It is a fact that anyone who has gone through 3020-a arbitration - or even a grievance - can see the procedure is not fair or neutral. The CBA, collective bargaining agreement, between the UFT and the NYC Department of Education, has whittled away at the rights of tenured teachers until currently there are few rights available any more to anyone.
Some people say this reduction in substantive and procedural due process rights is deliberate "bad faith", others say this act is negligence and not unconscionable.
Whichever motive you want to give the UFT President who is the collective bargaining agent at the CBA negotiations, the fact remains that there is no fair and/or equitable forum for members at this time to object to anything. Indeed, UFT Representatives tell members all the time "We are not going to grieve this, you have no right to grieve this, you can't grieve this, you better resign because you will never win your 3020-a, etc". Reps also dont want you to exercise the single most important right that you still have, namely to have an open and public arbitration hearing. NYSUT Attorneys and the UFT representatives in fact tell their members and clients going into 3020-a, that he or she cannot have an open and public hearing, if the member knows to ask for it. NYSUT Attorneys do not bring up the clause in the UFT contract that specifically gives members the right to have an open and public hearing, and do not mention it as an option. I have written about open and public hearings before, but here is the bottom line: if you have a hearing, and the door into the hearing is closed to anyone you who you might want to be there to observe the process, then the bad guys can do whatever they want to you, and no one will see this. What do cockroaches do when you turn on a light? They run for somewhere to hide. Same thing.
All of the information in the public domain now points to the coordinated effort by the officers, personnel and Attorneys of the UFT, NYSUT and New York City Department of Education to remove, by any means possible, tenured teachers and probationary teachers approaching tenure, from the public school system in New York City. This information is sometimes covered up by NYSUT taking a case to the Supreme Court, by Randi Weingarten making a telephone call for someone who needs to file a grievance or lawsuit, or by some other ineffective jab at looking like something is being done to help a member when indeed, nothing valuable or effective is done. The process is to get rid of the tenured "dead wood" in favor of the "acceptable" cadre of people, those individuals who drink the education policy kool aid and do anything that Mayor Mike Bloomberg dictates.
California may be ahead of New york State in terms of stopping unfairness and rectifying the unbalance in the procedures used atarbitration.