Wednesday, September 09, 2009
Despite A Shortage Of Science & Special Education Teachers The ATRs In These Areas Are Still Not Being Hired. Look At Ageism As The Reason
In August the DOE, citing a shortage of Science and Special Education teachers, rescinded the ban on hiring "newbie teachers" for these subject areas. However, many Principals and DOE service centers still continued to hire inexperienced teachers despite having ATR teachers available to them in those subject areas and Tweed just turns a blind eye to this terrible practice. In a New York Times article Many of the Principals interviewed for the article admitted that they are circumventing the hiring freeze by various means. Below is what the principals said.
Several principals — who did not want their names published for fear of angering the administration or the teachers’ union — said they were circumventing the restrictions by offering new teachers jobs as long-term substitutes or hiring them as specialized teachers but placing them in regular classrooms. Some said they planned to eliminate open positions from their budgets rather than take on teachers they considered undesirable, and others said they were holding out in the hope that Mr. Klein would lift the restrictions.
I also wrote about the Principal's intent not to hire ATRs as long as possible Here. Now I have been informed of a specific case dealing with how a DOE organization refused to give a highly qualified special education teacher her job back, despite glowing letters by the two principals she worked with.
The story starts with the veteran special education teacher with 20+ years in service being loaned to the DOE organization because of their need for an experienced special education teacher to work with two schools who were in desperate need of resource room services for their special education students. Since the teacher was an ATR, Tweed was responsible for her salary not the DOE organization she worked for. This year the teacher was told to report back to the DOE organization and she hoped that with the glowing written recommendations she received from the two principal and the other administrators of the two schools, would allow her to continue doing the job she was given the previous year. However, to her shock and dismay, the supervisors of the DOE organization refused to consider her for the position she had previously and instead hired a "newbie teacher" who had no experience with the children, Why would the DOE's organization supervisors hire a "newbie teacher" over a highly-qualified teacher when they would cost the same to their budget (ATR agreement)? The answer is simple its about the age. See the highly-qualified teacher is over 50 and when the supervisors say jump, she is likely to say "why". While the 25 year old "newbie teacher" responds by saying "how high"? To add salt to the wound, the supervisors asked the now jobless ATR to train the "newbie teacher" on what she needs to know and do at the two schools. If that wasn't bad enough the DOE organization is busy interviewing other "newbie teachers" for more special education jobs and this teacher was not even given a courtesy interview for these jobs. Just disgusting.
Age discrimination is rampant throughout the ATR population and hiring practices are dictated by insecure administrators that are best for them rather than what's best for the children with special needs. DOE's "children last" continues.