Archive for April 26th, 2015

Cuomo’s War on Educators

Andrew Cuomo got much of what he wanted in his attack on NY state’s teachers.   Tenure now will take four years. Fifty percent of our ratings will be based on standardized tests that our students take. It will be quicker to fire teachers. This set of changes is designed to “churn” teachers, to make teaching a short-term career – in some places. Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch, Cuomo’s partner, made clear which places do and which places don’t deserve experienced educators – April 1 she proposed exempting top (affluent) districts from the new evaluation system, and the next day she proposed exempting high-performing NYC schools.

It’s not just teachers who Cuomo targeted – the new system will lead to many more tests for our students.

It is impossible to ignore the role of our union’s leadership in this. The NY Daily News reported: “city lawmakers said they were told by Mulgrew’s team that voting for the package would not be held against them.” On March 29 Mulgrew e-mailed the membership, claiming victory. Once members learned the details, he backpedaled. On April 1 he sent out a correction.

New Action applauds the acts of protest and solidarity against Governor Cuomo’s “educational reform.” 150 schools linked arms around their schools. We must build so next time 1700 participate. But it is hard to get behind a campaign that says 50% tests is too much, but 40% is ok. The vast majority of teachers know that evaluating us based on test scores makes no sense. It is time for Unity leadership to discard its discredited, pro-testing stance.

September 2014 New Action moved to
endorse Zephyr Teachout in her race against Andrew Cuomo.
Unity blocked this endorsement.


Support the Resolution to Protect Planned Parenthood

(from the New Action leaflet distributed at the March 2015 UFT Delegate Assembly).
For a printable version click: March 2015 Leaflet

On March 10, 2015, New Action/UFT introduced a resolution denouncing the attacks on Planned Parenthood. Since the Republicans in the House and Senate have set their sights on defunding Planned Parenthood and have several bills in the Congress to completely get rid of the program it is important that the UFT use its influence to stop this and involve the AFT and NYSUT and publicize this fight among our members and our allies in labor and our allies in the community, at large. The resolution is on tonight’s agenda – we urge you to support it.

New Action Wants Your Thoughts and Your Help

What do you think about what you read here? Do you have suggestions for future topics? E-mail us, write us, or call us. We want to hear from you.

You can join us by filling in the coupon below. Financial contributions are always welcome. Do you receive our leaflets in your school? If not, one of the most important ways you can help is to distribute leaflets in the mailboxes in your school. Let us know how many you need. You can also send share links to interesting articles with your members.

Michael (Bklyn) (646) 286-3288
Jon (Bx) (917) 856-6595
Greg (SI) (718) 757-4552


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April 2015