The End of the Rubber Rooms

In September there will be no rubber rooms. The time-frame for adjudicating all cases, old and new, is greatly reduced. This is a victory!

This agreement directly benefits those members who are in the Temporary Reassignment Centers now and ultimately all UFT members. The threat to send teachers to the Rubber Room is eliminated. And one way of harassing chapter leaders and separating them from their members is gone.

Will the DoE Abuse this Agreement?

While the agreement is a giant step forward, we don’t trust the DoE and we will watch them closely. They could try to twist or pervert anything to use against our members. We cannot predict if they will, or what tricks they might try, but there are two areas we want to watch closely.

  1. This agreement makes the timelines enforceable by grievance – but the DoE might well test whether we are willing to grieve.
  2. And the new agreement’s faster timelines are designed to ensure that members are either charged or returned to the classroom more quickly. We should be ready in case the DoE uses the streamlined process to charge more members.

New Action’s eight members on the UFT Executive Board will work with President Mulgrew, to watch for and counter DoE “gaming” or violations, and to make sure that the provisions of this agreement are implemented to our members’ advantage.

We also know that there are serious problems with the disciplinary process and the 3020a’s, beyond the Rubber Rooms. The process is still stacked against our members, and still needs to be fixed. We pledge to continue to work to get our members fairer treatment and end abuses.

But for today we congratulate the membership on closing the Rubber Rooms for good.

Jonathan Halabi, David Kaufman, Michael Shulman,
Co-Chairs, New Action/UFT

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