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Thursday, July 25, 2013

The DOE Wins the "OMG This Is Ridiculous" Award

Most people in NYC who have or are working in a school know that a person can be charged, fired, or discontinued for any and no reason. The story below is one of those.
Stephan Serie's story reminds me of the termination of Christine Rubino, and many others. The
Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District (which is located in Nassau County) Department of Education's "long arm of the law" twists and turns around like a screw until the employee is staked out, gone. Where is the nexus between being visual candy for a TV show and Serie's teaching abilities?


EXCLUSIVE: Long Island middle school teacher Stefan Serie fired after appearing on reality TV show 'Princesses: Long Island'

A Long Island middle school health teacher lost his job afer appearing shirtless on a reality TV show and is now fighting for his job with the help of parents.

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UPDATED: TUESDAY, JULY 23, 2013, 9:12 PM



A teacher's cameo at a “Princesses: Long Island” pool party was too much reality for suburban school officials — and now he’s fighting for his job.
Stefan Serie, who taught health at Merrick Avenue Middle School in Long Island, got into hot water when he showed off his ripped body as an extra on the new Bravo show about six self-described Jewish-American princesses.
School officials weren’t fans — even though there was nothing illegal going on, the eight-year teaching veteran told the Daily News. “I didn’t do anything that I would tell my students not to do,” he said.
In the episode, which aired June 2 as the kickoff of the series, the 30-year-old flashes his cut abs and laughs in the background while the rest of the “Princess” crew drinks alcohol from red plastic cups, bounces around in their teeny bikinis and dishes about their dream boyfriends.
A week after it aired, the Long Beach resident received a letter to report to the school district office, where administrators told him his tenure offer would be rescinded and pressed him to resign, he said.
The hunky hardbody — who was rated “highly effective” during the last school year — quit his $75,000-a-year job, school officials confirmed.

                               Serie appeared in an episode of Princesses of Long Island.

“It was a coerced resignation,” said Serie, who will attend a rally Wednesday night with supporters calling for his reinstatement. “I want my job and tenure back. I think I deserve it.”
Parents are on his side. Rosemary Garofolo praised Serie for encouraging nutritious lifestyles for her two 12-year-old sons, who took his seventh-grade health class.
I don’t think there’s a kid in that school that didn’t love him,” she said.
“Honestly, I think as long as he wasn’t doing anything illegal on the show, I don’t see why it should matter what he does in his time,” she said.
Serie, who has degrees in health and physical education from Hofstra University, said he was approached by a producer friend from Bravo about the show, tentatively called “Gold Coast.” The friend introduced him to cast member Ashlee White, who met him for lunch and later invited him to the pool party.

Parents of Serie's students are on his side and want him to be given his job back.
But by the end of the boisterous bash, he realized he didn’t want to be associated with the shallow scene. The episode ended with a profanity-laced fight between two “princesses.”
Serie is seen at that point — fully clothed in a green V-neck T-shirt — yukking it up behind them.
“I was an ancillary character in the background,” he said. “The behavior of the cast members was not something I wanted to be a part of moving forward.”
The triathlete, who is seen shirtless in countless sporting event photos online, said he will bring the reality TV drama to court if he doesn’t get his job back.
Serie said the taxing ordeal has taken a toll on his hard-won reputation.
“I’m devastated,” he said. “This is the most difficult experience of my life.”

 Remember this? Daily News, February 2011

FEBRUARY 25, 2011 12:27 PM

More than 7,300 city teachers would be targeted for layoffs under a new bill to end seniority for teachers and administrators, reports our Rachel Monahan:

The bill, introduced by state Sen. John Flanagan (R-Suffolk), would first cut teachers who have an unsatisfactory rating in any of the last five years, have been slapped with a fine or suspension or meet one of seven other criteria.

The bill bolsters Mayor Bloomberg's push to change the state law that requires layoffs for the most recently hired teacher first. As of last week, the mayor said the city would have to lay off 4,666 teachers.

"The public wants us to do the right thing for their children's future, and that means focusing on merit to ensure we keep the very best teachers in our schools," Bloomberg said Thursday.

A city Education Department analysis of the bill, which also has a sponsor in the Assembly, shows it would make the following teachers eligible for layoffs:

2,671 teachers who have had unsatisfactory ratings in the last five years.

291 teachers who have been fined or suspended for misconduct in the last five years.

1,149 teachers who have been without a permanent job in a school and assigned to the Absent Teacher Reserve pool for more than six months.

529 teachers who have been convicted of a crime, including driving under the influence, assault and larceny.

United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew blasted the bill - including another provision that would lay off teachers who were found by an investigator to have committed wrongdoing but were never punished.

"The proposed bill would send us back to the days before civil service protections, when people could be fired for being the wrong race or gender, too young or too old," he said.

City Education Department officials did not have a breakdown of where layoffs were most likely to occur , they said.

Assemblyman Jonathan Bing (D-Manhattan) Thursday said he would introduce the bill in the state Assembly.