Archive for March, 2013

New Action at the UFT Executive Board 2010 – 2011



Part I  2010 – 2011

September 2010

New Action receives reports of U-ratings for ATRs. Questions how many them.
New Action calls for a contract update
New Action asks for report on “rubber rooms”
New Action introduces resolution to Support President Obama’s Plan to End the Bush Tax Cuts for the Wealthiest 2%
New Action initiates support for March on Washington on October 2, 2010

October 2010

New Action calls for report on special education reorganization
New Action calls for support for ATRs when agreement expires November 2010
New Action calls for a report on UFT endorsed charter schools
Bipartisan Social and Economic Justice Committee passes rent control resolution
New Action mobilizes for demonstration against Principal Bost at the Theodore Roosevelt Campus in the Bronx

November 2010

New Action speaks in favor of Resolution Promoting Diversity in  Teaching Force

December 2010

New Action challenges Bloomberg dictate/guidelines on granting tenure
Bipartisan Social and Economic Justice Committee gets resolution passed  on Reducing the Environmental Footprint. Calls for an end to plastic bottles at UFT and for recycling bins.

February 2011

New Action exposes SESIS as a “nightmare.” Calls for help for our members
New Action asks for follow-up of Diversity resolution passed in January
New Action is credited at UFT Exec. Bd. For bringing Wisconsin resolution  to the union.
New Action brings resolution in Support of Fired Puerto Rican Leadership.

March 2011

New Action initiates resolution in Support of Puerto Rican Teachers Federation Leadership
New Action calls on UFT to support the April 9 anti-war demonstration
New Action successfully calls on union to notify all Chapter Leaders and  Delegates to participate in the Commemoration of the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

April 2011

New Action warns that any new teacher evaluation system must have a fair appeals process, unlike the one currently in existence
New Action initiates and passes resolution to designate May 1, 2011 as Holocaust Remembrance Day

June 2011

New Action supports No-layoff agreement which saves 4,400 jobs

New Action at the UFT Exec Board 2011- 2012



Part II  2011 – 2012

 September 2011

New Action meets at Columbus HS to plan action against Principal John Chase who is charged with sexual harassment.
New Action wins support to publicize the struggle of Local 372 of District Council 37 members
New Action initiates resolution to Support President Obama’s Job Bill

October 2011

New Action exposes hiring of K -2 testing director at DOE
New Action introduces Dignity for All Teachers resolution which wins bipartisan support. Calls on Chapter Leaders to be proactive in defense of members’ rights.

November 2011

New Action presses the issue of Mandated Relief at November 21 UFT Executive Board meeting
New Action raises the fact that principals are hiding vacancies thereby keeping ATRs from filling positions

December 2011

New Action co-chairs, Jonathan Halabi and Michael Shulman, speak against the proposed UFT Constitutional changes

January 2012

New Action mobilizes for demonstration at Bronxdale HS in the Columbus Campus against abusive Principal John Chase.
At the Delegate Assembly, Mike Shulman opposes UFT Constitutional  changes. Calls for broader discussion of union democracy.
New Action calls for the restoration of lab specialist positions in every high school.  Asks to end policy of “giving away” or warehousing lab equipment.
New Action says we must end Mayoral control. Asks for strategy to end the fraudulent PEP panels.
New Action questions the Bloomberg policy of closing 33 new schools.
New Action Initiates A New York State United Teachers resolution in support of the New York State Dream Act. This could impact 300,000 youth to secure student loans grants and scholarships.

March 2012

New Action criticizes the DOE for breaking the “No Lay-off” agreement that ATRs must be placed in long term vacancies.
New Action introduces a resolution “Justice for Trayvon Martin” that condemns the murder of young Trayvon and calls for the prosecution of his killer.
New Action questions DOE policy of not placing ATRs in long time vacancies

April 2012

New Action initiates “End Mayoral Control of Education” petition.
June 1 the UFT announces they will reconvene committee to examine UFT position on mayoral control.
New Action introduces a resolution to oppose the Mayor’s NYPD policy of “Stop and Frisk.” This leads to UFT participation in massive NYC Demonstration.

May 2012

New Action is credited with bringing new DOE policy to “flag” names of UFT members who have been called in for disciplinary hearings. UFT files intent to sue
New Action’s call to make June 5 a “Day of Solidarity” for actions at schools is approved.

June 2012

Over 100 schools participate on June 5 for “Day of Solidarity.”

New Action targeted by rival caucus

We note that New Action has recently become the subject of negative campaigning by a MORE.

New Action is an independent caucus, supporting Michael Mulgrew in this election. MORE’s campaigning seeks to treat New Action as part of Unity. We note in particular their second campaign video, their Vice President Educational Issues’ motion at the March Delegate Assembly, on their blog, and their print advertisement in the election issue of the New York Teacher.

We weren’t really expecting this, but it’s not a great surprise, either. Back in October, Kit Wainer, a former leader of TJC currently representing MORE, indicated that MORE had no intention of attacking New Action during the campaign. “MORE will attack Unity.”

However, MORE’s stable of bloggers routinely attack us (Kit claimed no control over them, and professed not to read them. When asked if allowing the attacks and not disassociating their caucus from them looked like tacit endorsement, Kit did not respond.)

MORE is allowed to campaign as they see fit. We do not know why they changed their minds and decided they needed to attack New Action directly. But this is certainly within their rights.

— — — — — — —

MORE was formed last year. It reassembles at least pieces of ICE, GEM, and TJC, perhaps remnants of other groups.

— — — — — — —

New Action’s campaign focuses on:
New Action
Independent – Progressive – Influential
New Action is the only UFT caucus that
supports the leadership when they are right
and opposes them when they are wrong.
Vote New Action!

Those few words above, they are the heart of New Action’s election campaign. Our literature fleshes out details.

Retiree Program

Meaningful, effective programs to improve our COLA by raising increases to reflect Cost of Living Index

Safeguarding and expanding our health and welfare benefits

For the right of retirees to run and vote in Teachers’ Retirement Board elections

Reduction of union dues of post 1984 retirees

Fight to prevent the forced retirement of senior school staff

End a winner take all undemocratic governance of the RTC. Institute proportional representation voting

Reduce military spending and fund essential social services

New Action at the UFT Exec Board – this year



 Part III – September 2012 – March 2013

September 2012

New Action wins bipartisan support in solidarity with Chicago teachers

New Action introduces resolution to support President Obama for reelection

New Action calls for reconsideration of NYSUT recommendation to stay neutral in the Grimm/Murphy race on Staten Island

October 2012

New Action asks the UFT to join NAACP suit on selective school entrance exams

November 2012

New Action introduces resolution to oppose any cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid. Passes December DA

New Action questions why UFT space has been leased to King’s College

New Action calls for a list of worst principals who have issued U-ratings

New Action initiates bipartisan resolution in opposition to the “Grand  Compromise” proposed by Republicans

New Action introduces resolution to oppose any cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid. Passes December DA.

January 2013

New Action introduces resolution on gun violence. Passes unanimously.

New Action calls for list of schools with the highest U-ratings.

New Action blasts DOE for failure to recruit and hire teachers of color.

New Action calls for action to protect S.I chapter leader sent to the rubber room.

February 2013

New Actions calls for support for Seattle teachers who refused to administer standardized tests.

New Action calls on UFT to poll members regarding Democratic mayoral candidates.

March 2013

New Action calls for rejection of governance proposals, and for their resubmission as part of a package calling for the end of mayoral control


The Social Justice Caucus? Action vs Words

MORE Coalition- The Social Justice Caucus?

The MORE group has highlighted their commitment to fight for social justice in recent election material. They call themselves the social justice caucus.

On the other hand it is noteworthy that New Action/UFT has been in the forefront of the struggle for a non-racist, just society. While focusing on all the issues affecting educators in the schools, from the attack on veteran teachers, the attack on probationary teachers, the insanity of SESIS, abusive administrators, the fixation on standardized tests, and blaming educators for all the problems of the education system–New Action has taken action on ALL of the following–

The first to call for disaster relief for Haiti
The first to call for justice for Trayvon Martin
The first to call for an end to Stop and Frisk
The first to call for the defeat of Mike Bloomberg and support for Bill Thompson
The first to call for the defense of the fired leadership of the Puerto Rican teachers
The only caucus to repeatedly call for action on the disappearing Black and Latino educators
The only caucus to petition to end mayoral control
The first caucus to pass a resolution against gun violence
And New Action spoke up for organizing home care providers

MORE would like to have a record to match New Action but it’s not there yet. When the MORE coalition matches its actions with its rhetoric–maybe then it can wear the mantle of the social justice caucus!


President Michael Mulgrew, Wm. Grady HS
Secretary Carol Widom, PS 219K
Assistant Secretary Cheryl F. Hawkins, PS/IS 150K, Retired
Treasurer Ronald Leung, Fort Hamilton HS
Assistant Treasurer Bruce Rajswasser, Curtis HS
VP, at Large Gregory DiStefano, Tottenville HS, Retired, UFT Organizing Committee
VP, Special Education Tom McDonough NYC Museum School
VP, Elementary Ama Willock, PS 245K
VP, IS/JHS/MS Nelson Santiago, IS 63R
VP, Academic HS John McCabe III Tottenville HS

Rachael Bulla
Alyssa Colarossi
Sharon Coughlin
Lauren Donner
Lynn Halligan
Phylicita Nelson-Walker
Tracey Pearson
Marva St Clair
Michael Streiker
Earl Terrill
Almarie Walker

Ginger Brown
Diana Buono
Jessica Carter Mendiata
Yrvin Espinal
Bea Robertson

Alan Ettman, DeWitt Clinton HS
Keith Fessel, Ft Hamilton HS
William Goldman, Tottenville HS
Jonathan Halabi HS of American Studies
Anthony Klug, Wadleigh HS
Greg Lundahl, Washington Irving HS
James Vasquez, Newcomers HS

Irina Benediktova, School Psychologist
Noelle Delli Paoli, Guidance Counselor
Bernadette D’Onofrio, Social Worker
Jacques Dorcely, School Psychologist
Richard Dunlop, Social Worker
Barbara Falik, School Psychologist
Linda Langen, Paraprofessional
Dalia Maxwell, School Psychologist
Osama Mostafa, Guidance Counselor
Eve Rittle, School Secretary
Katherine Sisco, Paraprofessional

Jonas Abry
Kuljit Ahluwalia
Chris Ballerini
Charles Bayor
Joel Berger
Kim Brown
Lisa Buono
Dawn L. Campbell
John G Carlson
Linda Costello
Maurice Crooks
Angelo D’Angelo
Diane De Bernardo
Robert Dehler
Francis D’Souza
Nelson Espinal
Paul Feingold
Michael Freydin
Joel Garcia
Regina Gori
Robert Greenberg
Douglas Haynes
Arjun Janah
Mark Karwowski
Martin Kellerman
Jonathan Leventon
Fern Lowenfels
Carl Makower
Kate Martin-Bridge
Ruth McKenzie
Paul Millstein
John D Pallone
Francisco A Peña
Laurence Pittis
Gregorio Quinn
Dacio Quintana
Maria Ramos
Paul Regenbogen
Jon Dennis Regier
Paula Rogovin
Judy Rosenstein
Linda Scheer
Michael Sherwood
Michael Shulman
Justo Soriano
Barbara Stensholt
Diane Vines
David Widom