Sunday, August 07, 2011
The DOE's Open Market Transfer System Is Simply A Joke As Few, If Any, Senior Teachers Are Hired And Most Don't Even Get Interviews.
On Monday the DOE's Open Market Transfer System (OMTS) ends and few, if any, senior teachers were hired through the process. In many cases teachers who applied didn't even get a courtesy interview. First, let's look at the history of the OMTS. The OMTS was created by the DOE in the wake of the infamous 2005 contract that eliminated seniority-based bumping and worst of all eased the excessing restrictions in the District. In other words, the School District no longer had to fill their vacancies with excessed teachers before they offered them to "newbie teachers". The result was an explosion of excessed teachers, called ATRs that ranged from 1,200 to 2,800 teachers depending on the time of the school year.
The union hailed the OMTS by claiming principals were no longer able to hide their vacancies (before principals were allowed to hide 50% of their vacancies). "Unity's" top propagandist and supporter of the infamous 2005 contract, Leo Casey, once even bragged how well the OMTS worked in the first year. Of course this was before Tweed's "fair student funding formula" was implemented (However, I believe even those statistics showed that schools did not want to hire higher salaried teachers). Of course as the DOE's "fair student funding formula" was fully implemented and principals were financially punished if they hired a senior teacher, those statistics changed drastically. By 2008 even Leo Casey obviously realized there was a problem and not to embarrass his "Unity" bosses, he failed to follow up on these more disturbing statistics that reared their ugly head in age and salary discrimination for the years that followed. I know the UFT has the numbers, why don't they publish them?
Now we come to the end of the latest OMTS and nothing has changed. I am in a DOE shortage area and applied to ten vacancies as well as going to a "job fair". Despite being an excellent teacher, I did not get one interview, not one! Why? Because I am an older teacher and make too much money. Is it just me? No, I know many ATRs in my situation and not one I know received a job offer and almost all did not even get an interview. Worse, I overheard a conversation at the "job fair" between two administrators who talked about how they are are looking for young, inexpensive, and preferably untenured teachers in excess to fill their vacancies.
The OMTS is simply a "waste of time" if you are a senior teacher and seems only to work for younger, lower paid teachers looking to transfer to a better school. "Children first"? Don't make me laugh. It is really "children last...Always" as great teachers are no longer given the opportunity to compete for a vacancy if they are a senior teacher.
P.S. tell me your story about the OMTS.