Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Will Joel Klein Give In And Remove The Hiring Freeze So That Principals Can Hire "Newbie Teachers"?
It has been two weeks since the citywide ATR job fair has been held and I do not know of any ATRs in Queens who were offered positions for the vacancies that number over a thousand citywide. Some of these ATRs are great teachers and should have been snapped up. However, it is becoming increasingly clear that the principals are just going through the motions by interviewing ATRs for their vacancies and claiming that the ATRs are not appropriate for the teaching positions. It is quite obvious to me the principals are hoping that before the October 30th deadline when the money for the vacancy is removed from the school, budget one of three things will happen.
Exemption Waiver: Many of the principals showed up to the ATR job fair to only reject the ATRs and use those rejections to apply for an exemption and obtain a waiver to hire a "newbie teacher". Over 125 such waivers have already been approved by Tweed and more are being considered daily. This was first reported by Anna Phillips of Gotham News and the ATR job fair is the first step for a Principal to obtain an exemption.
Newbie Special Education Teachers: The hiring of "newbie" special education teachers and using them for mainstream classroom teachers. It appears some principals have hired "newbie" special education teachers, where there is no hiring freeze, and are using them as long-term subs or even as mainstream classroom teachers. How widespread this is is now being investigated by the UFT. I will be very interested in the union's findings.
Hiring Freeze: Many principals are still holding out hope that Joel Klein will end the hiring freeze in October and there is some reason to believe that this is not just wishful thinking. However, given the economy and budget restraints, there is probably less than a 50% chance of the hiring freeze being lifted. There is a better chance for the freeze to be lifted for math and foreign language teachers in specific locations before October 30th..
Time will tell how successful the principals will be in getting Tweed to allow them to hire who they want. Remember it is not about the children, it is about the Principa's power. Children last continues going strong.