Monday, March 30, 2020

UFT Executive Board March 30, 2020 (via phone) Andrew Cuomo Wants Teachers and Students to Work Through Easter Break

5:50 Roll Call

6 PM Secretary LeRoy Barr welcomes us.

Minutes—approved via email.

Michael Mulgrew, UFT President
—Update on DOE—Trying to finalize attendance policy for students and teachers, hoping within two days.

Worked hard for related service providers, reversed mandate for tele therapy. Some members wish to continue. Sometimes parents have posted therapy sessions, FERPA violation. They need language that parents will not do this. Will be clarification, may take 5-10 days with difficult supervisors. Working to make it available by phone.

—budget will be done in 24 hours, were looking at tens of thousands of layoffs, but there is fed money for state for education. When we get through crisis, first thing people will look at is schools and getting kids back in regular routine. We will play a vital role, but this is unprecedented. Social and emotional toll on all, will be ramifications. We will deal. We don’t want to deal with people having jobs threatened. Challenge because economy has been decimated.

Imminent threat on everyone. Must plan for when we do get out of it, and build a safety bubble around ed. We think fed. money will keep us from losing people. We have a lifeline for the next few months, but will need something bigger and stronger. Ed. plays vital role at all times.

Our nurses are beyond heroes, visiting nurses, NYU, SI, incredible what they’re dealing with. We’ve sent food out for them, least we can do.

Federal—package went through, no more talk of back to business on easter.

In NY, people must stay home for next two weeks. Police will crack down because this time is vital if we wish to end it. NYSUT believes governor saying since he waived 180 days that schools should work through Easter/ Passover break. NYC schools working at high level in stressful situation, ought not to be part of this.

Recommended amount of work? What you deem appropriate for your students. We have district plans and members working with one another. Teachers are figuring it out. Have spoken with members who gave too much work. Trying to figure out what’s appropriate.

Remote learning plan is very simple form. Most -repopulated.

How do we protect RSPs (related service providers) from being taped? Covered it and got state law changed. Now therapy can be done with phones. We will form training groups for RSPs. No one has enough training. Amazing we are getting work done. DOE didn’t offer real training.

State assessments suspended—if regents canceled how will it impact teachers? Will discuss with SED and let you know.

There is no agreement on how to do remote observations. We are working on it. I don’t think principals even understand it.

No online platform movement. Grading policy should be a school discussion. Whole school attendance is child interacting with school, not only class. Students who need extra support now—we’re doing better than most school systems around state. Some just send paperwork home.

We see good practices for whole school, while teachers take attendance in only their classes. We have to find students who don’t interact at all. Those may not be promoted or get credit. We need to find and help those students, especially those who need services.

Payroll secretaries now have home access. They are vitally important.

Teacher attendance should be simple. Some DOE people make things too complicated. Let’s focus on getting our jobs done.

How many UFT members tested positive?—Couldn’t guess at this point. Will say they are expecting a 40-50% positive rate in NYC, but many have had it and don’t know it. Will be an antibody test, and that will be pivotal. We will make sure when schools open that DOE and DOH may not sabotage their own process.

When we were going to court on Monday to close schools Mayor closed them. We may have stayed open another week. DOH failed to follow own process. We will take action before we return to make sure DOH and mayor’s office understand this is not a game. If there is an order, schools close. That’s it. We will take action before schools open.

Mayor said he wanted to open on 20th—doesn’t see it happening.

No NYSESLAT—what will we do—we will work it out.

In talks with DOE about tenure.

Governor saying we should all work through spring break because we waived 180 days. NYC taking this very seriously. We are outpacing everyone else. Should no be penalized because others didn’t.

Don’t know about observations via remote. May have to negotiate one.

We’re no entering a really hard time for this crisis. Stay home. Now is critical. Learning we offer is lifeline to families. All facing it. Not just about learning. Teaching is more complex. Maybe people will learn that and that may be sliver lining.

Much work ahead to prevent asinine behavior from people who don’t know how to support others.

Thanks us for all our accomplishments. Happy union is able to accomplish such great deeds and communication.

Final roll call. Barr asks us to inform members, thanks us for calling in.

We are adjourned. 6:34
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