News & Events

Jun 29

City Council Funds Teachers Unite + Dignity in Schools Campaign-NY-developed initiative for funding RJ Coordinators in NYC Schools!

Along with the Dignity in Schools Campaign-New York, Teachers Unite members have long been advocating for restorative justice coordinators and whole school restorative justice initiatives to be funded by the city. While the Mayor hasn’t funded any restorative justice training or pilot programs for the coming school year, the City Council has agreed to begin to fund restorative justice implementation in 15 schools next year!

"This allocation will support the implementation of a pilot restorative justice program which will change the culture of the chosen 15 schools approach to school disciplinary policies,” the council announced in this budget item (p. 33). No details yet on how schools will be selected. See Dignity in Schools-NY’s statement below and Urban Youth Collaborative’s statement here, and check for updates on our site!

Join Teachers Unite and DSC-NY in applauding the Speaker for this commitment, and help us keep pushing for sustainable resources for ALL schools to implement restorative justice.

Jun 23

Save the dates!

Wednesdays this Summer
4:30 to 6:30 PM
at the LGBT Center
208 W 13 St. in Manhattan
(A/C/E/L/F/M/1 to 14th St.)

Join Teachers Unite members in sharing skills and strategies for growing restorative + transformative justice and building inclusive, democratic NYC schools


Wednesday, July 8th

Scaling Up Restorative Justice in Schools
Facilitated by students + staff from Lyons Community School
Please RSVP here

Wednesday, July 15th
Building Capacity for Restorative Justice with All Members of the School Community
***An intro workshop for restorative justice practices particularly for school stakeholders not always included in the conversation (and DOE trainings) on restorative practices: parents, secretaries, students, paraprofessionals, parent coordinators—all are encouraged to attend!***
Facilitated by Tyler Brewster, James Baldwin School
Please RSVP here

Wednesday, July 22nd
A discussion of Charter School discipline practices
Facilitated by Elleni Ghebremicael and Emmy Bouvier
Please RSVP here

Wednesday, July 29th
Youth Organizing + Storytelling for Social Justice in the Classroom
Facilitated by Becky Del Toro, Sarah Camiscoli, and Mike Schirtzer
Please RSVP here

Wednesday, August 5th
"Tier II" Restorative Justice: Repairing Harm in Schools
Facilitated by Nicole Riley + Staff of E.A.R. West Side High School
Please RSVP here

Wednesday, August 12th
Having the difficult conversation on race & racism with students & school staff
Facilitated by José Alfaro
Please RSVP here

Wednesday, August 19th
Restorative Justice Deaning
Facilitated by Matthew Guldin and Fernando Restrepo
Please RSVP here

May 20

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Teachers Unite's End of The Year Garden BBQ Potluck

Join us in celebrating all the hard work done this year and welcoming new members of Teachers Unite!

Saturday, June 13th
2-4pm

Campos Community Garden
640-644 East 12th Street between Avenues B and C
Alphabet City (Manhattan)

All are welcome: members new and old, families, friends and supporters!

Bring a dish or beverage to share!

Let us know you're coming here

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Register for Teachers Unite's ItAG: Pushing Back Against Pushout: Restorative Approaches to School "Discipline"

Registration is now open for NYCoRE's 2015 Inquiry-to-Action Groups (ItAGs)!
Visit the 2015 ItAG Eventbrite Registration to register today!

Check out the line up below and please see the attached flyer for more detailed information about Teachers Unite's ItAG and the dates, times, facilitators, locations, and registration for all of the 2015 ItAGs. Discounts are available for group and some student registrations. Registration closes Jan. 21st !

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Pushing Back Against Pushout: Restorative Approaches to School “Discipline”
This weekly group will serve as an inquiry into restorative and transformative justice practices, including a look at the history and current political context of this philosophy and practice in schools; a study of particular skill-based practices; and discussion of what implementation can look like in partnership with youth & parents in schools city wide. We encourage current public school educators, students and families to sign up, and no level of RJ experience is necessary.

Facilitators: Tyler Brewster and E.M. / Elana Eisen-Markowitz are both Organizing Council members of Teachers Unite. Tyler has worked as a middle & high school math teacher, a Dean of Student Discipline and a UFT Chapter Leader in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. She is currently a Community Coordinator, with a specific focus on Restorative Practices, at The James Baldwin School for Expeditionary Learning, a transfer high school in Chelsea. E.M. has worked as a high school Social Studies teacher, a part-time Restorative Approaches coordinator and a UFT chapter leader in the South Bronx. This fall, she began teaching at City-As-School, an alternative transfer high school in the West Village. Both Tyler and E.M. have worked in NYC public schools for the past 8 years. Several other members of Teachers Unite will also be supporting facilitation.

Location: James Baldwin School, 351 West 18th Street, Manhattan.
Dates: Tuesdays from 5:30-7:30 pm. Kick off on1/23; sessions following on 1/27, 2/3, 2/10, 2/24, 3/3, 3/10, 3/17.

Don't forget to visit the Registration page to REGISTER TODAY!

Join the FULL COURT PRESS Against #SchoolPushout

Help us raise $10,000 to help 50 schools practice transformative justice this year and decrease the suspensions that lead young people to the School to Prison Pipeline.

In a series of 3-on-3 half-court games, teams of educators and supporters will be dribbling, jumping, fast breaking champions in the pursuit of transformed public schools and empowered student voices.
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Saturday, December 13th
2-6pm
Manny Cantor Center

197 East Broadway in Manhattan

Donate at teachersunite.causevox.com

RSVP on Facebook!
Bring your friends and family on December 13th
Volunteer at the event – email Katie@teachersunite.net for information
Spread the Word (flyer attached below!)

Thank you!!!

November 11th Press Conference: #EndB21: An Educator's Perspective

On November 11th Teachers Unite joined the Dignity in Schools Campaign-New York for a rally on the steps of Tweed Courthouse to call on the Mayor and Chancellor to make changes to the Discipline Code, including removing suspension as an option for "defying authority" and provide resources and support to schools to implement restorative justice approaches.

Teachers Unite member Tyler Brewster spoke alongside students from the Urban Youth Collaborative. Below is an excerpt from her speech. Read the full thing here: http://bit.ly/1oHdEHP

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Read the full thing here: http://bit.ly/1oHdEHP

Restorative justice isn’t just an idea. I have been on the ground and in the trenches and seen it in action! I know that restorative practices work. It’s so much more than “going soft” on the kids. To be restorative does not mean to abandon all structure and “take it easy” on our students. Instead it serves to empower our students and strengthen the bonds of the community. It pushes students to be accountable and teaches them the skills they need to resolve conflict and repair harms. It encourages a sense of responsibility and it holds the potential for saving our future from the juvenile justice system.

... Whenever I speak on this topic, a particular student comes to mind. Let’s call him Student A. Now, Student A. had been to the school’s SAVE room so many times we could have named it after him. He had also been suspended countless times, and he had even been arrested. It was rather apparent that these traditionally punitive methods were not working. Each time he returned from a removal, he was angrier, more jaded. One day, it dawned on me: I had to do something different. Why not have a conversation with Student A.? Ask him about his needs, his goals in life. Help him develop a plan. A plan so that when he stumbled—because that’s what students are supposed to do—we as educators would be there to pick him up—because that’s what educators are supposed to do. So I did, and it was one of the most powerful and positive experiences of my career. I could immediately sense he was shocked anyone had given him the time of day. He told me, and I quote, he was used to being treated like a problem, so he acted like one.

Now I know some of you are waiting for the fairytale ending to this story, the one where I tell you Student A. never got in trouble again. But restorative approaches are not magic tricks. It’s a process, a journey, a way of life. So what about Student A.? Well, he still has his struggles, but he attends school regularly now and even wears a uniform. He has now begun to shift his view of what school is and is now able to see education and the places it can take him as a real possibility for himself. While that may seem insignificant to some, to me that is a huge success.

Happy Hour FUNdraiser November 7th

Come kick off our Fall FUNdraiser

Help schools practice transformative justice* and end the suspensions that increase students’ chances of dropping out or being incarcerated

Fall HAPPY HOUR FUNdraiser
Friday, November 7th
5 to 8pm
at Dive Bar

732 Amsterdam Ave @ 96th Street
1/2/3/B/C to 96th

$15 for a sweet Teachers Unite wristband = happy hour prices all evening!
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All are welcome (21+)

Let us know you’re coming!
RSVP: anna@teachersunite.net
Or on Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1ylFnhD

* Transformative justice is a philosophy that looks at what harm was done, and focuses on how to best repair that harm by giving the victim of the conflict and the community in which the conflict happened a voice and a role in the process of achieving justice.

Flyer attached

Media & Storytelling Meetup: November 13th

Join us at Teachers Unite’s first Media & Storytelling Meetup!

Come build a community of educators committed to principled storytelling,
share media tools and skills, and contribute to story-based campaigns for social justice.

Thursday, November 13th
5-7pm

@ Teachers Unite
90 John Street, Suite 308
in Lower Manhattan
2/3/4/5/J/Z/A/C to Fulton

Please rspv: anna@teachersunite.net
Flyer attached
Bring a snack to share!

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