Wednesday, June 10, 2015

UFT DA Not Ready to Vote No Confidence in Reformy MaryEllen Elia

                        President’s report

Mulgrew thanks DA for our work (but notably, does not offer us cake). Says we have implemented contract but not far enough. Says we had no idea Cuomo would become nemesis. Makes me wonder why he chooses to disregard those of us who recognized this five years ago.


AFT has started process on presidential election next year. Pension cuts are threatened throughout country. Concerns about how US Supreme Court may rule. Says our enemies are really bad and evil, have cut revenue via tax systems. Boasts of surplus in NY because we fought back austerity measures. Speaks of other locals with huge increases to health care. 

Says it’s tough to get things done because DC is very focused on upcoming Presidential election, that many want to take, I suppose Hillary, down.


NYSED—we will have a new evaluation system next November 15th, maybe. Waiver application may be available for one year only. Believes by next September there will be another system. Says when we have momentum we will make system better.

Stresses it was important to get this out of governor’s hands and to NYSED. Says that is our strategy. Ridicules choice of November 15th to enact evaluation system. Screams about it repeatedly.

Mentions tuition tax credit and charter cap still face us and thanks those helping us. Mentions tax credit is now tied to rent control. Says the well-being, shelter and safety of 2 million people is tied to a tax credit for billionaires. Says we have informed people about it but questions why he did it. Says it will cost teachers $300 to get promised $200 tax credit, and that only very rich will be able to take advantage of it.

Says 13 million has been spent to raise charter cap and push tax credit. Says charter push is to destabilize public education. Says now presidential candidates will openly say charters are an attempt to privatize education.


Mayor pushing for mayoral control, but public is not receptive. Mulgrew says Bloomberg has tainted mayoral control. Says UFT supports mayoral control with checks and balances. Gets scattered applause. Speaks of our support for rent control.

Chapter leader survey—Says we need more info to determine whether contract is being implemented. Says he may get more people to schools to help build chapters.

Renewal schools—Says it’s tough but better than school closures. Says no member is mandated to work extra time, but it is available for pay. Says we need to make those schools work to prove we know “how to fix failing schools.” Speaks also of “out of time” schools that don’t need anything done until September 2016.

Mulgrew speaks of difficulty of being a chapter leader, and thanks outgoing chapter leaders.

Mulgrew says he wants to celebrate our schools and let people know how we’ve kept schools moving despite 20 years of mistreatment from Bloomberg and Giuliani.

Thanks all of us and wishes us a good summer.

                                                               Leroy Barr

Speaks of Spring Conference. Says it was fantastic. Says we gave a million dollars for Albert Shanker scholarships. Wishes a safe and restful summer


CL Paula Washington—Could you clarify what Weingarten said about negotiating reduction of high stakes testing? Mulgrew says it is law of the land, NSEA and RttT mandate you must follow their policies if you want Title 1, 900 million in NYC.

CL IS 303
—Where do we stand on CCSS with NJ giving it up? Mulgrew—Christie talks but isn’t giving up Title 1 funding. Mulgrew says state must have standards but it no longer has to be CCSS. He says politically CC can’t survive. With teacher eval. tied to testing while CCSS is introduced there should be 2-3 year waiting period.

CL PS 25—A lot of schools closed SAVE rooms under Bloomberg. What is status of SAVE law? SAVE law says there must be room, must be plan, and must be part of safety plan. Says there must be plan, must not be recreation.

James Duncan, CL—What should we do to be ready for next year re MOSL? Problem is DOE doesn’t have regs to answer that. Keep all existing committees in place. Mulgrew says matrix will be pivotal next year. Says admin opposes matrix because it takes power away from them and empowers members. Says it’s not true. Says he’s “heard all the rumors and it’s just factually untrue.”

—Comp time—which seniority? School. How do we prove it? Ask. Call UFT if you don’t know.

Jim Myer PS 32—Can we have evaluation clarified as to how points work? Mulgrew says we got rid of points “because of the silliness.”  Myer asks about inequality of class sizes, and perhaps that should be considered. Mulgrew says “class size is a biggie.” Asks why some kids get more money than others, says if we got what we were owed we could lower class size.

CL thanks Mulgrew. Says he hears a lot about candidates but is not interested. Says he’s interested in work we do for our chapters. Says we don’t do enough to build chapters. Says we need to inform members. Mulgrew says if you listened to his report, “you gotta change what you do. We don’t like data but we’re gonna have to get over it.” If key to contract is strong chapter, we aren’t implementing unless we have one. Mulgrew says strong chapter means you make school work with those who work there, and does not necessarily entail war with principal. Says CL is endorsing what he already said.


Mulgrew recuses self as chair. Bearded man takes over and fails to introduce self.

Mulgrew introduces motion for this month. States name of high school he somehow represents. Wants to affirm we celebrate public schools and great work done by UFT members. Much joking about rules and such ensues between Mulgrew and bearded man. Is hilarious, they seem to think. Chair returned to Mulgrew.

Jia Lee
moves for resolution of no confidence in MaryEllen Elia. Jia says we’ve made many compromises, but they have come with sacrifices. Compares Elia to King Tisch. Speaks of support of CCSS and high stakes tests. Raises this for next time.

Janella Hinds
speaks against. Says we don’t know who Elia is. Says there was good partnership in Hillsborough. Says we do not select commissioner. Says our positions must be grounded in reality. In absence of clear understanding it may be shortsighted to say no confidence. Asks for vote of no.

Resolution does not carry. Mulgrew moves to close motions.


“I’m resolution number one,” says Mulgrew. Recuses self. Guy with beard returns. Mulgrew, from floor, says he is of William E. Grady High School.  Says we do a damn good job in largest most challenging school district without any help from those who were supposed to help us. Says we need a complete plan to celebrate every place our members are doing a good job, despite what media says. Says it is not an anger campaign, but a happy campaign.

George Altamare, Exec. Board, says he is happy to see resolution.

Resolution passes.

David Garcia Rosen
  Sports—Some high schools get money while others are told there is not enough. Small schools movement have caused segregation depriving them of activities open to others. Says NYC system is separate and unequal. Says res will put pressure on city to allow more students to reap benefits of sports.

Janella Hinds
—speaks in favor of substitute res. Mulgrew rules her out of order. Hinds speaks against resolution.  Tells her to rise against resolution. Says she is speaking against it, for reasons she articulated, though I failed to hear them.

Ken Achiron—Rises to offer substitute motion. Motion seconded.

Megan Moskop—point of order—Does sub resolution get raised before discussion of first? Mulgrew—yes.

Achiron—Says all children should have opportunity but we shouldn't create opportunity for one student by depriving another. Says system is segregated but position is charters and small schools exacerbated segregation, not large schools. Says res. would ask that everyone’s gym would be open to permits and belong to no one and everyone. Says it would create disruption, taking ability to run teams away from many schools.

Mulgrew takes privilege as chair. Says he believes every kid should have opportunity. Says if we pass resolution City Council will slash budgets. Says our position on CFE is we should take from richer districts and give to us. Asks if we can come up with resolution that makes it clear we are not pitting one school against another. Says he understands rationale for both of them, and that they divide us where we have common ground.

Asks if parties can come with resolution to go after PSAL, and plan for children to have access to teams. Says we will push for all kids to have access. Seems to want parties to come to agreement.

Rosen—we have been researching since 2011, have discussed with UFT. Says res he put forth should be voted on. If it doesn’t get through we will work on it. Students need to know whether or not UFT supports them. Says there is enough money and facilities to go around.

Move to table—will require two-thirds vote.

CL Claude Atkinson
—Asks Garcia to reword reso as health rather than civil rights issue.

Mark Korashan—Moves to refer resos to exec. board. Mulgrew asks if it is motion to table. Parliamentarian says it is.

Motion is tabled.

Point of order CL PS 163—First motion was too important not to do properly. Asks for revote. Mulgrew does revote.

Revote passes.

Paul Egan—Resolution—should there be elections before next DA, Exec Board will endorse. Expects council races.

Marjorie Stamberg opposes because Exec. Board supports capitalist candidates. Says UFT is working class. Says we should oppose GOP, Democrats and Greens and need our own party.

James Cochran CL speaks in favor of motion—says he’s OK with board as long as they endorse people who get him “bigger piece of the pie.”

Mulgrew says we’ve had speaker for and against which is “ettiquette.”

Motion to renew rent regulations. Affect 2 million residents. Need to support extension and strengthening.

Isabelle C. Wagner, delegate—Is one of rent-stabilized tenants. Speaks in support. Says people really need it, she can’t afford to stay where she is otherwise.

Joan Haymont—asks to amend—change middle class to working class. Seconded. Says she would like to roll back rent stabilization to rent control. Asks for communist revolution.

Gloria Brandman, CL
—supports resolution,  asks additions. Mulgrew rules her out of order

Point of order—Mary Ahern, CL—time is up. Mulgrew—resolution started before time, so he let it go. Mary says she was upset when we never got opt out resolution.

Questions called.

Vote inconclusive.

Mulgrew has people stand. Still inconclusive. Mulgrew asks for vote on 19th floor. Mulgrew sees 26 in favor, 8 oppose. Mulgrew says amendment passes, res passes.
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