Highlights from the April 5 issue of New York Teacher:
Mulgrew challenges DOE to increase school budgets
With new money coming from the state and an improving city revenue picture, the Department of Education must finally start rebuilding ravaged school budgets, UFT President Michael Mulgrew told the City Council on March 27. Class sizes should go down and after-school and enrichment programs must be restored, he said.
Here’s the pitch
City schools finish in the money at annual Virtual Enterprise competition
Would-be entrepreneurs need to pitch detailed business plans to funders and investors. Learning to do that is part of schooling, too, as the annual Virtual Enterprise International’s Youth Business Summit competition attested. In round one, held at union headquarters on March 27, 19 student teams from high schools nationwide competed.
‘We can’t do it alone’
450 educators get message that collaboration is key to success in education
The theme of the day was “Collaboration: Changing Lives Together,” and it brought 450 early childhood educators to UFT headquarters for their fifth annual conference on March 24. “We can’t do it alone, we know it takes parents, teachers, family child care providers, administrators and advocates for children,” said UFT Vice President for Elementary Schools Karen Alford.
UFT blasts mayor for ‘reckless’ child care cuts
UFT President Michael Mulgrew accused Mayor Bloomberg of turning his back on 16,000 low-income families by failing to include $104 million in the budget for subsidized child care. At a press conference on the steps of City Hall on March 29, child care activists and community, union and political leaders protested the cut as unacceptable.
Thanks and no thanks
Lawmakers get feedback for their Tier 6 pension votes from 1,200 educators, parents
“If any elected official says ‘special interest’ to you, you tell them you mean the millionaires and billionaires who only want more,” UFT President Michael Mulgrew told the approximately 1,200 teachers, family child care providers, paraprofessionals and parents who descended on Albany for the UFT’s annual Lobby Day on March 21.
Larger-than-expected state aid heading for city public schools
The state budget, finalized on March 30, brought mostly good news for city schools. The state agreed to an additional $292 million for the education budget in New York City, even more than the governor originally promised.
PERB names mediator for evaluation talks
The state Public Employment Relations Board has named a mediator, at the request of the UFT, to help break the impasse between the union and the Department of Education over teacher evaluations in 33 schools. UFT President Michael Mulgrew welcomed the step.
Sheepshead Bay HS: 500 insist ‘We’re open!’
Sporting school-color orange T-shirts reading “We’re Open” superimposed over “Sorry, We’re closed!” the Sheepshead Bay HS community in Brooklyn is fighting for its life. On March 28, prior to a public hearing on its planned closure, more than 500 rallied to support its teachers and demand that the Department of Education reverse course.