AAUPAFTNJ NewsHigher Ed NewsNewsRutgers University

Historic strike by Rutgers faculty unions shakes up university, stirs legislators

On April 10, after working nearly 290 days without a contract, three Rutgers University faculty unions went on strike, marking the first teaching walkout in school history.

Union members and supporters participated in rallies and picket lines at the three main Rutgers campuses through April 12 as union leaders negotiated each day with the RU administration in Trenton.…

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AFTNJ NewsHigher Ed NewsNewsRutgers University

Murphy talks College Promise, FY24 higher ed investments at Newark roundtable

Gov. Phil Murphy on April 5 visited Rutgers University’s Newark campus for a roundtable discussion about his New Jersey College Promise initiative and to highlight higher education investments in his fiscal year 2024 budget.

“One of our top priorities from day one of our administration, which is now in its sixth year, has been making a college education more affordable and more accessible to every student who’s willing to roll up their sleeves and work hard,” Murphy said from the Paul Robeson Campus Center.…

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AFT NewsAFTNJ NewsNew Jersey City UniversityNews

Faculty, union leaders take charge at Fund NJCU Rally

New Jersey City University faculty and students, along with labor leaders, members of various unions, elected officials and others, convened March 13 for the Fund NJCU Rally, presented by AFT Local 1839 inside the campus’ Gilligan Student Union Building.

Here are excerpts from select rally speakers:

“For 93 years, NJCU has provided tens of thousands of students from Jersey City, Hudson and surrounding counties with educational opportunities … In 2029, NJCU will begin its second century.…

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AFTNJ NewsNewsPerth AmboyPre-K to 12 News

PAF’s Paradiso to Perth Amboy BOE: ‘Step up — or step aside’

The Perth Amboy Board of Education on March 9 held its first meeting since the stabbing of 11-year-old Smailyn Jimenez on Feb. 22 by a fellow Samuel E. Shull Middle School student and the subsequent community outcry about school safety.

In an op-ed posted by Perth Amboy Now on March 11, Perth Amboy Federation President Pat Paradiso wrote about a “raucous and uncomfortable” atmosphere during the March 9 meeting’s public session.…

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AAUPAFT NewsAFTNJ NewsLabor NewsNewsRutgers University

Hundreds gather for Take Back Rutgers rally on Newark campus

Like they did at their Dec. 6 rally in New Brunswick for new contracts, Rutgers University unions endured raw weather Feb. 28 for the centerpiece of their Take Back Rutgers actions on the Newark campus.

Following the first of two scheduled indoor discussions about solidarity, an estimated 200 people gathered for an outdoor rally on the steps of the Paul Robeson Campus Center. Eric…

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AFTNJ NewsNewsPerth AmboyPre-K to 12 News

Perth Amboy Federation, citizens elevate call for school safety after Shull student is stabbed

Nine days after Perth Amboy Federation members met to discuss safety concerns at Samuel E. Shull Middle School, 11-year-old Smailyn Jimenez was stabbed Feb. 22 by a fellow Shull student, prompting PAF to ramp up its efforts for change and accountability in the district.

Perth Amboy authorities say the attack, which occurred while Jimenez was on his way home, stemmed from an argument at the school, reports WABC’s Janice Yu.…

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AFTNJ NewsNewsPerth AmboyPre-K to 12 News

Perth Amboy Federation begins effort to improve Shull school’s climate

About 20 Perth Amboy Federation members met Feb. 13 at Samuel E. Shull Middle School to discuss safety concerns and unruly student behavior in the building and ways in which to address these issues.

The nearly hourlong afternoon meeting at Shull was led by PAF President Pat Paradiso, who was joined by district representative Lynn Audet and treasurer Josiah Santamaria.…

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AFTNJ NewsHigher Ed NewsNewsThomas Edison State University

AFT Local 4277, AFTNJ take action related to discharged TESU dean’s civil case

A civil lawsuit filed Jan. 25 by former Thomas Edison State University employee Joseph Youngblood II against TESU, President Merodie Hancock and others has prompted AFT Local 4277 and AFTNJ to speak out in support of TESU’s AFT members, the school’s reputation and the legal process.

In his suit, Youngblood alleges that over the course of his employment at TESU, which began 2003, he was “subjected to an ongoing campaign of blatant discriminatory practices and an environment of fear and intimidation.”…

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AFTNJ NewsNew Jersey City UniversityNewsSXSW EDU

AFT 1839 NJCU’s Mooke is in tune with SXSW EDU

SXSW EDU 2023 recently rolled out its initial performance lineup, and among those scheduled to play in Austin, Texas, during early March is electric violist Martha Mooke, a member of AFT 1839 New Jersey City University.

Mooke, a full-time professor at NJCU, will present “Igniting the Imagination: Music & Creative Process” on March 8 at the Austin Convention Center.…

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AFT NewsAFTNJ NewsNewsPre-K to 12 News

AFT extends Reading Opens the World campaign

Having exceeded 1 million books distributed in 2022 as part of its Reading Opens the World initiative, the AFT on Dec. 10 said it plans to distribute another million books in 2023.

“Reading is foundational,” said AFT President Randi Weingarten in a press release. “It is necessary for virtually everything we do—and for experiencing the joy of a great book.…

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AAUPAFT NewsAFTNJ NewsCOVID-19Higher Ed NewsNewsRutgers University

Solidarity aplenty in New Brunswick as Rutgers unions rally for fair contracts

Undeterred by the steady rain, Rutgers University faculty, staff and students gathered Dec. 6 in New Brunswick for an outdoor rally to support Rutgers unions in their quests for fair contracts.

The Hub City rally, one of three held around the same time at the other main Rutgers campuses, began at Voorhees Mall. Among the speakers there was Rutgers AAUP-AFT member Todd Vachon, director of Rutgers LEARN and an AFTNJ higher education vice president.…

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AFTNJ NewsNewarkNewsPerth AmboyPre-K to 12 News

Paradiso, Pereira join task force addressing N.J. teacher shortage

Perth Amboy Federation President Pat Paradiso and Newark Teachers Union member Silvia Pereira will be the AFT representatives on the task force Gov. Phil Murphy established via executive order to address the teacher and support staff shortage in New Jersey’s public schools.

“AFTNJ President Donna M. Chiera recommended me for the task force, but I would have asked to be part of it had she not,” says Paradiso (above left), who is AFTNJ’s PreK-12 executive vice president.…

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AFTNJ NewsNewsPre-K to 12 News

Murphy establishes teacher shortage task force

Gov. Phil Murphy recently signed Executive Order No. 309, which establishes a task force to address the shortage of K-12 teachers and education support professionals in New Jersey.

Dennis Zeveloff, Murphy’s chief policy adviser, has been named the chair of the task force, which will include two AFT members.

According to EO 309, all public members of the task force “shall serve without compensation,” and they will “organize as soon as practicable after the appointment of its members, and shall convene as often as practicable and as requested” by Murphy or Zeveloff.…

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