Francesco Portelos is a former environmental engineer/inspector turned science and technology teacher. He is a father of two boys who are entering the NYC public school system. He is also a husband to a 3rd grade teacher from Brooklyn. Ten years ago he made the decision to leave his higher paying career to teach in a troubled school in his community in Staten Island.
As most teachers do, Francesco Portelos stayed late and worked hard to give his students the best. Before entering the teacher activist arena, his principal wrote Francesco Portelos “is dedicated and hard working, giving the school access to the best technology the school can offer to the students and staff as well.” It wasn’t until he became a father in his school’s community, and saw the school system under the lens of a parent, that he came to learn the truth about how the NYC Department of Education and UFT operate. He began raising serious concerns at his school and was immediately retaliated by the DOE and left to fend for himself while the UFT did little to support him.
Not knowing how to give up, he pushed on advocating for himself and for his colleagues at the school. He was removed from the school and banished to a basement with gated windows twenty miles away. Did that stop Francesco Portelos? No. He ran for UFT Chapter Leader, despite his distant exile and made UFT history by being the first one to be elected while banned from his school.
That was only the beginning of a four year battle that continues pushing Francesco to create several educator advocacy groups including DTOE.org and ATRAlliance.org. Since raising concerns, the DOE has lodged over 60 frivolous investigations and/or trumped up charges against Francesco Portelos. Regardless, Francesco Portelos continues to be in front of the classroom today educating students and proving that you have to be strong and fight back.
He has taught all subjects from Pre-K to 8th grade. Traveling as an ATR he better understands the plight of educators from elementary to middle school. When he is not teaching he is addressing calls from all types of educators including assistant principals and principals who are retaliated by their own supervisors.
You can read more about Francesco Portelos and his journey to improve a broken system on his website www.EducatorFightsBack.org
Vote Francesco Portelos for President in 2016. A force to be reckoned with against those who look to harm public education and educators.
Watch these videos and learn more about Francesco Portelos.