Sunday, October 22, 2017

Behind The Drop In 3020-a Terminations. The 2014 Teacher's Contract.

In today's New York Post, Susan Edeleman  published data that showed that under Bill de Blasio teacher terminations dropped, when compared to the final year of the Michael Bloomberg administration.  If one looked simply at the numbers, Ms. Edelman is correct.  However, if one looked deeper into the numbers they would find that many senior teachers, eligible for retirement, took a deal to retire rather than fight the 3020-a charges and risk losing up to $50,000 of retro money owed to them, thanks to the 2014 teacher's contract.

According to the article last year there was 127 educators who went through their 3020-a hearings and only 34 resulted in termination, or 27%    Compare that to the 2012-13 school year when 55 of 122 were terminated, or 45%.  I suspect the numbers are accurate but it does not tell the entire story.  In fact, 3020-a charges remain high during the Bill de Blasio Mayoralty.

The total amount of educators who went through their 3020-a hearings were basically the same for the two years, 127 under De Blasio and 122 under Bloomberg.  Only the amount of terminations were different, 27 under De Blasio compared to 45 under Bloomberg. . Critics claim the difference is due to sloppy prosecutions, weak cases, and Bill de Blasio's closeness to the teacher's union.  However, the real reason is the 2014 teacher's contract.

The 2014 teacher's contract had some very unique features in it.  For example, all the retroactive raises and lump sum payments were paid out in drips and drabs and members will not be made whole until 2020.  Moreover, educators who resigned, died, or were terminated would no longer get their money owed to them.  Consequently, many senior teachers were unwilling to go through their 3020-a hearings if they thought termination was a possibility,

The simple fact that senior teachers, eligible to retire, decided to settle their cases by irrevocably retiring, rather then lose up to $50,000 in retro and lump sum payments and since the DOE saves up to $100,000 or more by settling cases, its a win for the DOE.  They get rid of the educator for good and don't need to pay the financial costs of a full blown 3020--a hearing.  Of the 184 educators who took a settlement, I suspect that many, if not most of them, irrevocably retired due to the fear of being terminated and losing a significant sum of money and that's why there were less terminations under Bill de Blasio than Michael Bloomberg, thanks to the 2014 teacher's contract.


Anonymous said...

I just feel everyday that my admins are looking to fire me.

Even though I was rated Highly Effective last year (thank you MOSL) and even though I am under the radar and they don't harass me like they do others, I was under fire three years ago by a different admin for no reason, so I understand the psy-ops terrorism that the DOE teaches its admins (who are now 'business managers') to perform to keep everyone off-balance and docile.

Hah! Any business run like the DOE these days would fail due to low employee morale. I see the admins throwing 1's and 2's at their 'this year's targets' and I know how easily it could turn on me. There is no rhyme or reason to it. How can you be in good spirits about your employment (and livelihood) when you work in an environment like this?

I'm almost 50, approaching that DOE-will-fire-you-any-moment age. Yes, the age discrimination is real. I am too old to start over in a new career, as Bloomberg was always fond of telling teachers to do. I sometimes wonder if I'll make it the 8 years I need to retire, and I am held up as an exemplary employee often enough.

The Eye of Sauron can turn in your direction at a moment's notice. I am investing and paying down debts and trying to prepare a back up plan. I have 8 years to go. Can I or anyone make it to retirement these days if you have that kind of amount left? Seems the ones who have only 2-3 years left are safe.

I think the effort to 'clean out the old wood' will ramp us soon. Despite all the DOE data cheating, the bells and whistles and fads of the moment, Jose and Shaniqua are not really making much progress, as measured by college readiness scores. We try so hard to help them, but you cannot compete with the street and all the stresses in their lives.

ATR 25/55 said...

I read the article and my only response was "Where is this 'powerful teachers union' they keep speaking of?" All these so-called experts and reporters keep peddling this lie. A "powerful" union would have rejected the 2014 contract outright, instead of selling a very flawed proposal to it's members. A "powerful" union would not have even entertained the idea of giving away seniority rights for nothing in return. A "powerful" union would be demonstrating against corrupt, dishonest and downright criminal administrators each and every chance they had. A "powerful" union would make sure the the contract is followed to the letter. And a "powerful" union would initiate lawsuits to protect it's members from discrimination. No, it is not the "powerful" union protecting our jobs but civil service laws and the Constitutionally protected right to due process. And even then the 3020a hearings are a crap shoot. The "powerful" union straw man argument has been used to bash teachers for far too long by all critics, regardless of ideology.

Anonymous said...

I have friends who went thru a 3020a. They're are being fined.
They said they should of retired. It is hard to save the money
even though it comes out of their checks.One paid in the upper
twenty thousand dollars range.

Anonymous said...

About 30% of teachers make it to retirement. Senior teachers are forced
to retire or be unhappy. All they care about their budgets.A Principal
would get in more trouble for over budget then a student not learning.
Also discrimination for teachers and students.Most ATR's are over 50 and minorities
Most students that don't make the grade are minorities.

Anonymous said...

Pretty soon they will not have enough teachers in the 50s to torture. Thank you Fariña and Mulgrew.

Anonymous said...

And they will begin to torture the teachers in their 40s. They will just go down the ranks. Nothing really will stop them. This ideology of churn lives on.

Highly Effective King Clovis said...

I know a woman who has survived some 3020a's and is being put through another one. I'd be screwed if I went through one as she is meticulous over the things she keeps. Thing is she is an ATR and the principal really has no reason to do this besides pettiness. Sad.

Anonymous said...

They keep targeting the same people. It is a sick system.