Thursday, March 02, 2017

Senior Teachers Targeted At Thomas Edison High School























One of the better high schools in Queens is Thomas Edison High School located in the Jamaica Hill section of Queens.  The school is both screened and unscreened when it comes to student selection and has a fairly diverse student body.  If you look at their snapshot you will see they have a high "college and career readiness" score and is a school that I highly recommend if I was a parent with an academically proficient student   However, if you are a senior staff member there is a dark side to the school.

The school has, in the last few years, a reputation for targeting veteran teachers and has forced many of them to retire or risk getting an "ineffective" rating.  For the veteran teachers who refused to be pushed out, 3020-a charges and reassignment out of the school and into the DOE's informal "rubber rooms" are the result.  I was there for a month and heard many a horror story about what the administration did to senior teachers and was there when one senior teacher got her 3020-a charges for incompetence, despite getting a "developing " rating on both parts of her evaluation the last year.  Some senior teachers told me that they are leaving and some have left mid-semester due to the administrative harassment they experienced.

Now, in today's New York Post, a senior teacher, Alan Herz was served 3020-a charges simply based on some questionable but innocent statements he allegedly made to two students.  Fortunately, for Mr. Herz, the charges was not put in writing within 90 days of the investigation and by contract they are no longer chargeable.  Therefore,  the statements cannot be used in the 3020-a hearings. and was thrown out by the administrative law judge.  Now, the DOE wants a second bite of the apple and wants to recharge Mr. Hertz again for the same statements he made in 2014 and has filed a lawsuit to overturn the decision against the DOE.

In another case an activist Chapter Leader, Marilyn Martinez, a 12 year veteran with a child in the school, from the award winning and progressive Central Park East I elementary school was removed after supporting parents and staff run-ins with appointed Principal Monika Garg who is trying to remake the successful school into something less. The Superintendent not only had the Chapter Leader removed just before the February break and was served, with lightning speed, her 3020-a charges.  But believe it or not,  her hearing starts tomorrow! Read the entire sordid story at Ed Notes Online. 

Also read the massive protest by parents and staff at 100 Gold Street in support of the Chapter Leader.

These are just more examples how little has changed at the DOE under Bill de Blasio and his Chancellor Carmen Farina when it comes to abusive persecution of senior teachers that started in the Bloomberg era and continues unabated to this day.

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

Question: Why do you think that some schools are going after tenured teachers while other schools are going after probationary teachers? (Discontinue) My school has discontinued a few teachers but no tenured teachers have been targeted yet as far as I can tell. Any info on this is appreciated?

ed notes online said...

Marilyn is like a 12 year teacher - and her little kid goes to the school she teaches in -- so they also want her kid out of there too. These people are vicious swine. Little tin dictators.

Anonymous said...

Senior teachers are being targeted everywhere. The UFT does nada! No information on anything about ATR rotation or lack there of. Why are we paying dues? Only because we're forced to!

Anonymous said...

WOW... ATR Supervisor Justin Stark really is an evil tool!

Anonymous said...

It just seems to me that if a principal were to go after probationary teachers that it would be easier than going after tenured teachers. However, tenured teachers "cost" more than probationary teachers so they are a better target to eliminate. I guess each principal decides if they prefer to go after newbies which is like shooting fish in a bucket, or to go after a tenured teacher which is harder but in the long run will save the principal money. I truly think that superintendents have a quota that they expect principals to eliminate certain amount of teachers each year just to keep the fear level up in schools. However, the superintendents probably don't care if it is a probationary teacher or a tenured teacher since teacher salaries are a problem only for principals.

Anonymous said...

CANT WAIT FOR SCOTUS TO GIVE ME THE FREEDOM NOT TO FUND THESE THIEVES OF 52 PARK.

Anonymous said...

Systemic age discrimination. Where is the UFT or lack of UFT? Where is Rona Frasier hiding?

Anonymous said...

To targeted teachers and their colleagues:

Please email all the information that you have about teachers being targeted to the following members of the NYC Council, along with a request for investigations and public hearings:

Hon. City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito
MViverito@council.nyc.gov

Hon. City Council Education Committee Chairman Daniel J. Dromm
DDromm@council.nyc.gov

Hon. City Council Oversight and Investigations Committee Chairman Vincent J. Gentile
VGentile@council.nyc.gov

The more specific you are as to names, dates, and events, the better.

Anonymous said...

Chaz,

What are your sources saying on rotation etc?

It seems ATRs didn't rotate this month. Amy gives little to no response other than 1 or 2 word answers.

No vacancies re posted in excessed staff selection system.

Just get feeling that DOE and UFT are doing the 'let's say nothing' game

Your info is better than the union info so I get all info here

Chaz said...

7:15

Some ATRs are being rotated next week while others, myself included is not. Go figure?

Anonymous said...

THe entire system has been in complete confusion for many years now with the same stories day after day regarding senior teachers, newbies, etc. I guess for all its worth,the system is preparing for the transition of the BEtsy Devos school of thought where all thugs will be given more money and this time its for choosing another school besides the public school for which they now shit on. The students are going to try and attend other schools while the public schools, nycdoe, uft will be transitioning to another existance mainly filled with no nothing teachers and virtual learning with special needs kids for the most part. Chaz needs to focus on other aspects of the livelyhood current as the system continues to purge itself sad but true. Perception is reality people

Highly Effective King Clovis said...

What's amazing to me, or not amazing is the NY Post referencing "rate my teachers" in their article. Like really? I know the Post is just a rag but still. And while the comments are a little questionable, I've said worse and heard worse, far worse (mostly younger days before I learned). If anything, this should be an internal matter, counseling memo maybe. But to try and go after someone's job? Ridiculous.

I'm at the same school next week as I was this week. My supervisor told me she isn't sure what the deal is, some are being long term placed and some are not. What a mess.

Anonymous said...

The Queens UFT is a travesty led by Randi friend Rona Frieser believe me they do nothing zero to help members. Ask how many grievances have been filed in Queens during her leadership. They are a disgrace to unionism so it is not big surprise about the horrible principals that are there and allowed to continue. Bryant HS, Thomas Edison, Townshend Harris, Flushing, just the high schools should tell anyone how useless the UFT Queens office is and continues to be.

Anonymous said...

In Queens Gateway some of the teachers helping admin to take jobs from other teachers. Does not get lower that. What lowlifes
What is up Lopez, Bartolozzi, Yilmaz,Joandhi,Hoffstein, Akomodi,Trialonas? Who gives you right to raise your hands on others people families? What satisfaction do you get doing it beside a "bone" from the "masters'" table? Shame on you!

Bronx ATR said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I have noticed a lot of rat teachers out there lately myself. They go straight to the principal instead of hashing out problems with fellow teachers. Seems like it is mostly the newbies who are the rats these days. Damn millennials have no people skills. Sorry, but it is true. Veteran teachers know better than to go bring up BS on other teachers to admins. We work out our problems together as we are all in the same boat. Anybody else notice this?

Anonymous said...

For years now since I've been an atr I've noticed more rat teachers.

It's not just the young ones either.

There are more teachers out there who want to be buddy/buddy with administration. They go to happy hours together etc

One teacher was close to the principal that she invited the principal to her wedding.

This is all administration doing a work. I'll notice that sometimes APs will mention 'how the last ATR they had stunk.' Then they'll mention a name. I'll always say 'I don't speak of fellow union members behind their back'.

But teachers ratting other teachers out or saying to an AP 'so and so can't manage a class' or 'so and so stinks at teaching' is a problem.

Anonymous said...

Sadly and even if I were in a school I'd feel the same way.

The days of making new friends who are DOE teachers are over

I sit in the room during preps with the lights off, I won't go in the lounge and I'm very careful at what I tell colleagues.

It can all be used against you.

Some Teachers, and it's always been a problem, feel the APs and principal are their friend. It is not the case

They are the enemy and want to pit teachers against each other.

Anonymous said...

Roving ATR supervisors and bad leadership principals are targeting older teachers, so they can score a few points with TWEED while out Union is becoming a complete disgrace.

Anonymous said...

Dwarka likes new teachers, and she loves to rate older teachers ineffective.

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't Amy have a meeting or email to assuage our anxiety or at least her guilty conscience?

Anonymous said...

"In Queens Gateway some of the teachers helping admin to take jobs from other teachers. Does not get lower that. What lowlifes ….."
If youre talking about the school where Judy Henry is principal, note that this is her style. She is reputed to have said that as principal, she was responsible for two teachers suffering heart attacks, one of whom died. She loves to boast about the number of teachers’ licenses she has taken. She rules by decree and by deceit.
On October 25 2011, NY Post wrote about the cheating that went on in Science Skills Center High School when she was the principal, whereby teachers were instructed to prevent students from writing multiple choice answers in pen. With responses written only in pencil, the administration of the school was able to tamper with the exams and erase wrong answers and turn them into correct answers. Office of Special Investigation (OSI) deliberately warped the investigation and changed the terms of reference. According to the Post, Judy Henry was never questioned. nypost.com/2011/10/25/regents-slap-for-bklyn-principal/
Beverley Hall, her Jamaican compatriot, a former superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools would later be investigated and disgraced for similar activities. According to https://www.theatlantic.com/amp/article/432012/, In 2011, state investigators in Georgia found that almost 180 teachers and principals had illegally tampered with scores on state tests, both by telling students the right answers and by secretly correcting the work students handed in.
Because of the cheating, Science Skills Center High, in a wild swing moved from successive F grades to A’s (two years in a row) and the principal pocketed the bonus on each occasion and shared it with her APs only.
Encouraging her teachers to rat on each other is minor for this principal whom it is alleged tampered with the school learning environment survey to reflect parent approval. Instead of sending the survey to parents she had her staff improperly fill them out to give the school an improbably high approval rating, all contributing to the A rating which Science Skills miraculously received in 2010 and 11.
Who says cheating does not pay? It pays even more when you have your own posse around you.

Ms. Tsouris said...

No wonder they sent the former Francis Lewis HS sp ed supervisor to a new job at Edison. Now I know why. That person trained to marginalize and scream at senior teachers at FLHS, and now that person is taking those valuable skills over to Edison. Too bad their highest qualification was batting eyelashes.

Anonymous said...

We should sue the UFT.

Anonymous said...

They do not want to hire ATRs, they want to rate them U and hire newbies.

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:49: You are the real deal.Only we could know the toxic environs of teacher rooms, filled with lefty young punks spewing their msnbc worldview. One group gets up,then the next bunch comes in, same sh*t, all day! Yes, I stay in my room if I get a coverage,speak to no one under
50-it's a survival tactic. The only way to win is to survive!

Anonymous said...

As an atr I try not to speak to any staff members. I'm polite when addressed but try to keep the conversation short and sweet. I try to avoid the staff rooms but sometimes have no choice. They ignore me and I ignore them. many teachers have no idea about tier 6 or other contract provisions. They are so busy will the copious amounts of work they don't have time for anything else. 3 more years!!

Anonymous said...

its funny how little most DOE teachers know about ATRs and how people become them

I'm only 40 but wish I were older bc then I could leave the doe.

15 years and counting!

Why have Amy or mike sill not sent out an email about asher or rumored placement at?

Silence I do not like

Highly Effective King Clovis said...

Most teachers have been pleasant to me, but any who have not I just let them know, hey, you could be an ATR too. Doesn't matter how good you think your school is. If the DOE wants to shut you down, they will.

Anonymous said...

Dwarka breath smells. When she reprimands me I put a mask on. Sheee nasty!

Anonymous said...

They like her because she gets rid of older teachers. FariƱa loves her.

Paulina Cameron said...

The thing with the teachers is that you have to trust them. Their profession has obliged them to be nice and supportive of every student’s need whether it is motivating one or giving a student an advice on college level essay websites. Teachers are being both defended and punished in the article and the comments above, yet, still, it is our decision to trust or not to trust a teacher and just have the child homeschooled. Another option would be online learning, however, advantages of that method are still yet to be seen.

Anonymous said...

The only thing they trust is in bad Principals ruining our schools, and in cronysm.

Anonymous said...

I went to thomas edison, its a horrible school there's only one boys bathroom. They don't supply that bathroom with soap, toilet paper, locks on stalls and even permisson to use the bathroom. And also the teachers are mean and full of hate.