Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Doing Guidance at Bayard Rustin HS

Dear Randi:

I know you're busy, but I wanted you to know that things are becoming intolerable at Bayard Rustin. Half of the Guidance staff (the senior half) are being subjected to harrassment and asked to do things that make no sense. The upper school kids have holes in their programs and the four of us are being forced to write paper programs in the auditorium (not in our offices) from a master list of courses that is outdated (1/31/).

The result is chaos – students don't have complete programs, classes are not in session. On Friday I asked to do my work in my office which was filled with students. Because I didn't go down fast enough I was informed that I'm being charged with insubordination. All this while other Counselors who were asked also refused. I'm the only one being charged. This morning
again we were asked inexplicably to "fill program holes" in the auditorium with kids using the same master course list from 1/31 to make programs for classes that don't exist. Counselors were allowed to walk in and out, the AP. J. Serna, making an effort to keep them there whenever they tried to leave. It is absolute harrassment. I stayed there for 2 hours, unable to
do the rest of my work, leaving kids unserviced. I came back to find a memo asking for a list of promotion in doubt students by 10:00am tomorrow morning.

It is obvious they want to U rate me again and put me through a hearing and get me out of the system. This is abuse, it is torture. The other half of the guidance staff (the younger half) is currently at a Retreat upstate in the Catskills courtesy of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation that is backing the small school initiative. They are returning on Thursday. A
four-day vacation while the rest of us suffer. This is outrageous and as our union someone needs to come in and protect us from these abuses.

We need help. This is beyond wrong, we need some kind of protection.

I hope to hear from you soon.


Note: Last June, the principal of Bayrad Rustin sent A for a psychiatric exam, a common tactic used by principals to go after people. The most famous example is David Pakter who, after being judged unfit by a doctor doing the bidding of the DOE, bought along his own doctor, the well-known Dr. Albert Goldwasser and the medical office eventually reversed itself and Pakter won a significant victory. He has filed suits against a whole bunch of the people involved and may be suing the doctor who initially ruled on his case for malpractice.

When A sent out a call for help on the weekend before her medical, Pakter came to her rescue and paid Goldwasser out of his own pocket to appear with her. With Goldwasser along, the DOE quacks backed off and A was found to be ok and out of there in no time. (
The UFT has been urged to put Goldwasser on retainer to assist teachers in this situation, but without success.) The principal, not being able to get his pound of flesh, has renewed his assault this year.

The DOE and old BOE have used psychiatric exams by the corrupt medical office as a weapon for years. Francine Newman exposed this in her book "The Cannibals at 110 Livingston St." The UFT has provided little backup or support, all too often assuming the position [and YES, I mean it THAT way] - where there's smoke there's fire, if not actually taking the DOE's position, but playing a neutral role.

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