Wednesday, April 14, 2010
These Stupid Politicians Are Dead Men Walking
Two misguided politicians, Assemblyman Jonathan Bing from the Upper East Side and State Senator Ruben Diaz from the Bronx were asked by lobbyists from the City to sponsor a bill that would eliminate New York Civil Services protections for determining teacher layoffs by seniority and replace it with a Principal directed procedure to determine the layoffs by different means.
The New York Times reported that the seniority based layoffs will be replaced by a school committee of administrators, teachers, and parents. However, we all know that the Principal will have the ultimate decision-making authority and it will be based upon the Principal's likes and dislikes as well as the teacher's salary. Not only is this proposal "wishful thinking" but is dead on arrival.
This misguided proposal, if accepted, would start a slippery slope of eroding the State's Civil Service protections that the unions have painstakingly built upon to ensure all public employees have fair and equatable treatment. Therefore, all the State, Municipal, and Local unions will rally against this blatant erosion of Civil Service rights. As for the two misguided politicians? They should be "dead men walking" as the unions should organize a campaign against their reelection and make sure they can never win again. Not even for dogcatcher! The unions must impress upon all the Assemblymen and State Senators that there are serious consequences for sponsoring bills against Public Service employees and that should be funding their opponents and taking out ads against these politicians.
To date, Michael Mulgrew's reaction to this outrageous and dangerous proposal was Randi-like (a very bad sign). Rather than strongly condemn the proposal he was bringing up the fact that in can cause high teacher turnover and destabilize the schools like in Washington D.C. Norm Scott in ednotes online said it best in saying:
It's economics, stupid, not about quality teachers
Sure, that is the reason to oppose the bill. To stop teacher turnover. Why not make the point that if they get rid of every single teacher who makes over $70,ooo they can keep lots more teachers? And why is the DOE still advertising new jobs? It's time for the UFT to start calling a spade a spade. Call this the BloomKlein version of a "buyout." Just fire all the senior teachers and save a whole lot of money. The "fire one and keep two" plan.
Norm's entire article can be found here.
I expect our union President to show these two politicians who is boss and punish them by helping them leave office as quickly as possible. Michael Mulgrew's tepid response so far is very discouraging and where is the strong rhetoric we heard before the election? I will be watching to see if Michael Mulgrew is a man of action or just a male version of Randi Weingarten.