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Tuesday, September 15, 2015

In 2008, the UFT Issued a Press Release About ATRs....And Promises Unkept


Are you kidding? ATRs without a chapter are voiceless by force.

Randi Weingarten

Time for a lawsuit.

See: "CASE STUDY IN PARTISANSHIP:  Critique of the New Teacher Report
"Mutual Benefits: New York City's Shift To Mutual Consent in Teacher Hiring"

Betsy Combier

Price tag of ATRs back in news

Weingarten responded with the following statement:

For immediate release
On September 22, The New Teacher Project reissued a report it had released earlier this year on the city’s Absent Teacher Reserve (ATR), and this time it included a new afterword with updated data and an open letter to UFT President Randi Weingarten and Chancellor Joel Klein that blames the UFT and the Department of Education for not finding permanent placements for the educators in the ATR pool.

Weingarten responded with the following statement:

There they go again. The New Teacher Project, a wholly owned subsidiary of the DOE, curiously weighs in on this issue after it has assisted the DOE in hiring so many new teachers this summer that they cannot even place all the new teachers that were hired, much less the hundreds of veteran teachers who have been trying for months to find permanent placements because of school closings and the current budget crisis.

If TNTP did not have a financial stake in hiring new teachers, they might have pointed out how irresponsible it was for the DOE to bring thousands of novices into a teacher market where the supply already far outstripped the demand. Alternatively, they might have pursued their previous recommendation to create financial incentives for schools to hire ATRs or even propose eliminating the new so-called fair student funding formula as their former president, Michelle Rhee, has done in Washington, D.C., or propose a moratorium on hiring of new teachers until all the ATRs were placed. It declined to take any of these steps, opting instead to bash the UFT because we pointed out errors in their first report – errors they just repeat here, such as the baseless claim that ATRs are six times as likely as other teachers to be rated unsatisfactory.

The facts remain as they were before: When this mutual consent provision was negotiated in 2005, we warned the DOE that unless principals were urged or given incentives to accept ATRs, a number of teachers would not be placed. They told us not to worry and they agreed to the job security provisions as a condition of ending all forced placements. Now instead of implementing a moratorium on new hires until most ATRs are placed, the DOE has exacerbated this situation by continuing to hire new educators from around the nation when there were no jobs for them. It also has left in place a funding formula that, coupled with its phasing out of schools and the budget crunch, makes it hard for principals to hire seasoned teachers who had the courage to work in at-risk schools that have since closed. Also, the DOE could offer incentives for principals to hire ATR teachers, but it has stubbornly refused to do so.

The UFT remains committed to working out ways, as we tried to do all of last year, that would place these valuable ATRs who have been displaced through no fault of their own, which would save the city money. To date, the DOE has declined, ignoring its own actions in creating the situation and seeking to unravel the job security clause. And now TNTP has joined in the pile-on.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

2008! It could have been written yesterday! We aren't allowed our own chapter because we are " a temporarily displaced group" ! I've met several 10 year ATRs. It's completely infuriating that we are treated this way by our own union. Yes, F them - I'll be opting out of union dues if the opportunity presents itself