Sunday, December 06, 2015

A Week Of Principals Acting Badly.


Here we go again and the newspapers and blogs are full of principals who are acting badly.  Be it having their own personal shower and refusing to supply a key to it to others, a Principal who's decision cost the DOE over $100,000 to settle a case against her, and least we forget the four principals at a campus who tried to bully and jeopardize the safety of their staff into using the same door as the students while allowing themselves use of a separate door to their cars in the parking lot.  Yes, this was a bad week for principals and what has our disappointing Chancellor did about it?  Nothing.  Nothing whatsoever!

First, there was the Principal of DeWitt Clinton High School Santiago Traveras who embarrassed the DOE when the New York Post exposed his personal bathroom with a shower in it.  You can read the entire sorry Santiago Traveras story Here.  Now it seems the DOE, clearly embarrassed by the shower, went into the school and dismantled the shower.  According to the New York Post, the key to the locked door that contained the shower could not be found and the workmen had to use a drill to get it open!  Yet Chancellor Carmen Farina has allowed Principal Santiago Traveras to remain as Principal.  Go figure?

Second, was the Principal of William Cullen Bryant High School, Namita Dwarka who has somehow remained in charge of her school despite the many allegations and investigations lodged against her and her administration.  You can find all the sordid details Here.  Now it seems one teacher won a major settlement against her and the DOE, rather than defend her, decided to pay off the teacher, remove the bogus 3020-charges she filed against him, and sent him to the ATR pool in the Bronx The Daily News article can be found Here.  This is just another reason that Namita Dwarka should have been removed from her position but has Chancellor Carmen Farina done so?  Of course not!

Finally, the four principals at Springfield Gardens Campus acted badly when they decided to force the campus staff to use the same door to enter and leave the budding with the students, while exempting school administrators from the requirement..  In fact, one Principal was ready to hold  a disciplinary hearing against a teacher who accidentally used a different door to exit the school on the first day of the new rules.  The entire punitive and vindictive story can be found in my blog Here.  Will any of these principals be disciplined for their poor decision making that the DOE was forced to rescind when a grievance was filed?.  Yeah right, if you believe in the tooth fairy.

The UFT and DOE talk about collaboration and a new tone but these cases highlight the double standard the DOE practices when it comes to principals acting badly, a hallmark of the previous Bloomberg Administration and continues under Bill de Blasio..

26 comments:

Anonymous said...

Those Avonte alarms are causing problems and inconveniences everywhere- another example of Bill DeB reacting to headlines and then leaving it to the schools to figure out yet one more crazy mandate. I know of one large building with 40 doors to alarm that DOE gave 3 spare batteries to- they go off all day and then die out in a month. Whose the real Chancellor of Schools- Farina or the NY Post???

Philip Nobile said...

Let us not forget that Farina made no push to have Kathleen Elvin, Dewey's corrupt former principal, prosecuted for falsifying grades which is a crime under state education law §225-Section 225: “A person who shall: Knowingly and willfully make an unauthorized and false alteration or representation of any grade ... of any student with respect to a school or college under the supervision of the regents, the commissioner, or the university of the state of New York.”

The DOE and the Attorney General's office has a long sordid history of letting rogue principals retire without facing the full extent of administrative or criminal law.

Anonymous said...

Phil,
I want you to know a dirty little secret - Farina and the DOE know that many principals are inflating grades. Not only to they turn a blind eye to it, they encourage if. Without it almost all high schools would be scheduled for closure. Worse diBlasio would look like more of buffoon than he already does and Eva would come in for the kill. If I were a teacher who cared I wouldn't report anything, you'll be doing away with your own job, while ushering in Charter schools.

Philip Nobile said...

To Anonymous 6:42:
You are on the right track. Obviously,nobody in the system cares about false grades because they make everybody look good. When have we ever heard a Chancellor, Superintendent, or Principal demand honest grading. I once told OSI Deputy Director Chris Dalton that there was a simple way to catch wayward principals: compare Regents scores before and after the switch to distributed grading. Schools that showed radical drops in scores should be investigated. Offer immunity to intimidated teachers, not the administrators, and the evidence of cheating would overflow--just as it did with immunized teachers at Cobble Hill in 2004. Dalton said that OSI had a policy of denying immunity to teachers (thus guaranteeing cover-up)and lacked the personnel to do the job (meaning lack of nerve). Remember, Beverly Hall, Atlanta's late criminal Superintendent, was Farina's contemporary in the DOE and surely learned tampering in our system.

Anonymous said...

Phi,
Thank you for the fabulous idea. I'll fillet that big putz.
Andy

Aixa Rodriguez said...

please look into brendan lyons who is the famous plunger principal who is now going after an award winning nationally recognized teacher and AIDS Activist Tom Porton.

Anonymous said...

DWARKA has broken so many laws but our political leaders continue to protect her.

Anonymous said...

Phil, do you know if anyone has been filing Part 83 complaints with NYSED?

www.highered.nysed.gov/tcert/respublic/teacherdiscipline.html

https://govt.westlaw.com/nycrr/Browse/Home/NewYork/NewYorkCodesRulesandRegulations?guid=If811fe70ab3811dd9e3f9b6a3be71c54&originationContext=documenttoc&transitionType=Default&contextData=%28sc.Default%29

http://nycrubberroomreporter.blogspot.com/2015/02/new-york-state-education-departments.html

Anonymous said...

Passing rates for the regents are plummeting also with these leadership principals.

Anonymous said...

We all have to admit one thing for sure. Donald Trump said he could not believe how dishonest the media is!!! I guess we as educators truly do agree with Trump in the fact of how dishonest the press is today. i mean we now have a press that is more corrupt than society so the news now is really how corrupt the media news is...strange but evil people in the press these days. The one comforting thing to watch however is how frustrated the press is with Trump because the press continues to try and write crazy off the wall stories trying to rid Trump but every story they put out backfires as Trump continues to go up in the polls...Screw you bull crap media lying bastards...you met you match with mr trump and next you will be listening to his new rules ....got it....put a spin on that.

Anonymous said...

Wow, this video of dwarka interview is so disturbing i could not help but post it for all to see what is has come down to regarding nycdoe. Imagine, this woman is in love with herself and really thinks she is someone of honor or that she is a success in life....omg..what a sham and what a joke.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUySqfH72Ok

Anonymous said...

No shower in the principal's office! What exactly is that smell eminating from him? Oh, you'll know it. He might not let you get too close, though. Mulgrew has the same odor.

Anonymous said...

To 9:59,
I'm shocked that so many liberal teachers I know are openly supporting Trump. It just shows the incredible amount of displeasure we all have with those who are controlling our society. The media being the worst. They really hate him! Another plus for Trump. When Randi endorsed Hillary for all of us, Trump's popularity with teachers skyrocketed. (You won't hear that from anyone, but it's true.) I can't vote for Trump, appealing though he may be.

Anonymous said...

The DOE is allowing these principals to commit fraud which is against the law.

Anonymous said...

Another teacher in this dump quit yesterday. The city is going to need more ATRs and subs. There's nothing keeping them- no tenure, not vested, and treated like absolute shit. None of them are going to get a pension. That stark reality is hitting many and off they go.

Anonymous said...

Referring to bad principals, all ATRS should watch out for the principal at International H.S. for Liberal Arts in the Bronx in the Walton campus. She is a real tyrant and terrorizes ATRs. She also is the type of principal who sends ATRS to other schools in the building. If this happens, Uft advised to call the UFT office, or at worst, the chapter leader and advise them. But you have to go to the school or it can be considered insubordination. Go, but immediately call or get UFT involved. They will have to call the principal and tell her to give you a schedule in the school you are assigned to. Only the DOE can change your school assignment. ATRS are not on loan to other schools who share a building. If we don't speak up for our rights as ATRS they will continue to abuse us. ATRS have been complying with this lending issue and this is why these principals are getting away with violating the few rights we have. Make the call, don't just go and not say something.

Anonymous said...

You can flat out refuse to go to another school in the building. Our weekly emails tell us to disregard any and all statements to stay or go any schools other than the one we are sent to by HR. They try that in the Evander campus and Columbus as well. They know what they're doing is wrong. That useless Arundel used to send out an email explaining our rights to us and principals. There's a lot of new ATRs who don't know. I saw three 60 year old ATRs hauling heavy boxes up several flights of stairs in Banana Kelly. They were afraid to say no. (ATRs have to stop being so pussified - the CLs, UFT or Arundel aren't going to do shit for you.) Guess what happens if one of them drops dead or ends up in the hospital? "Oh, too bad, they should have refused - Next!"

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:50 you are correct about the letter stating that you should ignore any instructions from other people, but that could mean instructions in writing. I just went through this situation. I called the UFT office first to make sure that they cannot send ATRS to different schools in the same building and was told to speak to the principal and if she gets nasty call them back or get the chapter leader involved. I spoke to the principal and she basically yelled at me and said she can send me where ever she wants. I told her no, only in her school. She ranted and raved and said for me to sit in the office. I called the Bronx district rep, Lara, he called the principal and spoke to her. They then gave me a schedule in the school I was assigned to. Lara said that it is better to call the UFT and let them handle it so that the principal cannot retaliate against you by writing you up as being insubordinate. Right or wrong, refusing to follow a principals direcive is insubordination even if they are wrong. The best action is "cover your ass!" Lara did come to the school and spoke to the principal in person. She has not said a word to me since. Cover your ass! Don't handle this situation in a way where they can retaliate against you.

Anonymous said...

The Union is useless, they created this ATR problem to get rid of veteran teachers.

Chaz said...

Anon 5"11

Let's get it straight. The DOE created the ATR issue. Our union just rolled over and played dead.

Anonymous said...

1:52,
Within reason. I know a lady who was put in a stairwell for six weeks. I know another who was asked to mop the staff room floor and yet another who was forced to be the elevator operator during Teacher - Parent Night. You need not be aggressive to be assertive. Technically if an ATR supervisor comes in and you're not in your assigned building, you can be brought up on charges. The principal will say gee wiz, I didn't know. I've told 2 principals this year I'm not putting my livelihood on the line so they can be owed a favor by another principal. Lincoln freed the slaves.

Anonymous said...

Union is in BEHIND the "teacher firing movement." The quicker people understand this , the quicker they will understand what is really going on in the DOE.Teachers that are tier 4 will all be in ATR pool soon.

Anonymous said...

I am 1:52...My point is simple "cover your ass!" I'm no fan of the union, but this time they came through for me.

Anonymous said...

1:52 again. I have also politely refused lesser assignments regarding physical labor. No one can force you to do anything that is not related to teaching. These people should speak up for themselves instead of just doing it.

Anonymous said...

Unity is behind this systemic age discrimination, and only a class action lawsuit will reverse the course.

Anonymous said...

AIN'T THAT the TRUTH!!