Highlights from the latest issue of New York Teacher :
Resupplying relocated students with 30,000 backpacks 
Calling it the “best of New York City coming together” UFT President Michael Mulgrew praised the efforts of educators, administrators, elected officials and corporate citizens who all pulled together with the goal of raising $1.5 million to deliver 30,000 backpacks filled with school supplies to students whose schools were flooded by Hurricane Sandy.
Members roll up their sleeves
Idea to help in lieu of Election Day PD was born on UFT Facebook page
Hundreds of educators across the city spent Nov. 6 bringing water, blankets and baby supplies to hurricane shelters, walking up 15 flights of stairs in public housing to assess needs, doing demolition work on homes that were flooded, shoveling sand off the Coney Island boardwalk so emergency vehicles could get through and bringing hope and help to those who needed it most.
Repaying a debt
Upstate teachers volunteer to help rebuild Staten Island town
They arrived on Staten Island in a bus from Schoharie in upstate New York, dressed in jeans and T-shirts, sneakers or workboots, carrying shovels and crowbars and hammers and utility knives in their workgloved hands. “We came here to work,” one said. “Let’s get started.”
Hundreds of UFT members turn out for Day of Action 
Hundreds of UFT members, bolstered by four busloads of members of the union’s national affiliate — the American Federation of Teachers fanned out across the city to assist with the Hurricane Sandy cleanup and recovery effort on Nov. 10, the first of several Saturday Days of Action being organized by the UFT.
Two taken from us by the storm 
Two dedicated UFT members lost their lives in Hurricane Sandy. They are Jessie Streich-Kest, a first-year teacher and activist with a wide circle of deep friendships; and Henry Sullivan, a longtime Abraham Lincoln HS teacher known for his generosity, integrity and humor.
Dealing with the trauma 
UFT’s Election Day PD switches focus after storm
In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, the organizers of the UFT’s Election Day safety training quickly refocused the agenda to make it relevant to chapter leaders returning to schools after the storm. They learned about how to address the short- and long-term trauma from the natural disaster affecting both students and staff.
Hard work pays off in national, state elections 
Election Day was sweet for UFT members who had worked so hard in the weeks leading up to Nov. 6 to get out the vote for President Barack Obama in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, in a critical Senate race in Connecticut, as well as in key state races.
UCP workers win contract just before strike deadline 
Poised to strike if a new agreement were not reached by Oct. 15, workers at United Cerebral Palsy of New York City beat that deadline by one day and then ratified a new contract in the final days of the month.