OSA Newsline - June 27, 2005

The candidates leaving the Administrative Staff Analyst Exam this past weekend were asked for a one word summary of their experience. The words used included, among others: "hot," "long," "challenging," "tricky," and "difficult." The one word most commonly used, however, was "fair."

The exam was not easy and the heat made taking the exam an ordeal for many. There was air conditioning for some, but most had to swelter. The union does plan to address this issue before any future exams take place.

Candidates are reminded that they should notify DCAS of their desire to be called in to review the test questions once the tentative answer key is issued. They have to tell DCAS that right away. (You have only one week from the date of the exam to submit your "request to protest." Follow the handout given to you at the exam for where to file and do it this week.)

Apparently, the Police arbitration award will be 10% for a two year contract and this is good. The teachers are next and we hope will do as well. As for ourselves, perhaps the Mayor will now decide to agree to pay the final one percent of our current contract. It may be, however, that the Mayor only believes in pattern bargaining when it hurts employees. We will see.

OSA Newsline - June 20, 2005

Admission cards for the Administrative Staff Analyst Exam have been mailed out. Candidates should receive them no later than Tuesday. If you don't get the card, please call the union for instructions.

The exam is set for 10am and there will be a five and a half hour long exam, an hour and a half longer than usual. There are only two test sites we know about, both in Manhattan Washington Irving High School at 16th Street and Irving Place and Art and Design High School at 57th and 2nd. Washington Irving is one block east of Union Square and transportation is especially good since there is an IRT and BMT stop nearby. There will also be a Sabbath Observer exam but we do not have the details on that yet.

All of your brothers and sisters of the Organization of Staff Analysts wish the candidates the best of luck on this exam. We'll see a lot of you at the exam site this Saturday.

OSA Newsline - June 16, 2005

Candidates for the Administrative Staff Analyst Exam interested in purchasing the training videotapes for the course are encouraged to contact George Morgan or Tony Sanchez at the union office (212-686-1229) immediately. Each of the four tapes is $9. You may purchase any one, any combination or all four.

The material on tape one is drawn from this year's Admin Training Course. The other three tapes contain material for the Associate Staff Analyst exam which is similar to the material on those subjects in the Admin training sessions. If you purchased - and still have - the training videotapes for the ASA exam, you do not need tapes 2,3 or 4. The contents follow:

  • Tape 1 - Material For the Admin Exam (7 hrs) -- Introduction, Policy and Procedure Design and Implementation, Data Preparation and Analysis, Statistics, Employee Counseling and Conflict Resolution, In-Basket Exercise.

  • Tape 2 - Material for the ASA Exam (6.5 hrs) -- Management and Supervision, Quality of Worklife, Personnel

  • Tape 3 - Material for the ASA Exam (7.5 hrs) -- Contracts, Procurement and Materials Mgmt, Budget, Organizational Research

  • Tape 4 - Material for the ASA Exam (5.5 hrs) -- Communication, Basic Math, Train the Trainer, Test Taking Techniques

  • OSA Newsline - June 13, 2005

    The Administrative Staff Analyst course concluded last week with the traditional graduation ice cream cake. Thanks are due to the teachers and the staff and especially George Morgan as registrar and Sheila Gorsky, who pulled together the teachers, the curriculum, the study materials and even the cookies and the cake. The course ran smoothly and the comments have been most favorable. We should have information about exactly where and when the test will be administered by next week's newsline.

    There is still no word on the 1% increase. For over a month, we have been given reason to expect that the Mayor will announce terms of how DC37 can arrange to gain the final remaining 1% for the current contract. We are still waiting.

    Many candidates for Staff Analyst have been calling in to learn how fast the list is moving. Actually, every time there is a certification issued to an agency, that fact is published in the civil service newspaper, The Chief. The notice is usually on page 2 and gives the list numbers reached. Since The Chief is a very pro-civil service newspaper and interesting as well, candidates might do well to buy The Chief each week to follow the progress of the list moving. It only costs 3 bits and even less if you subscribe.

    OSA Newsline - June 6, 2005

    There is no further news on the expected agreement between DC37 and the City on the 1% increase that is still pending under our current, but nearly expired, contract. We'll let you know as fast as we know.

    The meeting with the Mayor's Charter Commission went well. One point noted was that in two years, the Emergency Financial Control Board's mandate to oversee City finances will expire. The City has had 23 years in a row of budget surplus. The sunsetting of the EFCB will have one bonus. The EFCB now costs $20 million dollars a year and closing it down should save the taxpayers some money.

    The fact that the Mayor is seeking to have municipal labor sign on to his current attempt to reform the Charter is noteworthy. He may be remembering the last go-round when he put up for vote a series of Charter reforms opposed by labor and had them defeated. If his reforms this time are actually good for our City, we may end up supporting them.

    The United Federation of Teachers' rally at Madison Square Garden was most impressive last week. About thirteen thousand teachers gathered by starting time and perhaps twenty thousand all together attended. Many members shouted their anger in response to the two year delay in the contract.

    The Mayor claims the can not improve the schools with the existing teacher contract. Meanwhile, test scores went up under the existing contract and he is quick to claim credit that he has improved the schools. Which is it? That he can't or that he has (improved the schools, that is). He should make a fair offer and settle the contract.