Monday, April 20, 2009

If you’re not an ATR today, you could be one tomorrow

From Marjorie Stamberg:

This is a reminder, we will be at the UFT Delegate Assembly on Wednesday, April 22 to highlight the the crisis of ATR teachers and school closings.

This is the critical time, before principals hire for September. We need an immediate moratorium on all school closings and for a hiring freeze until all ATR teachers who want positions are placed. If schools are in trouble -- fix them, don't close them! The UFT has already voted for both the moratorium and the freeze, in good part due to our pressure and mobilization. But we need the union to act on this, not just pay lip service.

The D.A. starts at 4:15, and we will have signs outside for “Stop School Closings,” “Hiring Freeze Until ATRs are Placed,” and “If you’re not an ATR today, you could be one tomorrow.”

We will have a motion to call for

No New Hiring Until ATR Teachers are Placed

No School Closings!


Four months after the “Side Agreement” was signed, a grand total of 16 ATRs have been hired, while 295 brand new teachers were hired! There are now 1,740 ATRs across the system. The Side Agreement is like putting a band-aid on a bursting artery. And at the April 6 E-board, it was revealed that the UFT dropped its age discrimination suit in return for the toothless Side Agreement. A secret deal that is only now coming to light...

The union voted last October for a moratorium on hiring until all teachers who want positions are assigned -- we need to act on this now; we cannot wait until September. And there will soon be far more ATRs with many big high schools on the chopping block. The ATR situation threatens the whole union -- the DOE wants a big teacher reserve so they can use it to try to get rid of our "no-layoff" clause, and experienced teachers who know their rights. But it's not enough to know your rights, you have to fight to defend them.

The UFT is not addressing the root cause of the crisis. When the union gave up seniority transfers in the disastrous 2005 contract, it opened the gate for the Bloomberg/Klein to drive this truck through as they go after tenure. That's why one big part of our fightback has to be to restore seniority rights in the contract. We know that the ATR crisis was allowed to simmer and stew in the UFT until we engaged the issue in a strong united way, school by school.

We need a meeting of all ATR teachers where these and other questions are answered. We need a UFT special rep for ATR teachers who is available for phone calls, in-person meetings, not just e-mail that doesn’t get followed up.

We need the UFT to put teeth in its motions for– No School Closings! If a School’s in Trouble – Fix it, Don't Close It!

A Moratorium on all New Hires until ATR Teachers are Placed!
Restore Seniority Transfer Rights in the Contract!

Take Back the Givebacks!


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