Students giving back to the Earth and the amur

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Today in the Patchogue-Medford School District on Long Island,  students are taking part in their fifth annual Earth Day Film Festival. Many of them are also wearing amur leopard T-shirts, depicting an animal that is on the “Red List” of critically endangered species. Students design and sell the shirts, and the money raised will be [...]

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Trek for respect

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I would not want to be the treads on Maria DeAngelo’s sneakers. By next Monday, they will be shredded. This is a math teacher who is going to take on 150 miles of grit to ask the lawmakers and the governor, on behalf of students and teachers who have once again been slammed in legislative [...]

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Finger Lakes education locals putting bite in their business

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They’re not packing it in. No way. Fourteen Finger Lakes local unions are instead packing it up. Yesterday, members from 14 local teacher unions in four different counties gathered to pack up 1,000 apples they bought from a Geneva apple orchard. They are being shipped to Gov. Andrew Cuomo. My mouth was watering just hearing [...]

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International Women’s Day marked by matters of concern

Does the phrase  ”International Women’s Day” seem too overwhelming? How do you narrow women’s issues down to specific actions you can take to get involved? It’s worthwhile to learn new things, and today was no exception.  Today, for International Women’s Day, I learned something big:  An organization called One Billion Rising Revolution, which describes itself [...]

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‘Silence no more’

Editor’s note: Crises often bring good people together. We may not always agree on every issue or priority, but when it comes to providing for what all kids need and protecting public education, teachers, unionists AND administrators are almost always on the same side. Last Thursday’s education forum in Fairport, which drew several thousand pro-public [...]

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Button, button who’s got the button?

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When I was young, we played a game called “Button, button, who’s got the button?” We’d circle around a person in the middle, who held a button. That person would “pretend” to drop a button into our open palms, with only one person actually receiving the button. Everyone would immediately close their hands after their [...]

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Ichabod Crane local gives school board an earful on testing

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The Ichabod Crane Teachers Association organized a protest of overtesting at this week’s school board meeting, drawing about 150 teachers and parents fed up with testing. The Ichabod Crane School District is about 26 miles southeast of Albany. “This (the English Language Arts assessment) is not developmentally appropriate for my students and I find it [...]

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Reliving the spirit and soul of MLK

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(NYSUT Vice President Paul Pecorale recently returned from Atlanta, where he participated in the AFL-CIO’s Martin Luther King Jr. Civil and Human Rights Conference. This is his first-person account of that conference.) I was awestruck this past week at the AFL-CIO Martin Luther King Jr. Civil and Human Rights Conference in Atlanta, GA., where I [...]

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NYSUT taking students to film about Dr. King

Hundreds of students and their families from across New York state will be commemorating Martin Luther King Jr. Day this weekend by attending a showing of the award-winning film “Selma,” courtesy of NYSUT Vice President Catalina Fortino and the other NYSUT officers. Fortino and NYSUT Director of Community Relations Paul Webster have spent much of [...]

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Season’s Readings

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Today is, as A.A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh so famously said, “a rather blustery day.” Snowflakes are flying, adding to the hefty drifts already covering the ground. The evergreen branches are host to drapes of snow. Outside my window at NYSUT headquarters, a flock of birds frantically pluck at berries from a tree. The hulking [...]

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