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NYSUT Member Briefing - Feb. 26, 2021

Union unveils Advancing Racial Justice agenda

NYSUT’s Black History Month event on Wednesday, Feb 24, kicked off the union’s Advancing Racial Justice in Education legislative agenda. The event featured new Chancellor of the Board of Regents Lester Young, Jr., the first African-American chancellor in state history. You can watch a recording of the discussion here.

U.S. DOE stumbles with decision to continue standardized tests

Union leaders this week slammed the federal education department’s decision that standardized tests must go on, despite the pandemic. SED is weighing options but the Regents are expected to remove Regents exams from graduation requirements.

In spite of confusion, rules for reopening schools have not changed

NYSUT said this week, the safety of our students demands mandatory mask wearing and six feet of social distancing or the use of effective physical barriers. Decisions must also still be made collaboratively with parents and educators. “These standards have not and must not change,” said President Andy Pallotta.


More news

  • The annual Committee of 100 started Thursday with a huge Zoom briefing for hundreds of volunteer political activists and continues with scores of online meetings with lawmakers that extend throughout the first two weeks of March.
  • NYSUT is hosting its first ever virtual arts showcase. Deadline is May 17 for teachers to submit up to five student entries in music, theater, dance, visual and media arts. Here are guidelines
  • This week, BOCES students and educators shared their personal stories about why BOCES funding is so important.
  • ECB issues study of the inequitable digital divide among students in New York State.
  • NYSUT members and leaders are telling their personal stories in video testimonials as part of our Black History Month celebration.
  • The NYSUT Women’s Committee presents Making the Case for Women in History, a #NYSUTchat on Twitter 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.
  • DemocracyReady NY, a project of the Center for Educational Equity at Teachers College, Columbia University, offers a free webinar series, “Mending the Fabric of Democracy: Teaching Civic Readiness,” on four 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 has been renewed — and it now includes expenses for PPE and other COVID-related expenses. The recently passed Coronavirus Relief Act (CARES) offers new charitable giving tax incentives in an effort to 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.


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