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The Schenectady Federation of Teachers, Local 803, is a union of professionals representing more than 800 teachers, 300 paraprofessionals and numerous retired members of the Schenectady City School District. Our goal is to provide practical means for protecting and advancing the best interests of our members; to promote the welfare of the children of Schenectady and to raise the standards of the teaching profession in Schenectady.


The SFT is affiliated with NYSUT, AFT, NEA and the AFL-CIO. President of the Schenectady Federation of Teachers is Juliet Benaquisto serving from the 2006-2007 school year to present.

Our office is located at 740 Union Street, Schenectady, NY. We can be reached by calling 518.370.2808.


SFT Nomination and Election Information

posted Apr 19, 2015, 11:02 AM by SFT Pipeline

This year three SFT offices are up for election:
  • One elementary vice-president (must be teaching in this division to be nominated for this office)
  • High school vice-president (must be teaching in this division to be nominated for this office)
  • Secretary
Nominations of members in good standing should be sent to Juliet Benaquisto at pres803@verizon.net by noon on April 27th. The Building Directors will have the opportunity to add to the official nomination ballot at the regularly scheduled meeting that same afternoon; after which time the nomination period will end. Elections will occur in May and ballots wil be counted at the Building Directors meeting on May 18, 2015

Individual Building Director elections will also occur during this same election period specific to each building. Each building shall elect a number of directors to represent members of that building by attending monthly building director meetings and general membership meetings. Your current directors that have served this year, will have more information following the April 27th Building Director meeting.

Anyone interested with questions regarding running for any of the above positions is welcome to email Juliet at pres803@verizon.net.

Message from the SFT President: Impact of the State Budget on Public Schools

posted Apr 1, 2015, 1:35 PM by SFT Pipeline

Dear Member,

 

The State budget that was passed last night is devastating to us, to public schools, and will have long lasting consequences for all of us.

 

As a result of the new legislation, there will be changes to the tenure process for new members, and a significant loss of protection for teachers, who teach in high need/high poverty districts.  The legislation passed last night takes away due process rights from tenured teachers based on a new evaluation system that will be imposed before November 1 of next year. While the ability to bargain some aspects of this new system still exists, understand that the bottom line is this: a teacher rated as Ineffective on a State measure or on a State created Learning Objective will be rated Ineffective overall. The rest of any APPR system will carry no weight.

           

We are currently waiting to hear from NYSUT on what the strategy will be going forward. My understanding is that the NYSUT Board of Directors is participating in an emergency conference call this evening at 5:00 p.m.  We will continue to share and update information through SFT Pipeline emails and the SFT Facebook page.

 

We have the fight of our careers in front of us but rest assured we are ready to fight! We need every one of you to engage and be ready to support NYSUT’s leadership. We must act as one united group.

 

Now more than ever, it is crucial that members are signed up to receive private emails from the SFT.  Please discuss and share the contents of this letter with any of your colleagues who have not received it.

 

In solidarity,

 

Juliet


           

Urgent General Membership meeting

April 15th, 4:00 p.m.

SHS Auditorium

 

 

The primary purpose of this meeting will be to disseminate and clarify the changes we face to the degree they are known at that date.

 

 

*Please note we may ask membership to vote on an issue regarding the 2015-2016 SCSD calendar depending on developments between now and then. 

Occupy the Capital, Thurs. 3/26!

posted Mar 25, 2015, 4:43 PM by SFT Pipeline

Today NYSUT made an Urgent Call to Action to:

Occupy the Capital tomorrow, Thurs. 3/26!
  • We will protest beginning at 4:00 p.m. @ the million dollar staircase and are asked to stay as long as we can.
  • Wear your red SFT shirts to show your unity and support
  • Budget negotiations at the Capital have taken a turn for the worse and NYSUT feels the Governor's education reforms are about to be imposed on us.
  • There is a real concern coming from NYSUT that we could lose on everything we've rallied against so far.
We are asking that members carpool to the capital and we will reimburse drivers of cars with 4 or more members $25/car.(Driver should send an email with the list of members in your car to pres803@verizon.net to receive reimbursement.)

This is an urgent call to action and we need every possible member, (friends and family) to show up!

This is the risk we face in Schenectady:
  1. Hamilton & Lincoln may be put into Receivership. (That means an outside entity takes over those schools. SFT Contract Null & Void)
  2. APPR State assessments will equal 40% of composite score. (Not sure yet of other details impacting APPR yet)
  3. A panel of 6 people will be formed to move other details of the Governor's education reform plans forward. (This committee may have the authority to completely change teaching conditions without needing legislative action and without our right to collectively bargain.)
Call and text friends now to fill a car!

OUR ACTIONS ARE STARTING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE!!!! WE NEED TO KEEP IT UP!!!

posted Mar 18, 2015, 3:43 PM by SFT Pipeline   [ updated Mar 18, 2015, 3:43 PM ]

March 18, 2015 - New York Gov. Cuomo Drops To Lowest Score Ever, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Governor Losing School Battle To Teachers' Unions 

 

A tough battle with teachers' unions over the future of New York State schools is taking its toll on Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who begins his second term with his lowest job approval rating ever, 50 - 39 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.


This compares to a 58 - 32 percent job approval rating in a December 22 survey by the independent Quinnipiac University.


By a 55 - 28 percent margin, New York State voters trust the teachers' unions more than the governor to improve education in the state. All party, gender, age and regional groups agree.


Voters say 71 - 25 percent that teacher pay should not be based on how well their students perform on standardized tests and say 65 - 30 percent that teacher tenure should not be based on student test scores. None of the listed groups support Cuomo on these key initiatives.


Education should be the top priority for the governor and the State Legislature, 24 percent of voters say, while 15 percent list the economy/jobs and 12 percent list taxes, two issues which usually top the priority list. Only 5 percent list government corruption or ethics.

 

With a negative 28 - 63 percent, Cuomo gets his worst job approval rating for his handling of education.

 

http://www.quinnipiac.edu/news-and-events/quinnipiac-university-poll/

NYSUT Sponsored Happy Hour - March 27th

posted Mar 18, 2015, 3:38 PM by SFT Pipeline   [ updated Mar 18, 2015, 3:41 PM ]

Hundreds attend Save our School Forum!

posted Feb 27, 2015, 6:46 AM by SFT Pipeline

Check out this clip of last night’s Education Rally to Save Our Schools. Notice all the RED SFT Shirts!

http://www.cbs6albany.com/news/features/top-story/stories/hundreds-attend-save-our-schools-rally-23524.shtml

Keep the momentum going and join us for the Rally in downtown Albany on Monday, March 2nd!

What YOU Should do to Save YOUR Job

posted Feb 25, 2015, 1:38 PM by SFT Pipeline   [ updated Feb 25, 2015, 1:39 PM ]

NEWS FROM THE CAPITAL!!!!

GOVERNOR CUOMO IS ADAMANT THAT ANY BUDGET DEAL

MUST INCLUDE A CHANGE TO 50% GROWTH SCORES FOR APPR

 

This change would be detrimental to every Schenectady Teacher!

ARE YOU READY TO TAKE ACTION NOW!?!?!?!?

 

This is the most critical moment in the history of public schools in New York.  If you are not participating you are saying you are ok with Cuomo’s deform agenda!

 

What you can do…

 

2/26 Rally at South Colonie High School

          Pre-Rally at Wolf’s 111 4:30-5:45

          111 Wolf Rd Colonie NY 12205

 

The Rally 7-9pm,

1 Raider Blvd Colonie NY 12206

          -arrive early, carpool

 

NEW RED SFT SHIRTS WILL BE AVAILABLE

AT BOTH LOCATIONS!!!

 

2/27 IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A SHIRT YET

          -Make sure you order one by noon 

          using this link

-Building Directors will be picking up shirts Friday after school at The SFT OFFICE so you will have them Monday

 

MAKE SURE YOU RESERVE YOUR SEAT ON THE BUS FOR THE CALL OUT CUOMO RALLY

-We have two busses leaving MPMS and two busses leaving SHS at 3:45 on Monday

-Returning by 7pm

-See your Building Director to reserve your seat

 

3/2 CALL OUT CUOMO RALLY

-Understand that we will need to go through a security check point at the capital so bring as little as possible.

 

-If you are not joining us on the bus get

details here…

https://www.facebook.com/events/882983441745092

 

WEAR YOUR RED SFT SHIRT

 

3/3 TAKE ACTION TUESDAY

          -Wear your red SFT Shirt

-Make sure you have texted the word NYSUT to 38470 so you can participate with NYSUT Members throughout the state.

Education Forum - Thursday, Feb 26 at 7 p.m.

posted Feb 23, 2015, 2:57 PM by SFT Pipeline

SFT Members please join us Thursday, Feb. 26, forum will begin at 7 p.m. It is entitled: “SAVE OUR SCHOOLS: Quality Opportunities for Public School Children.” The event promises to again bring students, parents, teachers, taxpayers and school leaders together to talk about what is at stake if state leaders do not reverse course and adequately fund schools.

The SFT will be meeting prior to the forum at Wolf's 111 at 4:30 p.m. We will be handing out new SFT Red Shirts to all members that attend the forum. Attached is the forum's agenda.

The forum will take place in the Mark Cornell Auditorium at Colonie Central High School, 1 Raider Blvd., Albany, NY.

Check Out this Video - Repost on your Facebook and Twitter

posted Feb 22, 2015, 1:09 PM by SFT Pipeline   [ updated Feb 22, 2015, 1:10 PM ]

YouTube Video


Save the Date - March 2nd - NYSUT Event

posted Feb 15, 2015, 11:15 AM by SFT Pipeline

Details are in the works, but save the date March 2 to rally for what #AllKidsNeed at the state capital. 

Everyone who cares about public education -- pre-K through higher ed -- is welcome. Parents, students, friends and family will help us send a message to Gov. Cuomo. 

Details will be shared as they become available on the website at nysut.org/AllKidsNeed.

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