Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Pensions, Merit Pay, Class Size and Collaboration....


...UFT Actions Speak Louder Than Words


Updated 10/26 pm

James Eterno has written a piece today for the ICE blog on the winners and losers in the pension and merit pay plan, apples and oranges that have been merged by the UFT leaders (call it an appor.) One of the little tidbits James points to is that the original agreement in the horrendous 2005 contract where little bombs were set on pensions and merit pay that meant teachers voted for the future 2007 agreement when that passed the 2005 contract:

With regard to the long term recommendations the 2005 Fact Finders made subject to adequate CFE funding, the parties shall establish a Labor Management Committee to discuss the following issues: a)bonuses, including housing bonuses, for shortage license areas; b) a pilot project for school-wide based performance bonuses for sustained growth in student achievement c) salary differentials at the MA-5 through MA-7 levels; and d) a program for the reduction of class sizes in all grades and divisions. If the parties agree on the terms of any or all of these issues, they may be implemented by the Board using whatever funds may be identified.

Note provision d on class size reduction the one item ignored. Are you surprised? We have claimed all along on issues such as high stakes tests and class size, watch what the UFT does, not what it says. The merit pay plan endorses high stakes testing and the entire agreement shows where the UFT really stands on class size. Actions certainly do speak louder than words.

TJC's Peter Lamphere and Megan Behrent have written a piece on the merit pay issue which I posted at Norm's Notes here.

Eduwonkette is running a series this week on performance pay from her usual research-based perspective. And 8 year Teach For America's (see, some do stay) Ms Frizzle seems willing to try it based on the fact there's trust in her school. Schools where there's none should probably skip jumping in. Of course, there's no accounting for the high percentage of lunatic, power-hungry principals. In my continuing saga - "The Play's The Thing" posted a few days ago, all incidents are exaggerations based on the reality of my school. And that principal would be one of the better ones today.

On Collaboration
The NY Teacher is covered with the word "collaborate." Now, we haev used that word to brand UFT Leaders as co-conspirators with BloomKlein, Eli Broad, etc in their attacks on public education adn unions. So it nice for them to affirm what we have been saying all along, branding them as today's version of Vichy. And the fact that Vichyssoise will be added to the menu at Executive Board meetings affirms this point.

People have been telling us they are a bit tired of the constant use of the word. So we have decided to assist our buddies at the NY Teacher in an effort to make the paper more interesting.

Synonyms for collaborate:

act as a team coact cofunction collude come together concert concur conspire
cooperate coproduce fraternize get together go partners hook on hook up interface join forces join together participate pool resources team up tie in
work in partnership work together work with

Add one more: sellout

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