It is well known that summer Fridays are a notoriously slow news time. Reporters and editors are often pushed to find creative attempts to fill empty pages and air space.
Professional anti-teacher union blogger Michael Antonucci seems to have his own summer doldrums when it comes to dreaming up new attacks on teacher unions. His latest endeavour is an effort to create some sort of story out of the UFT’s new summer office hours. Get a life, Antonucci: even anti-unionists must be able to find something more entertaining than our summer office hours.
Antonucci is unable to get any story involving the UFT or NewYork City public schools correct, and this latest exercise in silliness is no exception. Historically, the UFT had closed down its five borough offices for the summer, and serviced our members working in summer schools through the central office, which was the only one kept open. Since the work day of summer school was shortened, so too were the union’s summer office hours. While that arrangement saved money on support staff and air conditioning, it was less than ideal for members who needed help and had to travel into Manhattan for assistance. Consequently, last year the UFT moved to keep the borough offices open during the summer. This year, as a harsh economy led us to look for ways to save money, we decided to keep all the offices open, but for only four days a week [Monday-Thursday]. The office hours are longer on those four days, so the staff works the same work week, but has Friday off, freeing us up from the cost of air conditioning over a long weekend.
As usual, if anyone had actually bothered to ask, they would have been told the whole story. But if you know the actual facts, then you won’t be able to make something up. And it’s one interesting case of projection for Antonucci to talk about the UFT’s “inability” to do fractions, given his history of being unable to produce accurate numbers when discussing class size in New York City public schools.