SOUTH BRONX SCHOOL

Sunday, September 12, 2021

Starting Tomorrow We Try to Cheat Death With Solidarity's Help

Oh joy, we walk into Death tomorrow. Three feet? What does that mean? Yeah, it's one yard or 36 inches. But what does it mean? In elementary school, is there no more mini lessons from the carpet? How do we conference with students? What are the guidelines in cafeterias? 

Must windows be open? What about these so called air purifiers? Word on the street is they are useless. 

Are schools supposed to be providing masks? Hand sanitizers? How can 10 percent of a school be tested every other week and there be a proper tally of who is safe or not? 

Who can answer these questions and more? One would think that in each school there would be a meeting led by the chapter leader in which concern and issues would be addressed. From my experience this has yet to happen. Several SBSB groupies have shared with The Crack Team that they do not know of any meeting with their chapter leaders concerning COVID safety. 

Worse, a friend of mine shared with me that she had called the UFT COVID hotline (or whatever it is called) and was hold an inordinate amount of time and just finally gave up. 

So what to do? Thanks to UFT Solidarity, we have somewhere to go. Read on...


Happy Night Before School!

This school year will be nearly unlike any we have ever experienced as UFT members. Now more than ever, UFT Solidarity needs all our members engaged and activated as activists and unionists in our schools. We have to power to protect each other and hold the UFT accountable.



Please make sure you and your chapter leader are familiar with the UFT's PPE Hotline. Ask your building rep, like NOW, if they've been in contact with the custodian, administration, and UFT regarding mandated PPE shipments to your building. If not, call the PPE Hotline immediately and make sure EVERY staff member in your school knows to wait outside your school until the UFT rep on the hotline gives the green light.


The UFT PPE Hotline is: 212-701-9677


Work with your colleagues and do your due diligence this week to document conditions in your buildings. Your video and camera applications will be your best friends. When in doubt, email your borough safety reps AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

Then, submit a Google Form documenting conditions in your school. If the form does not work, email us at Solidaritycaucus@gmail.com.


Make sure you follow our newly updated COVID Action Kit. This is well worth the read! 

Also, we are pleased to introduce our newly renovated UFT Solidarity website! Our website is now located at www.solidarityuft.org. Please share this website with your colleagues and, when you can, explore its features.  Our updated Toolkit and our Getting Involved Page are two must-read sections!

Finally, please mark your calendars for our Council Meeting on September 22nd and General Member Meeting on September 29th. You should have received Google Calendar invites. Look for a new email about these events next week.


Union means coming together as one, in solidarity. Let's boldly lead, let's boldly enforce the rules, let's boldly fight like heck for the living.






In Solidarity,

The UFT Solidarity Council

Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Wave of Death Coming to NYC Schools

 I am due one more retro payment this October. I was suspended in October 2015 which for reasons unknown to me I was classified as on "leave." So everything was pushed back for me. This goes for others who were on leave then. Which leads me to this question:

If I, or others, due retro in October, were to die due to the irresponsibility of the DOE and enabling of the UFT with the Delta surge, will the heirs receive the retro?

What is the acceptable number of deaths of staff and/or students for the DOE due to the Delta Variant?  Are staff more expandable than students? 

To paraphrase Colonel Trautman from First Blood,  "Will there be enough body bags?"

Has the DOE thought to have portable refrigerated morgues outside the schools to collect the dead bodies? 

On August 19, my son's college had ZERO active COVID cases. Today it the college has 22 active cases amongst students. And his college has a real plan! It's not a plan that was put together at the last minute. I trust his college's plan. I do not trust the crud put out by the DOE and enabled by the UFT.

How can we keep three feet distance in dirty, filthy, rat infested, crud infested, overcrowded school buildings? 

How many students are staying home on September 13? 200k? 250k? 500k? Does De Blasio have a plan for all these no shows? Will there be retribution upon the parents of all these no shows? I know if I lived in the city I would not send my child to school. It would like sending a child to their death. 

Why is De Blasio being such a dick? He's caving for the whitey white, entitled, smug, sniff their own fart Brooklyn and Upper West Side crowd. De Blasio has his eye on running for governor next year and he needs these parents on his side. Not just to vote for him, but to give him money as well. 

De Blasio is that self-unaware that he still thinks he was somewhat successful in running for president in 2020. His ego, his thirst for power is going to kill staff, and worst, the children of New York City.

There will come a day, and this day will be soon that a staff member or a child will die. Let's hope that appropriate legal action is taken against the DOE and any of its enablers. 


 



Friday, August 27, 2021

Mulgrew Comes Out of Hiding

We here at SBSB, along with The Crack Team, wish to give a belated thank you and thumbs up for Mike Mulgrew taking the suggestion from Monday's blog for a UFT Town hall for September 2 from 2-3:30 PM EDT. Though better late than never, I for one have had to change my tee time. Maybe I can squeeze in nine holes after the town hall. 

And as I have written in the past,  I will praise Mulgrew when it's appropriate we also give Mulgrew a proverbial thumbs up for once again reading these pages and finally coming out of hiding to led and sharing with the world the (hopefully tentative) safety agreement with the DOE

Many questions abound, Let's take a look at some of the highlights.

 Physical Distancing in Schools

The DOE will follow the CDC recommendation to maintain at least 3 feet between students within classrooms. When it is not possible to maintain 3 feet in a given school, the DOE advises layering multiple other prevention strategies. During meal service, schools will use outdoor spaces and additional spaces in school buildings where possible.

Does this mean 3 feet between the teacher and a student? How will this be enforced? This summer I did not see any effort to follow the three foot rule. As for a school that does not have enough space to maintain the three foot rule, what is layering? Will classrooms have a tier of desks? Multi-level classrooms? Tell us more! Are there schematics of this layering thingy for us to see?

As for meals, will meals be served outside when it is raining? Or snowing, or cold? Will students be forced to eat meals in bathrooms? Closets? Hallways?

COVID Testing

Every school will have 10 percent of unvaccinated individuals who have submitted consent for testing in their school population tested biweekly. Students and staff who are fully vaccinated are not required to be tested.

What happen if no one submits consent. And why only 10 percent? Why not everyone? You know how testing can be less invasive and quicker? Spit test. Twice a week. Spit into a bag. Results come back in less than 24 hours. 

Another problem is the Whiny Whitey Whites of Brooklyn, and the UWS are demanding that asymptomatic students must not be tested. Well how do we know who is asymptomatic? Duh. Watch out for these elitist and entitled types. 

Remote Instruction

The mayor has finally acknowledged the need for virtual instruction for medically fragile children and for those in quarantine, something we have maintained was necessary since last spring.

What about for those children that parents just don't want to send to school because they don't want their children to be dead children? Back in June I predicted 350k students staying home. It's going to be more I think. What then is the plan? 

Let's hope that in next week's town hall there is more information given. I am very interested in knowing what are the protocols for schools that do not follow safety measures properly. I am giving up a round of golf.

 

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Mike Mulgrew Has Abrogated His Duty To Keep Members Safe

As teachers we kind of expect that Mayor De Blasio will not only lead students to their death, but have the same feelings about teachers as well. I get it. De Blasio doesn't care.

On the other hand, where has Uncle Mike Mulgrew been? Except for a few mass emails this summer and
a town hall on August 3 Uncle Mike has been surprisingly silent about schools reopening September 13. That's less than three weeks away.

Now, I can be wrong. Perhaps Uncle Mike is deep within the bowels of 52 Broadway formulating a plan of safety in the "UFT War room." Whilst erstwhile right hand man and golfing buddy LeRoy Barr. Yeah, I know. But anything is possible. 

But reports are coming into the SBSB newsroom that the Chicago Teachers Union is demanding a safety plan from Chicago Public Schools.

Less than a week before the start of Chicago Public Schools classes, the CTU is still negotiating with the district on a COVID safety plan.
In a morning news conference Monday,
Chicago Teachers Union members said it's still not safe to go back to the classroom with students and staff as the delta variant continues to spread.

And what do we get from Uncle Mulgrew? In the email of August 23, we get...


With the Delta variant continuing to spread and Pfizer just announcing the full FDA approval of its vaccine, the city believes that those eligible for the vaccine must do their part to help keep our children safe.

I got no problem with mandating vaccinations. But getting everyone vaccinated takes time. Now that the Pfizer vaccine is about to be officially approved with Moderna soon to be, what not mandate for students 12+ as well?  

But, wait a moment. What bout keeping the teachers safe? Asymptomatic carriers will be walking among us possibly infecting those who are already vaccinated. These teachers can bringit home to those who are more at risk. What about the teachers and their families? Does Uncle Mike care? 

...so we know that as a union we have already done our part to help the city to beat this virus and protect our schools. 

Why is it upon us to protect the schools? Why isn't it upon the DOE and the city to protect ALL stakeholders? What is de Blasio's plan? The DOE's plan? Why isn't Uncle Mike pushing for one?

And I don't just mean a remote option. There is mask wearing. What happens if a student refuses to wear a mask? Testing. What if a teacher tests positive, does that teacher lose CAR days? What about clusters who see multiple classes? If three students test positive, but the students are all in three separate classes, does the cluster quarantine and if so does not lose CAR days? Where are the answers? 

What is the plan if there is no remote option and 500k don't show up September 13? Then what? How many teachers getting infected and/or dying is acceptable to the UFT?  One? Twenty? One hundred? 

It is time for another town hall post haste. We basically have next week to do it. The following week is Labor Day and Rosh Hashanah.  

Rank and file is demanding answers now. It is time for Mulgrew to make an appearance.


Monday, August 23, 2021

ATRs Are About to Get Screwed

So, what is to be of the ATRs this coming school year?

Back in June were told that all ATRs, irregardless of anything, will be placed at the school they were in for the 2020-2021 school year. We would no longer be ATRs but a permanent member of the school community. All this was to be completed by June 18. June 18 has come and went.

Then there was word that the principals raised a ruckus about forced placements and the plan was put on the table. Gee, is anyone surprised?

The Crack Team has found out that "the plan" is till going forward, however there is a but. Most teachers will be placed where they were last year, but some won't. And there will not be any rotations. 

So as of today, August 23, 2020, not one ATR knows where they are going or what they will be teaching. In fact I got a call today from an SBSB groupie wondering where she will be come September. She's anxious and new to this ATR stuff. She is a dear friend and wants answers. There aren't any to give right now. 

But there are problems afoot, Raise your hands if you can guess the problems.

Think about this. The ATRs that will be placed will be the young ones, the ones who don't make that much money and were basically excessed. Those teachers, though forced placed, will be welcomed by their school's administration and given the benefit of the doubt. 

Those who are labeled as "others" will not be welcomed in their school community.  Those others will consist of those with many years in the system and/or make too much money. Have institutional memory, are rabble rousers, have big mouths, have gone through hearings, etc... How long do you think it will be before a principal or an AP will start greasing the skids on these teachers? The Rubber Rooms (They never went away) will be full again. 

Here is another problem. How many ATRs received a preference sheet this past school year? If ATRs are placed at last year's school shouldn't they have some building seniority? Should ATRs have some preference choice? Are wee not teachers? If you prick us, do we not bleed? 

How many teachers have had an entire summer to prepare for their assignment this year? A lot. We will not be finding out our assignments until September 1 at the earliest. Some but not find out until September 3 when one should open up DOE Outlook. 

And worse, this might be a way for the DOE to save money. With the Delta Variant plowing it's way through New York City what better way to save money than to place ATRs in filthy overcrowded schools and hope that most of them die? 

Yes, we know that it is in the contract that ATRs be forced placed. But couldn't the DOE have not been dicks about it? Why not have spent the summer trying to match ATRs to schools? It would have been win win for everyone. But alas, the DOE must be dicks. 

But it would sure be swell to hear from the UFT.



Monday, August 16, 2021

The NYC DOE and De Blasio Are Planning to Kill Students This Year!

 Today is August 16. Staff reports to schools on September 9. Students report in exactly four weeks from today. De Blasio is still in denial.Worse, the UFT is silent. Children are being hospitalized and dying. The principals union, CSA has said it is impossible for their to me three feet of social distancing. Delta is raging through the South. The ignorant refuse to get vaccinated. The entitled whitey whites of the Upper  East Side and Artisanal Brooklyn are whining about their entitled babies having to wear masks in school. Meanwhile, regular Joe parents are shitting bricks about returning in September. There were 750k remote students last year.  I predicted, or intimated, at 350k not returning in September. There will be more than that. Social distancing in schools is a joke. So with all this information one begs to know.

WHAT IS THE FUCKING PLAN FOR SEPTEMBER?

This summer there was no social distancing in the school I was in. Students were right on top of one another. Teachers and students on top of one another. Staff on top of one another. No directions. No guidance. No nothing. Masks being worn at half mast. None of those special air filter thingys in the class rooms. I mean there were a few, but very few. Where is the direction from the UFT? Where is the leadership from the DOE?

The parents of the Upper East Side had a rally yesterday on East End Avenue against mandated vaccines in DOE schools. Geez, these parents are so indicative of the population of the  NYCDOE. Same with the parents of Artisanal Brooklyn. How they whine if their precious children will be traumatized by wearing a mask or dare I say it, learning remotely. Oh the horror. Little do they know their precious children's worst day is a great day for a child living in abject poverty. But what do they care? 

My son goes back to college in Thursday. I feel safe because I trust the plan his college has. The college follows through on its plans. The college gives consequences if the plan is not followed. The DOE only pays lip service to it's plan and gets away with it due to the enabling of the UFT. If I were a parent with a child in the NYC schools, I would not, could not, and shan't send my child to school. I would demand a remote option. 

De Blasio is coming for the students of NYC. He plans on killing them. He has an acceptable death rate before he allows remote. One student dying due to De Blasio is on too many. One student, infected because of De Blasio's false pride, is one too many. 

Parents should refuse to send their students to school in September and demand that there is a plan for remote learning. That the lives of NYC students are more important how an incompetent bozo mayor comes across.


Thursday, July 22, 2021

The UFT Enables DOE to Screw Members Yet Again

 Remember how Navin Johnson was so excited that the new phone books had arrived? I (and many others) wanted to have that same feeling when I awoke this morning. Today, after waiting since October would have had the remaining 50 percent of my retro. This is money owed us not just from October, but from
2009-2014. 

But alas, when you are really counting on something, something gets mucked up. And as usual the UFT is getting blamed. That could be debated. Hear me out. 

I do put the blame on the UFT for accepting the crappy 100 year schedule for our retro. I do put the blame on the UFT for not sharing with membership ahead of time that our October payment was to be delayed (They knew it several weeks ahead of time there would be an issue). I put the blame on not having the retro squarely on the DOE and the City for not making every single member whole today. 

I put the blame on the UFT for not only believing the bullshit reason why the checks didn't go in, but then  sharing the bullshit the DOE was spewing amongst membership.

The reason we were given was that the retro check was a "supplemental" check and not a payroll check. That this is why it would take banks longer for our direct deposit would be in our accounts. 

Which doesn't make sense.

How does a bank differentiate between a supplemental check and a regular payroll check? Money is money. If I went to the bank to deposit money into my son's account, would the bank know the difference if it was money owed for money for his birthday? Or spending money at college? Of course not. 

And if this DOE bullshit were true, why hasn't anyone seen their checks in the payroll portal? Do the banks have some magical ability to control the DOE's payroll portal? Doubtful. 

And we should trust the UFT when it comes to the upcoming change to Joe Namath's Medicare Advantage (Read more about this on Norm's blog and James Eterno's blog)? 

What would happen if a teacher who has yet to receive their retro today dies tonight? Would the teacher's family still be entitled to the retro check that should arrive tomorrow? Would the monies have to be returned? 

I appreciate that there were UFT higher ups that were proactive today on social media. In the past, it would not have happened. But Mulgrew should have been at the forefront of of speaking out. Imagine if this were the PBA. Pat Lynch would be having a conniption fit. 

But as usual, the UFT is the schlemiel (For those that are not up on their Yiddish, schlimazel is the person that spills the soup, a schlemeil is the putz the soup is spilled on.) of NYC labor unions. The City knows that it can't get over on the other unions. They know when they need to defecate on a union, on a union's membership they can turn to the us. The City know that its bullshit will be accepted. They City knows the leadership will rollover. That when the UFT screams, "Never again!" is just an empty threat and will be coming back with its tail between member's legs. 

I hope by the time I awake tomorrow morning member's will be made whole. I'm not betting on it.