Pro athletes do it, why can’t we?
NYSUT President Andy Pallotta this week led a discussion with national and local unions, including the NFL Players Association, on the critical importance of ramping up COVID testing in school districts across New York. The panel discussed effective COVID testing strategies implemented by New York City schools, SUNY colleges and the National Football League as examples for districts to follow. NYSUT also is calling for federal and state funding to implement testing.
Lawmakers approve vaccine leave bill
This week, the state Senate passed two NYSUT priorities, the four-hour vaccine leave bill and a two-year extension of last year’s public employee COVID death benefit. The bills already passed the Assembly and will be sent to the governor for his signature.
SED clarifies which Regents exams can be canceled
In light of U.S. DOE's refusal to waive standardized testing, the State Education Department sent a field memo this week to clarify which Regents exams are federally required: Algebra 1, ELA, Living Environment and Earth Science. The others, along with August Regents exams, are expected to be canceled at the Regents meeting March 15.
- NYSUT has posted updated versions of two fact sheets on opting out, for educators and parents.
- Eric J. Iberger, of the Bayport-Blue Point TA, was appointed to the board of the state Teachers’ Retirement System.
- Join us for The Power of Partnerships Conference, a virtual event March 10 to explore solutions to the teacher shortage and teacher diversity challenges.
- A win-win! Take action at the MAC to support the proposed Early Retirement Incentive for public employees in New York state.
- The Many Threads, One Fabric initiative plans a professional development webinar for March 18.
- The NYSUT Women’s Committee presents Making the Case for Women in History, a #NYSUTchat, March 21 inspired by the recent “Where are the Women? Summit.” Also, the UFT and NYSUT Women’s Committee offer a free virtual screening March 18 of the documentary 9 to 5 – The Story of a Movement.
- Deadline is May 17 for NYSUT’s new virtual arts showcase. Teachers may submit up to five student entries in music, theater, dance, visual and media arts.
- DemocracyReady NY offers a free webinar series on civic education Tuesdays in March.
- Check out the NYSUT Member Benefits Financial Learning Center, powered by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, for new articles about selecting the best value in tax planning software and more.
- The educators’ expense tax deduction now includes PPE and other COVID-related expenses. Also, new charitable giving tax incentives help charitable organizations like the NYSUT Disaster Relief Fund. And don’t forget, if you itemize, you can deduct union dues from New York state taxable income.
- Sign up online for upcoming free student debt webinars.
- Educator’s Voice, NYSUT’s professional journal, has re-issued its call for article proposals for the 2022 edition. The focus is on Leveraging Student Strengths through Project-Based Learning and Authentic Assessment. Deadline is April 1.