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Sunday, October 29, 2017

Chicago Teachers Forced Out of Their Public School Positions Get Placed on the Do Not Hire List Just Like Here in NYC

The inspector general for Chicago Public Schools found that dozens of employees who were barred from the district found working in new jobs at city charter and contract schools last year. (Jose M. Osorio / Chicago Tribune)
New York City is not the only place that teachers are thrown out of their jobs, tarred and feathered, and placed on the "Do Not Hire" ("problem code") list.

Anyone charged with 3020-a, and anyone discontinued or terminated, whether tenured or not, is immediately placed onto a "problem code" - unless you are a VIP like Santiago Taveras, Carmen Farina or other people at their 'untouchable' level.

The UFT is not willing to end this blacklist. Some representatives say it does not exist. But it does, and it is, in my non-lawyer opinion, a libelous label used to back up false or unproven charges.

Indeed, when I worked for the UFT from 2007-2010, and my office was right next to Amy Arundel's office, I used to get calls all the time from members who wanted to know whether or not they were on this list, and I would walk next door and ask Amy, who would look up their file, and then she would tell me yes or no.

The problem code is a red flag put onto your file number to alert anyone that your fingerprints have been tagged as not cleared to work for the DOE or any vendors.

When a potential employer calls up the Department, and they ask about you and say that they are thinking of hiring you, all the DOE is permitted to say is how many years you worked for them. But seldom do they stop there. They go on to say that your file has a "Problem code".

Try it. Have a friend call DOE Human Resources and ask if you can be hired.

Joe McCarthy, where are you?

Anyway, if you are on the problem code, you must try to get off of it. What you need to do is, contact the Office of Personnel Investigations (OPI) at 65 Court Street, and ask for an appointment to discuss clearing your fingerprints. Bring someone with you who can support what you are saying - a teacher or educator who knows your skills and character is best.

At this meeting make an argument as to why you must have this red flag removed from your employee profile. Get the person's name and email address with whom you spoke, and email them what your argument was, after the meeting. Then wait for the decision. When you get the OPI decision, than you may file an Article 78 to overturn it, and then you can also sue the DOE if you have filed a Notice of Claim.

Read Chancellor's Regulations C-105.

OPI is here:

NYC Department of Education/DHRT
Office of Personnel Investigation
65 Court Street, Room 200
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Fax: 718-935-4366

Betsy Combier
Editor, Advocatz
Editor, NYC Rubber Room Reporter
Editor, New York Court Corruption
Editor, National Public Voice
Editor, NYC Public Voice
Editor, Inside 3020-a Teacher Trials

By Juan Perez Jr.
Chicago Tribune, October 24, 2017
More than 160 Chicago Public Schools employees who were barred from the district because of alleged abuse, misconduct or poor performance were found working in new jobs at city charter and contract schools last year, according to a report from the district’s inspector general.
The list included three workers who were fired or resigned and blocked from being re-hired at CPS because of sexual abuse accusations, according to the report, which was released Tuesday. Twenty-two were put on a “Do Not Hire” list “due to improper corporal punishment or physical abuse of students,” according to the report.
Nearly 80 others were blocked from returning to the district due to incompetence or violating school rules. That included a list of probationary teachers who were blocked from future employment at CPS because of poor performance.
The 163 unidentified employees — 98 of them teachers — represented a small fraction of the workforce at the city’s publicly funded but independently operated charter and contract schools, the reported noted.
But Inspector General Nicholas Schuler’s office also found that CPS had no system for those schools to determine if their potential employees had been blacklisted by CPS with the “Do Not Hire” designation. Despite preliminary steps taken to fix the problem, the IG’s office said CPS has not finalized a policy on how to handle such situations.
The report did not name schools that hired the former district employees. Officials from three of the city’s largest charter school operators either declined to comment on Schuler’s report or said their schools conduct criminal background checks but don’t have access to CPS’ list of prohibited employees.
Kelley Quinn, spokeswoman for the Illinois Network of Charter Schools, said in a statement that “charter schools have not had access to the Do Not Hire list, but are required to run independent background checks for all staff, which they have done.”
“We also look forward to working with the district to ensure charter public schools have timely access to the Do Not Hire list in the future.” Quinn said.
A district spokesman said CPS conducts background checks for more than half of all charter and contract operators. In those cases, job candidates agree to share whether they’re blocked from working at CPS.
Schuler’s office said CPS is “developing a protocol” for alerting independently run schools of job candidates who are prohibited from working in the district. The IG said CPS also hopes to cover current charter and contract school employees as well.
It’s not clear how many employees on the Do Not Hire list are still on the job at charters or contract schools. The IG’s office reached its conclusions after reviewing a list of charter and contract school employees from last winter.
The three school workers accused of sex abuse are no longer working at the charters that hired them, the IG said.
“The charter data that we asked for was effective in December of last year,” Schuler said in an interview. “It’s a snapshot date in December of last year. Therefore, we’re unable to say exactly how many of these people in the (group of) 163 are still at the charters today.”
One challenge, Schuler noted, is that the law allows charter schools “considerable latitude” on their hiring decisions.
State law prohibits schools from hiring candidates who have been convicted of certain criminal offenses. CPS also elects to bar a range of other offenders from being hired, though charter schools are not required to follow suit.

“Although the Board decides not to hire those individuals, it does not have a statutory basis to require charter schools to defer to the Board’s conclusions about the risks presented by those individuals,” Schuler’s office said.
Twitter @PerezJr