Monday, September 15, 2008

UFT Once Again Joins Happy Talk on School System

by James Eterno, UFT Chapter Leader, Jamaica High School

I am well aware that I should no longer be surprised with anything that happens in the school system, but once again I allowed myself to be disappointed to read the UFT Newspaper, the NY Teacher. The September 12 edition had a headline that read, "Grand Opening." Below it was a caption that read, "Classes begin with hardly a glitch." Are they for real?

Instead of throwing the newspaper in the garbage, I read on to see what UFT President Randi Weingarten had to say. She stated, "Today's opening of schools was one of the smoothest I can remember." She went on to talk about sporadic problems that were mostly solved. Why is the UFT again joining in on the happy talk about the school system?

Maybe I am so shell shocked because of what we have been through and are continuing to experience at Jamaica High School, but the UFT quotes do not reflect any of what we are feeling. Classes started for us on September 2 with around 100 oversize classes and over twenty people in our building were Absent Teacher Reserves. After school on the first day of classes, I went to a Queens High School Chapter Leaders Meeting.

I heard Chapter Leaders talk about how many ATRs are in each school. Talented veteran teachers who are not allowed to teach a full time program is not anything I would define as grand, particularly when there are oversize classes. At the meeting, I listened to Chapter Leaders complain about oversize classes in their buildings. How could this be allowed to happen when the State just came through with funding for reduced class sizes? Having students move chairs from room to room because classes are so crowded is not what I would define as a smooth opening.

In Queens, the overcrowding problem is severe but Jamaica High School, which has space available, this past week was closed out for incoming over the counter students (those new to the area who are registering for school for the first time). The DOE actually wrote that we have no seats available. We have plenty of seats and we have teachers if we were to be permitted to use our ATRs to actually teach. How was the opening of the year in your buildings? We would like to know.

School Administrators Need those two Days Before Labor Day Back to Reorganize

My observations of the high school opening in Queens was that it was a mess. How many classes in the city will still be oversize after the ten day grace period that the UFT and DOE gives principals to fix them? My guess is that oversize classes will still number in the thousands.

Part of the problem is that the amount of time between the end of summer school on August 15 and the date when teachers start school on August 28 is not sufficient to reorganize high schools properly. Administrators must re-program many students who earned credit in summer schools. This takes time to do correctly and then it puts class sizes out of balance in many cases. This partially explains the oversize class problem in certain schools every year.

It is virtually impossible to fix the problem because we come back to school too soon after summer school. If administration had the two full weeks between summer school and the return of teachers, as they did in the past before the 2005 Contract, they might be able to do a better job of reorganizing. There might be less chaos at the start of the school year because many more students would be properly placed.

The PBA (Police union) recently set a precedent when they negotiated to win back a day off that was taken away from them by an arbitrator in a prior settlement. It's now time for the UFT to use that agreement as a precedent to say that for the good of the schools, let administration have the entire two weeks between summer school and Labor Day to reorganize schools properly without teachers or pupils in the buildings. We come back too soon; administration needs ample time to readjust student schedules after summer school, instead of worrying about planning teacher professional development for August. We should return to school after Labor Day and then bring the students back on the Thursday after Labor Day. A couple of extra days to update student programs might make all the difference in the world and allow us to start each school year a little more efficiently.

The PBA won one day; the second day we need could be gained by exchanging a Professional Development Day, such as Brooklyn Queens Day, and making that an instructional day. After all, that is a valuable day just a week before Regents Exams in the high schools. Certainly, extra instruction at that time would benefit the students. Let's do what the PBA did to benefit the kids and bring some order to the start of the school year.

36 comments:

ed notes online said...

Good start James. But I hope we are not posing that starting school after Labor Day is a solution to the enormous problems you raise in this post.

Robert said...

There
are
18
atrs
atlafayette
HS
plus
2counselors
and3
paras
w/o
regular
assignments

Anonymous said...

There are over 20+ ATR's at Tilden HS. All teaching duties have been taken away from us. The classes are crowded and an extra class was given to tha health teacher on a per session basis. Our office was taken away and made into a book room just to make us feel uncomfortable and the locks were also changed. They told us we could move into another office which already had four taechers in it and was too small too begin with,
We keep hearing that we be out of the schoo by Friday (/19 and sent toanother school as an ATR and ATR's from another school will take our place. Whose brilliant plan is this, And what is the UFT doing about this, they told me to go on the Mass Market Transfer, brilliant

Anonymous said...

These stories are insane.

NYC Educator said...

James,

I think it's dangerous to suggest we use BQ day as instructional. You may inadvertently be giving Ms. Weingarten the idea to use it thusly, add yet another training day in August, and declare victory by announcing she averted a second additional training day.

Clearly you don't think like those in charge.

Anonymous said...

Is it true that James started doing pension consultations at the Queens office?

MsMalarkey said...

The UFT newspaper is a Tweed newletter. It's not even worth reading.

Anonymous said...

NYC Educator-

I never thought of it that way. I want us to get back and help the kids also, not give back. Call me a blind idealist.

No, I'm not doing pension consultations at the Queens office.

James Eterno

Anonymous said...

Don't forget South Shore High School. Ten or so of us are ATR's and sit in the Teachers Center (thank heaven we have it -- computers, a/c, good conversation) but the madness doesn't end there. Last week another 10 or so were declared excessed even though they have, and will continue to have programs, some full, some short. My guess is that the principal figured out how to milk the system since ATR salaries come from Central not out of her budget.

We were told that next week we will all (the ones sitting, that is) be shipped out to whatever schools need subs. I am horrified that I have no say in where I am sent, who I work for, etc. Why have I put in all those years, all that training, to have absolutely no say in my future. Even per diem subs have more say when they register with Subcentral.

Anonymous said...

I am an ATR. Last night, I had a dream. Lou Gosset was standing over me screaming, "I want you out of here ATR! I kept screaming back, "No Sir" He kept screaming, "ATR, I want you out of here!" I got choked up and started crying out, "I got nothing. I got nowhere to go!" I woke up in a sweat screaming "I got nowhere to go!" My wife had to grab me and ask me if I was having a nightmare. I told her, "No, I am living one everyday." I had to blink twice before I realized that she was not Debra Winger.

Anonymous said...

I got a call from a highly rated high school. They did not have a position but needed an ATR to fill in for a sick teacher in my subject area. The teacher may be out for a year and if they did not return, I may be invited to interview for the job that I would cover. I showed up at 7:00 A.M. to interview for a position as an ATR. That was pretty funny. I had on my best suit, a close shave, a buzz cut to hide my grey hair, a letter of recommendation from the former principal of this very high school, a resume, 13 years of teaching experience, copies of observations, etc. I even sucked my gut in the whole time. I answered all of the usual questions reserved for new teachers. I came off as confident but not over bearing. The AP seemed happy and walked me around the school. He introduced me to the staff who started giving me hugs and asking how I had been in the last ten years. One of them swore that she did not remember me but she was also the one that used to accuse me of "sprinkling while tinkling" in the common bathroom and not cleaning off the toilet seat which I honestly denied doing and explained to her that I was a Marine and that I keep things Marine clean. In this business, I wondered if she would bad mouth me as the "Tinkler" after I departed. He spoke about getting me keys then told me to go back to my school and wait for the word that I would be transfered to his school. When I got back to my school, security started screaming at me as I walked past them, "Sir! Sir!, where are you going? You need to sign in here!" I told them that it was me under this clean cut look. They all started laughing and calling other agents over to look at me. They were telling me that they never saw me looking so young and handsome. The jokes were flying. I told them that times were tough so I had to hire a make over show to get me a new job as an ATR in a school that I already worked in ten years ago for one semester as a full time teacher. I have not received word yet and it has been two weeks. No disrespect to the staff if they decided to go for the "younger looking" teacher but that seems to be the way things are going now. Such is life.

Anonymous said...

Grieve South Shore Grieve if you are ATRs and there are programs in your license areas.

Anonymous said...

Is nobody frightened by any of this?

ed notes online said...

From day one Klein wanted the right to ship teachers out to schools at his whim and despite union cries it would never happen, guess what? It has.

ed notes online said...

Anon 11:34:
Fabulous story and a great counter to the lies being spread by the news and Klein. I'm putting it up as a main post on the ed notes blog. Best of luck and keep us informed.
Oh, and I may have some hair dye for you. Or maybe ask for coverage for botox treatments to get that younger look they are looking for. But the reality is that darn salary you make at 13 years. The diff between a new teacher and a 22 year teacher salary is around 50 thousand? They can get more than 2 for 1.

Anonymous said...

Norm the difference between a new teacher and a teacher on maximum is $54,419. You can get two starting teachers at $45,530 and still have plenty of money for per session to buy more people off. Nobody is going to hire a veteran. The real world in the schools is a tough place for experienced teachers.

Anonymous said...

Grieve What! At Tilden they did the same thing last year. The Principal saved thousands and thousands of dollars by making many of us ATRs and then she gave us full schuledes in our subject areas. We all went to our chapter leader at Tilden and told him what are you and the union doing about this, we would like to grieve. He told us the principal does not have the money to pay us in her budget. This is the only way she can keep the school running and us in the building. If we grieve it she we be force to dismalt the classes and assign some of us to different subject areas. It other words she will give a Math teacher 2 math classes one english class one science class and one social studies class. That way there will not be 5 open math class were the teacher can grieve a right of return. Plus any other extra Ats will be moved from the building. So don't rock the boat. Not to mention that she could come in and give you a negative observation. Yea, then you can go grieve that like your going to win. You will lose at the first 2 steps and then when it is suppose to go to arbitration it will be turned by our unoin because they don't want to lose at that level. We asked him they file a class action grieve on behalf of all of us. He told us that he does not know if he can do this. He'll have to talk to Charles Turner and find out. The Chaper leader never got back to us on it. We are still waiting for an answer a year later. Now that they are going to ship us out after a year of teacher 5 classes in our subject area as Atrs, our chapter leader tells us we can't grieve anything, we are lowlife ATRs and have no rights. We most go where they send us and do what we are told if we want to get a pay check at the end of the week.

Anonymous said...

I have been an ATR for a year and last year I had a full program. Now everyday that I walk into the building I hear that we will be moved by Sept. 19th. School aides stop me in the hall and tell me that Sept. 19th will be our last day. I feel like I am living the movie "Dead Man Walking" and everyday that I go to work it's like I am walking my last mile. I called the union district office and got a special rep on the phone who makes $127,000 a year and he he couldn't answer any questions for me. Did you ever speak to a dope? He asked me why I didn't speak to my building UFT rep and I told him that I do not like sarcastic and demeaning remarks which he would only make in the building to me. He then said he would tell the district rep about this and he would call me. This was 3 days ago and I have still have not been called. Lets face it I think the union has written off ATR's.

Anonymous said...

James gave me great pension advice last week.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

AS an ATR I was looking to the UFT for help. But when the New York Teacher came in the mail on Sept. 12th there was not one story about the ATR situation in it. It was then I realized that we had all been sold out by the UFT. I called the UFT district office last week and John Settle got on the phone. He is a special rep who makes over $100,000 a year.All I got was double talk which is probably a requirement for getting his position. The best thing all 1,400 ATR's can do is file a class action suite against the UFT and the DOE, there is strength in numbers. I am sure that the UFT would not like it if we could find a way to withhold our dues to them. This would be a million and a half dollars a year. Why should we pay dues to them they are not representing us

Anonymous said...

I am an ATR. My brothers have been NYPD cops for ten years. One taught H.S. and one was a para who finished his B.S. degree after becoming a member of the NYPD. He subs on his days off. They both married their college sweet hearts who both teach elementary school in Brooklyn. I have another brother who teaches special ed in Florida. My family, for some reason is full of teachers and police officers. In my opinion, years ago, your parents taught you that going to college would ensure that you became something other than a civil servant. I suppose it was Mom's way of saying that there are different rungs on the social ladder and that in her view, those who were educated seemed to have more in life than your average city worker. We saw it that way as well. This is why all of her children went to college. As the years went by, we noticed that the value of a degree seemed to diminish. I saw friends leaving teaching for jobs as firemen and police officers. I saw friends that went to law school become police officers instead of pursuing their dreams of being a lawyer. As we matured, we began to look at the benefits of the various fields of employment. I was somewhat surprised to see how many more benefits that your basic civil servant had in their contracts with the city than teachers do. Before I was an ATR, I was surprised when my sister in laws ran out of sick days as new teachers who had just given birth. They had to borrow sick days. I then realized that we do not have "paid" maternity leave. Should I point at a pregnant colleague's bulge and say that I hope they get better soon? When my sister in laws had their second child, they started losing days of pay. They had not caught up yet to their borrowed days. I once asked Randy in person why we do not have paid maternity leave and she said that it never goes through each time they ask for it. I doubt that she ever really makes it a union issue. When one of my sister in laws needed heart surgery right after giving birth, she went to 60% of her salary for six months. After six months, if she did not return to work, she would receive no pay. My brother was working every second job that he could to pay his mortgage. Other unions have unlimited sick and paid maternity leave. Most also have a heart fund. We do not in the UFT. Do we ever ask for it? We have no worker's compensation. When I was assaulted at work by a student, I had to pay every hospital and doctor co-pay and every physical therapy co-pay for the six months that I required it. The DOE will only reimburse up to $700 in co-pays for LOD injury unless it is an assault. Well, the student said that he was only joking around when he dove at me from behind and tackled me down to the ground. Eureka! Since he said that he was just playing around, I guess that it was an accident. So it cost me to be the victim of a crime at work. My brothers often ask me a few times before they understand the nuances. They ask things like, "So who got collared for assaulting you?" I just have to explain that I walk past the student every day at work and he laughs at me each time. That sort of, "You aint nothing sucker, I got over" sort of smirk. Why do I have to see this student again? What union would allow that? Other city jobs have a 20 year retirement. A teacher starting out now has at least four years of college before employment, the related expenses, and years of night school just to obtain the final certification for teaching. While in school, you learn that the time spent in college is called opportunity cost by an economist. Anytime that you are obligated to spend other than working is a lost opportunity to make money. Get it? Those first four or five years of school could have been the first few years of full time employment in another city job that has a 20 year retirement. You actually incur an expense (tuition) for those years of study as you also lose money and time towards retirement by not being employed. If Mom's advice were correct, the pay off would come when you acquire your degree. However, you find that you are making the same amount of salary as your friends who became city employees such as NYPD, Corrections, Transit, Sanitation, etc. You are surprised when they compare their contract talks with ours because of all of the sacrifice that we make before employment. You are more surprised when your friends have purchased homes years before you and that you paid $400,000 for the same semi-attached home as the one they paid $180,000 for only seven years earlier. So now you realize that while you sat in school, you were also losing money in future disposable income. Your mortgage payments are more than twice as much as theirs. Now, years later, they are retiring. Some have bachelors degrees that they obtained at night. They are starting second careers as teachers in places like Middletown N.J. and Long Island. That raises my eyebrows. Their mortgages were refinanced to 15 year rates at lower interest when you were just learning about buying a home. Their houses are paid off and were sold as a down payment on a big detached home in New Jersey. Their new mortgage is still lower than yours. You wonder who the smarter person actually is. If you start teaching at 22, you will work 33 years before you can receive retirement pay. You do the math for when it was 62. Some people answer that we have summers off and a shorter work day. I answer with, "How much work do you take home and how much time do you spend of your own time performing work that is related to your day job?" Does a sanitation worker take garbage home? Does a fireman have to clean trucks and stow hoses at home? It would be called over time pay in any other union. Your lawyer does work at home. It is called the bill that you receive that makes your jaw drop while looking at it wondering if he really put in that much work on your single case. They say their job is more dangerous. I ask them how many times that they were wrestling with a 19 year old that was trying to cut them with a box cutter at work. Zero for them, two for me. Some of them have asked me what was happening since they read that they were going to "Tear your school down and build another one." I laugh and have to explain it best to them. I tell them to imagine that they are a cop for 18 years. The NYPD brings four new units into your station house. They tell you that you are now called an Absent Patrolman Reserve AKA an APR. They tell you that you have a chance of being hired in one of the new units in the station house but that you then observe thereafter that hardly anyone is hired as part of the new staff. So, they tell you to start writing a resume and going around on your own time asking the commanding officer of each station house if you can work for him because you are better than the other candidates that are lined up outside. You then say, "Oh well, at least I am getting paid." You then read the paper and your Police commissioner and the Mayor is saying that you are not working hard enough to be a Patrolman in a new station house so they want to fire you after one year of not finding work on your own time. You then read that your own union has screamed, "Never!" about many issues that they gave to the city anyway in the long run. I then say that with 19 1/2 years, you find yourself laid off. They usually say thing like, "No way man, they can't do that!" Well, not to you with your union but to us, yes they can and perhaps will. A childhood friend was a teacher for 20 years. He was fired for allegedly being insubordinate to a regional superintendent. He swore at his hearing that the woman was a nut who was lying and making the whole thing up. She swore that he did act insubordinate in a hallway when she told him to go back in an office and to stop talking to a colleague in the halls. I suppose that asking the question, "I am sorry Mam, who exactly are you?" is a reason to lose everything that you ever worked for. He has been unemployed for a few years now as a teacher. When he walks into the UFT office, the reps there throw their hands up and say out loud, "Oh boy, he is here again?" They try to actually get up and shut their door. It causes him to get so upset that his voice goes up. They then start saying, "Sir, you are yelling at me again!" He can't understand how after her testimony, that the words of Joan Mahon-Powell are still considered truthful in his case. That the UFT acts like he is an annoyance. Does anyone need a reminder of who she was. Just Google her name. If a cop is accused of cursing at a high school student, if substantiated, would probably lead to the loss of a few vacation days. For us, you would have to go home and tell your kids that Daddy lost his teaching job because they believed a kid that lied and said that you cursed at them. Now, we will lose this house if I can't find work and you will have to move away from all of your friends. This is exactly what happened to my buddy who I mentioned above. For the both of us, making it out of the housing projects and having the money for college required four years in the military. I have never mentioned the things that I have done and seen in those years to anyone unless they are close to me. My comrades at the VFW post know by my facial expressions. They see the same look in the mirror at times. Experiencing so much pain and coming close to death several times just to have the money to go to school and become a teacher? When you think of that, it makes it even worse to think of those years as part of the total loss I would suffer if the UFT failed to represent me like they did for my buddy. It just amazes anyone who hears his story. Everyone except the UFT. This former Marine and former Army Green Beret and now former teacher is doing landscaping work right now to pay his bills and feed his kids. A 50 year old landscaper with two masters degrees and a veteran of two branches of the military. One would never figure that that six foot tall light skinned black man with the weed whacker outside your window-- who seems to be mumbling to himself is actually mumbling the words "Damn UFT." My sister in law asked me yesterday what exactly an ATR was. I sort of looked at her funny because they just brought a new school into her building. I told her that the union membership better start worrying about issues that are not affecting themselves before the DOE's divide and conquer strategy sees them out of a job with some last minute "minor" change to the next contract. Yesterday, while speaking with my sister in law, when I got to the part about how we as a union do not have the right to grieve a false allegation by a supervisor with the letter in your file clause and how we keep giving back benefits and time, my mother finally chimed in on the conversation. In her best Brooklyn Jewish mother accent she said, "Stop acting like a kevetch and be a mench. Stop crying about it already. I can't take it anymore. You should have been like your brothers and become a cop." I just gave her that quizzical look. "She then said, "Oy, if looks could kill." as she walked out of the kitchen exhaling in mock frustration.

Anonymous said...

Well, I finally saw some tears flowing. Many letters were given out at Tilden yesterday and today. Veteran teachers are all being assigned as ATR's to various locations. Since they all must appear on Monday, the number of teachers who got letters through out the week are all here today, Friday the 19th. I can hear a teacher crying next door as I write this. If she wanted to leave Tilden, she would have asked for a seniority transfer years ago. She loves the kids in this community and wants to stay. She has over 20 years experience. The locations are, well, to be blunt the locations that parents usually use the no child left behind act to get their kids away from. Seniority transfers used to allow you to pay your dues in a tougher school then move somewhere that the kids really think that the N word is really a bad word. Now it is the opposite. You work in a tough neighborhood for twenty years with dreams of finishing your career in that nice school near your home in the borough or place that you live in and as you walk out today past that new young teacher hired by a new school, you realize that you are on your way into the belly of the beast. The place where that younger teacher should have been paying their dues at this very moment. I feel bad for the ones who voted no on the last contract. For the ones who voted yes and were dumb enough to tell me that you did? LOL seems appropriate.

Anonymous said...

***K you would seem more appropriate. The frustration here is incredible. I am sad just reading these comments. But what makes me so sad is that people keep voting Randi in over and over again and voting yes on these horrible contracts.

Anonymous said...

WAKE UP TEACHERS WAKE UP!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

A DAY OF INFAMY
Yesterday September 19th 2008 was a day of Infamy. All the ATR's in my school and other schools got their new assignments. ATR"S are being sent to alternative schools, learning centers, mini schools, not places that senior teachers would normally go to.But since we were sold out by the UFT we have no choice. The plan as most people see it is to make us uncomfortable so that we will quit or retire or they will send us to the Sup's office on some type of phoney insubordination charges.
And where is our union, Blowing Smoke" like the district rep did at our school yesterday. He just answers questions with double talk answers. Why did they call an emergency meeting yeasterday at 2:15 this meeting should have been last week. The reps reponse was that they did not anticipate the DOE's action. Everyone else in the system knew that this was going to happen yesterday excpet the UFT.
ATR's wake uptheUFT sold us out.The time for a Class Action Case is now. Do not expect any help from the UFT, they created this whole situation with their lousy contracts.
Some teachers in my school,are calling for a job action. That's one thing Randi is afraid of doing so it should be done. It was done in Philadelphia a few years ago and it worked.Lets work together and forget the UFT

Anonymous said...

What school are you talking about?

Anonymous said...

At South Shore on Friday, a notice was posted over the timeclock that all ATR's, with or without programs, had to report for a meeting with the principal at 2:15. Mind you, our day ends at 2:25. So all 20 ATR's gather and wait and wait and wait. (This after a really horrible day of anxiety and tears. Normally nice tempered friends were at each others' throats.) So we wait. And wait some more. Finally, after someone called downstairs, the principal and APO arrive with the dreaded pile of letters. Some ATR's had already left in anger since it was now OUR time. There was a rumor that Charlie Turner, our union rep, would be there too but he was a no show. My envelope was one of the first and since I could deal with the tension no longer, I ran out opening my letter as I did so I have no idea what news others got or what the reaction was. On my way out I ran into two former students who were so glad to see me but I couldn't talk for the lump in my throat. I never said goodbye to anyone but the wonderful safety agent at the front desk whose two daughters were in my AP classes a few years ago. South Shore is my neighborhood school; the kids there are my neighbors' kids. I had always intended to end my career there. And when none of us were able to get jobs at the 8 new schools upstairs, it was clear that we don't count for anything. I report Monday to a school I don't know, to administrators who will do whatever they like with me; I could be a classroom teacher out of license or a day to day sub or a much hated competitor for classes in license. After almost 20 years of excellent teaching, mentoring, etc., what a pathetic way to almost end a career. I wish I could just go away. Teaching is my identity and Bloomklein and the Randi and the union have destroyed my identity.

Blue Devils said...

Charlie Turner could not come to South Shore because he had his hands full with a mob of angry Tilden Teacher! Ho he did plan on coming over to South Shore after he was finish with Tilden. He though he would hold our hand and comfort us by showing up and saying I am sorry, and that's the way the ball bounces. Instead he found a crowd of angery teachers that fired away question after question of the injustice that was going on and what the union was going to do about it. Poor Charlie was caught by surprise. He though he would give us his condolences and be on his way to South Shore. In fact he thought it was going to be so quick that he called an emerency UFT meeting in the libery at 2:15. The poor guy thought he would be out in 5 mintues and be on his way to South Shore by 2:25 the latest. Instead he found himself deflecting and avioding key questions. Like way are ATRS from other schools coming to Tilden while the Tilden ARTs are sent somewhere else? Why are teachers who have been in the building for over 20 years told to move? The contrack states that a teacher cannot be removed from the building if they have 20 years. Why are we being moved out of our district? The contrack states that we were to be placed in the same district? Why are you here now? You and the Union Reps, who make a ton of extra money doing nothing, should have been in these closing, phasing out schools from day 1, to prevent what has just happened. To make sure ATRs are not abused! Charles response? OH, What, Where, Who, How? We were not aware this was happening. Some answered back by say, everbody knew this was going to happen by the 19th of Sept. Were where you? Oh, we heard that they were going to do something like this, Charle said, but we did not actually think they were going to go through with it. Oh, 20 years in the building you say, ho grieve it. I was not aware of what was happening, I did not know that ARTs from another school where coming to Tilden to replace ART's in this one. We'll look into it. He said, but we know we will never get an answer. Charle told us to write to Randi, and tell her what was going on,(like she doesn't know). Charlie told us to e-mail her at UFT.com. One teacher stood up and said is that UFT.com or AFT.com. Charlie responed with a big smile, uft he said, while teachers cried in the back ground about leaving the school, friends and students they loved after a life time of service to go to parts unknown. These teacher never did anything wrong. They have a clean record. This did not phase Charlie one bit.Oh the district, there are no more district the DOE, desolved them, so they can send you any where they want. But don't worry they have to keep you in the brough for the frist couple of years. Some teachers where sent to a suspension center in East New York. One teacher stood up and said I don't want to go to a suspension center. Those are not the kind of students I want to teach. These are students who have been kicked out of schools like ours because they can't behave like human beings. They are out of controle. Some have an arrest record. I am a swim teacher the man said. What I am I suppose to teach? Is there a pool in the suspension center? Charlie quickly responed. You have to go, or you can be fired for insubordination, your a teacher you can teach any student any subject anywhere, anytime. He said all this with a smile on his face. Of course what does he care, he's safe. He teachs one class and then does stuff like this all day long and collects two salaries and two pensions. It's a beautiful thing. A beautiful life. I was too busy throwing up in the back to ask Charlie any questions. I would rather take my chances with Klein and Bloomberg.
So you see please don't blame poor Charlie for not coming over to South Shore to hold your hand while you cried. He was busy running for his life from the Tilden teachers, he tried to bull s**t. So you see he couldn't come over, he was running late, and after all it was a friday afternoon and Charlie had to get home to beat the rush hour traffic. His job was done. So don't blame him, blame those dam Tilden Teachers, they would not go down without a fight!You want teach the UFT, DOE, and Mayor a real lesson? Don't give up the fight! Go to the news papers. Go to more than one newspapers. Go together as a group of teachers. Go to any newspaper that will listen. Go to your State Sentor, Assemblymen, Congressmen and let them know what is going on! Go to anybody who will listen! Tell them how Principals are hiding incidents and changing teachers grades to bring up the passing rate so Klein and Bloomberg will not close their schools like they closed ours. We failed students that did not come to school, We failed students who did not do their work, we reported and suspended students who commited crimes and broke rules. We did this not to be mean but to get them ready for the real world. Now Principals hide incidents and hire teacher who they can push around and scare them into passing everbody. Now when these kids go to fill out a college or job application after they graduate they can't do it. Go to anyone who will listen. Tell the world about how the DOE, wasted money left and right, tell them about the czay principal like the one you have at South Shore. Let the world know. And above all, tell everybody what has happen to you as ATR, and how the union did nothing about it. Tell them to coop out and vote for someone else in the next uft elections! Long live the BlueDevils.

Anonymous said...

ANONYMOUS SAYS:

The school I was talking about is Tilden. I I keep getting sick thinking of Charlie Turner. He is rated as the lowest of the low by Ed Wise. He is a deflector for the UFT, just don't answer questions. Or give some sacastic answer to a teacher who has just asked him aa important question. Where do they learn this a UFT Rep school? And he always does this with a smile on his face.
He told us he will be visiting us at our new sites to check on us to see how everything is. Sorry Charlie I don't think that you give a damn about us. Out of sight out of mind.

Anonymous said...

The district rep we were talking about is Charlie { I will not answer your questions} Turner. He is a master of deflection, rated the lowest of the low. And for this he mkes a extra $50,000 a year. He only has to teach one class at his school, Maxwell, and then its off to his district rep job.
Try contacting him all you get is voice mail and maybe if you are lucky a return call.
On Monday 9/22 we are going to Adams street the Brooklyn district office to file grievances, for what. They will be turned down and then go to the ad com committe and they will reject it. And even if it goes to arbitration and by some miracle you win the DOE has the last say and you know what that will be. So in other words you are in a kangaroo court.
The UFT wants us to act like good little children and go to our new assignments without a fight, SORRY CHARLIE,we don't plan to take this lying down,

Anonymous said...

Good for you Tilden people. Don't give up.

Anonymous said...

I was listening to NPR radio last year. I was surprised that Baltimore had shut down every high school but one and made them into smaller schools. They were about to phase out the last one. This is what will happen in NYC soon. As they do this, you will see our union rights keep going down hill. Making small schools is a great way of breaking union power. A friend of mine ran for president of a big union in NYC. A big blue collar union that is on every construction job in the city but I won't mention the union. He almost won but does not care because he has influence over many members who listen to his opinion and vote accordingly. He laughs when I tell him about our union. He joked and said that is why they are still looking for Jimmy Hoffa in the end zone of Giants stadium. His type of union has a membership that believes in working hard every day yet will not allow one right to be taken away. They do hard dangerous work and refuse to allow their union to sell them out. Every contract they negotiate sees the members getting even greater benefits in both pay and health care. The amount of money they make an hour would shock most teachers. $58.00 an hour for Journeymen and way more for senior members. If a union delegate were to answer a member with a snide remark during a meeting, they may not make it out of the building without a few bumps and bruises. This is why our chapter leaders get away with saying things like, "Hey, you are a lowly ATR. What do you want me to do?" Our leaders answer everything with double talk. When you look at the brutal nature of some unions, you at first see them as behaving in a primitive manner. Breaking car windows as scabs drive past. Getting arrested for punching a police horse in the nose. Firemen at ground zero having physical fights with cops who were there to ensure that they could no longer look for lost comrades. Some were arrested. When teachers protest, they look like a group of kids that were the type that got picked on their whole lives. Not a tough nasty one in the bunch. When I ask teachers what they did growing up, most never played a contact sport, served in the military or ever had a fist fight in their lives. They usually had high GPA's in high school, played in band, were in the photography club, on the debate team and so on. Pretty much everything that I would want my child to be. Nevertheless, a group like that is an easy target when they get together and become members of a union. It is the nature of the beast. Who does this job attract? The kid who was in the school play or the kid who was a linebacker? The linebacker is usually putting his skills to use by tackling suspects, in the pits on wall street or running into burning buildings while others are running out. Not to paint every UFT member with a broad brush but my views seem to ring true. When you look further into the blue collar unions, you see that their actions ensure that their elected delegates will always defend any attack against their ability to keep feeding their children and paying their bills. Even the cops had a mini riot years ago when Guiliani was first running for mayor. The papers called it a beer fueled display of unprofessional behavior that included the very crimes that these officers swore to protect against. I can recall that one cop was riding the train home that day after that rally. An 18 or 19 year old student pulled a box cutter on him over something like stepping on his sneaker on accident. He got his face slashed on the train he was riding. He then punched the young man and broke his jaw. The slasher was convicted. The cop was then convicted of misdemeanor assault but his union fought and won for his right to remain on the force. He actually had a probation officer and was allowed to work his hours around his visits with his probation officer. A recent PBA right to represent themselves with more rights at department trials helped him keep his job. Imagine if it were a teacher? You would be gone in a heartbeat. Now that is a union that fights for its members.

ed notes online said...

Charlie Turner is one of the District reps who's proud of pulling ICE and ed notes lit out of mail boxes at Maxwell.

He called me a scumbag for writing about him. Guess his list is growing after these comments.

Anonymous said...

Don't" think that the UFT did not know where the ATR's were going to be sent. They had copiof our transfer letters before we got ours. Now the ATR's are all going to be transferred again since a number of ATR's were sent out of their license areas.
But where are they going to transfer us? What district and whar borough? No one at the UFT will say or knows anything

Anonymous said...

LIFE AS AN ATR

After being excessed from my school I was sent to an alternative school a fancy name for a detention center. All of the teachers there are ATR"s from other high schools. The first day there we find out that this is a Junior High school and we all have Day High School licenses.

We are told that there are no occurrences at this school, I wonder why, is it they never report them? A call to the UFT reveals the following information and that is we are stuck there and if we want to go back to High School we have to go on the Mass Market Transfer which in my thinking is like going to Fantasy Land. In other words we are stuck ther for the duration.During interviews with the site principal she asked teachers if they were UFT teachers. Her response was that they don't go by the UFT rules at this site, wonderful.

The second day there some of us are moved to High Schools but as ATR's. On teacher was moved to a mini High School as an ATR.
When interviewd by one principal one of them asked a teacher you seem old how much more time before you retire. That question is against the labor laws in this country but if questioned the principal will deny it.

When talking to teachers in
this mini school it seems that most of the teachers are teaching 35 classes a week or 7 or more a day. The contract says only 5 classes a day but if they don't like it they can find another job.
So when the UFT told me I was being transfered to another site they said becareful what you wish for. You were in Sing SIng and now we are going to send you to Alcatraz. The whole system is set to explode

Anonymous said...

I got transferred to one of the best high schools in Brooklyn. I am an ATR. I teach different subjects every day. I am expected to teach a lesson regardless of the subject area. I was winging it at Math B the other day. I almost died from laughter as I thought of what would happen if a student asked me for help. Somehow I made it through. There was a handout to do so I walked around acting as if I were concerned that they were doing their work. I know how to run a classroom but I certainly forgot this level of math since college. These kids finished in about five minutes. I asked one of them how he did it so fast. He said come on man, we are Asian. They all laughed. This place is like what you see in a Hollywood movie. Very relaxed environment. Kids allowed to sit in the halls if they have a break. There seem to be about 40 clubs. The UFT rep is a real go getter. Not one administrator has bothered me at all. They just smile and say hello every morning. Sort of like everyone being on Zoloft all at once. The other ATR that came over with me was sitting with me today. A young teacher came up to us and introduced himself. He said that he was an excessed teacher that was sent to Murrow. He had a real position. However, he got hired at a small school in Williamsburg. So, he wanted to meet with the other ATR to go over the material that he would be giving him. It seems that my buddy from my old school will be teaching his old program starting this Tuesday, 10/14/08. As an ATR. A full program but will still be in an ATR status. He will have to write lesson plans and be observed in his subject area which is math. How can he not be hired full time on the spot? A bunch of BS if you ask me. I hear that the school would only have to pay the average teacher salary for him and not his higher pay. I wish that I had a free maid that was paid for by city hall.