Archives For Movement of Rank and File Educators
by Mike Schirtzer, Teacher/Delegate, Leon Goldstein HS
The UFT and City of New York finally came to an agreement. In fact, the UFT Facebook celebrated by proclaiming “the wait is over” and it’s “the contract for education”. Unfortunately, this is not the contract we deserve, and it is no reason for a victory lap. Simply put, the retroactive pay is delayed until 2020, the raises are deferred until 2018, and New York City educators are left with 5 years of pay freezes and “raises” that don’t even keep up with the cost of living in New York. We have not received a raise in 5 years and now are being told to celebrate because we finally have one! This is not a fair contract and clearly not the raise and back pay we deserve. Our costs from milk to gas to utilities to our children’s colleges, have skyrocketed and all we can celebrate is a 2% pay increase starting in September. This is a demeaning insult to our profession.
Michael Fiorillo is a teacher, MORE member and former Chapter Leader at Newcomers High School in Queens
The Corporate Reformer’s Game Plan
- Proclaim austerity for the public schools, while continuing to expand charters
- Create incentives for non-educators to be in positions of power, from Assistant Principal on up
- Maintain a climate of scapegoating and witch hunting for “bad teachers,” who are posited as the cause of poverty and student failure, doing everything possible to keep debate from addressing systemic inequities
- Neutralize and eventually eliminate teacher unions (the first part largely accomplished in the case of the AFT). As part of that process, eliminate tenure, seniority and defined benefit pensions
- Create and maintain a climate of constant disruption and destabilization, with cascading mandates that are impossible to keep up or comply with
Watch the video for a sneak peek of the rally and march in front of NYC City Hall to defend public education from destructive, profit-driven corporate “reform”. Endorsed by 30+ parent, teacher, and student groups, including MORE. Featuring some great speakers, including a message from Diane Ravitch!
The NY United Teachers union is comprised of more than 1,200 local unions across NY State. This year the Movement of Rank-and-file Educators (MORE) ran six candidates for the Board of Directors. NYSUT Elections have been uncontested since 1979. The six candidates pooled their speaking time at the NYSUT Representative Assembly convention and were represented by Lauren Cohen and Mike Schirtzer. Behind them were James Eterno, Julie Cavanaugh, Francesco Portelos, Jia Lee from MORE and our union sister from Port Jefferson Teachers Association Beth Dimino.