First meeting with the district October 27th
Sign & Share the Petition Online
Thanks to everyone who has signed the UESF petition on our meet and confer on wages. For those who haven’t signed the petition yet, now is your chance to add your name online and share it with your colleagues.
The petition calls on the members of the Board of Education and Deputy Superintendent Myong Leigh to do everything in their power to offer a serious wage increase when we sit down for our meet and confer on wages on October 27th.
With the affordability crisis continuing to destabilize our schools, we need a strong and unified voice to the leadership of the SFUSD – now is the time to act!
UESF has extended the deadline to sign the petition until October 24th. Please sign and share the petition ASAP. If you have circulated a paper version of the petition at your school, please return it as soon as you can to the UESF office.
Vital That We Pass Prop. 55 and Elect a New School Board
UESF and the Democratic Party have endorsed Stevon Cook, Matt Haney, Rachel Norton, and Mark Sanchez for the SFUSD Board of Education. We also urge a yes vote on Prop. 55 to maintain essential funding for our schools.
Volunteers Needed to Ensure Our Schools Have the Resources and Leaders We Need
Take Our Election & Volunteer Pledge Online
Complete UESF Endorsements
Register to Vote Online
September 8, 2016
With Labor Day behind us election season gets underway and the stakes couldn’t be higher. We have the opportunity to pass Prop. 55, guaranteeing billions of dollars for public schools for twelve years by continuing a small tax on the top 2% of California wage earners. We also have the opportunity to elect a new majority to the Board of Education. UESF/COPE members have
interviewed all of the candidates, and after careful consideration the Executive Board has voted to endorse Stevon Cook, Matt Haney, Rachel Norton, and Mark Sanchez.
With contract talks and the hiring of a new superintendent just around the corner, it is essential that we have the resources and the leadership we need in order to stop the massive turnover and displacement of educators and to ensure that our students and educators get the resources and support we need.
With mail ballots set to go out in just one month, it is very likely that the election will be won or lost in September. That’s where you come in.
UESF has an ambitious volunteer calendar for the coming weeks, including phone banking on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:00-8:00 p.m., at SEIU 1021 (350 Rhode Island St.) and precinct walks and phone banks on Saturdays from 10:00-2:00 p.m. (also at SEIU 1021).
Please take the online pledge to support Prop. 55, our school board candidates, and to sign up for a volunteer shift today.
Contact UESF Political Director Ken Tray at ktray [at] uesf [dot] org for help arranging a meeting at your school to help organize your co-workers.
Parents, students, and staff at Redding Elementary take a stand for full funding of schools!
Thanks to all of the parents, students, educators, and school advocates who took part in the AROS nationwide day of action for public schools today. School communities across the city helped spread the word about the urgent need to pass Prop. 55 on the statewide ballot.
Check out our Facebook Photo Album of the event and this SF Examiner article covering the day of action.
Join UESF for an exploration of Dia de los Muertos at the SOMarts Cultural Center on Friday October 28th from 4:00-6:00 p.m.! Enjoy wine, chocolate and cheese starting at 4:00 p.m. followed by a visit to the gallery at 4:30 p.m.
The annual Day of the Dead exhibition at SOMArts Cultural Center offers one of the most internationally diverse Día de los Muertos celebrations in the United States. Merging traditional Mexican altars with contemporary art installations, the exhibition presents a superabundant array of perspectives remembering, honoring, and celebrating the dead. Inspired by cherished relationships, current events, and personal and collective histories, more than 25 altars by over 50 participating Día de los Muertos artists build a dense environment of creativity that creates space for meaningful reflection and community engagement.
Thursday, November 3rd
Eviction Defense Collaborative
1338 Mission St., SF
With funding provided by the Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development (MOHCD) through the 2015 Prop. A housing bond, housing counseling will be available directly to UESF members the first Thursday of every monht this fall. The counseling will be coordinated by Homeownership SF, a local nonprofit, in conjunction with the Eviction Defense Collaborative.
Services include eviction defense, home purchasing assistance with HUD approved counselors, and rental counseling. The clinics will be staffed by expert counselors and eviction advocates. Educators who attend are strongly encouraged to bring relevant materials to the counseling sessions, including: legal notices, landlord communications, current leases, household monthly budget, recent pay stubs for all household members.
Upcoming Sessions Include:
- November 3rd, 2016 : Eviction Defense Collaborative, 1338 Mission Street, SF
- December 1st, 2016: BALANCE, 595 Market St., SF 94105
No RSVP is necessary; to access services just drop in. For more information go to www.homeownershipsf.org/educators.
Note: Priority for the Health & Welfare and Scatena Funds will be to those who have not previously received an award.
Health & Welfare Grants Given on Rolling Basis: September 1 – December 15, 2016
Health & Welfare Fund Application
UESF is currently accepting applications for assistance through our Health and Welfare Fund. The funds are meant to provide emergency assistance to UESF members, certificated and classified. Priority will be given to those members who are homeless, fire victims, or who have suffered hardship due to the death of a family member.
Applications will be accepted any time from September 1, 2016 through December 15, 2016, with grants distributed on a rolling basis. You may apply for up to $2,500.00. Paraprofessionals and substitutes must pay a $6.00 application fee, which is refundable for those who do not receive an award (Note: Certificated members do not need to pay an application fee because 50¢ of their dues goes into the Health and Welfare fund every month.
All applications must have the requested information and documentation. Please call the UESF office at (415) 956-8373 if you have any questions.
Scatena Fund Applications Due November 28th
2016 Scatena Fund Application
The Scatena Memorial Fund was established as a trust with the Bank of America in 1925 in order to provide grants to San Francisco active and retired teachers and paras who are in extreme financial need.
To apply for the Scatena Fund grants, please fill out the three-page application form, available at the UESF office and linked to above The deadline for applications to be received at the UESF office is 5:00 p.m. on Monday, November 28th at 5:00 p.m.
New Year, New Book for the UESF Testing Committee
By Aaron Neimark
(originally published in the August 2016 SF Educator)
Many of us who sat in meetings during the professional development days in August before the school year started were tasked with trying to make sense out of loads of test data. What trends did we notice? Who struggled the most? Who became proficient? How can we help our students do better on these tests?
But I found myself asking these questions: How much time did it take to prepare our students to take these tests? What else could educators have done with their students instead of test preparation? What did our students know that was not reflected in these tests? Do our students’ families understand enough about the tests that we give their children and do they know about their opt-out rights? Where did the tests come from and what are some alternative ways to use authentic assessment?
If you’ve been thinking about these sorts of questions, there’s a book for you: The Test: Why our schools are obsessed with standardized testing—but you don’t have to be, by education journalist Anya Kamenetz. For those who are concerned about the present and future of American education, Kamenetz provides an important book focusing on where standardized tests came from, who controls them, what concerned parents and educators are doing about resisting standardized testing, and what kind of alternatives are out there (or on the horizon) toward gaining a much clearer picture of what our students are learning.
Kamenetz discusses the racist and biased origins of educational testing in the U.S. and the way politicians have pushed testing. Her chapter on opting out goes into important detail about parent rights and important legal considerations. She also features an interview with Jesse Hagopian from Seattle, who has been a key figure in fighting for authentic assessments for our students. Kamenetz also writes about some new and creative ways to better assess our students.
One Union One Book
As part of a new One Union One Book program this school year, UESF has purchased 20 copies of The Test, available for loan to school sites who wish to do a PLC on testing. If you are interested in checking out the books for your school, contact me by email at aaronneimark [at] sbcglobal [dot] net.
Aaron Neimark, a teacher at Feinstein Elementary, serves on the UESF Testing Committee.
The Panda might be gone, but the Giants are still on track for another playoff run! Join fellow UESF members on September 12th at another Union night at the SF Giants!
UESF has purchased 200 tickets to the San Francisco Giants game on Monday, September 12th when the first placed Giants will take on the San Diego Padres at 7:15 p.m. Tickets will first be available to purchase for $20 each at our beginning of the year UBC trainings on August 10th and 11th at Rosa Parks Elementary and at our political training on August 27th. Get your tickets early as we always sell out. Limit 4 tickets per UESF member. Note: We are not ordering t-shirts for the game.