Monday, May 04, 2020

UFT Executive Board May 4, 2020 (via phone) Looking at September

Roll Call 5:52 PM

UFT Secretary LeRoy Barr welcomes us. 6 PM.--

Reports from Districts:

Serbia Silva--Had a virtual poem in pocket April 30. 68 kids read poems, with over 200 people on call. Kids were happy to perform and be heard. Great way of coming together and engaging district.

Janella Hinds--Wishes happy teacher appreciation week and nurse appreciation week.

?--UFT and AFT teacher leaders presenting research projects virtually this week.

Rashad Brown--Pride committee not doing brunch but will be distributing scholarships to recipients anyway.

UFT President Michael Mulgrew--6:08--Thanks us for being here. Members still passing, Total now 60 in service and 42 retirees.

Moment of silence.

Thanks everyone who participated in petition, soon to hit 100,000. Part of a week and a half of members engaging in social media. Many people talking about education without talking to educators. Went on 10 day blitz to let people know what we're facing, how social distancing will affect us. Finally we were able to break through--mayor and governor speaking about this in right way.

They are now looking at issue. We still don't know about summer school. End of month perhaps.

There is a grading policy for final grade now. Many conversations going in with DOE, SED, everyone. We have to start planning. CSA, UFT and DOE looking at plans to open in September, possibly, with social distancing. Will we need evidence based testing for virus? We need guidelines on social distancing. Busing is an issue. Cafeteria.

We have to come up with guidelines and each school will come up with its own plan. What will instruction look like? Can never have entire school in building at one time. We are not child care and we can't be spoken of like that. This is not gonna happen.

What is hybrid teaching? What can we put up for students not in classroom? We already know tech causes a lot more work. Have been in focus group that says time in front of students will help a lot in terms of teaching concepts.

Then there is programming. How can you program when it isn't just classes, but also services. We have to start working on this. Now at least, there is a mandate for us. Will report on a weekly basis.

All these things are additional costs and ought not to be part of our district budget. Every district nationwide already facing cuts.
Fed stimulus package is pivotal. If we don't get that it will be dire. This is needed to keep state and local governments afloat and moving. This is cops, nurses, firefighters, workers, everyone. Will be moving on that.

This is teacher and nurse appreciation week. Will be things going out. Wishes us all to feel appreciated, will send something out.

Concerned with census. Nationally 56.6% NY 50, NYC at 45. We had a plan, and Covid has derailed it, will do action, have 200 volunteers. Will try to bring together other stakeholders and get NY moving. This is also tied to funding and budgets.

State RA coming up. May 14th. Will have delegate meeting.

Calendar should be out within next few days. Parent teacher conferences will somehow be flexible, as is remote learning. Will be no distinct block of time, but most already doing outreach.

We have to really focus on September. Quite a challenge, but we're all willing to do it.

Will do another Town Hall, perhaps next week. Let's keep instruction our students, doing what we need to do, and get through as many challenges as we can. We will get there.


Likelihood of layoffs--Will let you know after federal package.

Tenure--People will receive tenure this year. There is nothing stopping anyone from being granted tenure this year.

Postal union--What can we do to help?--We will work with AFLCIO and AFT. We will stand with them. 

Memorial Day--Have not heard anything about working that day. Concerned about rec centers. Will bring it up Friday.

Transfer HS--Can Oct 31 deadline be extended to January? Concerned with that. Much confusion in DOE. They rely on making sure students get in transfer schools. Will consult and get back to you.

Grading policy--NX needs to be explained. Says DOE went out of their way to make sure no one would be harmed with F. Students will have to go to summer school and show mastery. About 35K in summer school last two years. We have had over 100K. High school seniors will get priority for slots in the summer. Looking at possibility of two or three week classes for some.

Task force to reopen, in state, has no teachers--Betty Rosa has her own task force and SED is determining legal factor. We like to coordinate with them and other school districts. Union reps are on that task force and are doing that work. We have separate statewide task force with many educators.

If we open schools with vaccine, can vaccines be required? That's difficult. We will monitor this. Rush to vaccine could mean they'd screw it up. Don't know who will be required to get vaccines. Will be as transparent as possible.

Can untenured teachers be excessed and join ATR pool? Yes. Is there time limit? No.

Great that governor and mayor know we need to look at safe way to open school system, safety, social distancing, hybrid programming are on their radar. Hoping SBO system will be ready by May 15, and calendar should be done soon.

Thanks all for attending. 6:39

Final roll call.

We are adjourned 6:41
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