Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Teachers Unite Rank and File Leaders

Teachers Unite with Rank and File Leaders

Rank and File Leadership Program
(Rank-and-File: Individual members of an organization, exclusive of its leadership)
In several U.S. cities, teachers committed to social justice have mobilized to win the leadership of their unions. Teachers Unite seeks to inspire New York City public school educators to transform the United Federation of Teachers so that it effectively advocates for educational equity. Participants in this program will work on projects that mobilize rank-and-file members to elect new leadership in chapters across the city and in the union itself.
October 16
Facilitator: Dr. Lois Weiner, Professor of Education, New Jersey City University
Pushing back on testing, merit pay, charter schools, and de-professionalization of teaching: How can we use teacher unions?
NYC’s education landscape is bleak:  privatization and commercialization of services; creation of charter schools to displace neighborhood schools; curricula geared to standardized tests; de-professionalization of teaching; and vilification of teachers.  What’s going on? And how can we push back?  What should we expect from teachers unions? And how can we get it?
Dr. Lois Weiner will explain what’s prompted this assault on public education and teachers and why creating space in this landscape for schools that serve all kids well and support quality teaching and teachers requires transforming teacher unions – including the UFT.
We will share strategies with participants for leading reading groups with colleagues about these issues. Participants will be provided with reading materials to distribute and action steps for organizing teachers in their school building.
Space is limited. Register now! To reserve a seat, please click here and scroll down to How to Register.
November 13th or 20th
Time and Location TBA
Guest speaker from CORE
What can we learn from Caucus of Rank-and-File Educators or CORE? This new caucus won leadership of Chicago Teachers Union through grassroots organizing, and citywide mobilization. Learn from CORE leaders some keys to their organizing success, and their vision for a new kind of teacher unionism.
Space is limited. Register now! To reserve a seat, please click here and scroll down to How to Register.
Date/time/location tba
UFT 101
What is the structure of the UFT? How does it work? If it's democratic, what do we need to know about how it functions? UFT veterans show us the ropes!
Date/time/location TBA
Chapter Building Fishbowl
Veteran and new teachers share strategies for organizing school chapters in a range of contexts. Come through and share some of your strategies, or pick up some new ideas.

From Leonie Haimson:

I will be speaking at two events, on Sunday and Tuesday, about the state testing scandal, the city’s failure to reduce class size, and how this failure to invest in the classroom relates to mayoral control and the corporate-style reforms imposed on our schools.  Please come to one or both!  Thanks, Leonie

Sponsored by Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats

WHEN: Sunday, October 17, 3:00 to 5:00 pm

WHERE: Union Temple, 17 Eastern Parkway
(Across from the Brooklyn Public Library map here;; #2 train to the Brooklyn Museum Station)

Chris Owens will be the facilitator

Speakers include: DOE Test Score Scam; Leonie Haimson, Class Size Matters,

Misguided Federal, State & City Policies; Martha Foote, Time Out From Testing

Under Receivers, Not Under Achievers; Akinlabi Mackall, Black New Yorkers for Educational Excellence, S.D.D.D.S/SIDS, CPE/CEP
Charter School Idea Hijacked; Mona Davids, New York Charter School Parents Association

Corporate Big-Bucks Takeover; John Tarleton, The Indypendent Newspaper


WHEN: Tuesday, October 19, 5:00-7:00PM

WHERE: Urban Justice Center, 123 William St., sponsored by Teachers Unite.
(map here: take the A,C, 2,3, J or Z to Fulton St.)  

Guest speaker: Leonie Haimson

How has mayoral control affected the classroom? What does school governance have to do with the overemphasis on testing and lack of attention to class size?

Participants in this session will help shape the survey that they will use in the research project that gives voice to teachers, parents and students and their experiences under mayoral control of schools. We will review the goals of this research project and the plan for the year in making it happen.

Free for Teachers Unite members and $5-$10 (sliding scale) for non-members.

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