Chapter Leader Weekly Update for April 20th, 2018

This Week’s Focus

First 2% of total 5% salary increase coming on May 1

The salaries of UFT members employed by the Department of Education will increase 2 percent on May 1 as part of the 2014 contract. All UFT pedagogues and paraprofessionals on the Q Bank payroll will receive the 2 percent increase in their May 15 paycheck. This 2 percent is the last step of the phase-in of the 8 percent retroactive rate increase arising from the 2009–11 period. Nurses, therapists, education officers, education analysts and other eligible members who are on the H Bank payroll will begin to see the 2 percent increase in their May 19 paycheck (for 13 days, May 1 to May 13). All pedagogues who work per diem or per session will first see the new pay rate in the June 1 paycheck for any days worked from May 1 to May 15. Substitute paras and paras working per session will see the new salary rate in their regular, semi-monthly check dated May 31. UFT members will receive another pay increase of 3 percent on June 16. If you have any questions, please contact a salary rep in your UFT borough office.

Check out the new UFT app!

Chapter leaders and delegates have the chance to be the first to download the UFT’s new app. If you haven’t done so already, please download the app for Apple phones or the app for Android phones. On this app, you can handle your union business, from registering for CTLE classes to changing your address, call a union office or the Welfare Fund, catch up on the latest campaigns, and unlock special members-only discounts for apparel, gifts, travel and more. The app also contains a digital version of the UFT membership card that you’ll be receiving in the mail shortly. You can use it to prove you’re a UFT member, whether for UFT services or for member discounts. You log in to the app using the same username and password you use for the UFT website. We are unveiling the app only to chapter leaders and delegates this week because we are counting on you to alert us about any technical issues and we want to gather your ideas for ways to improve the app in later releases. We would also appreciate your input as we add to our list of member-only discounts from local and national merchants. Please let us know if you have ideas about vendors that you want us to approach. Use this online form to give us your feedback.

Meet the new schools chancellor at our Spring Education Conference

Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza will be a featured speaker at this year’s UFT Spring Education Conference. Carranza will join UFT President Michael Mulgrew to talk about important issues that face our schools today. The UFT’s annual Spring Education Conference, our signature event of the year, celebrates, supports and inspires our work as public school educators. This year’s conference will take place from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the New York Hilton in midtown Manhattan. The spring conference includes breakfast, a morning town hall, a large exhibit fair, workshops and a gala luncheon. Read a description of the workshops. This year, you can register and pay the fee online. The registration fee is $50 per person. There is an additional $30 charge for teachers taking a workshop for CTLE hours for a total of $80. For paraprofessionals and other UFT members who want to take a workshop for CTLE hours, there is an additional $15 charge, for a $65 total. School Leadership Team members may use funds allocated to the team to pay for registration fees by using the Spring Conference Purchase Order. For more information, see the UFT Purchase Order Memo.

School safety is a UFT priority

We want every New York City public school to have a safe environment for our students to learn and our members to work. The UFT is here to support you and your fellow members in creating a safe climate at your school. Here are some things to know about safety incidents: You or your members should report safety incidents using the union’s online reporting systemon the UFT website. All injuries and incidents must also be reported to your administration within 24 hours. A UFT health and safety specialist will follow up with you within 24 to 48 hours of receiving an incident report. The UFT Safety and Health Department can also help you process line-of-duty injury claims and Workers’ Compensation claims; address your concerns regarding environmental safety in your school; and conduct a safety walkthrough at your school to offer suggestions about ways to improve your overall school culture and climate. You can read more information on the Safety and Health Department on the UFT website.

Show our video about teachers in Wisconsin at your next chapter meeting

We’ve produced a powerful five-minute video for you to share with members of your chapter at your next meeting. Seven years ago, Kim Kohlhaas was working at her dream job in Wisconsin as a well-paid, respected teacher. When Scott Walker, the newly elected Republican governor, decided to go after public employee unions in 2011, Kohlhaas and her colleagues had no idea how quickly everything they took for granted as public school educators would be taken away from them. Wisconsin teachers now have less prep time during the school day. They no longer have an impartial grievance procedure and are all at-will employees who can be terminated at any time. They work 45 minutes longer each day and have to attend three more PD days each school year with no additional compensation. There is no seniority. Teachers must now pay an additional $5,000 deductible in their health care plan and contribute $5,000 annually toward their pensions. Now, with the help of your school’s membership team, it’s your turn to relay Kohlhaas’ account to your members. At your next chapter meeting, we encourage you to show this video of Kohlhaas telling her story. Set aside time afterward for a conversation among your members about what Kohlhaas said and why it’s relevant for us as we await a decision in the Janus v. AFSCME case before the Supreme Court. You can read more about what happened to teachers in Wisconsin on the UFT website. If you have trouble accessing the YouTube video at your school, you can watch it on the UFT website.

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Your Chapter Leader Checklist

  • NewShare the name and contact information for your election committee chair:Every three years, your school’s UFT members have the opportunity to elect a chapter leader, delegates and paraprofessional representatives. The current three-year term ends on June 30, 2018, so your school must hold an election for these union positions. As per the UFT chapter election procedures and guidelines, chapter elections shall be conducted by secret ballot under the supervision of an election committee. The election committee may be designated by you (the chapter leader) with the approval of the chapter or can be elected by the chapter. Candidates for chapter leader, delegate and paraprofessional representative cannot serve on the committee. The first and most important part of the process is to choose an election committee chairperson. The chairperson, along with the committee, has the following responsibilities: 1) Preparing a Notice of Elections; 2) Creating a list of the positions to be filled; 3) Creating an appeals process; 4) Preparing the ballots and the ballot box; 5) Determining eligible voters on the basis of UFT established rules; 6) Conducting the actual election; and 7) Counting the ballots. Please fill out this brief online form to give your district representative the contact information for your election committee chairperson. After the election, the chairperson must certify the election to the UFT Membership Department on the appropriate form, whether paper or electronic. We strongly encourage you to hold your elections in early May. For more information about how to run a school chapter election, chapter election procedures and the responsibilities of the chapter leader, see the chapter elections pageon the UFT website.
  • NewDeadline extended to nominate your chapter for a Trachtenberg Award: Are you proud of your union chapter? The deadline to submit a nomination for a Trachtenberg Award, the union’s celebration of the accomplishments of standout chapters, has been extended to Friday, April 27. The UFT will honor the achievements of chosen chapters at Teacher Union Day in November. For more information, including eligibility criteria, see the Trachtenberg Award page on the UFT website or submit a nomination online. Only chapters that did not receive Trachtenberg Awards in the 2016-17, 2015-16 or 2014-15 school years are eligible this year.
  • Professional Activity Periods: To empower chapter leaders and chapters, the UFT’s Contract Empowerment Department, in consultation with the Grievance Department, created a Professional Activity Fact Sheet for Elementary Schools and a Professional Activity Fact Sheet for Middle and High Schools. Each fact sheet presents best when printed as one double-sided document. For additional support, each of the bulleted activities outlined on the fact sheets cite the relevant contractual article, circular or arbitration. Currently, the Professional Activity Manual is under revision and we anticipate providing it as a valuable resource in the coming weeks. In the interim, please refer to these fact sheets to guide you as you consult with your principal on Professional Activities. Questions can be directed to your district representative or Debra Poulos, the director of the union’s Contract Empowerment Department, at
  • Start the discussion about SBOs with your members: Now is the time to begin discussing school-based options (SBOs) in your school. If your chapter would like to renew an SBO or implement a new SBO, you should discuss options at your next chapter meeting. An SBO allows staff at a school the flexibility to collaboratively modify contractual articles or to create positions not automatically allowed under the contract. You can use the SBO process to change your school schedule, including when members engage in professional development, parent engagement and Other Professional Work; change the dates for parent teacher conferences; and create comp-time positions. An SBO can be proposed by either the principal or the chapter leader on behalf of the chapter. However, a principal cannot force the chapter to hold a vote on any SBO, and an SBO cannot be adopted unless at least 55 percent of UFT members at the school vote to support it. More information about the SBO process will be coming in future Chapter Leader Updates, so stay tuned. If you have questions, please contact your district representative.

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Share With Your Members

2018-19 school calendar

May Day rally flier

Caregiver Support Group flier

5K Family Walk/Run flier

New Teacher Professional Learning Opportunity flier

Campaign fact sheet on UFT’s current parental leave benefits

10 reasons to be #PublicSchoolProud flier

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You Should Know

Community Service

Last chance to preregister for the 5K Family Run/Walk: Tuesday, April 24, is the deadline to preregister for the UFT’s fifth annual 5K Family Run/Walk, which will take place on Saturday, May 5, on Coney Island. Please encourage your members to bring colleagues, family and friends and join us for this untimed run/walk sponsored by the UFT Middle School Division. The Family Run/Walk is fun and a great way to build friendships with members of your school community. The proceeds will go to the UFT Disaster Relief Fund. Beginning at MCU Park, the 5K Family Run/Walk will take place from 8:30 a.m. to noon. There will be complimentary water, snacks and giveaways for each participant, and the chance to win raffle prizes. The fee to participate is $25 for adults and $15 for children age 12 or younger. You can run or walk as an individual or as part of a team. You can also raise additional funds for this cause by asking sponsors to pledge a dollar amount for your participation. Register online or download the mail-in registration form. Here is a map of the route. Download the 5K Family Walk/Run flier.

English Language Learners

New Conference for ELL educators: The UFT Teacher Center invites all educators and paraprofessionals of English language learners to a citywide conference, “Preparing Our ELL Students for 21st-Century Learning: Utilizing the Four Cs to Promote Academic Success.” In this conference, which will take place on Sunday, April 29, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at UFT headquarters, 52 Broadway, participants will explore strategies that both engage English language learners and develop 21st-century skills necessary for success in a global society. Participants will develop an understanding of the four Cs of 21st-century skills: critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity. They will also explore and use digital tools to support English language learners in developing 21st-century skills; and engage in project-based activities using 21st-century skills to foster English language skills. For the fee breakdown and to register, see the online registration form.


Consider a midyear professional conversation: Midyear professional conversations are an opportunity for teachers and evaluators to reflect on a teacher’s growth and need for additional support from the school leader during the cycle of observation, reflection, feedback, support and development. These conferences are optional for teachers, except those on a Teacher Improvement Plan (TIP). See your administrator if you would like to hold a midyear professional conversation. The deadline for midyear professional conversations is Monday, April 30.

Student roster maintenance verification for MOSL:Teachers should have received an email from the Department of Education asking them to verify their class rosters before the Friday, May 4, deadline. Teachers should be aware that roster verification is important because it determines which students are linked to them for the Measures of Student Learning (MOSL) for their final rating as part of the Advance evaluation system. For more information, see the DOE guidance on roster verification.

Health and Safety

New Learn about the benefits of exercise: All members are invited to the 2018 UFT Welfare Fund Medical Learning Series lecture “Benefits of Exercise and Tips to Get Moving,” presented by Nina Brojan, an exercise physiologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering. This event will take place on Thursday, May 17, from 5:30 to 7 p.m., at UFT headquarters, 52 Broadway, 19th floor, rooms B/C. Light refreshments will be served. To register, call Christine Jittan at 212-539-0667. For more information, see the UFT Welfare Fund Medical Learning Series 2018 flier

Join the UFT’s caregiver support group: Caregiving can be a difficult experience, but it does not have to be faced alone. The UFT’s Member Assistance Program, in collaboration with the UFT Welfare Fund’s Retiree Social Services, has begun its spring 2018 sessions for the caregiver support group where UFT members can connect with other caregivers who are in similar situations in a safe and confidential space. For more information, including the spring 2018 session dates and times, see the Caregiver Support Group flier. Enroll ASAP. To register, please email or call Christopher Chin, LMSW, at 212-598-9591.

New Members

New Forms are available on the UFT website: The UFT website has a wealth of useful forms — UFT, DOE and even New York State Education Department forms and applications — that new teachers often need for issues pertaining to leaves, salary, line-of-duty injury, special education and much more. You can go to UFT Forms on the UFT website to access or print these forms.

Spring 2018 professional learning opportunities for new teachers: The UFT Member Assistance Program, in collaboration with the UFT Teacher Center, is offering workshops for teachers in years 1-3 to help them get oriented, find their way and accumulate the teaching and learning credits needed for their careers. These workshops will take place in the union’s borough offices. The fee is $30, which includes two CTLE hours. For more information and to register, see the New Teacher Professional Learning Opportunity flier .


New Peer Intervention Program vacancies: The Peer Intervention Program (PIP) provides voluntary, confidential assistance for tenured teachers who believe their teaching would benefit from such assistance. PIP is accepting applications for full-time positions as Peer Intervention Program Intervenor. Applicants for the position must have a minimum of eight years of full-time teaching experience and have demonstrated outstanding classroom teaching ability and successful experience working with adults. Priority will be given to teachers licensed in middle and/or high school social studies and English as well as special education. For full selection criteria and responsibilities, see the position posting or email The application deadline is Tuesday, May 8.

Attend the DOE Climate Summit: All educators are invited to the DOE Sustainability Department’s first Climate Summit on Thursday, April 26. Participants will learn about the diversity of climate change and how it relates to school activities and curriculum. Various presenters will speak on climate-related topics and share activities that can be introduced to your students. Activities will include mapping visualizations, climate-themed simulations and games, climate-risk assessments for schools, data analysis, health impacts and climate advocacy. For more information and to register, see the Climate Summit flier.

Political Action

New Join the May Day Rally for Immigrant and Worker Rights: Join thousands of workers, immigrants and allies on Tuesday, May 1, at 5:30 p.m. at Washington Square Park in Manhattan for a celebration and rally featuring speakers, musical performances and community members harmed by the federal government’s anti-immigrant and anti-worker policies. The New York May Day coalition, to which the UFT belongs, is composed of worker and immigrant rights organizations from across New York City, declaring that we are #PartnersinPower for creating positive change in our communities. For details, see the May Day rally flier.


Shoutout to Chapter Leader Diane Mendez, PS 92 in the Bronx: Chapter leaders are on the front lines, defending members’ rights, ensuring members have a voice in school decision-making and mobilizing members in political action to benefit public schools. This month, we’re giving a shoutout to Diane Mendez, the chapter leader at PS 92 in the Bronx. Diane pulled out every stop in her uphill fight — and ultimately unsuccessful bid — to save her school from the chopping block after the city’s Panel for Educational Policy voted 7 to 6 to close the school at the end of the school year. Read more about Diane Mendez’s achievements as a chapter leader on the UFT website.

Salary and Personnel

The Open Market Transfer Plan period began on April 15: The Open Market Transfer Plan offers all pedagogues as well as paraprofessionals access to job openings throughout the city through an online registration process. During the transfer period, which runs from April 15 to Aug. 7, you do not need a release from your principal to change schools. You may even apply to schools without current openings, and your application will be kept in an electronic file in the event an opening occurs. We suggest following up all electronic applications with a hard copy that is mailed, emailed or dropped off at the school. The Open Market Q&A on the UFT website offers more information about the process.

Apply for summer school positions now: Summer school applications are available on the DOE website. Before beginning the application, everyone must register as a new user, even if they have previously registered as an applicant for the Summer School Instructional Program. Members should claim retention rights if they are entitled to them. If someone believes they are being improperly denied retention rights, use the Contact Us form on the left column of the Summer School Instructional Program website and email Michael Sill at The deadline for applying for summer school is Saturday, May 5. Please remind members that if they edit their application after they have submitted it, the date of the application is reset. So, if members edit their application after the May 5 deadline, the application will be marked late.

Members on leave must tell the DOE of their plans for next year by Tuesday, May 15:Members currently on leave must notify the Department of Education of their intentions for next school year between the first week of April and May 15. If a member does not notify the DOE about their plans to return or apply for a leave extension by the May 15 deadline, they will be deemed voluntarily resigned from their position. Members on leave will receive an email from the DOE that explains how to log into SOLAS to state their intentions. Members who have questions should contact their UFT borough office.

Special Eduation

New Review new guidance for IEP assigned paraprofessionals in revised Special Education Standard Operating Procedures Manual: The revised Special Education Standard Operating Procedures Manual (SOPM) contains significant new information about IEP assigned (1:1) paraprofessionals. IEP assigned paraprofessionals provide behavioral, health, language, toileting, and orientation and mobility supports to individual students with disabilities. The union encourages chapter leaders, IEP teams and paraprofessionals to become familiar with the Special Considerations: IEP Assigned Paraprofessionals and Supports for School Personnel on Behalf of the Student sections of the SOPM where these new updates can be found. Members may also source this information on from the Special Populations Special Education section of the DOE website, but they must be logged in. For the first time, this manual explicitly requires IEP teams to consider and document students’ needs for paraprofessional support during non-instructional activities such as lunch and transitions as well as in-service training required for paraprofessionals to effectively implement students’ IEPs. There’s new guidance directed to IEP teams considering a recommendation for an IEP-assigned paraprofessional, as well as guidance on documenting and implementing recommendations for these members. Going forward, for example, behavior support paraprofessionals will be required to receive training in behavior management in general and specifically on how to implement a student’s behavior intervention plan with fidelity. If you need any clarification and, or have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact the UFT Special Education office.

Teaching and Learning

New Teacher Center conference for CTE educators: The UFT Teacher Center is pleased to offer a citywide conference entitled “Building College and Career Readiness in Career and Technical Education” on Sunday, May 6, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This conference will offer a variety of approaches and online resources that can be integrated into curriculum to support demonstration of understanding, collaboration and student engagement. During this conference, participants will: 1) Promote higher-order thinking and problem-solving skills through project-based learning activities; 2) Explore options and strategies for teachers to connect CTE instruction with related academic instruction; and 3) Engage students by infusing technology throughout the curriculum to expose them to 21st-century tools and skills. For the fee breakdown and to register, see the online registration form.

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This Week in Education and Labor News

Jet Blue flight attendants to unionize: JetBlue flight attendants on April 17 voted to join the Transport Workers Union, reports Forbes. TWU President John Samuelsen said the union will seek a contract that provides flight attendants with job security, a grievance procedure, improved wages and benefits, and “a seat at the table in case of possible merger or acquisition.” The union will represent about 5,000 Jet Blue flight attendants. Jet Blue pilots voted to join the Air Line Pilots Association in 2014.

Arizona teachers vote in favor of a statewide walkout: Despite Gov. Doug Doucey’s plan to increase teacher pay 20 percent by 2020, starting with a 9 percent increase next year, Arizona teachers voted to strike beginning April 26, reports Fortune. While Arizona ranks 43rd lowest among the states in teacher salaries, teachers across the state are also demanding the restoration of education budgets to 2008 levels; a permanent salary structure, including annual raises; competitive salaries for education support staff; and no new tax cuts until per-pupil funding reaches the national average. Seventy-eight percent of the 57,000 teachers voted in favor of a statewide walkout.

AFT drops Wells Fargo over NRA ties: The American Federation of Teachers on April 19 announced it is cutting ties with Wells Fargo over the bank’s connections to the National Rifle Association, according to the Hill. The AFT offers a mortgage program through the bank that more than 20,000 union members participate in. “The lives of students and educators must be valued more than guns,” AFT President Randi Weingarten wrote in a letter to the bank. Wells Fargo operates accounts for the NRA and has reportedly helped firearm companies with $431 million in loans.

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Events Calendar


Saturday, May 5: The UFT’s fifth annual 5K Family Run/Walk takes place from 8:30 a.m. to noon in Coney Island. Register online or download the mail-in registration form. The deadline to register is Tuesday, April 24. For more information, see the item in Community Service.

Saturday, May 19: Online registration is now open for the UFT’s Spring Education Conference, which celebrates, supports and inspires our work as public school educators. This year’s conference is from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the New York Hilton in midtown Manhattan. For more information, see the item in This Week’s Focus.

This Week

Tuesday, April 24: Members who are five to 10 years from retirement and their spouses are invited to “Ready-or-Not Retirement, the first session in a program about how to plan for retirement covering topics like financial planning, legal matters, Social Security benefits, health and health insurance. Other dates for this program are Tuesday May 1, 8, 15 and 22. This event will take place from 4:15 to 6 p.m. at the UFT’s Queens borough office, 97-77 Queens Blvd., Rego Park. Register by printing the mail-in coupon, filling it out and sending it to UFT Retiree Health Benefits Department, 52 Broadway, New York, NY 10004. Be sure to write on the flier the name, date and borough of the workshop you are attending. Those accepted should bring a $15 check made out to NYSUT for the first session.

Wednesday, April 25: The laboratory specialists chapter meeting will be held at 4 p.m. at UFT headquarters, 50 Broadway.

Wednesday, April 25: The Member Assistance Program invited teachers in years 1-3 to “The Journey to Resilience,” a workshop in which participants will learn strategies for creating a classroom environment that supports the social and emotional needs of all students. Participants will experience strategies to build resilience and student independence, while being considerate of the connections between traumatic experiences and learning. This event will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. at UFT headquarters, 52 Broadway. Register online.

Wednesday, April 25: The administrative education officers and analysts chapter meeting will take place beginning at 5:30 p.m. at UFT headquarters, 52 Broadway.

Thursday, April 26: Educators of English language learners are invited to “Strategic Learning: The Five Guiding Principles of ELL Instruction,” a workshop in which participants will explore research-based core principles as a frame for ENL instruction; practice engaging instructional strategies to increase ELL students’ access to content; reflect on how specific strategies promote integration of content and methodology; and build a toolbox of techniques for integrated ENL classrooms. This event will take place from 4 to 6 p.m. at the UFT’s Manhattan borough office, 52 Broadway, 10th floor, rooms A/B. Space is limited to 40 people. You can contact the course instructor, Jamie Polzin, at 212-598-6800 if you have any questions. The course fee is $30. For more information and to enroll, see the online registration form.

For more events, go to

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New on

Photo Gallery: Academic High School Awards Celebration 2018

Photo Gallery: Meet the President for Districts 18–23 and HS

Video: Expecting Paid Parental Leave: When you’re a new teacher and a new dad

Union Proud testimonial: Dawn DePalma on school safety

Union Proud testimonial: Bob Cain on the UFT’s advocacy to improve patient care

Occupational and Physical Therapists Chapter newsletter

Manhattan Parent Newsletter – April 2018

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Professional Committees

UFT Professional Committees offer a wide range of workshops, presentations and exchanges, enabling all members to take an active part in their professional growth. Unless indicated, meetings are at UFT headquarters at 52 Broadway, Manhattan. Check the lobby for exact locations. For further information, contact us at 212-598-7772 or visit us online.

Albanian American Heritage

Association of Teachers of Social Studies

Capably Disabled

  • Thursday, May 24, 4:15 to 6 p.m., General Membership Meeting. This month’s speaker is Patricia Hazell, television host of “Patricia’s Potpourri.” For more information, see the Capably Disabled flier.

Irish American Heritage

New York City Art Teachers Association

Pride Committee

  • Thursday, May 24, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., LGBT City Council Legislative Caucus Meet & Greet. We will have a forum with City Council members. For more information, contact Rashad Brown at
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