Log in  |  Search

Delegate Assembly Approves Contract

This afternoon, the UFT’s Delegate Assembly approved the proposed contract, sending it on to the general membership for ratification. The vote was overwhelmingly in favor of sending the agreement to the membership: less than 50 of the Assembly’s delegates voted in opposition, while more than 1450 delegates in attendance voted in support.



  • 1 Schoolgal
    · Nov 8, 2006 at 10:17 pm

    I am resigned to the fact that all the gains we once had will never be regained with Randi. I may even be inclined to vote for this contract even with the ridiculous addition of a committee to investigate the excessive paperwork. Take my word–it’s excessive.

    However I still would like to know what the actual percentage of the raise will be and if there will be any negative consequences to an ATR who chooses not to take the deal. (maybe 3rd time asking will be a charm) I really don’t think it’s fair not to have the whole package presented. To hold the cost of health care back seems like you are hiding a significant increase. If the percentage of the increase is a fair one, then there’s no reason not to tell us the numbers being discussed.

  • 2 mvplab
    · Nov 8, 2006 at 11:43 pm

    Hi Schoolgal,
    • Total cash increase = at least 8% for all members
    • Top salary exceeds $100,000 milestone

    • 7.1% salary raise for every member next school year
    — 2% effective Oct. 13, 2007
    — 5% effective May 19, 2008
    — applies to all rates and longevities

    • Up front cash payment for every member
    –$750 one-time lump sum payment (pensionable)
    –payable Jan. 1, 2007

    This is what I know so far. The complete salary charts for all titles and levels will be published in the next NYTeacher

  • 3 mvplab
    · Nov 8, 2006 at 11:44 pm

    I believe the union emailed some of this to the general membership tonight.

  • 4 Persam1197
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 4:32 am

    I’m not trying to look a gift horse in the mouth, however I have a few questions.

    First, what is this “new five year longevity?” It already takes 22 years to reach the top salary level (compared with 15 years in the surrounding school districts). Will we have to wait 27 years to reach 100,049?

    Second, why did the city negotiate with us early while the CSA is still without a contract after 3 and a half years? With Levy stepping down in January, is this the end of that union and are we driving the final nail in the coffin as Bloomberg works to dismantle it? I know AP’s and principals are pissed!

  • 5 Schoolgal
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 6:14 am

    Thanks for that answer. I can understand why Leo chooses not to answer me directly. Those are numbers I would have liked to see 5 years ago when the burbs were making that top salary after fewer than 22 years.

    Can you give more info on the status of ATRs since many schools in the future may be restructured?

  • 6 Schoolgal
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 6:23 am


    This is why it is important to know if the increase in health cost will not exceed 2% because that will leave us with a 5% raise. Anything higher cuts heavily into this raise.

    I can only hope by ratifying the contract now will mean Randi will in no way exceed what the TWU was asked to pay.

  • 7 Jackie Bennett
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 7:22 am

    The new longevity comes in at 5 years. It means that members will get a nice bump up in their pay early on in their careers – which works because we have so many newer members. For teachers, it’s a thousand bucks a year extra in the pocket from year 5 to year 9, at which point the 10 year longevity kicks in.

    And no. You won’t be working an extra 5 years to hit top pay, which will now go to over $100,000.

    Regarding AP’s and principals, their very difficult situation should makes it clear just how hostile it is out there for unions. . Other than that, we’ll have to wait and see.

  • 8 Jackie Bennett
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 8:07 am

    Schoolgal – regarding ATR’s: If the DoE decides to offer a buyout, it’s got to be offered to all. No picking and choosing. The DoE must negotiate with us the amount offered. Members can decide for themselves if they want to take it. Some members might want to take it, and some won’t. Their choice.

    Regarding health – since at least the early ‘80s, it’s been bargained separately and with all of the unions in the MLC. More clout.

  • 9 mvplab
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 9:00 am

    School Gal:
    All this will be in the NYTeacher next week:
    Health Benefits
    • An increased city, contribution to our Welfare Fund will allow us to improve a variety of Fund benefits, including a $1,000 per family cap on annual drug co-pays. (That’s big.)
    • Secretaries and Lab Specialists hired after July 1, 1985, are eligible for sabbatical leaves for restoration to health, as of 9/1/07.All titles now have paid leave for catastrophic illness.
    • As always, the city negotiates citywide health issues with all the municipal unions. (The way it’s been for more than 20 years.)

  • 10 Just A Cog
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 5:02 pm

    Why didn’t Randi et al negotiate for an END to ATRs? How can it be that experienced teachers were given lousy sub jobs even while the city was hiring young kids off the streets? When and if my school restructures, why wouldn’t the city try to get rid of a teacher like me (i.e., experienced and costly) with a buyout? Why are we not being protected?

  • 11 Ellie
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 6:55 pm

    Most the “the ‘burbs” are only working 183 days per year with contracts that say so!! They don’t have all this wasteful idiotic “staff development” that we are subjected to where old stuff is put into new bottles. Excuse me, I learned about “Bloom’s Taxonomy” about 28 years ago while studying for a master’s degree, thank you. All we hear is an AP telling us how to teach when some of us have been doing so for over 30 years. Also, most of the “‘burbs” don’t return from summer vacation until after Labor Day. This contract will NOT KEEP UP WITH INFLATION if our medical costs go up, which looks like part of our sell out…I mean new contract.

  • 12 Civil Servant
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 7:28 pm

    Let’s Take it Nice and Easy !!!

    Why not 5% first, then 2% later ??

    Are we still coming in 2 days before Labor Day, and shortening our Summer vacations and plans ???

    Do we still do 37 1/2 minutes each day as penance !!!

    Lets think this over, There is more to our lives than a quick buck, which does not keep up with inflation or anything else.

  • 13 willimake30yrs?
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 8:22 pm

    I would like for someone with accurate information to please address the situation for the ATRs in this new contract. This “relegation to ATR status” element of the last contract has been a disaster for many veteran members of this union. With all the reorganization to come, I feel the nightmare will only get worse for many more members.

    · Nov 9, 2006 at 9:05 pm

    I am the only person that recognizes all the of the broken record regular anti-UFT commentators from NYCEducator’s blog here…

    It seems that without anything to really object to in this contract, they just makes things up…

    A voluntrary severance buyout for teachers who have been excessed and have not found a permanent position gives those teachers options and choices…

    Unable to find anything wrong with that, they go on about things they make up about ATRs…

    Do you gouys listen to yourselves?

  • 15 Ellie
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 9:27 pm

    Hey Soc.St. Teacher, we’re not anti UFT, we’re pro teacher, unlike the UFT. There is something VERY wrong with the ATR situation where veteran teachers are without jobs. The union as we knew it for years has been decimated in the past 3 years, only to be continued in this contract. Seniority no longer has any meaning. A young man who was a high school teacher was FALSELY ACCUSED by students last year of sexual misconduct, and was actually arrested just on the word of students, and no police investigation was conducted until after the fact. 5 months of that young man’s life was gone and his reputation ruined forever by these accusation which were totally false. He is suing the city for millions for false arrest coupled with no due process. Where was the union? I hope this doesn’t happen to you, Soc. St. Teacher.

  • 16 Schoolgal
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 9:35 pm


    For the record I have never wrote vote NO like I did last year. I have in fact questioned the final raise percentage which bugs the hell out of you. Gee, maybe I should just trust everything you guys say.

    Why don’t you check the archives from a year ago when I questioned what would be the fate of teachers who were excessed. This was always one of my major concerns, so I am not blowing smoke here.

    Did you know Klein was going to send an email to principals telling them that those in excess should not be hired because they are incompetent?

    Where was your outrage over that comment?

    And btw, NYC Ed has one of the best blogs in the country. Oh, and he is hosting the
    CARNIVAL this week. Go check it out!

  • 17 ESLteach
    · Nov 9, 2006 at 9:45 pm

    Social Studies Teacher
    It is a very real problem that senior teachers have been excessed and turned into ATRs. I have several friends who had this happen to them.(they are still not placed) It almost happened to me this year as well. I was returning from a sabbatical and had no where to go. It seems no one wants to hire someone they have to pay top salary to. I can not imagine being forced to chose ATR (sub) or you must retire. No one should have to go until they are ready. NO one should be an atr shuffled from one temporary position to another at the twilight of their career.

  • 18 Persam1197
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 4:41 am

    Soc St Teacher,

    The above points are valid concerns. I don’t know about the blog you refer to, but as a dues paying memeber of the UFT, I’d like to hear responses.

    “A voluntrary severance buyout for teachers who have been excessed and have not found a permanent position gives those teachers options and choices…” What a choice! This is like musical chairs; someone gets left out due to beaurocratic reorganization, is left to rot as an ATR and then take a hike. Come on, we can do better than that. That could be any one of us.

    As for the increase, Ellie is correct in stating that it does not keep up with inflation. If there are give-backs in health, we’ll actually earn less.

    I’m not condemning the contract, but we have a right to know everything about it before we just check off “yes.”

  • 19 Peter Goodman
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 7:44 am

    excess teachers were NEVER guaranteed any particular job … sometimes they were assigned to other schools, sometimes they were sent to be interviewed for other jobs, sometimes sent to others schools as ATRs, sometimes retained as ATRs in ter own schools. Usually within months they were absorbed into a regular job somewhere.

    Without a “no layoff” agreement bumping would take place and eventual layoffs.

    A voluntary new system would allow an excessee who has not been absorbed to be “bought out” …

    the key word” is voluntary …

    why would one member want to take away an option available to another member?

    on the other hand check the salary and benefit schedule in other large cities …

  • 20 TriBeCaTchr
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 8:00 am

    I do agree that we should continue to fight to get back what we gave up last contract. I believe a similar “300 committee” should be set up next year to negotiate with the new governor (yeah) and the future Mayor! For now, I will vote YES for this contract!

  • 21 Just A Cog
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 8:59 am

    First of all, I am new here and I resent being lumped into ANY group so that you can easily dismiss me as a chronic complainer. I am not, but I do understand your need to villify dissenters in order to pass this garbage contract that will solidify the losses of the previous garbage contract.

    “Without anything to object to in this contract?” Surely you jest? Everything that was wrong with the last contract–and I mean EVERYTHING–is still in this contract. It’s made worse by the fact that it is now entrenched. If we idly accept the last contract’s givebacks yet again, we have accepted them forever.

    The ATR situation is horrendous, however you spin it. Why shouldn’t experienced teachers–who are long time, dues paying UFT members–be allowed access to jobs due to their seniority? Does seniority mean nothing anymore? Why should a kid just out of college get a job while there are 25 year veterans stewing as high paid babysitters?

    Is the best we can offer them a severance package–a neat little way to tell them that their services are no longer required and that they should get out? Why aren’t we fighting for them?

    And now, Klein is touting to his principals that he wants to do this to APs, as well. He cites our contract as proof that teachers have accepted this and that APs should, too. Can anyone else see where this is headed?

    For the record, I am not an ATR, but I can certainly see how easily I could become one should my school be reorganized. If that were to happen, I want the RIGHT to take a position at another school. No one should have to beg for a job after a lifetime of service to the children of this city. It’s a disgrace. The UFT leadership should be embarrassed that his exists.

  • 22 R. Skibins
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 3:38 pm

    This whole ATR fiasco is just legalized age discrimination and tenure busting, pure and simple. While some inexperienced kid is hired to take your place, you risk losing your house, and your kids’ college education is in jeopardy. Now tell me: do you think that the buyout is really voluntary? You know how we are threatened, harassed and demeaned by supervisors on a daily basis. Those in the ATR will be threarened, harassed and demeaned until they DO accept the “voluntary” package. The ATR should be scrapped.

    · Nov 10, 2006 at 3:53 pm

    Oh, I guess it is someone else who also goes by the name ‘Just A Cog’ that is all over the NYCEducator comments attacking the UFT with Schoolgal, Ellie and the rest of the gang.

    Yes, and here is how much Klein loves this contract.

    Teachers deal not so sweet for Klein


    As Mayor Bloomberg and teachers union President Randi Weingarten joyfully announced their surprise early contract deal this week, observers noted that Schools Chancellor Joel Klein was standing in the back – and scowling.

    It was in stark contrast to last year’s contract announcement, when Klein gave Weingarten an enthusiastic hug and kiss.

    Klein denied yesterday that he was disappointed. “I tried to make it as good as it gets,” he said. “I think we came out with a contract that was very satisfactory.”

    But sources close to Klein said the contract fell short of his hopes. “If he had been able to design the UFT contract, he would have done it differently,” one source said. “But he’s enough of a professional and he’s been around government enough to know that these things are very complicated … People walk away from any negotiating table feeling bad about things.”

    Klein has been critical of provisions in the teachers contract that he says protect incompetent teachers. He has called for the ability to alter the length of the school day and for the ability to pay some teachers more than others.

    He even boasted at a recent event that he was creating a “new labor-management paradigm” in the school system.

    But the 24-month contract that teachers seem likely to approve in a formal ratification vote next month – the last teachers contract over which Klein is likely to have any influence – contained virtually none of reforms he has advocated.

    The contract calls for a 7.1% raise for all educators and a long-awaited six-figure salary for senior teachers.

    Its only significant provision that isn’t related to money is a plan to offer voluntary buyouts to tenured teachers who’ve been out of a job for six months or more, rather than keep them on the payroll indefinitely. Sources said Klein was pushing for the buyout to be mandatory – and for the city to set the price.

    “Obviously, all people were pushing for different things,” said James Hanley, Bloomberg’s top labor official. “In the final analysis, lots of people have different views.”

    But, Hanley added, “I think we’re all kind of happy that stability is in place and we can all focus on the really important things and improving education.”

    By signing with the UFT nearly a year before its current contract expires, Bloomberg set a precedent for dealing with other public unions and earned a key ally in upcoming battles in Albany over school funding. But Weingarten insisted yesterday that she had made “no secret deals” with the mayor in exchange for the contract.

    “It just happened to work out for all parties involved,” she said.

    Originally published on November 10, 2006

    · Nov 10, 2006 at 4:19 pm

    New York City public school teachers have contractual protections which amount to ‘no layoffs’ for excessed teachers. Show me one other teacher union local in the US that has that level of protection for excessed teachers. In places like Chicago, an excessed teacher from a phased out school who does not find another job is laid off, period.

    Now, teachers who are excessed not only have a guarantee of a job, but they also have an option, if they would want to take it, to take out a buyout severance and retire. Why anyone would see something wrong with giving a person that option is beyond me, Maybe it is envy that only an excessed teacher could get the buyout.

    Under this ‘open market’ transfer plan, more than 2000 NYC public school teachers were able to transfer to new schools — almost three times the number of teachers who were able to transfer under all of the transfer plans in any year past. This is not a perfect staffing system, but it has real advantages for teachers that past systems did not have.

  • 25 Just A Cog
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 4:58 pm

    SOC: I’ve posted a few times on NYC Educator’s blog–not all over the place. Hyperbole seems to be your forte. BTW–does posting there preclude me from posting here? What is it your business where or when or what I post? What possible relevance does it have to the discussion at hand other than to derail actual discussion?

    Whatever Klein may think of our contract is irrelevant. We all know that if he had his way, we’d be at will employees. In any case, not getting hammered by givebacks this time doesn’t eliminate the ridulous givebacks of the last contract.

    HS: I agree that our previous protections from layoffs were outstanding. Why are we willing to set a precedent that diminishes that protection by allowing ATRs?

    Let’s face it–it’s very likely that principals have been told, either explicitly or with a nod and a wink, not to hire ATRs to full time positions. If the DOE had any intention of placing ATRs, they would place them BEFORE the hired kids straight out of school.

  • 26 Civil Servant
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 5:04 pm

    This ATR matter raises many issues that should be addressed. No professional should be treated as a REFUGEE.

    However, the buyout option that they will have is one that should be extended to all Retirement eligible teachers.
    There should be equal bemefits and detrements to all.

    This ATR issue requires full transparency and disclosure. Otherwise significant inequities may occur.

    Under the current format, no senior teacher has any guarantee to a permanent, continual assignment in the school that they are in.

    Therefore, this option of a buyout should be offered to all retirement eligibles.

  • 27 NYC Educator
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 5:32 pm

    …on the other hand check the salary and benefit schedule in other large cities…

    I take exception to that suggestion, Mr. Goodman. I believe (as the UFT has repeatedly insisted) that our salaries should be compared to our suburban counterparts. I live in Nassau, and I’m somewhat familiar with many teachers here. It’s not uncommon for me to meet a teacher with ten years fewer experience making 10K more than me, while teachers at my level easily make 20K plus more.

    I remember when Saint Rudy wanted to compare us with Detroit. I’d be very surprised to hear you didn’t go along with the UFT response that was an unfair comparison.

    I agreed with the UFT then and now that, given the cost of living here, it’s preposterous to compare us with other cities.

    Furthermore, unless you agreed we should work for Detroit salaries, it’s disingenuous to make that argument at this time. Please compare us with the suburbs, as we should be trying to better our lot.

    On a related topic, CPI numbers suggest the cost of living in NYC is up 5.2% so far this year.

    Disregarding the fact that the proposed contract continues every odious defect of the last contract (and the Post and News did not like it because it was good for teachers), I don’t think cost of living is too much to ask while the city is sitting on billions.

    Do you think cost of living is too much to ask, Mr. Goodman?

  • 28 mshalo18
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 5:38 pm

    Our chapter met this morning to discuss the potential contract. Everyone is very concerned about the question over our health benefits. The New York Times on November 8th states, “Ms. Weingarten said: “The commitment I made on health is the commitment that is always made on health. As the chair of the M.L.C., we will always meet with the city to engage in ways to find affordable, quality health care. There’s no commitment beyond that.” If that is indeed the case, then why was the provision that we have to right to vote on any contributions to health benefits removed from the contract? If this is not true, let’s see it in writing- something like this would suffice-
    “Any contributions to health benefits will be ratified by the members as part of a new contract agreement”. Unfortunately, the union won’t do that. I won’t vote for a contract with a big glaring hole in it, just as I wouldn’t sign a contract with missing information.

  • 29 Peter Goodman
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 6:47 pm


    The Municipal Labor Committee (MLC), that includes representatives of all city unions, negotiates health plans for ALL city employees – not union by union. They are NOT linked to individual union contracts … health plans cost the city hundreds of millons of dollars. We are concerned with outputs: costs to union members and levels of services, the city of concerned with inputs: cost to the city. The third parties are the carriers, the health plans. These are extremely complex negotiations … i.e., will the merger of HIP and GHI result in savings and if so who will benefit from these savings?

    Welfare plans )prescriptions, dental, etc.)are run by the individual unions and benefits vary according to the requirements of the members of each union.

  • 30 mshalo18
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 7:55 pm

    Mr. Goodman-
    Please explain, then, 1) why the transit workers were able to vote on a 1.5% contribution to their health benefits, 2)why 2002 and 2005 UFT Contracts settled any health care changes beforehand and were attached to Agreements, and 3) why now the new wording reads, “The parties acknowledge that collective bargaining regarding health benefits is within the purview of negotiations between the Municipal Labor Committee and the City. Cost-containment initiatives and program modifications in the City Health Benefits program shall be discussed with the Municipal Labor Committee.”

    These are simple and straightforward questions, and the membership deserves a simple and straightforward response prior to any ratification vote.

  • 31 Schoolgal
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 8:05 pm

    If I understand Peter correctly, it is better to make senior teachers ATRs than lay off new teachers??

    Why not the other way around?

    I am a big believer in seniority rights, and new teachers are getting more protections than we are. Even their salary is better than those who have served more than 10 years.

    I have no qualms with anyone who votes Yes to this contract, nor will I ask teachers to vote no as I did with the last contract. Nor am I a member of the ICEburgs. I just want to know what numbers are being thrown around for health contributions. I am totally sure you guys know this information.

    Leo always stated that the last contract was a result of the political climate even though it was an election year for the mayor. Well this Election Day proved that the climate was warm and sunny around the nation, so why no takebacks?

    As for SS Teacher:

    The newspapers also write that Randi made a deal with the devil to support mayoral control. Maybe she doesn’t read Edwize where all posts (written by both Leo and Peter) have been negative toward the DoE under this mayor.

    The reporters also state that this contract was preemptive so that she could win reelection. (What a surprsie!)

    BTW, I’m glad you’re a reader of my friend’s blog. Not all posts are about the union. He received a national award for his blog and his site is visited by many around the nation.

    While I have little respect for Randi’s achievements in both of these contracts, I will always be Pro-Union unlike the new teachers who will one day make the UFT obsolete–much like the CSA is now due to Leadership principals.

  • 32 Science Sam
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 9:21 pm

    Ms. Halo says that she discussed the contract with her chapter and “everyone is concerned about the question over health benefits.” That’s funny. No one in my school was concerned about it except our also-ran chapter leader who kept trying to stir them up.

    Every year I hold my breath and wait for the health insurance disaster. Every year for UFTers it doesn’t come, even as the entire country takes hits on health. Right now, I figure I’m about 8 years ahead. If Weingarten beats them again, great. If not, I can’t see how I can blame her. She got me 8 good years, at least.

  • 33 Chaz
    · Nov 10, 2006 at 10:12 pm

    Schoolgal’s comments reflect my own.

  • 34 redhog
    · Nov 11, 2006 at 9:35 am

    I’m rushing out of the house for brunch and a movie and could have waited til later to post a comment.(Stay tuned.) The fact that I will,being in a hurry, refer to just one provision of the new contract will be seized upon as proof that my arguments and enthusiasm are limited: BALONEY! But I just MUST point out one miracle, yes miracle, of the new Agreement: the cap of $1,000 per family on prescription co-pays!!! My Lord, don’t you guys EVER give credit where due?? That item alone is intoxicating vindication for this contract, and yet it is just one of many brilliant selling points.

  • 35 Schoolgal
    · Nov 11, 2006 at 11:02 am

    Sam the Science Man,

    She also got us a longer work year and longer day. She got us potty duty and less vacation. She got senior teachers in sub positions while new teachers got jobs. She got rid of seniority rights.
    She got us more letters in files without due process. She got us a new committee to supercede the old committee on excessive paper work, with the chancellor being the last word on that. She got us a U rating if we exceed 10 days of absence even with a doctor’s note–so don’t go getting the flu.

    Of couse health care has to see a change, didn’t we just start paying more for our meds, but lets hope it’s not one that really lessens this new salary.

    However I don’t see how loss of our hard-earned rights equals 8 good years unless you are lucky enough to work for a fair-minded and collaborative administrator. If so, then it’s your principal who gave you 8 good years.

  • 36 xkaydet65
    · Nov 11, 2006 at 11:04 am

    The question about the MTA contract and health benefits is easily answered. Unlike the UFT et al, the TWU negotiates with the MTA, a STATE AGENCY. The rules that aply to the NYC/Labor talks do not apply with the state. As city employess our basic health benefits are the same, no matter we are a teacher, a cop, a clerk. The differences come because unions use the supplemental contributions for different benefits. We have prescription drugs and a mediocre dental plan. Ask the CSA about their dental plan. It’s not as good. But we all have the same choices as to basic coverage.

  • 37 oz
    · Nov 11, 2006 at 11:37 am

    I simply want to know what the rush is? Why not give some time for the membership to hold some meetings and discuss the pro’s and con’s? Shouldn’t an opportunity be given for a schools UFT members to inform their delegates how they want them to vote? In my school we held a chapter meeting Friday morning and everyone was feeling the same way. The rush feels shady? I get no sense that this contract is a limited time offer from the mayor.

    As for the health issues, I agree that when placed in the context of the mayors prior statements the change of wording in our contract is suspect. To those of you who have posted about how this is the way health care has always been negotiated, that just doesn’t seem correct. The past 2 contracts had much more clear and protective wording contained within the contract. The wording in this contract is significantly different and hard to interpret. What does “UFT generated internal funding” mean? That’s actual language from the new contract regarding health insurance. I interpret it to mean an increase in my payment for healthcare. Which I further interpret as a salary cut.

    Financially this contract is 2 raises forward and 1 healthcare payment backwards.

  • 38 Science Sam
    · Nov 11, 2006 at 5:51 pm

    Ms Halo, my reference to 8 good years was, as I believe is clear from my posting, a reference to health, which as you admit yourself “has to see a change.” I hope that’s not the case, but on this at least you recognize that larger environment in which we operate.

    Yet you seem to recognize no larger environment when it comes to the last contract – the environment created by the pattern, the cops deal, the political administrations local, state, and federal. Weingarten did what could be done in tough times . I see no motivation for her not doing everything she could, and I see no lack of energy or brains . I don’t think the contracts are what they are for lack of ability or effort.

    I could match your list with another list, if I were so inclined – She got us cash, she improved the health, she got verbal abuse separated from corporal punishment, she kept us out of circular 6 (“potty patrol” as you call it) through a couple of contracts even under intense pressure, she pulled down Eva Moskowitz, she pushes on the educational issues, she stopped forced transfers, she stopped the termination of excess teachers – -and so on.

    If I were so inclined, there’s a list. Probably some mistakes. But lists tend to distort. You could pick mine apart, and I could pick yours apart. You could say how “that wasn’t her, that was the situation.” Okay, same goes for the negatives, too.

    I don’t myself understand all this shrill anger about the last contract. Sorrow, yes. Anger, no.

  • 39 NYC Educator
    · Nov 11, 2006 at 8:00 pm

    As it happens, Science Sam, I happened to be around for the abolition of lunch and hall patrols.

    These things, like the UFT transfer plan, were bought zero percent raises.

    Like many of my colleagues, I paid dearly for these things. Giving them back en masse for raises that did not even meet cost of living was simply bad business.

    I’m glad you’re happy to come in earlier and stay later. I’m glad you’re satisfied with less than cost of living, again.

    The whole more work for less pay thing, though, leaves me unenthused.

    Did you sign the loyalty oath, Sam?

  • 40 willimake30yrs?
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 9:01 am

    The ATR is the big issue at the moment. It is a disaster! Teachers who have given 10, 15, 20 yrs. or more of loyal, “SATISFACTORY” service were excessed due to school reorganizations. (NO FAULT of THEIR OWN) Many of the schools were in tough to staff areas of the city. They were told they are on their “own.” That they would have to distribute resumes, and interview for jobs.

    Did the fireman who were working in the firehouses the city closed a few years ago become “ATR firemen”? Did they have to submit “resumes” to other firehouse? NO THEY DIDN’T! If all the leadership supporters use “pattern bargaining” as an excuse to how limited we are in negotiations, Why did no other Union have to accept anything remotely comparable to the “ATR” position?

    My questions are:
    1) What happens to ATR’s who can’t take a “voluntary” buyout? Ex. not enough years of service

    2) Is the Union going to closely montitor the number of year end “U” ratings that ATR’s receive?

    3) What is the Union going to do WHEN disproportionate numbers of ATRs are given “U” ratings?

  • 41 northbrooklyn
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 11:40 am

    Here are my questions which may be a bit off topic-
    Reading these comments leads me to understand that we have teachers without an assignment [ATR]. Are they being paid? If so, why aren’t they in one of our schools relieving this terrible overcrowding/huge class register problem that exists in every school in the city?
    If they are not being paid, why aren’t they hired?
    Am I off the mark to suggest that this is an example of DOE mismanagement?
    Please advise.

  • 42 Jackie Bennett
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 1:29 pm

    Hi North Brooklyn —

    ATR stands for Absent Teacher Reserve. The ATR’s are regular teachers whose positions closed at their own schools. They are teachers in excess. Many got new jobs in other schools, but some were not rehired into regular positions in the new term. These teachers who were not placed in regular positions remain on their full salary. They cover classes of absent teachers, often in their own schools.

    The jobs of these teachers are contractually secured. As positions open in schools, these teachers may apply and then be hired full time as regular teachers.

    In the meantime, they cannot be laid off. Some would like to go back to regular teaching, and some would like to go on subbing. The new contract potentially gives these teachers a new option. If the DoE wishes, it can offer these members a “buy-out” of an amount that would be negotiated with the UFT. That buy-out would have to be offered to all excessed teachers with more than one year of ATR service. The choice of leaving or staying will be up to them.

  • 43 paulrubin
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 1:33 pm

    Let’s view this realistically. Effective next Sept, the schools will all be “empowerment” schools which means principal’s butts will be on the line. You’re never going to get a system to fly that forces teachers on a principal whose very existence lives or dies based on the success of his or her teachers to raise test scores, improve attendance, reduce incidents, and the like. So if ATR’s couldn’t find a job in the current environment, they’re never going to find one next year. We can wring our hands about this mess but the UFT, by its very support of Mayoral control, brought it down on our heads. They’re never admit their mistake and based on current events, apparently won’t have to.

    So in this regard, the new contract is actually a tremendous boon to ATR’s. They’re close to finished as NYC teachers thanks to the wisdom of those who run the system because the powers that be know that the best way to have a pliable servile work force is to decrease the number of veterans and increase the number of newbies. That’s our reality, at least through the balance of the Bloomberg administration. It’s applied equally to teachers and our supervisors and even to a lesser extent their supervisors. Whining about it doesn’t change anything. A quick painless (to the majority) contract defuses the situation and a buyout to those who are in many respects history anyway is certainly no surprise. Defuse the situation. That’s the UFT way.

    But look on the bright side. There was no further erosion under Bloomberg and no for all intents and purposes to the teachers, he’s a lame duck. We need to turn our collective attention to the post Bloomberg era and move to elect someone not so anti-teacher/anti-union/anti-public schools. Getting rid of Pataki is a start. Taking congress away from the Republicans is a start. Now it’s time to take back the city itself. We need to find a viable candidate right now and turn him or her into the next NYC Mayor so we can if not undo the damage, at least mitigate it and get something back for our hard work.

  • 44 willimake30yrs?
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 2:02 pm


    But what will become of the members who currently are ATRs and are unable to retire because they don’t have enough years of service?

    If you are correct, and more schools become “empowerment” or are reorganized, the ranks of veteran members relegated to ATR status is bound to increase.

    What is the Union prepared to do to protect these members’ livlihoods if they don’t, or CAN’T accept a “voluntary” buyout?

  • 45 Schoolgal
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 4:42 pm


    Didn’t this union have an opportunity to elect pro-public education officials?

    They supported Pataki over McCall because of some false promise of pension reform.

    They supported this mayor and his control, and if they have their way, will endorse mayoral control again (over their own objections on this blog) while Bloomberg is still in office so he can futher his agenda against unions.
    Fool me once, fool me twice and now fool me 3 times.

    Something is totally wrong with this picture.

  • 46 NYC Educator
    · Nov 12, 2006 at 7:39 pm

    I think they will sit on the fence and let mayoral control be renewed. Then they can say they didn’t support it, just as they say they didn’t support Bloomberg.

    Of course, they claimed to be neutral and didn’t support Ferrer either.

    I was much more upset when they endorsed Pataki, over friend of education Carl McCall, for whom I was proud to vote.

    To thank us, Pataki vetoed 25/55 and improvements in the Taylor Law.

  • 47 HS_ teacher
    · Nov 13, 2006 at 12:53 am

    Just for clarification, The UFT never supported Bloomberg, either in 2001 or in 2005.

  • 48 paulrubin
    · Nov 14, 2006 at 9:05 pm

    Hopefully we’ll have a better choice than between the outrageously rich Bloomberg and the unelectable Ferrer next time. We need to be more proactive about getting acceptable candidates into position. We don’t control that but we do influence it. Every large special interest group does.