Will the the Common Core standards help make education in the United States more competitive globally?
    Login Form

    Nov December 2016 Jan
       1  2  3  4
      5  6  7  8  91011

    NYSUT News Feed

    News Feed
    Description of RSS News Feed
    • Lake Shore First Book event 'a marvel'

      first book lake shoreThere were 5,300 First Books stacked up in the middle school cafeteria at Lake Shore. And lines of nearly 1,000 eager children waiting to own them, read them and share them. Each student was allowed to choose five books.

      “Kids were bumping into each other because their noses were in the middle of their new books,” said Michele Amoia, a third-grade teacher who co-chaired the event with Shannon Muldowney, a middle school science teacher, both members of the Lake Shore Central Teachers Association. “We had 950 kids and more than 2,000 community members.”

      For the students, it was a marvel.

      “The look on their faces was as if the Buffalo Sabres had won the Stanley Cup,” said Anthony George, president of the Lake Shore Central Teachers Association.

      About 100 teachers and teacher aides worked at the “Literacy Across Lake Shore” event, which was sponsored by the 261-member Lake Shore CTA in Erie County.

      “It was such an amazing event. It exceeded all of our wildest expectations,” said George. “We’re lucky to have Michele and Shannon. I’ve organized large-scale events, but nothing this large. The skillset these teachers have was on full display. It went off flawlessly. They expanded what they do in the classroom every day.”

      Students also visited literacy centers set up for the event, where they could learn sight words or make their own leather bookmarks.

      Teachers worked as greeters or handed out books, some of them surprising students by dressing up as characters from books. Many educators wore new union T-shirts that carried the Lake Shore CTA logo. Each student was given a pencil that said "LSCTA supports literacy."

      The smell of barbequing chicken wafted across the entrance to the school. Chicken dinners were sold by teachers to raise money for scholarships that the Lake Shore CTA awards to high school seniors. The dinners quickly sold out.

      “We give out $3,000 in two scholarships a year. We might be able to increase that for a third scholarship now, in part because of the success of the chicken barbeque,” said George.

      He said he met parents who he’d never met at open house or for school events.

      Entire families came to the book night.

      It might have been hard to tell who was more pumped up about the event: kids or teachers.

      first book lake shore event 

      “We are super excited,” said Amoia said when she was prepping for the book night. It was through her work as a NYSUT Political Action Committee coordinator for her region that Amoia heard about the community outreach available through First Book. Her fellow PAC coordinator, Cheryl Hughes from Kenmore-Tonawanda, inspired her to try a book give-away after her own local’s successful event.

      At Lake Shore, youngsters and teens were given “Literacy Passports” made by students and teachers in the art department. Five books equaled five stamps, enabling the youngsters and teens to drop their passport into a drawing. A raffle was held for five door prizes: five book shelves handmade from repurposed barn board by Lockport TA member and physical education teacher Danielle Hagen.

      Five families from each of the district’s five schools went home with new bookcases last night.

      The road to get these books to this western New York community was lined with unions. The American Federation of Teachers is a partner with First Book, a nonprofit that gets donated books into the hands of students in need. NYSUT, an AFT affiliate, has been working for more than three years to help local unions with Title I schools to sign up for First Book. This year, NYSUT and First Book have provided nearly $3 million worth of books to students in New York schools.

      Many schools have held First Book events this fall.

      Before the big book night out in Lake Shore, there was other behind-the-scenes action happening. Many teachers worked on "sorting night" to prepare the books for the give-away. The books had arrived stacked in snug plastic wrappings on wooden pallets.

      “I had members who rarely ever come out who came out for this event. It’s about the kids and literacy,” Amoia said. ‘It was such a fun member engagement night.”

      “Every facet of NYSUT membership has been a part of this,” said Paul Webster, NYSUT director of community outreach. “Every constituency group has participated.”

      Beekmantown TA in the North Country and Middle Country TA on Long Island also recently held their initial First Book events. In Middle Country, there were lines of students out the door waiting excitedly to get their own books to keep.

      For more information about First Book, go to www.firstbook.org. Qualified teachers and school-related professionals from low-income schools can also order low-cost books, school supplies, warm coats and backpacks at First Book Marketplace.
      This online site boasts both Newberry and Caldecott winners, along with other quality children’s books in fiction, nonfiction, history, poetry and even coloring books at discounts beginning at 50 percent below retail.

      Some recent examples are: The Very Hungry Caterpillar (72 percent off); Click Clack Moo, Cows That Type (69 percent off); Diary of a Wimpy Kid (63 percent off); and Island of the Blue Dolphins (61 percent off).

      First Book Marketplace also sells socks, hygiene kits, shower kits, oral care supplies and other basic needs items at low cost.

      @LSCTA_1 Literacy Night over 2,000 @LakeShoreCSD community members 5,300 FREE @FirstBook GONE! @paulwebster06 @nysut @AFTunion @MrGB4B pic.twitter.com/UT8GJS1IoP

      — Michele Amoia (@shellyamoia) December 2, 2016
    • Hundreds attend inaugural ELL conference

      More than 500 educators and administrators participated in the inaugural English Language Learners/Multilingual Learners Literacy Conference at the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany. In opening remarks, NYSUT Vice President Catalina Fortino welcomed attendees and thanked them for being “dream makers and dream keepers” for their students.

      “Ours is a profession of hope - we don’t see obstacles, just how to reach our goals,” said Fortino. Other event speakers included Regents Chancellor Betty Rosa, Regent Luis Reyes and Commissioner of Education MaryEllen Elia.

      The daylong conference offered theoretical and practical classroom strategies for educators, ranging from K-12 general education teachers to English as a Second Language and bilingual educators. The event featured a full slate of workshops on topics including preschool multilingual learning, literacy development for English Language Learners and engaging ELLs in subject area instruction. A keynote address by Aida Walqui, author of “English Language Learners and the New Standards,” focused on realizing the potential of ELL students.

      Organized by the New York State Education Department’s Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages, NYSUT co-sponsored the event for participants who earned six continuing education credits for the free event. Other sponsors included the Regional Bilingual Education Resource Networks and Questar III BOCES.

      Photo Gallery

      First Annual English Language Learners/Multilingual Learners Literacy Conference

    LTA Blog

    Stand Up For What All Kids Need







    Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposed budget for 2015-2016 lays out a punishing anti-public education agenda that attacks teachers and hurts students.

    Rather than provide what all kids need, the governor is pushing a Billionaires' Agenda that would decimate the state's public schools. His "my-way-or-the-highway" budget would:

    • hold school aid increases hostage;
    • woefully underfund the state's K-12 and higher education systems;
    • more than double the weight of standardized tests;
    • make permanent an undemocratic tax cap that has wreaked financial havoc on school communities;
    • eliminate funding for teacher training;
    • launch a back-door voucher plan that would siphon funding away from schools most in need;
    • underfund public higher education by tying funding to campus "performance" rather than enrollment;
    • smooth the way for the privatization of SUNY's five hospitals;
    • destroy prep programs for future teachers;
    • and fail to fully address the student debt crisis.

    Simply put, Gov. Cuomo's proposed budget - which serves the interests of his billionaire backers - is an attack on public education that fails to address what all students need.

    Things you can do right now to fight back.

    Every NYSUT member is needed to defend public education and the teaching profession from Gov. Cuomo's Billionaires' Agenda.

    Tell the governor to stop scapegoating... stop teacher bashing and focus on what #AllKidsNeed.

    Here's your to-do list.

    Take action on this week's campaigns.

    The latest actions will always be right here in the No. 1 spot.

    Call your state senator. Now.

    • Stop what you're doing and call your state senator with this message: stand up to the Governor's "Bigfoot" tactics and defend our outstanding New York public schools!
    • You can look up the number at the NYSUT Member Action Center.

    Sign up for MAC text alerts!

    Take 10 seconds and sign up for MAC text alerts on your phone!

    Here's how: Text the word "NYSUT" to the contact number 38470.

    Sign the petitions.

    Call out the governor.

    • Invite the governor to visit your class to learn what #AllKidsNeed. Tweet out an invite directly at him and be sure to include his Twitter handle @NYGovCuomo and the hashtag #InviteCuomo if you want your tweet to be seen and heard.
    • Not on Twitter? See step 8.

    Get connected to the MAC.

    • BY TEXT. Get real-time text messages about urgent news and actions by texting the word NYSUT to the number 38470.
    • BY EMAIL. Subscribe to the NYSUT Member Action Center email alerts for updates on this campaign. If you're registered via email as a NYSUT MAC e-activist you'll also be the first to know about upcoming rallies, protests and more.
    • BY APP. Download the NYSUT MAC App for your iPhone or for your Android phone. Be sure notifications are enabled to receive alerts on new action items.

    Get connected on Facebook.

    Get connected on Twitter.

    • Join Twitter and follow @NYSUT to be part of the social media army.
    • Once a day (or as often as possible) tweet your thoughts on what #AllKidsNeed - more science labs, music and art classes, school libraries, smaller class sizes and more. We're reminding the governor to focus on what matters! Follow the conversation in real-time for some great examples from parents and educators.

    Share the poster.

    Wear the button.

    Take part in community forums.

    • Keep an eye on nysut.org/allkidsneed for information on upcoming NYSUT-sponsored Community Forums to Save Public Education in every region of the state.

    Talk it up.

    • Get the conversation going - online and offline. Read "Where We Stand" and use it to craft social media messages, send letters to the editor, and brief friends and colleagues.
    • Circulate and share print materials and videos.

    Support "Take Action Tuesday."

    • Mark your calendar to support NYSUT's "Take Action Tuesday" every week. Be on the lookout for updates.

    Learn more at www.nysut.org/allkidsneed.


    Last Updated (Tuesday, 03 March 2015 16:10)


    Member Alert Program




    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




    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)

    Who's Online
    We have 10 guests online