Tag Archives: Newark Teachers Union NTU

Newark Teacher’s Union President Discusses City School Closures

Watch Newark Teacher’s Union President Discusses City School Closures on PBS. See more from WNJT.

Finger-Pointing Precedes Teacher Contract Talks in Newark

With negotiations resuming, union, superintendent at odds over plans for troubled schools

By John Mooney

The last time negotiators for the state-run Newark Public Schools met with the district’s teachers union, the $100 million Facebook gift was not yet national headlines and Superintendent Cami Anderson was still an administrator in New York City schools.

And it didn’t go well, either, ending with contract talks at an impasse ever since.

On Thursday, the two sides are set to sit down again at the offices of the Newark Teachers Union, seeking to jumpstart talks on the contract. They’re not starting particularly smoothly, either, with Anderson and the 5,000-member union continuing to be at odds over her plans for the district.


NJEA support for private management of public schools displays weakness, cynicism

“It was an NJEA deal,’’ said Joseph Del Grosso, president of the Newark Teachers Union, an affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO (AFT). “They blatantly sold Newark out.’’

The NJEA does not represent Newark teachers, although it does represent Camden and Trenton instructors. Of the three districts in the bill, only Newark, a state-run system, does not have local control. The bill requires local school boards to investigate the private organizations seeking to start “renaissance” schools.

“Those are important checks and balances,” Del Grosso said. “Newark won’t have them.”


Newark’s First Foray into Teacher Evaluation Pilot, with Teachers Front and Center

[…] Newark is one of 11 districts in the state piloting a controversial plan led by Gov. Chris Christie that would more closely tie teacher evaluation — and potentially tenure — to student achievement.

And while plenty of controversy remains, several in the group last night said they appreciated at least being included in the process, no small thing in a state-operated district that has not always held such trust between teachers and administration.

One vote of appreciation, if not full confidence, came from the union leaders that up until then had been lukewarm and even hostile to the plans.

“You seem to be more open and willing to different stakeholders,” said Cheryl Skeete, executive vice president of the American Federation of Teachers NJ, the umbrella organization for the Newark Teachers Union.

“It seems more well-rounded than earlier when we were told it was only one way,” she told Anderson’s staff. “That should help in getting more buy-in.”

That should mean something. The NTU has openly opposed the pilot as it stood up till now, surely contributing to the fact that not one of the district’s 80-plus schools voted to join the pilot in its first year. That left just seven schools included, all of them as a condition of large federal grants.


Pilot Teacher Evaluation System Slow to Gain Traction in Newark

Superintendent Anderson “disappointed” in teachers union, moving ahead in half-dozen schools

By John Mooney

In New Jersey’s highest-profile school district, plans to test one of Gov. Chris Christie’s highest-profile reform initiatives have gotten off to a bumpy start with the teachers union.


NTU breast cancer march report back

Sunday, Oct. 16 was a beautiful day with sunny skies, bursts of wind and high 60’s temperatures. 
Newark’s walk for cancer traveled along Broad Street from Military Park to Lincoln Park and back. Refreshments, fundraising items, music and good spirits were everywhere. Mayor Booker, Batman, NJ Devils mascot were there to name a few people of interest.

Organizers of the march said that this year’s event raised $345,000 and had 12,000 participants. These figures outpaced last year by $25,000 and 3,000 marchers.

Cancer Society, NTU Team Against Breast Cancer

The Newark Teachers Union has recently aligned itself with the American Cancer Society in their fight against cancer. In doing so, they have committed to supporting them in their Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk which is held annually in our city of Newark.

Pietro Petino, who led Newark teachers union through 4 strikes, dies after battle with cancer

Pietro Petino

SPRINGFIELD — Pietro Petino, remembered as one of the loudest voices for teachers’ labor rights in Newark, died at his home Friday night after a nearly 15-month battle with cancer.

The 68-year-old Springfield resident spent more than 40 years working with the Newark Teachers Union, Local 481, serving most recently as the union’s executive director.

“He was a huge part of the union, from the day that I started teaching back in 1970. We were very close friends, colleagues and co-workers together for many years. He’s going to be sorely missed,” said union president Joseph Del Grosso tonight. “It’s going to very difficult to replace him or find someone with his dynamic personality.”


$100M grant from Mark Zuckerberg begins to have effect on Newark schools

Newark Teachers Union President Joe Del Grosso said he is troubled by the ongoing secrecy surrounding the Facebook donation.

“We don’t know what the foundation is doing or how they intend to spend the other money,” Del Grosso said. “With that money comes a responsibility to the public to be clear about its use.”


Wilson Avenue School Closure Sign of Neglect Pre-Hurricane Irene

Newark Teachers Union calls for restoration of vital Ironbound community school

NEWARK…One child brought a sign that read, “We deserve a healthy, safe environment” before she was bused away from Newark’s Wilson Avenue School. Another little girl cried. As parents brought their elementary and middle-school age children to the first day of school, they found buses shipping off students to the Central Ward or to Belleville.  While the Newark Public Schools District office blames Hurricane Irene for the problem, Newark Teachers’ Union President Joseph Del Grosso found the state run district management at fault for mismanaging the situation.

“Mushrooms and mold were growing in the Wilson Avenue School building already,” said Del Grosso. “Hurricane Irene may have acerbated the problems with the facility, but these were pre-existing conditions that the district’s state appointed leadership choose to ignore, while favoring upkeep on buildings co-located with charter schools.” He pointed to lack of upkeep including not repairing holes in external walls and scaffolding that has been holding up a crumbling brick wall for more than seven years. “Lack of routine maintenance made the damage from the storm much worse than it should have been,” said Del Grosso.

Del Grosso also faulted the district for being slow to notify parents of the problem, and renting out-of-district space at St. Anthony’s in Belleville while Newark school buildings stand vacant. Hurricane Irene hit Newark on Sunday, August 28, more than one week before the start of school. “The District had time to be in touch with the community and should have consulted with teachers and parents from Newark before making such an important decision,” said Del Grosso.

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