Sunday, December 30, 2018

You Think Our Pay Raise Was Puny - Look What The Federal Employees Are Getting.

In our newest contract UFT members will be getting a puny 2% annual raise for the next three years and eight months, the length of the contract.  While our raises are less than than the inflation rate.  Pity the Federal civilian employees who had their 2.3% annual raise rescinded by President Donald Trump due to the budget impasse and his hostility to civilian public service employees.

The Senate proposed a 1.9% par raise but the House never voted on it.but the Democrats take over next weekend and can vote on the Senate proposal or come up with their own pay raise proposal in January.  See the article Here.

The military is exempt from the pay freeze.  They are getting a 2.6% annual pay raise for 2019.

I guess there is no happy new year for federal employees. Read the entire article Here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

The DOE Says No To Santa Claus.

According to the DOE, Santa Claus was refused a job with them because he is politically incorrect and cannot be hired by the DOE in any capacity.  Why has the DOE banned Santa Claus from employment?  Here's why.

Sexual Misconduct:
Santa Claus puts children on his lap without their permission and calls girls hoes.

Bullying and Corporal Punishment:
Santa Claus allows poor Rudolf to be bulled by other reindeer pulling his sled and threatens to put coal in the stocking of children who are bad.

Breaking And Entering:
Santa Claus goes down chimneys without approval of the homeowner and steals milk and cookies.

Santa Claus makes a list and checks it twice to determine if the child is naughty or nice.  According to the DOE no child is naughty.

Poor Santa Claus, he will never get a job with the DOE.

You can read my Santa Claus posts Here, Here, Here,  Here, Here, Here, Here, and Here.

Happy Holidays to all.


Saturday, December 15, 2018

More Closing Schools And That Means More ATRs.

The De Blasio administration has let it be known that more Renewal Schools will be closed at year's end.  This means more ATRs, especially veteran teachers since school based Fair Student Funding will discourage principals from other schools to pick them up.

How many Renewal Schools will close?  Probably five is a good estimate based upon their lack of students, low test scores, and teacher turnover.  Its possible that an additional Renewal School or two will be merged with other schools making more ATRs. This does not include trying to have teachers  reapplying for their positions like they did at Flushing and DeWitt Clinton High Schools.

Renewal Schools cannot attract academically proficient students simply by being identified as a struggling school and due to Fair Student Funding, quality teachers. Does that matter to the DOE that their own policies is a recipe or failure?  Of course not, best to blame the school for not improving then the DOE's  own failing policies.

What will happen to the remaining academically struggling schools?  I suspect they will eventually close or merge with other schools unless the schools are given specialized programs to attract academically proficient students and recruit veteran teachers, something the DOE has no plans to do,

You can read the entire article about the Renewal Schools and what will happen to them in Chalkbeat.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

My Response To The New York Post Editorial.

In Today's New York Post there is an editorial  that wants to end the teacher evaluation moratorium that links children's test scores with teacher evaluations.  The editorial falsely claims that the moratorium protects lousy teachers rather than the real reason for the moratorium.  That scientific studies have shown that a teacher accounts for only between 1% and 14% of a student's academic growth.

The New York Post editorial also failed to mention the  Sheri Lederman case where the judge found the linkage between teacher evaluations and her students growth was based upon an incorrect algorithm, "junk Science".

Furthermore, the  editorial failed to mention that the moratorium was limited tto grades 3 to 8.  High school teachers were still evaluated based on Regents test scores.

Finally, all teachers are evaluated by their administrators and if the teacher is lousy, they can be terminated. either immediately if they are untenured or, if tenured,  through an administrative hearing by a State appointed arbitrator.

Sunday, December 09, 2018

Just Another Terrible Principal

Leave it to New York Post columnist, Susan Edelman, to find some of the worst people working at the dysfunctional DOE.  In today's New York Post Susan identified a recently terminated Mew Rochelle high school Principal, Shadia Alvarez.

Leadership Academy alumni Principal Alvarez was terminated by the New Rochelle school board due to grade fixing and phony credit recovery. The investigative report that lead to her termination said the following:

Last week, the New Rochelle school district released an investigative report that found Alvarez had changed or fabricated 212 grades for 32 students who failed or did not complete online make-up classes needed for graduation. 

Ms. Alvarez had previous problems as a DOE Principal at Collegiate Institute for Math and Science in The Bronx. There Ms. Alvarez, was subject to separate OSI and SCI investigations and quit as Principal when the SCI report was completed.  She was accused of padding her overtime, not documenting her DOE credit card spending and leaving the school with a $114,000 debt.

Ms. Alvarez was also known as the "prom killer" as she threatened to cancel the prom unless the senior class had a 100% graduation rate, an impossible feat, especially for a Bronx high school.

The question is how did Ms. Alvarez get the Principal job at New Rochelle High School and who in the DOE hid the reports of Ms. Alvarez's misconduct and gave her a glowing recommendation?  Those DOE officials should be terminated as well.

Thursday, December 06, 2018

NYC Public School Students Had Lower English And Math Regents Passing Rates - So Much For DOE's Claim Of Academic Improvement.

It appears that the DOE's claim that students academic achievement is getting better took a major blow when the New York State Regents results came in.  Both in English and Math there were significant drops in the passing rate.  According to the New York Daily News, English passing rates dropped 7% from 77.7% last year to 72.2% this school year.   While the Math Regents drop was 9% from 66.2% to 60.5%.

While the English and Math Regents passing rate dropped, at the same time  the high school graduation rate increased.  This shows the disconnect between the graduation rate and student academic achievement.  In other words the New York City schools are graduating students who are unprepared academically for the adult world .

Interestingly, the DOE cited the improved graduation rate  as proof of student academic achievement  while claiming that the lower Regents passing percentage was due to this year's harder Regents which the State denies. Based upon my previous posts on the graduation rate, I suspect the State is correct.

Further proof, I did an analysis of all Queens, unscreened high schools and that shows the disconnect. In addition, here are the Queens high schools that had poor college readiness scores.

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Why Doesn't The Union Fight To Eliminate School-Based Fair Student Funding?

In 2005, them UFT President, Randi Weingarten badly miscalculated and agreed to eliminate seniority transfer, which allowed the DOE to impose school-based Fair Student Funding (fsf).  Ms. Weingartem's miscalculation was that she didn't think that the DOE would allow ATRs to be without a classroom and pay 150 million dollars yearly.  However, Chancellor Joel Klein and Mayor Michael Bloomberg believed it was worth the extra cost to eliminate veteran teachers and close schools while hiring inexpensive "newbies" in their "education on the cheap" policy.   Of course Fair Student Funding did not affect the union leadership, only their rank and file members were affected by this perverse and discriminatory policy. 

The main reason the union leadership didn't fight fsf is that they are not affected by the policy.  Moreover, it doesn't hurt that they get double dues from the 1,300+ ATRs and the "newbies" hired by the schools in place of them.  Finally, why should the UFT President, Michael Mulgrew, butt heads with his friend the Mayor?  Better to have 1,300+ ATRs being glorified babysitters, with no right to refuse forced placements,  than advocating for their placement back in the classroom and pissing off his buddy the Mayor.

Sunday, December 02, 2018

Wiil Principal Louis Pavone Be Removed From PS/IS79 In Long Island City For Drunk Driving?

Principal Louis Pavone was spotted by the police making an unsafe lane change and was found to be drunk.  He was arrested for a DUI.  If  Mr. Pavone was a teacher, he would be removed from the school and reassigned until his case was adjudicated.

However, Mr. Pavone is a Principal and will probably be allowed to run his school while his DUI charge runs its course.

 This is known as the DOE "double standard" that assumes administrators are innocent until proven guilty, while teachers are assumed guilty and reassigned from their school.

You can read the entire New York Post article Here.