Monday, December 18, 2017

UFT Executive Board December 18, 2017. Stuff Happens and I Write About It

Due to circumstances beyond my control, I won't be going to work today and I won't be going to Executive Board either. I've asked Jonathan to take notes, and if he commits them to email I'll post them. Just in case he doesn't, I've decided to write the notes for the meeting before it happens, without having actually attended.

Secretary Howard Schoor welcomes us. 6 PM


Unity Caucus member gets up and tells us how great a Thing was. It was fantastic. Nobody expected it to happen, the odds were against it, and everyone loved it. This is a great victory for all of us, and truly inspirational. Who would have thunk we'd be able to achieve this Thing, especially in these times? But when we stick together, and act determined, we find a Way to do the Thing. There is applause.

District Rep. gets up and explains how another Thing happened. It was hard to achieve this particular Thing, because we were up against a Bad Principal who was very much against the Thing. But we went to the school, and not only did we go, but several people on the dais went as well. They were there multiple times and insisted there was a Way to accomplish the Thing. A member comes up and thanks the union for finding the Way to do the Thing. There is more applause.

Minutes--briefly debated after Mike Schirtzer's objection that minutes are too short. Schirtzer demands 62 seconds per minute, contending members are not deriving maximum enjoyment out of minutes as constituted presently. Unity Rep. makes point of order, saying minutes are too long because they already have to listen to MORE and New Action, sometimes for up to two minutes at a stretch. Asks minutes be limited to 58 seconds. Point of order recognized by chair, 58-second minutes approved on party lines. Second party line vote designates 58-second minutes New Minutes.

President's Report--Mulgrew is not here. 

Staff Director's Report--LeRoy Barr describes a bunch of stuff that happened, and then tells us about a bunch of other stuff that will happen in the future.


MORE rep asks a question.

Howard Schoor gives vague response.

New Action rep asks a question.

Howard Schoor calls on someone else to make a response. Person he calls on is going to meet with someone to discuss this question, and will get back to it as soon as they have an answer.

Another MORE rep asks what about the question that was asked last time. Schoor says he hasn't got the answer yet, but will find out. Calls on someone else to explain  why. This person has been to a meeting on that very topic. Has no answer but will try to find out at the next meeting. After that he is confident he will be able to conclusively explain why he still has no answer.

Mulgrew arrives. Mulgrew speaks. Mulgrew leaves.  

MORE rep. with MacBook notes times Mulgew came and left, inserts picture of The Flash running away.

Legislative Report--Paul Egan talks about football. MORE member raises point of order, claims football talk irrelevant to union business. Point of order ruled off point and out of order. Football talk continues for 16 New Minutes, illuminating subtle and intricate differences between various kinds of football and explaining precisely why certain teams should win while others should not. Biblical references cited in support.

Also, we are facing Janus, and Janus is a pretty bad thing.

Reports from Districts--

Unity Rep. A--There was a Great Event. Event was Great. Everyone, without exception, praised and adored the Great Event and next year it will be an Even Greater Event.

Unity Rep. B--There was another Event. It was much better than the Event they had last year because this person, that person, and some other person went to event. Thanks all the people who went to Event.

Meeting interrupted when Philly steak sandwich falls on floor with resounding crash, breaking member's foot. Ambulance is called, member is taken in ambulance. After ten New Minutes, meeting resumes.

Special orders of business--

Resolution--The world would be better if people were nicer. Resolution is contained in folder. UFT VP motivates, contending she personally knows a good number of people who are are nice and likes them much better than people who are not. Several Unity members get up and state that, at their work, it's much easier to deal with nice people than not nice people. Head of grievance department is brought up, speaks in strong support. Says most conflicts are easier to resolve if people are nicer. States that if principals were nicer there would be fewer grievances.

Passes unanimously.

Resolution--To make all the little children all over the world happy. Resolution is on Kelly green paper in back of room with coffee spilled on it. Sticky note is attached to first paper in stack that says, "Please print this on Kelly green paper, spill coffee on it, and don't put it in folder." We wait while people go back and try to pick copies with fewest coffee stains. Jonathan Halabi of New Action motivates. Says everyone likes children and when they are happy the world is a better place. Says he personally works with children every day, and that when they are happy they learn better. Says when he tried making them sad results were not as good, so he now tries to make them happy instead.

Unity member steps down from dais and says, while he may or may not like to see the children of the world happy, that this is neither the time nor the place. This is an issue better left to the 300 member negotiating committee and taking it out of their hands would be an act of such unspeakable depravity that he cannot bear to contemplate it for another moment. Takes off shoe and bangs on podium.

80 Unity members momentarily look up from sandwiches and/ or phones to pay attention.

Proposition is debated. Several Unity reps contend this may alienate Trump voters and say this is not the time for such a bold resolution. Another asks whether there are studies to demonstrate this theory. A MORE member gets up to speak in support. Unity member makes point of order, interrupts her mid speech. Another Unity member calls the question. Howard Schoor praises the motion and remarks that in the over 30 years he's known this Unity member, he's never known him to speak before. Question is called.

Resolution fails on party lines.

We are adjourned.
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