Sunday, September 18, 2005

A Day in the Life Under the Fact-Finder’s Contract

Act I, Scene I

Place: Time clock area. Teacher walking in. Principal standing by the clock.
Time: June 2006, Contract based on fact-finding report is in effect

Principal: Whoa, Mr. Jones. Clock in!
Mr. Jones: But it’s just one minute past and there was a fire on the subway.
Principal: Sounds like not only are you late but you’re insubordinate as well. Thanks to our new procedures here is your letter to the file. (Hands paper printed from portable printer).
Mr. Jones: Let me get my Chapter Leader.
Principal: Not necessary. Just wait three years and if I don’t give you a “U” or bring you up on disciplinary charges it will be removed.

Act I, Scene II

Place: Chapter Leader and Mr. Jones meet in hall.
Time: Later that same day

Mr. Jones: Can I see you in your office later? I just got a letter in my file.
Chapter Leader: Are you kidding? I don’t have an office anymore. The principal uses it for small group instruction.
Mr. Jones: Well, where can I see you about this letter in the file? (Handing document)
Chapter Leader: (Reading) Oh, this just says you are always late, insubordinate and your breath stinks. Don’t worry.
Mr. Jones: Can’t we grieve it?
Chapter Leader: What does “grieve” mean?

Act I, Scene III

Place: Lunchroom
Time: Lunch Time

Principal: Mr. Jones, what are you doing here? (Ducks from tray of food thrown by student)
Mr. Jones: You assigned me here.
Principal: Oh no. You belong in the boys’ bathroom taking notes. Where are your notes? (Handing document from portable printer)
Mr. Jones: Oh no. Another letter to the file?
Principal: Do I detect some insubordination? (Tries to get another paper out of the portable printer but it gets jammed). Damn, I can’t get another letter out for you. I’ll get you next time.

Act I, Scene IV

Place: Outside of boys’ bathroom
Time: Later

Principal: Mr. Jones, you’re late for your coverage.
Mr. Jones: But, I’ve done 10 unpaid coverages already this year.
Principal: You’re lucky my printer is out of paper.

Act I, Scene IV

Place: Auditorium
Time: Later

Mr. Jones: (yelling) O.K., children we are here for small group instruction.
Johnny: I can’t hear you.
Mr. Jones: I know there are ten classes in here but there is nowhere else to go.
Mary: I heard Mrs. Smith got suspended without pay, is that true?
Mr. Jones: Sorry, Mary. I can’t comment on that.
Charlie: Mr. Jones since this is our last day of school will you be transferring to another school?
Mr. Jones: I tried Charlie but no one would take me.
Charlie: But you have 35 years teaching.
Mr. Jones: It doesn’t matter anymore.
Susie: How long do we have to sit here?
Mr. Jones: You know, 30 minutes.
Susie: Don’t you get a break?
Mr. Jones: No not anymore. We still have lunch…… I think.

Act I, Scene V

Place: Local bar where teachers frequent. Group of teachers talking.
Time: After last day of school

Mr. Jones: Thank God this year is over. I can’t take it any more.
Ms. Smith: I got “U” rated and the Union said nothing could be done about since my file now takes up two file cabinets.
Mr. Ronco: Yeah, that Chapter Leader has it easy. You know, he forgot what the word grievance means. What did you choose for your professional period?
Mr. Jones: Your school still has professional periods? We call them 9th periods.
Ms. Smith: Well, got to go. Have a great summer!
Everyone: (in unison) What are talking about? We have to come back in August!


Norm said...

Jeff, you're wrong on one thing:
What chapter leader?

Scene 6:
Pincipal (at faculty conference):
You're 8th chapter leader in 6 months had joined the other 7 in the rubber room for failing to come to attention and salute me. The UFT has asked me to take over the job.

NYC Educator said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
NYC Educator said... can use a little polish, but I like it and I've linked to it on my blog.

Hopefully we can get more people to see this thing for what it is.

Anonymous said...

Nominate for a Tony

Anonymous said...

You've hit the nail on the head here.NYC's educational system is too politicized a creature to consider giving up the few things that protect educators from those in leadership positions with personal vendettas. Harassment is real and up front and is hard enough to prove now. Why would I ever consider giving up the minimum of due process offered me? No amount of money is worth that. Certainly not the paltry sum offered herein as a 'raise'. No thanks!
I especially bristle at the provision that makes excessed personnel find their own jobs. Cute! Let's get real! Two years ago I was excessed and sent to a school. If my racist principal had his/her way, I wouldn't be there now. This contract, if approved, will affect disproportionate numbers of minority teachers who even in 2005, have to look really hard to find any welcome mat anywhere outside of a SURR school.

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