Tuesday, August 31, 2021


This is from an interview UFT President Michael Mulgrew did on PIX 11 on August 27:

Anchorman: Is remote learning..., do you want that to be an option and is there the staffing for it?

Mulgrew: It's not a question of do we want; it will be an option; it won't be an option as it was last year. At the end of June last year, we were closing a thousand classrooms a day, those children were being taught remotely and that is when we had 300,000 students, so we're going to need a remote program. So for us, the teachers will do the job but we have to make sure that they're not being overburdened and that the Department of Ed is doing its job to support the teachers in the work they're trying to do. And that is what that negotiation is about. I know the mayor likes to say there is no remote; it's just not realistic.

Anchorman: So what are you negotiating?

Mulgrew: We're negotiating the fact that now teachers will have to be doing a regular day of work, setting up a classroom and all of that and at the same time now, that the city and we understand this, they need to set up a digital classroom and all of the rest of it. So this is a lot more work than they normally do.

My take is that if the Delta variant spreads like wildfire throughout NYC schools, there will be plenty of classrooms closed that will go virtual. That seems very likely. Teachers will be the ones who have to do the extra work Mulgrew talked about and there will be little or no compensation. 

Mulgrew admits on PIX 11 that in June the DOE was closing a thousand classrooms a day and this was before the more contagious Delta variant was all over the place. At that time, the vast majority of the kids were not in the buildings. They were learning remotely. Having so few students in buildings kept infections at a lower rate than they would otherwise have been and gave many parents and other New Yorkers the chance to get vaccinated so by the end of the school year Mulgrew could make his premature claim that we had reached herd immunity. 

Now that the United States with Delta is again one of the countries most negatively impacted by the pandemic as there are over a thousand Americans a day dying and doctors fear children of color are particularly at risk, it seems to me to be a little insane to negotiate on what to do when kids get COVID instead of figuring out how to truly minimize infections. This could be best accomplished by again having a remote option opened up to every family, especially those with children under 12 who cannot get vaccinated. 

I am no scientist and don't pretend to be one. That said, in my non-scientific opinion, the de Blasio-Mulgrew strategy now seems to be to throw a giant "infect the kids with COVID party" and hope for the best in terms of hospitalizations and deaths because children have had better outcomes with COVID than adults.

I don't understand why the radical right who come to this blog are not praising de Blasio and Mulgrew for opening schools at full capacity. It looks like a strategy to infect as many kids as possible. It is quite close to the infect everyone with COVID to build natural immunity declaration that folks on the right love. It is a weird kind of survival of the fittest approach.

I'd prefer a remote option for those who don't want to participate in this social-scientific experiment.


Anonymous said...

Let me understand,

Students will be allowed to stay home and never log on?

That's how they learn? To get the highest grad rate ever?

Anonymous said...

I had to reread it a couple of times. Mulgrew is on board with this: "setting up a classroom and all of that and at the same time now, that the city and we understand this, they need to set up a digital classroom and all of the rest of it. So this is a lot more work than they normally do." A lot more work than we normal do? Is he trying to work us to death?

So it looks like what they're going to do is not go the "home instruction" route, and rather have remote options taught from the regular teachers at the school. It would certainly be a lot more work to have remote lessons alongside in-person lessons. If they think there's not going to be a grand exodus for remote learning like last year they're just naive. Maybe if the Delta surge wasn't an issue they'd be ready to return, but there's no way most of those kids are coming back if they have the option to stay at home. They're due back on the 13th. What are they waiting for to put these plans in place?

Anonymous said...

With the testing being decreased, I wonder how much will go undetected. And when students do get sick, and test positive from a test given outside of schools, will the DOE count it. That was an issue last year. It was also a matter of proving that the positive case was a result of contracting it in school. If i remember, even when they couldn't prove where it the child contracted covid, they wouldn't close the classrooms. They had to actually prove it was caught in the classroom. These are ridiculous thresholds, that were immensely confusing (and honestly still are) but apparently a gold standard.

Anonymous said...

At this point any words that comes out of Mulgrews mouth are beyond meaningless. He does not tell us the truth and changes his stance continually to meet the needs of the mayor.

on a separate note- James I noticed you responded several times in threads saying over 630k people died in the US from Covid as you support and push the vax mandates. Although I am vaccinated I do not feel comfortable telling other people they must get it. Yes way to many people have passed away but you regurgitating that # scares me as early on hospitals were pretty much declaring every death a covid death or citing it as an underlying factor. In many cases it was not, I know families that said loved ones were labeled covid deaths that were clearly not and do not forget hospitals received up to 38k in federal money for each covid labeled death. Hospitals clearly had enormous incentives to drive this number up. Who knows what the real number is but the one the govt is using is clearly not correct to be be basing decisions off of.

nerd said...

To me it’s unclear if Mulgrew is also inferring there will be an option for teachers to be fully remote or as necessary or all teachers will be on site but students may not be.

Anonymous said...

Kids will be in quarantine from time to time but there WILL NOT BE A FULLY REMOTE OPTION. DeBlasio already stated that only 10% of kids will be tested every two weeks with parent approval. Any idiot can read into that and see that we will hardly see any Covid cases in schools. Less testing equals less cases.

James Eterno said...

Send the evidence, 9:29. I listen to the ICU people. CoVID is no joke. The extra deaths in the USA are real. Check out the funeral homes.


Florida is in the middle of its third COVID death spike, as local funeral homes are operating at or near capacity. On Thursday, Palms West Funeral Home had two more COVID deaths come. Their record in one month for total deaths is 90, and with five more days in August, they could break that record.

Anonymous said...

That's right, this all has nothing to do with education, it's just the nuerotic obsession with safety-ism

Anonymous said...

Shut up say the crazies on the left. Wear your little obedience mask and stand on the idiot circle.

Anonymous said...

The negotiating duo is back at the Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum Courthouse.
Here they are posing for a photo together at Tweedle.


Anonymous said...

Sweden's 7-day average COVID deaths have been at ZERO for about a month now. It must be because they lockdown and forced vaccines on everyone ! LMAO

I feel like its only a matter of time before the very existence of a place called Sweden is scrubbed from the internet.

Anonymous said...

NY may not see another wave. We have high Vax rates and high infection recovery rate. It may wane.

James Eterno said...

Doug, I apologize for not posting testimony from an anti-vax conspiracy theorist who has a PHD but was easily debunked. Reliable sources matter and this blog is for union and education issues, not to debate conspiracy theories.

I noticed the person who posted took off the comments of those who had links to sites that proved she was wrong. Only general statements disagreeing with her were allowed.

I am taking the time, too much in fact, to make sure whatever discussion goes on here is fair.

Anonymous said...

1110. It must be because of their universal healthcare system which provides all people with the ability to have regular checkups and a consistent observation of their overall health. It must be because over 50% of their population is able to live in a single person household. It must be because their population is less condensed. It must be because they have lower rates of diabetes. It must be because they have dramatically lower rates of obesity. It must be because they have government paid sick leave which gives people the ability to stay home when they are sick. It must be because living in Sweden isn't in and of itself a pre-existing condition.

Anonymous said...

Hospitals do not receive 38k for each Covid labeled death. Instead, it is the cost to provide care to a covid patient. Especially, if they are put on a ventilator. There is no massive hospital cover up. There are too many good people out there that would blow the whistle on such fraud. And all the other stuff about people dying and being labeled covid deaths are just silly anecdotes that we hear over and over again. The new argument now is doctors have their hands tied because they are threatened with losing their license for writing exemptions. Well, it works both for and against because it's fraud if they knowingly make misleading statements about a patient's health.
Just sayin'

Anonymous said...

When gets get very sick, diblasio will not be safe in nyc. Why did they change to 3 ft rule if delta is contagious??how many will homeschool?maybe jobs teaching pods will open...what a shitshow the greatest city is!

Anonymous said...

No mandate for kids to test.what can u say?parents will continue sending sick kids to school.
Btw, cheech and chong diblasio and mulgrew must be on some good pot.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Sweden hasn't had any recent deaths, but they've had cases, and hospitalizations but what does that have to do with places like Florida and Mississippi where we do have deaths and ICU cases? Hospitalizations, of a child especially, are serious business. It's very traumatic for everyone.

Anonymous said...

Praise DeBlasio? It was never about safety for him. It was always a political decision. The doe will hide COVID cases like they hide everything else.
-Right winger who thinks there should be a remote option if parents want it. Teachers medically unable to be vaccinated should be given remote assignments.

Anonymous said...

LOL @ "DeBlasio already stated that only 10% of kids will be tested every two weeks with parent approval. Any idiot can read into that and see that we will hardly see any Covid cases in schools. Less testing equals less cases."

Good point. That was DeBlasio's original plan but Principals were already told to prepare for a remote option, not sure why they haven't announced it yet. Schools across the country were planning on the same thing and they've had to shut it down when people starting getting sick. So he can trying pulling his tricks, but it's going to be exposed real fast and the best thing he can do is prepare for it now so that's it's not a complete disaster when/if schools have to close down, quick, fast, and in a hurry.

Doug said...

Wow James. You are censoring testimony at the Michigan House. There is no conspiracy theory there. She is anti-mandate, not anti-vaxx.
That’s fine, though. It’s your blog after all. But notice how your actions fall in line with corporate media’s attempts to silence dissident voices in the scientific and medical community. Do you really want an echo chamber in here?

Regarding the issue of COVID prevention strategies, you continue to evade my question: Are you a socialist?
I support a remote option because I love choice. I’m not a part of the radical right.

Anonymous said...

Many NYC Charter Schools are now up and running with full on-site learning—in several public schools. What will the infection rate data indicate in about 10 to 14 days from now—assuming they collect data. Are these schools actually doing any Covid testing, enforcing the wearing of masks, are those air filtration units in the classrooms. —and of course are their teachers fully vaccinated?

Anonymous said...

I hope Mulgrew means UFT is negotiating so that teachers get paid for the time and work we do in maintaining a digital classroom in addition to teaching in-person. It also looks like [unlike other cities] any "remote" option will be on the backs of classroom teachers - there will be no "centralized remote option." We knew this - who would do it - there is no one, and no plan.

The City has piles of money for Covid-related stuff and teachers need to get paid for the extra time and work we will be doing. This should be official and contractual. So far, what did I get as a classroom teacher? 2 Intellipures, disposal masks, hand sanitizer - and less testing. No books, materials, devices, - no extra pay for extra time.

Anonymous said...

Obesity seems to be a key measure in many COVID deaths. Taking a look at many of the land whales that circumnavigate our buildings, this is where the concern lies. Also, look at the complete shit our students "nourish" themselves upon. The only sympathy I can provide is for the immunocompromised and students with pre existing conditions.

Anonymous said...

Real classy @9:53. But looking at some of the images of people who are dying or in ICUs, they're not all "land whales" and according to CDC the number is 30% attributed to obesity. You have a preexisting condition of being ignorant. I think that's worse.

James Eterno said...

Doug, Anyone can speak at a public hearing. I don't want this blog to be the place for anti-vaxxers to pontificate. You have plenty of other places where you can do that. If you would have the guts to email me, I will discuss it off the blog.

Your expert is an anti-vaxxer who links autism in black kids to vaccines which has been shown to be false.

Debunk the Funk(Dr. Wilson) is my source.


My other source is Michigan Advance:

One speaker, Christina Parks, is a science teacher for a Grand Rapids-based Christian homeschool organization with a postdoctoral degree in cellular and molecular biology from the University of Michigan.

Amid other false claims Parks made about COVID-19 vaccinations, she referred to mask-wearing as a “biochemical nightmare” and “metabolic nightmare” that exacerbates inflammatory diseases and increases risk of cancer, diabetes and more — none of which is scientifically accurate.

Parks also argued that the COVID-19 vaccine should not be taken because it does not guarantee against transmission or breakthrough cases. The goal of vaccines is to prevent individuals from getting the virus or becoming seriously ill — which the COVID-19 vaccines are doing.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services reports that 98% of COVID-19 cases from Jan. 15 to July 21 in the state have been from unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated people.

To be fair, I am going to link to the original speech but please don't expect me to publicize more of this nonsense and make me waste my time debunking it.


James Eterno said...

I listened to your expert again. She says the CDC conducted the Tuskeegee Experiments between 1930 and 1970. The CDC didn't even exist in 1930. Tell your expert to get her facts straight.


It was the USPHS that did that infamous, disgraceful study.


My point is that if a history guy like me could easily spot that error, my guess would be the science debunkers could easily find science bs.

Anonymous said...

Why link to unscientific propaganda garbage, if that's what you say it is, just because he's whining about it?

Anonymous said...

James at 11:57. If science debunkers could easily find science bs, then that’s exactly what they should do. But they don’t. Instead they get Big Tech and bloggers like you to censor. I’ve been thirsty for honest debates among scientists since this thing started. Once people are censored I immediately find them to be more credible. Nyc will never enforce vaccines for kids. They’ve never enforced before, they won’t start now. They will never demand anything from parents and kids, only demands on teachers. Same old doe ways. Never going to change. We’re all getting COVID eventually and the democrats in charge of nyc will sweep it under the rug even if we start dropping like flies.

Doug said...

Thank you for posting the link and at least giving people the choice to challenge their assumptions. I don’t know if she is an expert. I found her to be an interesting dissident voice from the scientific community.

I am not anti-vax. I am anti-mandate. I think you can see the difference.

She could be wrong about MMR shots and autism. I haven’t explored that claim.

Dr. Christina Parks and current CDC director Rochelle Walensky are correct when both say the “vaccine” does not stop the spread or prevent breakthrough infections. For that reason alone, the mandates are unconscionable. Why force unnecessary medical treatment on people who do not want and/or need it? Our immune systems are not a conspiracy theory. The infection fatality rate is incredibly low for the vast majority of Americans. This is already proven yet you act like it’s still March 2020.

I think you are wrong in your second comment. The CDC and USPHS worked together. I’m under the impression that the CDC joined the experiments after it was formed in 1945. Regardless, the point stands that the US government has performed medical experiments on its own people and foreigners throughout the 20th century (check out what they did in Guatemala). Since the Pfizer “vaccine” still has 13 FDA studies to be completed by 2027, many Americans conclude that mandating COVID vaccines amount to further coerced medical experimentation. Of course, the law states otherwise for now, You are right about the law.

The Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male[1][2][3] (informally referred to as the Tuskegee Experiment or Tuskegee Syphilis Study) was an ethically abusive study conducted between 1932 and 1972 by the United States Public Health Service (PHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on a group of nearly 400 African Americans with syphilis.[4][5]


It’s difficult to debate mandates and not talk about the mandated vaccines. I understand your frustration.

Unknown said...

Just because some of us are questioning safety of vaccines does not makes us antivaxxers or right wingers. Thetr is a covid doccuseries currently in progress with many respected doctors and scientists, some of whom worked with Fauci.experts speak from differrnt angles.oh btw, Gates owns a huge amount of Phizer syock.intetesting that he pushed the fda to get it out first.now two people from fda.wondering why...is fallout imminent?
Agreed that surely, there are conspiracy nuts put there.but doctors and scients who are in the know should be heard and not dumped together with dirty politics or nutjobs.there is no longer respect in government or science anymore.btw, if we die or become incapacitated from the shot, will the die pay out?? One less pension to pay.i guess that is why they mandate it for the military.they hope they die before they have yo pau.my opinion, NOT from the experts.i think its manipulation that they came with stimulus money after desyroying people's livelihood.its a mind game, and a dangerous one.
James, i do not think it is right that you do not allow posts relating to the work of scientists and dictors who question the narrative.you are doing thevpropoganda job of the cdc.atr they paying you to censor??

Anonymous said...

Your horrible and lazy typing on your stupid phone clearly indicates the slovenly attitude you have to life in general. As a teacher you wouldn’t accept it. As teachers neither should we accept what amounts to a half assed attempt to write your jumbled disordered thoughts on a blog that’s for teachers. People who actually give a toss about the written word. You seem to have too much free time to expound on your drivel. I usually ignore your ranting. However, this laziness is irritating. You are the bad apple that spoils the barrel. Please show some respect for yourself and the teachers. That’s if you really are a teacher. It certainly casts a dim light on the profession. Your continual bleating and atrociously lazy texting from the phone truly sucks.

A teacher.

James Eterno said...

Please read what I wrote, Doug on Tuskeegee:

"She says the CDC conducted the Tuskeegee Experiments between 1930 and 1970. The CDC didn't even exist in 1930."

My source is the National Archives at Atlanta, not Wikipedia:

"The United States Public Health Service consciously decided not to treat the men who were afflicted with the disease so that they could study the effects of the illness."


The United States Public Health Service didn't not tell them that they had syphilis as your Doctor Parks said the CDC said. The USPHS said they had bad blood which was a common name for a number of ailments at that time. They then didn't treat them even after penicillin was approved. Not treating them was an unforgivable act. Bill Clinton apologized to those who survived on and families of the deceased on behalf of the country in 1997.


My main point is I don't want to promote anyone who does not even take the time to get their basic facts straight when they go before a public body. Saying it was the CDC in my view is intentional to make it look like they are doing similar things now like with vaccines. I get it and it is not factual. Please move on. Thanks.

Debunking them is not worth the time. I really have other things to do.

waitingforsupport said...

@11:42 am...@9:53am may be struggling with a psychological matter so Let's show them more compassion/ sympathy than they can muster up for others. Covid has not only taken a horrible physical toll, it's also shown a light on how the mentally ill really need support.

Anonymous said...

James really loves to close that Overton Window.

waitingforsupport said...

Now i haven't listened to Doug 's expert and don't want to jump into this discussion between James and Doug buttt,
yes the CDC didn't conduct this horrific atrocity;it was the US govt. A point i mentioned in an earlier posting.

waitingforsupport said...

@12:39pm... says "once people are censored i immediately find them to be more credible. That's interesting.

waitingforsupport said...

It's his blog. Damn. Don't y'all understand this? I bet 90% of you folks who yell "censorship" and "my rights" don't tolerate other people who push back against the government. If James doesn't post your comment, oh well.

waitingforsupport said...

Thank you @2:50 pm. I took to skipping over those posts because i was getting vertigo- like symptoms. I'd be surprised if they are an adult, let alone an educator. No shade intended but hey

David Suker said...

I am not vaccinated and will not wear a mask. I've informed my principal and the the Channcellor. I was told to submit a solas application!

Will do!

Anonymous said...

Hey Dave... tough talk. But what are you going to do? It's a choice of Vax or out.

waitingforsupport said...

Ooh..@David Suker
I sure hope you keep this blog updated. I have to get my old air popper out because I think this will be very interesting.

Anonymous said...

@David Suker. Solas application for what?

Anonymous said...

QUESTION ANYONE do we get time off in Sept to get the vaccine AND are we docked a sick day if we have a reaction

Anonymous said...

@4:57 sure you did.

Just an endangered CL said...

Ready to take that vacation at motel 6 with the $225 Mulgrew netted us for setting up Google Classroom and doing both in-school/live instruction and asynchronous instruction this year. Way to go UFT! All the millions the city received for just this reason, where is it going? Not to the people actually doing the job of teaching the students!

Glad we held a vote on it!

Anonymous said...

What is a solas application for?

Anonymous said...

The cdc is a government entity. Their messaging has proven they have a political ideology. They, like the government that controls them, can’t be trusted to prioritize facts and science. Maybe they’re being truthful. Maybe not.

SOLAS is used to apply for leaves of absence.

Anonymous said...

Suker @ 4:57, did you you think they were directing you to put in for an accommodations or did you know they were directing you to apply for an unpaid leave?

Anonymous said...

Maybe your admin was being sarcastic because so far, there arent any accommodations!he was passing the buck.

Anonymous said...

Attitudes like that are exactly why they are going with the mandate. They can't trust that people will be careful or take lesser precautions like wear a mask. One of the unvaccinated teachers at my school feels that if they catch COVID they'll just beat it, they couldn't care less if they pass it on to someone who won't be so lucky.