Wednesday, September 15, 2010
The Story Of Ebony & Ivory - In The Bizarro World Of The DOE, Settlements Are Made With "Bad Teachers" Who Are Threats To The Students And Staff
Some teachers may object to this post because it seems to give credence to the DOE perverted philosophy that teachers who are reassigned, ATRs, and advocates are "bad teachers". However, the truth be told there are some "bad teachers" out there. This article is about two of these "bad teachers" who were not only kicked out of their schools but caused trouble at the reassignment center. These two teachers, despite their terrible behavior, were incredibly given very lenient settlement terms by the DOE legal services and were sent to unsuspecting schools where they will be doing more damage to both the students and staff by their behaviors. By contrast some of the "great teachers" who were sent to the reassignment center on frivolous and embellished charges were either offered harsh settlement terms or have elected to go through their 3020-a hearings.
To understand the sense of injustice and hypocrisy by the bizarre DOE legal services you need to understand the behaviors of these two individuals. Let's call them Ebony and Ivory.
Ebony was a very disrupted influence at the reassignment center. She, time and again got into arguments with both other teachers and the site supervisor. It was a monthly occurrence for her to call the police on the most frivolous of incidents. She was always insubordinate to the site supervisor and refused to follow the rules that other reassigned teachers followed. Ebony had previously finished a 3020-a and for some reason was not placed in a school' However, she caused so much trouble at the reassignment center that the DOE filed new 3020-a charges based upon her behavior at the reassignment center and yes she received two consecutive unsatisfactory ratings while at the reassignment center. This person's dangerous behavior would make you believe that this is the type of teacher who the DOE would never settle with. Guess again, the DOE settled with Ebony for a small fine and a course thereby exposing the poor students of the unsuspecting school she is assigned to.
Ivory was a troublemaker from day one. She has a bad habit of disappearing for long periods of time and was known to show up to punch in and come back at checkout time. She accused many of the males of making inappropriate advances and sexual remarks, including the union representative and the site supervisor. She also called the police on occasion for imaginary actions directed against her and was herself arrested for threatening another teacher with a sharp object. A month did not go by without Ivory getting a disciplinary hearing on her time and attendance issues or her behavior. As you can guess she also received two consecutive "unsatisfactory ratings while reassigned. Ivory is a threat to everybody that are exposed to her and yes, just like Ebony, Ivory settled with the DOE for a small fine and a class. Just unbelievable!
How bizarre, the DOE tries to terminate "great teachers" while settling with "bad teachers" who are threats to the students, staff, administrators, and themselves. Go figure.
Labels: 3020-a, bad teachers
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What a big surprise to learn the stories of Ebony and Ivory and the way they were being handled by DOE! Getting rid of BAD teachers never was the primary objective of the rubber room, it was created first and foremost to terrorize the whole staff and to punish any teacher who dares to stand up for his or her rights.
The Ebonies and the Ivories are nothing but bullies, a bully is willing and ready to submit when a bigger bully shows up, and the big bully-DOE never really feels being threatened by the Ebonies and the Ivories.
A bad teacher is inconvenient but never a threat, an independent good teacher is often perceived as a real threat to some admins.
If one or both were black, I bet the DOE was afraid of being sued - so the bigger bullies won.
Be it concentration camps, Russion gulags, Chinese Laogan camps, or NYC rubber rooms, they are all created by Hitler, Stallin, Mao and Bloomberg not for the social deviants, but created to purge social dissidents under the pretexts of Jewish conspirators, agents of the west, anti-revolutionaries, or bad teachers for a change.
I venture to say the likes of Ebony or Ivory are not too different from many of the admins, and both Ebony/Ivory and admins know it. they are no different from two sides of the same coin.
Perhaps they received the generic settlement DOE is doling out in an effort to empty the rubber rooms.
Not true. One of my friends is a great teacher and the DOE offered him a one year suspension while another was offered resignation for a year of pay. Both are excellent teachers and were targeted by their Principals.
Ebony and Ivory sound just like the characters who performed everyday in my reassignment center... They never got tired of making the lives of the other teachers a living hell. It was one scenario after another and they always got away with it in the end.
Ebony and Ivory are similar to various individuals that I had the misfortune of knowing while I was in the Rubber Room and are the reason why I will always support the closing of the Rubber Rooms. That kind of behavior cannot take place now that we have been split up and are surrounded by normal people who are busy doing their normal jobs. The situation is not ideal, and there are definite disadvantages, but the crazy acting out is over. I don't know how you can be sure about the outcome of their cases, which is confidential. However, assuming that they did receive a very light punishment compared to others just confirms what I always suspected--some people were planted in the Rubber Rooms to make life a living hell and to give us all a bad reputation.
I hope your friends counter-offered the DOE settlement offer.
Everybody I know who went into mediation has had problems with it. The mediators (arbitrators) seem to pressure the teachers to take the DOE settlement conditions. The original offers were very harsh but have softened somewhat under pressure to meet the December 31st deadline. However, most of the settlement offers in mediation were similar to offers that the DOE offered before mediation.
Mediation often splits differences. Teachers need to know that and the NYSUT lawyers know that. A harsh DOE offer for a frivolous 3020a should be met with a response of "withdraw the false charges, compensate me for the specific damages done (physical, emotional, future earnings potential, missed per session", I am suing you, blah blah blah". The NYSUT lawyer (who is not to be trusted by the way) has to know/believe that the teacher actually means it. The teacher should present a professional yet 'outraged' posture each and every time he/she has communication with their NYSUT attlrey. That means in the odious off-the-record discussion between the lawyers and mediator the counter offer will be repeated and DOE will realize the teacher is serious. And then as the negotiations begin the teacher has items they can reluctantly peel off their demands as DOE peels off items from their harsh offer. And teachers should come with their prescriptions, lawyer correspondence, per session pay stubs, etc.
The babe in the woods teacher facing false or frivolous charges is looking to become a victim. I suppose ebony and ivory might play the system better than other teachers.
For some teachers the realistic goal might be a complete withdrawal of charges and for others it might be a 'letter of counselling'. That is far less than a letter of reprimand and allows for a comprehensive written response attachment.
Without rambling, you may have noticed that arbitration often, if not usually, results in lower punishments than the BOE settlement offers. Especially if the charges are frivolous and do not involve harm to a student. It may be the same for this new mediation process.
Fascinating last comment (6:44). I'd love to copy it into its own post and circulate.
Let's start with the mediation process. It is not really mediation. Usually the mediator tries to pressure the teacher to take the DOE settlement terms rather than ask for a counter offer.
Some arbitrators are known to give very harsh sentences and therefore it might be easier to take a settlement offer. Consequently , it is important to know your Arbitrator's history.
Finally, the DOE must prove their case and usually they have trouble getting the students in.
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