General Meeting Minutes

If you were absent from the General Meeting several weeks ago, here are the minutes. Have a question? Want to get involved? Email the Council at solidaritycouncil@googlegroups.com

May 18, 2018

6pm to 7:30pm

Whole Foods Market

Attendees: Eleni, Chris, James, Quinn, Lydia, Juanita

 

Agenda/Minutes:

  1. Ice Breaker: One Word (describe how you are feeling now in one word)
  2. Chapter Leader, Delegate, Para Rep Elections in the Schools

                 a.Strategy to convert Chapter Leaders to support Solidarity

  1. UFT Leadership Elections in 2019
    1. What are the caucuses?
    2. How is Solidarity different from other caucuses?
    3. Why can’t we work with other groups who oppose Unity?
  2. Needs from Our Membership
    1. Willing to write blog articles
    2. Willing to help make a YouTube Video

         1) A video explaining the election process (caucuses, voting) and how teachers can change the

            UFT power structure to improve working conditions and school tone.

         2) A video contrasting  Solidarity and Unity and how we would better support teachers and

            improve working conditions.

  1. Other
    1. Make sure you check your emails!
    2. Make sure you receive emails from the UFT Solidarity
    3. Encourage colleagues to join UFT Solidarity, especially those who seem interested in union affairs
    4. Members sign up and join, but then why. What do they hear, get a call , ask to do something , join a listserv and that’s it? -Francesco
    5. Slack: let’s use it!

 

Minutes:

  1. Icebreaker

Shared out issues in schools and emotions.

 

  1. Chapter Elections in Schools

Botched elections will mean that you might need to go seek approval from Mulgrew in case of emergency.

 

How can we get CL aware of our caucus? James proposes send post-cards to Chapter Leaders at schools (you can find names of Chapter Leader on a school’s CEP). Post cards can be computer generated and designed with a message to Chapter Leaders introducing our Caucus and referring them to our videos. Post cards can be addressed generically to the Chapter Leaders ( would need school addresses on stickers from a mailing list company) as looking up names would be very time consuming.There will be expenses for generating the post cards, buying address labels, and mailing costs.

 

MORE and Solidarity agree on a lot of the same issues. However our emphasis and scope is different.

 

We want to work with other groups. However we need to attract them. We can do this by working on our initiatives. If we are successful, the other groups will seek us out for support.

 

Chris proposes interacting with members before and after the Delegate Assembly. Let’s hit them up in their first September DA. Give out post-card with links. Ask principal for early release time on Delegate Assembly days. We need members willing to give out postcards and fliers. James is willing to work with a member to help design post-card’s text and pictures.

 

  1. Leadership Elections in UFT
  • About 25% of all teachers voted in the last election. Don’t know what a caucus is. Teachers don’t get the power structure.A video can inform them.
  • We need to make head-way in recruitment and action so other caucuses want to approach us.
    • Juanita suggested initiatives to prevent issues from arising in the first place. Teacher tend to only come to us when there is an issue. Trainings for chapter leaders? Going to retiree meetings? Chris recommends you file a grievance if the “school accounts” are not publically shared. Get teachers to file grievance on this issue.
    • Unity turns back on SLT. UFT has a right (along with parents) to consult on budget.
    • School account need to be audited every year.
    • Publicize per session- SeethroughNY.org

 

  1. Member Needs
  • Willing to write blog articles (James is willing to help; Eric does this too)
  • Eric is willing to help out with Twitter.
  • Reach out to teachers over social media. Reach out to Jeff Storobinsky and “Money Over Age.” Ask Francesco to arrange a meeting with Jeff. We are proposing to invite Jeff to our next Council meeting to help us market and attract awareness of UFT Solidarity.
  • Podcast: Johnny and Eric originally wanted to do a podcast of ideas.
  • Willing to help make a YouTube Video: Quinn says we need a concrete plan on the videos. We need to start NOW. Trying to decide length of video. James has a vision; Juanita and Eleni are willing to help out.
    • Chris’s Hook: “Hey, we cannot give you unlimited pencils for the rest of your career….but maybe we can give you a bigger budget for your classroom. But we need your support?”
    • James will be a producer of the videos. He will get emails of Eleni, Juanita, Chris, Eric, and Francesco to produce videos.
    • Juanita says, “Solidarity: the Action Caucus”
    • Due date of videos will be by September 2018 DA.
    • Post-card due date will also be September 2018 DA.

 

         1) A video explaining the election process (caucuses, voting) and how teachers can change the

            UFT power structure to improve working conditions and school tone. Video would be at least

            five minutes.

         2) A video contrasting  Solidarity and Unity and how we would better support teachers and

            improve working conditions.

        3) Eventually, a series of short videos on various topics, posted on a You Tube page, as well as

           other social media spots.

 

  1. Other
    1. Make sure you check your emails!
    2. Make sure you receive emails from the UFT Solidarity
    3. Encourage colleagues to join UFT Solidarity, especially those who seem interested in union affairs
    4. Members sign up and join, but then why. What do they hear, get a call , ask to do something , join a listserv and that’s it? -Francesco
    5. Slack: let’s use it!
    6. FOIL: FOIL Step 2 grievances (ask Chris for exact wording)
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