|All pals now. (Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office)|
So now that NYC Chancellor Richard Carranza, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, and UFT President Michael Mulgrew are all warm and fluffy with each other, all is right/not right (pick one)....right?
They all agreed on the new UFT contract, or MOA 2018
This new contract (not voted on yet) is cause for alarm especially since Mike Mulgrew seems to have swung away from the arguments made by any education activists who argue against Mayoral control of the NYC public school system, like us at Parentadvocates and Advocatz.com. We have, since the start of mayoral control in 2002, fought to fire/let go all the appointed members of the Panel For Educational Policy (NYC School Board) who randomly deny rights to the general public and stakeholders. The members of the PEP are appointed, and owe allegiance to the person/officer who appointed him/her. Stakeholders are not listened to, unless the political officers say so.
The PEP members routinely have violated the rights of parents, students, teachers, vendors and friends of NYC stakeholders by closing schools on the whim of the Chancellor, by ignoring the vote on probable cause under Education Law 3020-a for tenured teachers, and procuring services and products that don't do the job for which they are funded, with public money.
In retaliation for our egregious departure from the so-called "required" political mantras in NYC, we have been vilified by education activists as well as parent groups who think that anyone is fooled by going-along-to-get-along. We don't play by those rules. We know who plays politics in this town, and we will stay with our opinions intact, thanks very much. We have been reporting on and investigating the NYC school system for 21 years, and we are not giving up. Too many lives are being destroyed.
The coalition pictured at the top is very dangerous for anyone who has a problem with the school system. A sign of danger is, in addition to their support for continuance of mayoral control, ATR mess, etc., (see Chaz' blog too) the glee shown by all three men (the new "three men in a room"?) in light of their support for a "stress test" for new teachers. We agree that this in principle may be a good idea, but the implementation may lead to discrimination, racial profiling, age discrimination, and fraud, all of which we have seen in education grievances, lawsuits and appeals.
Thus we agree with the Opinion of the NYC Daily News Editors that caution is required on this new test. We add vigilance.
Watch this video on how NYC uses evaluations against teachers:
Chris Lee on evaluations in the 2018 Contract
A law, rule, and regulation is only as good as its implementation.
Editor, NYC Rubber Room Reporter
Editor, New York Court Corruption
- Building on the success of the paperwork reduction process as a way to resolve disputes, the union has secured this same process to address disputes surrounding professional development, curriculum, inadequate space, workload and basic instructional supplies — which now include paper and assessment materials.
- At the school level, these issues may be raised by the chapter leader to the principal or appropriate supervisor and/or at UFT consultation. If the matter isn’t resolved in five school days, it can be escalated to the UFT district representative, who will bring it to the district committee.
- If not resolved at the district level, issues surrounding workload, professional development, curriculum, basic instructional supplies and space will be addressed by the central committee.
- The UFT can take unresolved issues surrounding PD, curriculum and basic instructional supplies to arbitration.
Evaluation windows and timelines
Professional development on evaluation
- Timely relief from teaching oversized classes was a priority in these negotiations. The UFT has negotiated a new procedure that will address oversized classes in a way that violations that can be resolved will be resolved sooner and those that must go to arbitration will also be addressed faster.
- Paraprofessionals will no longer be suspended without pay for long periods without due process while their cases are being investigated.
- Teachers will now be able to earn their MA+30 differential by taking courses, called A+ courses, that are approved for this differential and are aligned to the work that they do every day.
- This model is a joint effort to help students achieve their highest potential through a transformation of school culture based on genuine collaboration. Attracting and retaining staff is a priority of this model. Up to 120 schools, mostly in the Bronx, will participate.
- Eligibility is based on criteria including teacher turnover, staff retention/attrition, academic achievement, persistent vacancies, repeated use of shortage-license-area waivers, student demographics and enrollment, leadership turnover, transportation issues and/or state identification. Both the chapter leader and principal have to agree to be part of the model.
- A central committee composed of an equal number of representatives appointed by the UFT president and the chancellor will oversee the pilot.
- Each school will form a school-based committee composed of between six and 12 people; 50 percent of the committee members will be UFT-represented employees selected by the UFT. These committees will receive joint professional development on collaboration, facilitation, shared decision-making, “Speak up Culture,” DOE data dashboard and other topics.
- School committees will assess the school’s needs, review and analyze data, identify strategies, engage parents and community, select supports/strategies from a menu of options and collaboratively work to transform their schools while being supported by the central committee.
- This pilot program will sunset in June 2022, unless the UFT and the DOE agree to extend it.
- Five grievances regarding salary, religious observance and injury in the line of duty that are not resolved at the chancellor’s level will be arbitrated in one day. This means five times as many of these cases can be heard.
- In cases where the chancellor failed to issue a timely decision, the UFT may take five cases per day to arbitration. These dates will not count toward the contractual limit on arbitration days. The result is that UFT-represented employees who file grievances will get an arbitration decision more quickly. Paraprofessional grievance procedure and personnel files:
- The time limits for how long a disciplinary letter can be placed in a teacher’s personnel file will apply to paraprofessionals.
- The timelines for filing grievances in the teachers’ contract will apply to paras as well.
- The procedures for summer school assignments for one-on-one paraprofessionals change. If the student that the para works with during the regular school year attends summer school, that para will be offered the opportunity to continue working with that student during summer school.
- Joint DOE-UFT guidance will be issued to principals on what assignments school counselorsmay have during the final two days of the school year. The UFT and the DOE will also form a labor management committee to discover home visit procedures.
- School secretaries will receive tuition reimbursement for the two-credit School Records and Accounts course. The Department of Education will provide vacancy lists for school secretaries twice a year, on Oct. 1 and March 1. The UFT and the DOE will form a labor management committee to discuss how to align the professional development that school secretaries receive with their job duties.
- Occupational and physical therapists will have the right to return to their previous workplace when they return from leaves of less than one year. Therapists will also now have the same indemnification protections as speech teachers have. Under the tentative contract, the current obligation to represent and indemnify employees for work performed as part of their usual duties and responsibilities will be extended to ensure therapists are adequately protected for Medicaid-related actions. Therapists will also have the right to take a leave of absence without pay for study not to exceed one year to upgrade their professional knowledge and skills after a minimum of three years of full-time service provided an appropriate replacement is available.
- The annual cap for per-session activities for school social workers and psychologists will increase from 270 hours to 400 hours. A labor management committee will be created to discuss the creation of a standardized rating sheet for social workers. Another labor management committee will be created to discuss issues related to the Single Shepherd program. The SESIS menu will be updated to include state-required documents. A new psychologist intern position will be created in schools.
- A new labor management committee for speech teachers will be created to discuss SESIS, the blended model and creating time for parent engagement. The DOE will provide vacancy lists for speech teachers twice a year, on Oct. 1 and March 1. The speech language pathologist title will be added to the collective bargaining agreement.
- For members of the Nonpublic Schools Chapter, excessing will be limited to the district of superintendency of the employee’s assigned public school.
- School nurses will be paid for CPR training; going forward, this training will take place as part of the regular workday. Professional development for school nurses will be scheduled on non-attendance days. The head nurse position has been reinstated. A new process has been created to expedite payment for school nurses’ overtime work and escalate issues of delayed payment.
- 30 days’ notice must be given if teachers assigned are scheduled to work during winter or spring recesses.
- Attendance teachers will have the same per-session rules as classroom teachers, and the DOE has agreed to meet once a month to discuss ways to standardize professional development for attendance teachers.
- FDNY certification for lab specialists will take place during the workday and will be reimbursable. The UFT and the DOE will also form a labor management committee to continue to address certification requirements, transfers and staffing issues that are of concern to lab specialists.
- The UFT and the Department of Education agreed to discuss with the city’s Department of Citywide Administrative Services the frequency of civil service exams for supervisors of nurses and therapists.
- Comp time for travel to mandatory weekend conferences will be given to directors of alcohol and substance abuse programs.
- For Home Instruction Chapter members, consultation committee meetings with supervisors will occur during the work day and chapter meetings will take place at the beginning or end of supervisory monthly meetings, outside the workday, in DOE-provided space.
- Teacher Development Facilitator, who will take on additional responsibilities to support the instructional practice of individuals participating in teacher preparation and induction programs. These activities include modeling, observation and feedback, coaching and support. Teacher Development Facilitators will receive $3,000 per term in additional compensation and work an additional four hours per month.
- Teacher Team Leader, who will work as Teacher Assigned to support the work of other teacher leaders. Teacher Team Leaders will receive $14,000 additional compensation per year and will work five additional days beyond the Teacher Assigned schedule.
- PROSE Plus schools are schools with demonstrated success at collaborative innovation that have been in the PROSE program for at least one year.
- PROSE schools may submit an application to join PROSE Plus to the PROSE panel with approval from the steering committee and school leadership team in their schools.
- The application must include the challenge the school is seeking to address and the innovation designed to address it.
- The decision to remain a PROSE Plus school must be ratified each year by staff or the school will return to PROSE status.
- In this pilot program, high school students with limited access to AP courses or foreign language courses for an Advanced Regents Diploma will have the opportunity to enroll in remote courses.
- A joint labor management committee will determine all aspects of this three-year pilot program.
- Students receiving remote instruction will be supervised by “on-site staff” (teachers, lead teacher assistants or assistant principals).
- This pilot provides tenured high school teachers with opportunities to participate in several different ways: either teaching remotely with no students physically in front of them or teaching with some students physically in front of them and students in up to two remote locations.
- An ATR’s salary will no longer affect the average salary calculation of a school that hires the ATR, eliminating any financial disincentive for a principal to hire ATRs.
- The DOE can place an ATR into a vacancy in the ATR’s license and borough as of the first day of school.
- ATRs will be able to apply to a posting for the “4x4 Program,” which is a literacy program in which educators work with small groups of students for the remainder of the school year.
- All contracts in this bargaining round were contingent on New York City reaching a health savings deal with the Municipal Labor Committee, the umbrella group of nearly 100 municipal labor unions including the UFT. On July 1, the city and the MLC reached an agreement on a plan to save $1.1 billion in employee health care costs while maintaining premium-free health insurance for city employees.
- As part of the agreement, city employees hired after July 1, 2019, will automatically be enrolled in HIP and, after one year, can select another plan if they choose.
|Panel of City officials announcing the new contract (photo Reema Amin, Chalkbeat)|