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    • Disaster Relief: Bracing for the rain in Western NY

      NYSUT Disaster Relief Fund

      Volunteers hit the streets again today, either shoveling or securing sandbags to help prevent flooding as western New York digs out from up to 79.5 inches of snow and prepares to handle the rapid meltdown from warmer temperatures. Today, it is raining and high winds are expected to bring power outages as Buffalo-area residents max out on weather strife.

      "Today we were especially needed. Many local community volunteers had to go back to work Monday but, with school closed, we had members available who were coming out today to shovel or sandbag; whatever was needed," said Joe Cantafio, president of the West Seneca Teachers Association. "The community had to rely more on us,"

      The Buffalo-area snow arrived in about 48 hours; then, in the last 48 hours, a lot of it melted as temperatures spiked. Today, it's about flood preparation: sand bags. As of Monday afternoon, it was still raining and flooding had begun.

      "One member who never had flooding in his basement in 30 years is getting flooded today," Cantafio said.

      Although schools in the Buffalo area are closed, workers are still there keeping buildings safe.

      "Many of our School-Related Professionals have been working around the clock to clear roofs, clear parking lots, make sure schools are safe when we do return, and make sure payroll is processed and school is functioning," Cantafio said.

      NYSUT members know how these weather disasters can affect families. The union is poised to help in other ways, in addition to shovel power. Fundraising for the NYSUT Disaster Relief Fund, which helps members in need after natural disasters, got a jumpstart this weekend when $2,020 was raised at the annual Suffolk Region Leadership Training Conference for Buffalo-area members in need.

      "We do know on Long Island that NYSUT was very supportive, as were our brothers and sisters across the state, when Superstorm Sandy hit (October 2012) - both financially and with people coming down to help," said Antoinette Blanck, president of the 800-member United Teachers of Northport and NYSUT board member who kept the fundraising lively at the conference. "It's important for us to pull together. It's a way of paying back."

      Western New York educators were front and center volunteering in community shovel endeavors throughout the weekend, answering the call from the Area Labor Federation for volunteers.

      "We have many elderly - there was no access. We shoveled them a path from door to street," said Cantafio, who joined the crew with his first and second vice presidents, Christopher Galley and Mark Wright, respectively, along with many teachers and NYSUT Regional Staff Director Mike Deely. They were given lists of addresses at the Emergency Operations Center and showed up with their shovels, joining ALF President Richard Lipsitz. Some elderly needed medicine delivered.

      "It meant a great deal that so many union brothers and sisters came out," Cantafio said.

      As the afternoon sky darkened in its quick approach to night, Catafio said, "All I'm doing is watching my sump pump. "It's raining. We have 60 degrees and rain."

      Even with all the melting, he still can't get out his front door. West Seneca won second place in snowfall with 78 inches; Hamburg took top prize with 79.5 inches.

      Many area K-12 schools are closed until December 1st. Among the six emergency shelters set up in the Buffalo area by the American Red Cross, the most recent was at Iroquois Middle School in Elma. The shelters provide cots, blankets, food, water and support.

      SUNY campuses at the University of Buffalo and Buffalo State College reopened today after cancelling classes the last half of last week. Joseph Atkinson, professor of engineering at the University of Buffalo, reported on the dangers of flooding in Buffalo online. He is a member of United University Professions, a NYSUT higher education affiliate for state-operated SUNY campus faculty and professional staff.

      Among the storm-related deaths in Buffalo this past week are those who died from heart attacks. University of Buffalo cardiologist and professor Anne Curtis, a member of UUP, explained why the risks of heart attack increase for both shoveling and snow blowing.

      Tips on home disaster preparedness kits can be found at www.redcross.org/prepare.

    • New York trusts teachers

      A recent poll shows New Yorkers trust teachers to do what's best for their students more than anyone else. And they should.

      Our public school teachers are consistently rated among the best and most highly educated teachers in the nation. Besides earning college and graduate degrees, they must pass rigorous background checks, multiple certification exams and required training courses. They must also complete 175 hours of professional development every five years.

      Few states demand as much of their public school teachers as New York does.

      No wonder our state earns high marks for its exemplary teaching force, stringent standards and credentialing rules — typically ranking in the nation's top 10.

      No wonder New Yorkers trust their teachers. They've earned it.


      The above ad appeared in the November/December issue of Education Update and in the November 17 issue of the Legislative Gazette. The PDF version is available to download and distribute.

    LTA Blog

    Carle Place Rally

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    Picture with Randi Weingarten, AFT President

    Our LTA Executive Board attended the Rally in Carle Place on September 26th.
    The Carle Place BOE has proposed a salary schedule that would have all new hires making many thousands of dollars less down the line than their current counterparts.


    Last Updated (Friday, 15 November 2013 16:35)

     

    Member Alert Program

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    There are so many member benefits, that it can be hard to keep track of them all.
    The NYSUT Member Benefits MAP (Member Alert Program) email blast service keeps you informed through a brief email message every three weeks.
    You can join MAP on the NYSUT website, at http://www.nysut.org/49.htm

    Last Updated (Friday, 15 November 2013 16:58)

     

    Nysut Action Center Mobile App

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    NYSUT action center now has an app for smartphones that makes it very easy to take action. It is available in the app store for free.



    Last Updated (Friday, 15 November 2013 16:38)

     

    Field Trips in LPS

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    Students in Lynbrook Public Schools Have a Lot of Field Trips to Look Forward to!Field trips provide real-world connections for the things students are learning in the classroom. Teachers in Lynbrook Schools have organized great experiences for their students to look forward to.

     

    Teacher: Carol-Ann Pryor- Science teacher, Globe Club Advisor
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip:
    Globe Club went on its 2nd Annual Homecoming Clean Up. 15 members of the club attended a clean up sponsored by the American Littoral Society with the goal to clean up the waterways at Wantagh Park. Operation Splash also aided the clean up. The students were able to clear the waterways of 200 pounds of litter. Every time some one litters the trash is flushed off the ground into the gutters, the gutters lead to reservoirs and the reservoirs pump the garbage through a huge pipe directly into the bays and oceans in our areas. A local organization named operation splash (mentioned above) works to put catches on the gutters in order to prevent a surplus of trash making its way to the water. The gutters with the catch are labeled with green and blue stamps above the gutter.They also hold weekly clean ups of the wetlands from local marina. There is a splash boat docked in East Rockaway that cleans the waterways of Easy Rockaway and Hewlett Harbor. For more information students can go to opperationsplash.net.

     

    Teacher: Erin Murray- English Teacher
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip:
    I've taken my juniors on a field trip at the start of our unit on The Great Gatsby. Our first stop is Coe Hall, a mansion from the Gold Coast of Long Island in the Oyster Bay Planting Fields Arboretum. We go to the mansion to understand the lifestyle and wealth of those living on the north shore of Long Island in the time of The Great Gatsby, the Roaring Twenties. After we take the mansion tour, we head up to Sands Point Preserve on the bus to have a picnic lunch outside the Hempstead House, a mansion previously owned by the Guggenheims. Unfortunately, the mansion is now empty, hence the first trip to Coe Hall. But the mansion is very close to where Gatsby's house was supposed to be, and overlooks the Long Island Sound. After lunch we look out at the Sound and I explain the difference between the two "Eggs", "East Egg" and "West Egg," which were really Manhasset and Great Neck, and we see look out over the water at what Gatsby stares out into throughout the book. Time permitting, we read together from the novel the scene in which Gatsby stands with his arms outstretched toward Daisy's dock across the bay. It's powerful for the students to connect the text with the actual setting.

     

    Teacher: Susan Ehrlich
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: Yankee Stadium & Hard Rock Café / Madison Square Garden & ESPN Zone.
    As a follow up to our stadium design and franchise management units, I take my Marketing classes to the Yankee Stadium tour. On the tour, students will visit Monument Park, the Yankees Museum, dugout, clubhouse and batting cages. After the tour, enjoy lunch in the Hard Rock Café at the stadium. In past years, I have also taken students to Madison Square Garden for the facility tour followed by lunch at the ESPN Zone. This annual field trip helps students to make real world connections to units studied in class.

     

    Teacher: Jessica Sanders- English Teacher, School Newspaper Advisor
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip:
    1 - Hofstra Press Day in December. Students meet with local journalists who run a variety of workshops throughout the day. 2 - Adelphi Press Day in April. Students participate in the Quill Awards presentation and also participate in various workshops conducted by local journalism professionals.

     

    Teacher: Danielle Leighley- Spanish teacher
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: A la Carte, Lynbrook
    For the past few years, I have taken my Spanish Classes to the A la Carte Cooking School in Lynbrook. The trip provided the students with an opportunity to improve their understanding of the Spanish and Hispanic cultures by introducing them to various types of Mexican and Spanish cuisine and to the origins and uses of Spanish spices. The students also experienced a cooperative group exercise in which they worked in teams to prepare a sampling of foods and ended the trip by actually eating what they prepared!

     

    Teacher: Marisa Minicus- Spanish teacher
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: A la Carte, Lynbrook
    The Spanish 2H class goes to A la carte while studying our "food" chapter. There the students prepare, cook, and eat typical Spanish / Hispanic foods such as arroz con leche, paella, fresh salsa, tortillas, and tortilla espanola. The kids learn a lot about the cuisine and the preparation and are exposed to a positive cultural experience.The Spanish 3H class goes to the Kindergarten Center to teach the students a simple lesson in Spanish. Last year they prepared a lesson on the colors. The interaction between the older and younger kids was awesome. Both groups really enjoyed the experience and it also promotes studying languages.

     

    Teacher: Michael Franklin - Math Teacher, Mathletes club Advisor
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: Nassau County Mathematics Tournament
    The mathletes club goes to the Nassau County Mathematics Tournament every February to compete against the top math students in the county. It is an all day event of three rounds of math. The first round is the grade level individual round, the second round is the mathletics round and the third round is the team round. There are both team trophies and individual trophies for the top 10 teams and individuals in each grade.

     

    Teacher: Ellen Kannengieser-Science Teacher
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: NY Aquarium, Brooklyn
    The Marine Science classes at Lynbrook High School ended the school year with an exciting trip to The New York Aquarium in Brooklyn. The Coney Island atmosphere helped the students feel as though they were in a true ocean environment. The classes observed the marine organisms and their habitats up close. Many students were able to touch the smaller organisms.From the small sea stars to penguins, sharks and sea turtles, the classroom lessons came alive. An entertaining 3D show was part of the trip. Most of the students agreed that the highlight was the sea lion show. Wally, the sea lion, really performed in the aqua theater.Both the students and their chaperones truly enjoyed this learning experience!

     

    Teacher: Jonathan Spector- Guidance Counselor
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: AHRC, Brookville
    For the past 9 years, I have taken LHS students on school trips to volunteer with children and adolescents who have developmental disabilities. One popular field trip is to the Association for the Help of Retarded Children (AHRC) located in Brookville. Every year LHS students particpate in holiday-theme art projects with special education children. We go to the AHRC during Thanksgiving, Halloween and Valentine's Day. It's amazing to watch the LHS students make special connections with children at the AHRC. In addition, LHS students visit the Association for Children with Down Syndrome (ACDS) located in Plainview. They shadow teachers and additional staff such as Occupational Therapists, Physical Therapists and Speech Pathalogists. LHS students also interact with special education children ages pre-school to kindergarten. This year we will continue to volunteer at the AHRC and ACDS and do more community service projects.

     

    Teacher: Noriko Koide- Japanese Teacher
    School: Lynbrook High School
    Field Trip: Japanese Tea Ceremony
    We are going to a tea house called Urasenke Chanoyu Center in New York City. Interior design of the tea house looks like the traditional house in Japan. The master will take students around the house and show rooms. In the tea room, he will talk about the way of tea and demonstrate the ceremony which students are going to participate in as the guest.

     

    Teacher: Neil Farina
    School: Lynbrook North Middle School
    Field Trip: Old Bethpage Restoration Village
    We go each year to Old Bethpage Restoration Village. This is a recreation of an 1840s village, with a farmhouse, blacksmith, hatmaker, tavern, shops, and animals. The trip allows students to experience the lifestyle of Americans during the period which they study in 7th Grade Socials Studies.

     

    Teacher: Maureen McCartney
    School: South Middle School
    Field Trip: King Tut exhibit at the Discovery Times Square
    The sixth grade students at South will be attending the King Tut exhibit at the Discovery Times Square exhibit. Last year, we also attended the same trip in June. We were so impressed that we are going back with a new group!

     

    Teacher: Jackie Miller
    School: Waverly Park Elementary School
    Field Trip: Nassau County Museum of Art
    Third graders go on three separate field trips (fall, winter and spring) to the Nassau County Museum of Art in Roslyn to view their varied exhibits offered through the year. This is part of an Arts in Education Partnership with the museum, sponsored and paid for by our PTA. In second grade, a unit on famous artists from around the world is done in late spring, and this trip taps into all the students' prior knowledge and allows them to now apply it. It is related to our art teacher's curriculum for third grade as well.

     

    Teacher: Peter J Deschler, Band Director
    School: Waverly Park Elementary School
    Field Trip: Greis Park, Lynbrook
    The Waverly Park Senior Band (4th and 5th grade) perform music from both the winter and spring concerts at Greis Park. Every year, we are invited to perform for the senior citizens at the Greis Park recreational center. This usually takes place at the end of may/beginning of June. This provides another performance opportunity for these students.

     

    Teacher: Melissa Quartararo- Music Instructor
    School: West End Elementary School
    Field Trip: New Orleans Jazz concert at the Tilles Center at C.W. Post
    I'm taking my 5th grade band students to see a New Orleans Jazz concert at the Tilles Center at C.W. Post. It's an educational jazz concert geared towards school-age children.

     

    Teacher: Donna Smith
    School: West End Elementary School
    Field Trip:
    We go to Amigos Mexican Restaurant to support our study of Mexico. They provide food and a very extensive educational presentation of the history, geography and culture of Mexico. We also go to Commerce Plaza to support our study of economics. (www.commerceplaza.org), we go to Ellis Island and we go a museum with Mr. Christie, the art teacher.

     

    Teacher: Jenny Winn
    School: West End Elementary School
    Field Trips: Mangoes Restaurant in Bethpage - Cultural experience that relates to our Latin America UnitEllis Island - We extend the school day and visit the museum at Ellis Island to enhance our Immigration unitFishing Trip (Freeport)- That's our traditional end of the year trip to celebrate their upcoming graduation. Each child brings one parent on the trip.Also, our art teacher, Michael Christie, takes each fifth grade class to a different museum such as the Guggenheim.

     

    Teacher: Karen Ajamian, Gale Bayen, Gail Meister, Peter Deschler
    School: Marion Street Elementary School
    Field Trip:
    Every December, the Marion Street Music Department (Karen Ajamian, Gale Bayen, Gail Meister, Peter Deschler) takes a group of chorus, band and orchestra students to perform at the ATRIA ASSISTED LIVING Facility. The students perform for the residents and then take part in a group sing a long. It has become a tradition that one of the residents, a former professionally violinist, plays along with the group.Karen Ajamian (Chorus, Marion Street) regularly accompanies a Marion Street Girl Scout troop on their annual visits to assited living facilities to perform.This year, the music department is sponsoring a field trip to a CW POST TILLES CENTER program entitled WHAT IS NEW ORLEANS JAZZ. The fourth grade classes at Marion Street are studying the history of jazz and this program will enhance their experience.

     

    Teacher: Susan Lindner
    School: Waverly Park Elementary School
    Field Trip: Whaling Museum, Cold Spring Harbor
    In conjunction with the Fourth Grade Social Studies Curriculum, New York/Long Island, and the 4th Grade Science curriculum, the fourth graders at Waverly Park take a trip to the Whaling Museum in Cold Spring Harbor in December. The students have pre lessons with their homeroom teachers, learning about the whaling industry and the part it played in the economy of Long Island. Susan Lindner, their Science teacher, while learning about Animal Adaptations, to include the whales, also does a prelesson on parts of the whale used long ago, scrimshaw, baleen,etc. and other terms related to whales and the whaling industry. The students go on a scavenger hunt in the Whaling museum, looking for various items througout the museum, watch a video on a Whaling voyage, and culuminate by making a piece of scrimshaw as a souvenir of their trip. The students learn first hand about the life of a whaler and have a great time on this totally hands on trip.

     

    Teacher: Kathy Freehill
    School: Lynbrook Kindergarten Center
    Field Trip: Lynbrook Public Library
    Kindergarten classes are going to the Lynbrook Public Library. The librarians introduce the children to the children's section of the library and explain how to get their first library card. In addition, the children learn about all the different books, tapes, cds, dvds and magazines they can take out for free. Ms. Egan and Ms. Rene read picture books, play a memory game and do fun stretching activities with the children. It is always a fun trip!We are also going to Tanglewood Preserve on Nov. 4th and 5th for the Live Animals program and Math in the Natural World. Then we will visit a local dentist for our Community Unit.

    Last Updated (Friday, 15 November 2013 16:34)

     
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