Tuesday, March 15, 2016
The DOE And UFT Have Made It Easier To Termminate Teachers.
Back in 2007 the UFT and DOE agreed to a voluntary program called "Peer Intervention Program Plus" or commonly known as PIP+. The theory behind the PIP+ program was to have an independent evaluator observe the teacher accused of incompetence and recommend possible improvements. However, the PIP+ evaluator was neither independent or fair and over 90% of the teachers who took the PIP+ program were found to be incompetent and forced to resign. retire, or be terminated in a 3020-a hearing where the Arbitrator almost always found the PIP+ evaluator to be an expert witness.
Interestingly, the union leadership told the Chapter Leaders to encourage these unfortunate teachers to take the PIP+ program without bothering to tell them that the PIP+ program was voluntary and that over 90% of the teachers lost their jobs. Instead, they told the Chapter Leaders that the PIP+ program would allow the teacher another six months without the school administration observing them and have an independent peer evaluate them. Unfortunately, the independent evaluator almost always sided with the Principal as they worked for a company that depended on DOE contracts and didn't want "to bite the hand that feeds it" by going against the Principal and finding the teacher competent. Hence the over 90% incompetence rate.
Now, with the new teacher evaluation program there is no need for the PIP+ program. Instead. after a teacher is found to be incompetent the first year he or she gets a peer validator and the first year of the peer validator program, over 70% of the teachers were found to be incompetent by the peer validators and I suspect the percentages will approach the old PIP+ number. Why do I say that? Well just read Betsy Combier's blog who published a letter from UFT lawyer Adam Ross that makes it virtually impossible to challenge a peer validator's decision Despite the UFT/DOE contract that claims that their main goal is to improve one's pedagogy. In fact, the Ross letter makes it clear that there is no teacher remediation but termination is the sole goal of the program. Moreover, once a peer validator finds the teacher incompetent its virtually impossible for the teacher to avoid termination in the 3020-a process. Who's side is our union leadership on? Certainly not the teachers side.' The letter is below.