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Joint Slate – New Action and MORE

September 16, 2015 pm30 2:37 pm

Today my caucus announced that New Action and MORE are running together in the spring UFT elections. I fully support this move.

Some people will be happy. Others will be angry. But some will ask, “why now?”

Now, because the time is right.

Now, because on the two biggest issues facing members – abusive administrators and teacher evaluation – the two groups are in agreement. Our leadership has dropped the ball on abusive administrators, even as far as dropping the Principals in Need of Improvement (PINI) program when it was needed more than ever. I hope they rethink this, and step up for members facing horrible principals. But today too many of our members are on their own. Our leadership partly favors the use of student test scores to evaluate teachers. I hope they change this position. And in time I believe they must. But today they stand on the wrong side.

We are no longer facing a hostile City Hall, forcing us to lock arms on a daily basis. This is the time we should be doing the members business. This is the time we should be advocating for teachers, schools, education. The joint MORE/New Action campaign will be doing exactly that.

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10 Comments leave one →
  1. Atlas O'Rourke permalink
    September 16, 2015 pm30 6:04 pm 6:04 pm

    I have serious reservations concerning New Action. They have continually supported Mulgrew. Will they support another candidate? If not then it’s MORE b.s. .

    • Arthur Goldstein permalink
      September 16, 2015 pm30 6:37 pm 6:37 pm

      New Action has written that it plans to co-endorse a presidential candidate who is a member of MORE. Jonathan linked to it.

      • Atlas O'Rourke permalink
        September 16, 2015 pm30 7:03 pm 7:03 pm

        Then I am cautiously optimistic.

        • Arthur Goldstein permalink
          September 16, 2015 pm30 7:53 pm 7:53 pm

          Always a sensible approach.

  2. September 17, 2015 pm30 1:02 pm 1:02 pm

    Well said Jonathan. Any chance of updating the “Do not apply” post?

  3. southbronxschool permalink
    September 17, 2015 pm30 1:04 pm 1:04 pm

    Dang, that came out anonymous? That was me^^^^

  4. October 10, 2015 pm31 9:17 pm 9:17 pm

    Unity No Architect of Advance & Never Drop Ball

  5. October 10, 2015 pm31 9:18 pm 9:18 pm

    Unity No Architect of Advance & Never Drop Ball
    The leadership of Unity Caucus was not in part the architect of the current teacher evaluation of the NYC public school system as outlined in the following digital media references. However, we usually associate the success and failure or both of what happened in our society to the leadership or administration of the time whether on the local, state and national level. Accordingly one can argue that Unity Caucus, M.O.R.E or New Action could have done more to motivate the rank in file into rejecting the uneasy evaluation but it is too simple-minded to say. So it is better to focus on what dynamics come to play then.
    Also, it is more than fitting and proper to underscore the obvious that is evaluation and supervision are entwined and that Unity Caucus was seeking for improved supervision when struggling for better teacher evaluation. Unity Caucus leadership did not drop the ball on the issue of supervision as evidenced by the fight for a better evaluation. It should be noted that all the factions inside the UFT fought tooth and nail to address the abuses of supervisors when they were calling for a fair deal but compromise is part of the collective bargaining process and as such we ended up having the current contractual agreement and that does not mean the fight for a better contract has stopped. Unity Caucus, M.O.R.E and New Action are still at it. The claim that Unity Caucus did drop the ball is not supported by any factual evidence. Unity Caucus continues to fight for a better contract.
    As stated in the above the following edited articles shed light on the dominant factors that led to Advance the evaluation system for NYC DOE teachers.
    In “New York’s Secret Educational Policy Makers” (1) Alan Singer reports that “The Albany Times Union calls it a “shadow government” within the New York State Education Department. It is supported by $19 million in donations from wealthy individuals and foundations. The “Regents Research Fund” fellows are a private think tank embedded in the public education department that is defining education for New York’s 3.1 million public school students. They frame policy, consult regularly with State Education Commissioner John King, and interact with state employees and officials, but they are not covered by the state’s Public Officer’s Law or ethics rules…
    Other donors to the Regents Research Fellows program included Bill Gates, who advocates evaluating teachers, principals and schools based on students’ scores on high-stakes standardized tests; the National Association of Charter School Authorizers and the Robbins Foundation which are pushing for more charter schools; and the Tortora Sillcox Family Foundation, supporters of the now suspect Bloomberg plan to replace larger high schools with smaller, supposedly better performing, units. Money for the fellows is also coming in from Hewlett Foundation, Carnegie Corporation, Tiger Foundation, Robin Hood Foundation, the Helmsley Trust and General Electric.”
    According to Thomas Kaplan in “Bloomberg Asks for Legislature’s Help in Teacher Evaluation Fight” (2), the city is facing the withholding of state money because it missed the deadline of Jan. 17 to reach a deal with the teachers union on an evaluation system. Including New York City, only 6 of 691 school districts in the state failed to reach an agreement before the deadline.
    Al Baker wrote in ‘Governor Issues Ultimatum in Teacher-Evaluation Fight’ wrote that “A 2010 state law created the outline for a new system, one based on students’ test scores, classroom observations by principals and other measures, with the details to be negotiated by each school district and its teachers’ union. Virtually all of the 691 districts reached an agreement, but New York City did not, mainly because of a dispute over whether the agreement should be allowed to expire in two years, as the union had wanted, or continue indefinitely, as the Bloomberg administration had desired.”
    The Danielson Model
    In 1996, a formative work on supervision and evaluation was published by Charlotte Danielson-Enhancing Professional Practice: A Framework for Teaching, which was updated in 2007, was based on her work with the Educational Testing Service that focused on measuring the competence of preservice teachers. Given its past and current popularity, the Danielson model must be the reference point for any new proposals regarding supervision and evaluation. Whereas Hunter had described steps in the teaching process and Goldhammer and Cogan had done the same for the supervisory process, Danielson sought to capture—in its full complexity—the dynamic process of classroom teaching wrote Robert J. Marzano, Tony Frontier and David Livingston in… “A Brief History of Supervision and Evaluation” (4).
    The above just evinced some of the overriding factors leading to the teacher evaluation that we have and continue to better.
    Sources
    1-From “New York’s Secret Educational Policy Makers by Alan Singer, Posted: 12/02/2013 12:22 pm EST Updated: 02/01/2014 5:59 am
    Source URL:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alan-singer/new-yorks-secret-educatio_b_4368282.html
    2. “Bloomberg Asks for Legislature’s Help in Teacher Evaluation Fight” By THOMAS KAPLAN Jan. 28, 2013 from Source URL: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/29/nyregion/bloomberg-seeks-legislatures-help-in-teacher-evaluation-fight.html?action=click&contentCollection=N.Y.%20%2F%20Region&module=RelatedCoverage&region=Marginalia&pgtype=article
    3. Governor Issues Ultimatum in Teacher-Evaluation Fight by AL BAKER JAN. 30, 2013
    Source URL: Source URL: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/31/nyregion/gov-andrew-m-cuomo-issues-ultimatum-in-teacher-evaluation-fight.html
    4. Source URL: http://www.ascd.org/publications/books/110019/chapters/A-Brief-History-of-Supervision-and-Evaluation.aspx

    Peace
    FSMEDU

    • October 12, 2015 pm31 6:29 pm 6:29 pm

      “Also, it is more than fitting and proper to underscore the obvious that is evaluation and supervision are entwined and that Unity Caucus was seeking for improved supervision when struggling for better teacher evaluation.”

      Unfortunately, this simply was not the case.

      One of the problems here is that several of us, when speaking of evaluation, clearly and without any ambiguity underlined training for supervisors, and the need to review the credentials of Bloomberg’s administrators, as central to any issue with evaluation. The union’s leadership did not agree. They pursued Danielson, not incompetent and abusive administrators.

      In the hands of a skilled administrator, there was no problem with S and U.

      We should have gotten rid of the unskilled (or mean) administrators. Instead the union leadership pursued getting rid of S and U.

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