisions
    1. Except as expressly provided herein, this Rule 11(B) shall not in any way constitute a modification of, limitation on or a waiver of any other provision of this Agreement or past practice.
    2. For purposes of this Rule 11(B) the term “Excessed Employee” shall refer to all UFT-represented employees that have been excessed, including Excessed Employees that have been sent to a school to be considered for placement and not selected (an “ATR”).  For employees that do not have licenses, the term “license” as used herein shall mean the appropriate title. 
  2. Consideration for Placement of Excessed Employees
    1. An Excessed Employee/ATR, upon notification of being excessed, shall be required to register on the Open Market System for purposes of providing updated contact information.  Failure to so register shall eliminate the DOE’s obligation as to that Excessed Employee/ATR under this Rule 11(B).
    2. Employees excessed after the execution of this Agreement shall be sent to schools for consideration for placement as follows:
      • (1)  When one or more vacancies occur, the DOE shall send the most senior Excessed Employee in the district/superintendency with the appropriate license to the school(s) for consideration for placement, except that the DOE shall not be required to send Excessed Employees who have already been sent to a school for consideration for placement pursuant to this paragraph.
        (2)  An Excessed Employee sent to a school for consideration for placement shall meet with a Principal or Assistant Principal. For non-school based employees, the term “Principal or Assistant Principal” shall refer to the equivalent supervisory title.
        (3)  If the Principal denies the placement, and the vacancy remains, the DOE shall send a second Excessed Employee in the district/superintendency with the appropriate license to be considered for placement.  Such Excessed Employee shall be the most senior in the district/superintendency who has not previously been sent for consideration for placement.  No school shall be required to consider for placement more than two (2) excessed employees in a term.  For purposes of this Agreement, a “term” shall be from September to January 31 or February 1 through of the end of the school year.
        (4)  If the DOE notifies an Excessed Employee of the school he or she is being sent to for consideration for placement before the school year begins, he/she may choose to meet with the supervisor before the school year begins if a mutually agreeable time can be arranged.  The DOE shall inform Excessed Employees that are notified subsequent to the start of the school year as soon thereafter as reasonably possible of the school to which he/she is being sent for consideration for placement.   
        (5)  Notwithstanding the above, an Excessed Employee who has not been sent for consideration for placement shall be sent for consideration for placement prior to an Excessed Employee with the same license who has been excessed in a subsequent term, even if the subsequently excessed employee has more seniority.   
        (6)  No release by an Excessed Employee’s current Principal/Supervisor shall be required if a Principal/Supervisor accepts the Excessed Employee for placement.
        (7)  The Principal or Assistant Principal shall meet with the Excessed Employee/ATR for consideration for placement during the regular work day.  No supervisor shall prevent the Excessed Employee/ATR from attending such meetings.  If Excessed Employees/ATRs fail to appear at a school for consideration for placement when properly notified, the DOE shall have fulfilled its obligation to the Excessed Employee/ATR under this section, except if the Excessed Employee/ATR has a reasonable excuse. If reasonably possible, the Excessed Employee/ATR shall notify the Principal of his/her inability to attend.
    3. All employees currently in excess status shall be sent, in seniority order, to schools in their district/superintendency for consideration for placement in vacancies in their license area prior to any employee excessed after the date of this Agreement.  Employees who are sent to a school for consideration for placement pursuant to this Rule 11(B)(3) shall count for purposes of the provision in Rule 11(B)(2)(b)(3) limiting the number of Excessed Employees that a school must consider for placement to two (2) per term.                     
  3. Leaves and Long Term Absences
    1. The Principal shall select an appropriately licensed Excessed Employee/ATR in the district/superintendency, if any such employee exists, to fill all leaves and long-term absences.   The Principal retains the right to remove an Excessed Employee/ATR from the filling of such leaves or long-term absences at any time and replace him or her with another appropriately licensed Excessed Employee/ATR.  In the event that only one (1) Excessed Employee/ATR in a license area in a district/superintendency is available, the Joint Oversight Committee created in Rule 11(B)(7) shall address the issue.    
    2. As used in this Rule 11(B)(3), the definition of “long term absences” shall be absences of longer than twenty-nine (29) work days.
  4. Vacancies
    1. After September 15th an appropriately licensed Excessed Employee/ATR in the district/superintendency shall be temporarily utilized in a vacancy until the Principal makes a final determination whether to keep the employee in the position.  An Excessed Employee/ATR that is filling a leave or long term absence may decline to be moved to or utilized in a vacancy.  If the school has not yet considered two Excessed Employees/ATRs pursuant to Rule 11(B)(2)(b)(3), it shall do so as soon as possible so long as the vacancy exists.  
    2. If a Principal decides not to continue to utilize an Excessed Employee/ATR in the assignment, another Excessed Employee/ATR shall be utilized pursuant to the terms of this Section 4, if such an employee exists, beginning no later than the first work day of the following work week, except where three Excessed Employees/ATRs have been utilized or declined to be utilized in that vacancy.  From the day the Principal decides not to continue to utilize a particular Excessed Employee/ATR until the first workday of the following week, the Principal may utilize a substitute.  
    3. At the end of the school year in which the temporary utilization occurs, if both the Principal and the Excessed Employee/ATR agree in writing, the employee shall be appointed to fill the vacancy in the school and take his/her rightful place in seniority order.  If the employee or Principal do not wish the assignment to continue, the employee shall remain an ATR in their district/superintendency in a different school.
    4. An employee that is temporarily utilized in a school shall maintain all of his/her contractual rights.
    5. The prohibition against moving an Excessed Employee/ATR during a week pursuant to Rule 11(B)(5)(b) below shall not apply to an Excessed Employee/ATR who agrees to be moved to a vacancy pursuant to this Rule 11(B)(4).        
  5. Assignment of Excessed Employees
    1. To the maximum extent possible, as provided herein, an Excessed Employee/ATR shall be used to cover for a UFT-represented employee in his/her title who is absent, prior to the employment of a substitute or paying another employee in the school to cover a class or classes (or other appropriate assignments).   If the Principal determines for a legitimate educational reason that it is unacceptable to allow the excessed employee/ATR to continue to cover a particular position, the principal may employ a substitute for the remainder of the work week.  The Principal shall not be permitted to hire a substitute beginning with the first work day of the following work week for the same absence, unless no Excessed Employee/ATR is available.      
    2. An Excessed Employee/ATR shall be assigned to a school within his/her district/superintendency for no less than a week, but may be assigned to a different school within his/her district/superintendency each week.  A “week” shall be Monday through Friday, or shorter if the work week is less than five (5) days.
    3. An Excessed Employee/ATR shall be notified no later than Friday (or the last work-day of the week) if he/she will be assigned to a different school the following week and, if so, to which school.  An ATR who has not been notified that he/she has been assigned to a different school by Friday shall report on Monday, or the first work day of the work week, and for the duration of that week, to the last school to which he/she was assigned. 
  6. Other Applicable Provisions
    1. For purposes of this Rule 11(B), the terms “rotated” or “rotation” shall refer to the assignment of certain Excessed Employees/ATRs to a different school within his/her district/superintendency on a revolving basis.
    2. The parties agree that for purposes of Rule 11(B)(3), starting with the commencement of the rotation, the DOE will assign ATRs/Excessed Employees to schools on a temporary basis to fill positions caused by leaves or long term absences as defined above that are not covered internally by a school through contractually permissible methods and where a substitute teacher would otherwise be utilized to cover for the absence or leave.  The ATRs/Excessed Employees covering leaves and long term absences will not be rotated until the completion of the assignment unless the principal requests the removal of the ATR/Excessed Employee prior to its completion.
    3. The parties agree that for purposes of Rule 11(B)(4), the date the DOE shall begin temporarily utilizing appropriately licensed ATR/Excessed Employee will be the date of the start of the rotation of ATRs/Excessed Employees as determined by the DOE in a given school year.
    4. It is expressly understood that the obligation in this Rule 11(B) to send Excessed Employees/ATRs for consideration for placement or to cover vacancies, leaves or long term absences in their license area shall not apply to those Excessed Employees/ATRs who are not in the weekly rotation (e.g., those temporarily utilized to cover a vacancy, leave or long term absence/assignment) to cover other vacancies, leaves or long term absences/assignments.
    5. The parties agree that ATRs/Excessed Employees in the Brooklyn and Staten Island High School District (BASIS) who are rotated, shall be rotated within seniority district but not outside the borough in which the school they were originally excessed from is located.
      It is expressly understood that the obligation in this Rule 11(B) to send Excessed Employees/ATRs for consideration for placement or to cover vacancies, leaves or long term absences in their license area shall only apply to BASIS ATRs within the borough in which the school they were originally excessed from is located.
  7. Joint Committee There shall be a Joint Oversight Committee comprised in equal parts of representatives appointed by the President of the UFT and the Chancellor of the City School District, respectively. The Joint Oversight Committee shall meet regularly, but no less than twice each term, as defined herein. The Joint Oversight Committee shall monitor the implementation of this agreement to maximize cost savings and ensure proper implementation.  The DOE shall promptly provide the Joint Oversight Committee with all appropriate data and information, so long as it is requested in a reasonable amount of time.
    The parties agree that starting in October of the school year, the Joint Oversight Committee (the “Oversight Committee”) will meet monthly, and at each meeting the DOE will provide reports on the number of ATRs/Excessed Employees by license and district, the number of ATRs/Excessed Employees in long term assignments and the number of leaves commenced at the start of each month.  The parties also agree to discuss any and all particular issues concerning the implementation of this or  Rule 11(B) at these Oversight Committee meetings.
    It is the intent of the parties to resolve issues relating to compliance with this agreement through the operation of the Oversight Committee.  The UFT agrees that issues will be raised at the Oversight Committee prior to the commencement of any union initiated grievance or arbitration.  The DOE agrees that should the committee agree about an issue of non compliance, the Division of Human Resources and Talent will reach out to DOE Staff and/or the school to ensure compliance.  If a particular issue at a particular school warrants further intervention, the Deputy Chancellor for the Division of Talent, Labor and Innovation will intervene with appropriate DOE staff to ensure compliance with this agreement.  At any time after an issue has been brought to the Oversight Committee, upon five (5) days written notice to the DOE, the UFT may proceed with a union initiated grievance.  The DOE will issue a memorandum to schools outlining all the changes above and share a draft of the memo with the UFT for consultation purposes before issuing.  This memo will be issued prior to the start of 2012-2013 school year.
  8. Provisional Agreement
    1. The parties agree that after the end of the open market hiring period, if both the school’s principal and the Excessed Employee/ATR agree in writing, the Excessed Employee/ATR will be staffed to a school on a provisional basis for the school year or remainder of the school year.  An agreement to be staffed provisionally for either all or the remainder of the school year shall be in writing and signed by both the schools’ principal and the Excessed Employee/ATR.
    2. An Excessed Employee/ATR that has been provisionally staffed for the year or remainder of the year by a school shall be treated in all respects as an employee on the school’s table of organization for that year or remainder of the school year.
    3. An employee that has been provisionally staffed by a school shall become an Excessed Employee/ATR again at the end of that school year unless both the employee and school principal agree in writing that he/she be hired and placed on the schools’ table of organization in their rightful spot in seniority order.
      d.   Nothing in this Agreement is intended to alter or change the right of a principal to temporarily utilize an Excessed Employee/ATR in a vacancy and, if both the Principal and the Excessed Employee/ATR agree in writing at the end of the school year, to staff the employee to fill the vacancy in the school pursuant to this Rule 11(B).

Wednesday, July 06, 2016


We are often asked what the per session (overtime) pay rate is for teachers under the current contract. Below we have copied the pay rate for per session right from the contract. It is from Article 15. 

The per session pay rate is the same whether the teacher is a first year teacher or someone with 22 years experience and a Masters with 30 additional credits. I believe it is also below what the hourly rate would be for teachers if we were paid for extra time at a pro rated basis. Forget about overtime being paid at time and a half as we are not eligible for that kind of overtime. 

It is still a decent rate and since the UFT won a court case years ago to make it pensionable, per session pay is not high on the list of things that need to be fixed.

A. Rates of Pay

  1. Except as otherwise provided in 3 below, the hourly compensation of per session teachers shall be:
    Effective DateRate
    May 19, 2008$41.98
    May 1, 2013$42.40
    May 1, 2014$42.82
    May 1, 2015$44.11
    May 1, 2016$45.65
    May 1, 2017$47.73
    May 1, 2018$48.67
    June 16, 2018$50.13

Monday, July 04, 2016


Below are the American Arbitration Association totals for the number of votes coming from each district in the recent UFT election. This is important to look at in terms of the community districts to see where the election had a robust turnout. 

Clearly, District 24, a longtime Unity Caucus stronghold, did very well. District 75 is the special education district which is citywide. The other districts in the 70s are the high schools which we covered in a prior posting except for District 79.

I believe the numbers shown before we get to any district are the retirees and non Department of Education votes. 

I am not that familiar with the elementary and middle school districts, as my focus has been mostly on the high schools, so I would appreciate any help to enlighten me on the meaning of these district-by-district numbers. 

UFT District   Cumulative Total
00                          279
01                          293
02                          395
03                          311
04                          337
05                          288
06                          464
07                          564
08                          597
09                          582
10                          865
11                          798
12                          486
13                          197
14                          368
15                          700
16                          275
17                          310
18                          446
19                          513
20                         1292  
21                           756
22                           853
23                           242
24                         1621
25                           765
26                           576
27                           663
28                           492
29                            660 
30                            806
31                           1636  
32                             241
71                             683         
72                             594 
73                             729
75                           2464                                                                      
76                             984
77                            1712                                                                                
79                              371 
84                                47
88                                 29
Total                       52,902