Now that I am going to my fifth school and have already contact the Administration to see if they have a vacancy at the school in my subject area, they do not. I can safely say that the $4 million dollar ATR algorithm developed by the DOE is a failure. It is very obvious to me that the DOE algorithm simply randomizes the ATR's schedule within the District's schools without any thought of which schools are the best fit for the ATR. In my case, my first ATR assignment was in a school that didn't teach my subject! What is most disturbing is that our union claimed that the DOE algorithm was developed with the goal of matching the ATR with the proper schools that have vacancies in their field. It is very obvious to me that THE UNION LIED TO US!
It is bad enough that the DOE treats the ATRs as "second class citizens" and at the same time refuses to punish principals who hide vacancies which one ATR claims that the school she is in has five. But it is worse when our union leadership lies to us by telling us the DOE algorithm was well thought out and it is a great chance for ATRs to obtain a position. Worse is the union's inaction and lack of concern that principals are hiding their vacancies. In one outlandish case that I am personalty acquainted with the Principal refused to hire an ATR in a hard to place subject, despite the Assistant Principal's request to hire the ATR. Instead the principal hired a day-to-day sub who is not certified in the subject area. Just another outrageous example of "children last".
Sure the union will tell you how ATRs are offered vacancies but what they won't tell you are the vacancies are in the:
- "Worst schools with notoriously high teacher turnover".
- "Bad school administrations that are on the "do not apply" list.
- Low poverty schools who are going through restart or transformation.
Unfortunately, the union's propaganda machine continues to make the ATR crises into lemonade and it is not working. We ATRs see through the union's deception and it still is a lemon, sour taste and all. Tthe union needs to change their uncaring ways and at a minimum, do the following:
- Publicize the plight of the ATR and how the DOE algorithm is a failure.
- Pressure the DOE in making sure principals are filling their vacancies.
- Press conferences that not placing ATRs in vacancies is contrary to the DOE's "children first" policy.