Wednesday, September 24, 2008

UFT Hypocrisy on Merit Pay Exposed

I'm working with the Justice Not Just Tests group from NYCORE to campaign against all forms of merit pay. An excellent pamphlet is being prepared that we want to distribute to schools that accepted and rejected merit pay, so let me know if you are interested in helping us get this out if you are in one of the shcools or have access to someone.

I almost missed this post on the issue from NYC Educator. It is posted here, but it needs to be reposted again so I am including most of it.

A recent post by Leo Casey in Edwize criticizes the School Progress Reports that the DoE issues (you know, the ones that give "A"s to schools the state classifies as "persistently dangerous"). I agree, of course, that there is fluctuation from year to year, and that the variation from one year to the next is not all that significant.

What, in particular, did Mr. Casey find troubling about these reports?
One small problem: they are not reliable.
He'll get no argument from me. Here, though, is what strikes me as odd--when I read this article in NY Teacher about UFT merit pay (you know, the merit pay system that absolutely is not a merit pay system, like the sixth class you teach Monday to Thursday that is absolutely not a sixth class), I can't help but notice the following:

The criteria for awarding bonus money to a school will be aligned with the Department of Education’s new School Progress Reports and entail various benchmarks, more than just standardized test.

Now this is where I really get confused. Since the School Progress Reports are not valid, why would Ms. Weingarten and Mr. Casey base the not-merit pay system on them? I mean, I've been reading Edwize and NY Teacher for years, and the one thing I've learned is that the UFT patronage mill never makes mistakes about anything, no matter what.

Hey, NYC. You must have an iron constitution. When I read Edwize, which is almost never, I get a tummy ache. Bromo, anyone?


  1. I was bothered by this also.

    It is so clear to me — as it has been to you, Norm, for maybe a decade and to so many others as well — that the unnatural, incestuous co-dependency of Klein and Weingarten is unhealthy for the profession.

    This is what happens when two non-educator lawyers try to make a monopoloy game out of scholarship and learning.

  2. Norm, I will give the info you guys are working on about the merit pay. My school opted in. We went from a "C" to an "A" therefore we are supposed to get the pay at the end of Oct. We decided to split it evenly amongst all UFT members. Test scores were mentioned, but I squashed that proposal immediately. When I found out that the principal will also get money on our backs I was angry. Why should a principal get 7000$ for sitting in the office?? Also in my case the principal recieved a 4 out of a possibe 10 on the surveys from the teachers. Where is the accountability there??If I had known this I would have swayed my folks to vote NO! I plan to mention this bull shit in an email to the wonderful Mr. Klien.


Comments are welcome. Irrelevant and abusive comments will be deleted, as will all commercial links. Comment moderation is on, so if your comment does not appear it is because I have not been at my computer (I do not do cell phone moderating). Or because your comment is irrelevant or idiotic.