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UFT Executive Board February 26, 2018--We All Get Along

I came from another meeting and arrived late at 6:08.

Minutes approved.

LeRoy Barr talking about how news SCOTUS judge is silent. DOJ was there on behalf of Janus. Conversation ent way beyond whether agency fee person should pay dues. Argued against collective bargaining. Said unions don’t have that right.

Mulgrew is not here.

Howard Schoor—Moment of silence for Parkland victims. Several resolutions.


Arthur GoldsteinMORE—:  Nobody responded to us to our request to negotiate resolutions.  Found it disappointing that after that you present two, covering the same ground as ours.  Seems unfair that we receive no notice of resolutions brought up by board, particularly when you consider you passed a resolution to require it from us. 

Schoor: Let us debate what we should do.

Mike SchirtzerMORE—Is it possible for us to reach out to our counterparts in DOE and request a safety meeting in the next week or two?

Schoor—Thinks it will be favorably received.

Schirtzer—Update on parental leave?

Schoor—Problem is anything we say gets out. We don’t want to take the chance it goes out. When you negotiate we don’t want to negotiate on the blogs. Some things need to remain private. There has been a snag.

Schirtzer—What can we do?

Schoor—We will eventually have a rally. Will be great optics.

Ashraya GuptaMORE—DeBlasio said this was a teachable moment, that he would walk out. He seems to suggest DOE will have plans. Can we advocate for teachers involved in design?

Schoor—We agree, but it’s more than that. There are different rallies and events. We will be involved but things are not yet finalized. Three upcoming demonstrations. We will be involved with the city. All our members are susceptible. Safety most important issue.

Marcus McArthurMORE—We’ve talked about problem admin and supes. Our discussions will focus around supes, we hear. How is that going?

Schoor—Brought four problem schools, three high schools in Queens and Manhattan. Don’t want to ID, trying to resolve. Asked borough reps to ID schools. May be movement in three of the four. We may report on them when things are clearer. May send officers to about 20 schools around city. We will try to resolve issues. New chancellor will have new policies.

KJ AhluwaliaNew Action—Can we do something about the sandwiches? I have Indian friends who can cater cheaply. It doesn't have to be expensive.

Schoor—Motion to change menu.

Passes unanimously.

Reports from Districts—

I miss the first one, as someone is talking to me.

Sterling Roberson—Annual Career and tech. ed—educators were honored. Over 60 individuals. Industry partners also selected. Awarded teachers, and schools so plaques will remain. Thanks all from various boroughs.

David Kazansky—Rally on Saturday was fantastic moment. Saw unions, NYSUT, PSE DC37 all in solidarity. 200 UFT. Good for break. Thanks Janella and Anthony Harmon, who spoke.

—Lutheran Medical Center contract settled. Highest rated by state, and only one with a union. Negotiating committee March 1st. Asked for demands from functional chapters. Have survey responses from 6K of 30K paraprofessionals.

Legislative—Paul Egan—asks for moment of silence because Chelsea lost. We have Lobby Day. There are vacancies. Last chance to sign up.

Ellen Procida—Grievance Dept.—Most of our grievances involve individual members. As a result of a UI we came up with a procedure when paras are arrested, if charges dismissed, they are made whole if they do all in time. They get quick arbitration. Board decided she didn’t notify in timely fashion, but she had. Arbitrator gave full back pay and admonished board.

Two cases with APPR and 13% appeal. We have deadlines to notify board. Two members scheduled to go for 13% also had APPR complaints. Both APPR were successful and members ratings no longer developing.

In elementary schools, graduation is issue. You are allowed day off to go to your child’s graduation. Board has been saying not necessarily for elementary. We go to expedited arbitration. Arbitrator says OP-201 no longer says except elementary, so of course they can go.

Paperwork—issues with lesson plans brought up, then taken out. We didn’t have to go to arbitration. Leave a copy of your lesson plan in folder, particular place, Memo sent—prohibited to do this.

Lots of cases come one person at a time. Grievance process is doing pretty well.

Schoor—paperwork has been successful, but not everything is brought to our attention. CL brings it to principal, then to superintendent, and then arbitration. Teachers don’t have to bring grievance. Not all come forward.


West Virginia Teacher Strike

Sterling Roberson—Asks we support teacher walkout in WV. Teachers walking out for better pay, health care, job security as opposed to pay cuts. Student learning conditions are our working conditions. If we don’t advocate and support fellow members it’s the same issue across the country. We will have to continue to do this with national conditions.

Mike SchirtzerMORE—As was previously stated, we sent out resolution and offered to work with you. Asks for amendment in lieu of other resolution. Asks we add resolved.

Resolved that UFT will publicize the courageousness of the WV teachers to help educate our members about the power of union activism, including strikes, even when strikes are illegal.

Says this applies in NYC as well. We should support it.

Schoor—Does anyone want to speak against?



Main resolution—


Resolution in favor of gun safety

Janella Hinds—Everyone horrified by what we saw. As NYC educators, we think of larger issue. Our kids live in communities where gun violence is pervasive. This resolution supports student activist in FL and around entire country. UFT will stand in support and work with advocates to prevent weapons of war accessible to teenagers.

We are looking at mental health. We need professional learning for intervention strategies. We need to prevent these catastrophes.

Ashraya GuptaMORE—Would like to add phrase to existing resolved and one additional, including revoking the federal Dickie amendment and banning high capacity ammunition magazines.

Resolved, that the UFT calls on DOE to review school safety plans with faculty at every school.

Dickie amendment says CEC can’t do research on gun violence. As teachers we should be up in arms about this. We need to advocate for more research.

High capacity magazines release multiple shots in short period. For military or having fun at gun range—doesn’t justify them. Even Marco Rubio said he would reconsider. AFT supported this ban last week. We should join them.

School safety plans important. We need to review what we’d do, however, disheartening these drills may be.

After second resolved, please.

—Let’s debate that.


Schoor—debate about Dickie amendment.

Sterling Roberson—offers to amend amendment. Strike all related to Dickie amendment. We have to do research to make sure we understand it.

Vin Scaglione:  I didn't hear the debate abuout the amendment.  He did hear about the CDC bans research on NPR.

Arthur Goldstein--MORE--Heard the same.  We should say that we support research into gun violence and end the ban on the agency.

Schoor: We are in agreement in policy.

Hinds—proposes second resolved. That the UFT supports federal research on the impact of gun violence, as number two.

Point of order—Sterling R.—

Schoor—Body can change rules…

Roberson—(I don’t follow his comment)

Ashraya GuptaMORE—If I withdraw mine, can we vote on Janella’s?

Schoor—We can do what we want. We have conceptual agreement. Janella’s resolved will supersede Sterling’s amendment.

Gupta—Can we add “public health impact” of gun violence?

Michael Friedman—Dickie amendment means feds spent no money at all. Can do no research. Any other issue CDC can evaluate. Dickie himself against amendment.

Vote on resolution with changes.


We are adjourned. 7:07

Thanks to KJ Ahluwalia for taking notes when I spoke and also for complaining about those awful sandwiches. 


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