In saying this, I can't imagine what our plight would be without a union. In 2012 our union stood up for teachers time and again. First, they filed a grievance that overturned Mayor Bloomberg's vindictive "turnaround program" that would have dumped a thousand teachers into the ATR pool. Next the union forced the DOE to require the principals to hire ATRs for their long-term leave and vacancies as stated by the ATR Agreement. Finally, the DOE will now be required to pay special education teachers their actual salary, not per session,when they spent evenings and weekends doing SESIS work.
If we didn't have a union, just think of what the Mayor would impose on us.
- End of "first in, last out".
- Reducing "sick time".
- Automatic removal from salary and benefits when accused.
- Health benefit premiums would dramatically increase.
- Eliminate the 7% TDA dividend..
- Teachers would be required to abide by new working conditions like a sixth classroom period instead of a preparation period.
- Elimination or restricting teacher tenure and adding more time.
- Loss of "due process" rights.
A reminder to our union: I expect that the UFT should insist that any Mayoral candidate pledge that they will honor the "City pattern" and the long-held practice of retroactive raises. Without such a pledge the union should actively campaign against that candidate. No other course of action would be acceptable. It is time we flex our collective muscles on this issue and not wuss out.