Sunday, July 08, 2007

PR Duplicity: UFT Sells Out Members Rights and Fights For Them in the Press

Today's Post bashes OSI investigated DOE employees, once again, by citing how they are paid while investigations continue and that the system is too slow to fire these charged employees.

While the argument is old and expected the response that makes most sense, if you are a Union that really cares about its members, is that being charged does not mean you are guilty and due process requires a full hearing before dismissal. In fact the article admits that a small percentage of employees are actually dismissed and that the DOE actually disagrees with OSI's findings at times.

What is most disturbing, however, is the quote from UFT spokesperson, Ron Davis. In response to the failure of the DOE to unilaterally remove charged employees from the payroll without a hearing he states,

"If a teacher does something that merits dismissal, then they should be removed from the classroom," Davis said. "But not before they have due process."

Yo Ron. Due process! Don't you remember our famous contract….we gave that right up. Surely you are not suggesting we are really entitled to due process when our contract already allows the DOE to remove us from not only the classroom but also from payroll upon mere allegations.

Unless, like "just cause" we are reinventing the term "due process." Watch out tenure!


Anonymous said...

And when the DoE disagrees with the findings, especially if it goes against an administrator, they just fire the investigator and start all over again until the administrator is vindicated.

Anonymous said...

xzrryvaqThe Rubber Room is still pretty much a mysterious dirty little secret to the membership at large as well as to the public.

Don't under estimate waging a war in the press.
As everyone knows poltics is a tricky business.
The press still shapes perceptions, more so than "real knowledge" does.

A good union helps it's teachers every way it can. For example, the first words a good union should say to the press when discussing the 700 or so teachers who are currently under investigation is something along the lines of "Our teachers work very hard under the most stressful situations imaginable. All too often they have to not only deal with students who show a total lack of respect and complete disregard of education, but with uneducatied and hostile parents, and, under Mr Bloomberg and Mr. Klein, the most unsupportive administrators in the United States of America and perhaps the world.

"This is America, where each and every citizen accused of wrong doing is innocent until proven guilty. Every US citizen is entitled to due pocess, the reporter should review his basic social studies.

"Further, it is a union's job to provide support of all kinds to it's membership to help them every way it can. Again the reporter should study the nature of unions.

"We proudly stand behind each and every one of our teachers."

Further, a good union should say "When it comes to mentioning any specific teacher the appropriate answer is "no comment while the teacher is under investigation,..""

Speaking of real knowledge:

Lately I've heard that the DOE takes it's ability not to renew administrative hearing officers when they do not rule the the DOE likes often enough. Does the UFT do the same?

How can we find out? Where does the membership get to see how often their hearing officers rule for the member?

Anonymous said...

Hello Jeff:

I am one of those teachers awaiting a 3020A hearing. I am very frightened, humiliated, embarassed and humbled by all of it, but rest assued I will fight to my last breath against the lies SCI have some up with. I have to say, my biggest fear is because the percentage of firings to suggested firings is NOT small as you say - unless I am reading that chart listed in the Post article wrong.

2006 = 40% fired
2005 = 65% fired
2004 = 62% fired

In 2007, the 5 fired were "Non - tenured" so that is pretty automatic. The others are awaiting their hearings.

Jeff - I am greatly interested in speaking with you. Is it possible for you to e-mail me at: