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PFT President Jerry Jordan on Closure of Gideon Building Due to COVID-19

PHILADELPHIA—"We continue to emphasize the importance of an ongoing, trackable database of positive COVID-19 cases in buildings, and have made this ask of the District. The temporary closure of Gideon Elementary's building is the right decision because it will help stop the spread of this virus--but it is very troubling. This is the second closure of a school building in just a few short weeks."

PFT President Jerry Jordan on Georgia Shootings and Rise in Anti-AAPI Violence

PHILADELPHIA—"My heart is heavy in the wake of the murder of eight people in the mass shooting in Georgia. The loss of life, including the lives of six Asian women, is sickening and deeply tragic. On behalf of Philadelphia's educators, I send my deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of those who were murdered.

Testimony Submission, Committee on Children and Youth

March 3, 2021

On behalf of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, I am pleased to offer written testimony in support of Payments In Lieu of Taxes (PILOTS) in the City of Philadelphia.

It is truly unconscionable that in 2021, we continue to have to fight so hard for the bare minimum for our young people and educators.

PFT President Jerry Jordan on Partial Reopening Plan for School District Buildings

March 1, 2021

"This Union has led the charge in ensuring that when school buildings reopen, they will be safe for reoccupancy. That's exactly what the plan we outlined today does. It was a painstaking process, but this Union has never, and will never, waver when it comes to the safety and health of our educators and the young people they serve."

 

PFT President Jerry Jordan on District's Delay in Reopening School Buildings

February 17, 2021

"The School District made the right decision to delay the reopening of school buildings, as far too many questions regarding safety of buildings for reoccupancy remain unanswered. The Federation's position that we are unable to verify the safety of buildings for reoccupancy--and in fact we know that many buildings are unsafe for reoccupancy--remains unchanged. We continue to work through many of these issues specifically regarding ventilation with the neutral third party. Our goal of returning to school buildings when it is safe to do so also remains unchanged."

PFT President Jerry Jordan Tells Membership to Work Remotely on Monday

February 5, 2021

"Other than sheer cruelty and a callous disregard for the lives of educators and school staff, I can't think of another reason to push forward with a reckless plan to reopen unsafe buildings for thousands of staff on Monday.

"As we await further information from the neutral third party, I have advised my membership that they should continue to work remotely on Monday. In fact, they will be able to provide more time in front of students by doing this. Further, it is important to remember that this half baked reopening plan means that fewer than 1/3 of eligible students have even chosen the hybrid option.

PFT President Jerry Jordan Calls for Intervention in Reopening School Buildings

February 4, 2021

School buildings are scheduled to reopen on Monday, and I am unable to assure their safety for reoccupancy. It's that simple. Health and safety of the educators and students of Philadelphia is paramount. Despite ongoing discussions with the School District, we do not believe safety conditions outlined by the MOA have been met. As such, I have called for the intervention of the neutral third party, as indicated by our negotiated agreement.