Written and edited by Norm Scott:
EDUCATE! ORGANIZE!! MOBILIZE!!!
Three pillars of The Resistance – providing information on current ed issues, organizing activities around fighting for public education in NYC and beyond and exposing the motives behind the education deformers. We link up with bands of resisters. Nothing will change unless WE ALL GET INVOLVED IN THE STRUGGLE!
Time to put an end to The Discontinued - Dreaded D Teacher Blacklist at NYCDOE
Ed Notes has been covering the story of the Dreaded D - Discontinue - since teachers who have been blackballed by the vicious act of principals who were handed a loaded gun by the DOE without a peep from the UFT. Only non-tenured can be discontinued - where a mark is placed in the computer system and even if another principal wanted to hire them they couldn't.
The teacher is out of your school, so why would you give a shit if someone else wants to hire them? Only a personal grudge would lead to such a despicable act.
a discontinued teacher, I completely understand the experience. I find
that principals have too much and little is done to check and balance
it. Principals know they have a better union than the UFT and know that
have been discontinued and U rated and I have been subbing in 2 other
NYC public schools. The AP's in both schools picked up my resume
(through networking). In fact, one of the AP's loves my classroom
management and ...
Olga Livanis gave out 7 U ratings and a Discontinue to a non-tenured
and popular teacher last year, in addition to driving at least one top
notch fed-up teacher into resigning. The D is a career-ender (vs a U
the Discontinue that kills a teacher's career immediately. Revamp DOE
Legal and OSI. I will not be cheering for Carmen Farina until I see some
changes in these policies. She ought to walk across the street one day
on to the UFT. If you find you are blacklisted by the dreaded D and ask
the UFT for help you will get 12 different answers. The most common is:
Don't worry, that is only for your district. You can be hired by
the years we at ICE have been contacted by a number of teachers who
received the Dreaded D rating which basically blackballs them from
teaching under their license again even if another principal wants to
name is Jennifer and she is in her early twenties. She wanted to be a
teacher since she was a little girl. It’s August and she gets the call
that her interview at a local elementary school went well. Principal
Higgins wants her to fill an opening for a 5th grade position. Jennifer
and her family of teachers are ecstatic. Then, several months later and
out of the blue, it happened. Without even realizing it, Jennifer
crossed Principal Higgins by questioning some change in assignment and a
preparation period she felt she was owed. Suddenly, Jennifer stopped
receiving "satisfactory" observation reports and began receiving several
"unsatisfactory" ones. Principal Higgins then rated Jennifer
unsatisfactory for her first year final rating. Jennifer was devastated.
It didn’t make sense. The students and parents liked her. She received
unofficial praise from the assistant principal, but to Principal Higgins
Jennifer didn’t differentiate instruction. She didn’t have coherent lessons and didn’t demonstrate knowledge of resources.
Then came the letter from the
district superintendent stating that the NYC DOE would be making a final
decision concerning discontinuance of her probationary period.
Jennifer’s heart sank even more. She rounded up exemplary student work.
Her mother and family of teachers jumped in to help save her young
career. Parents and students wrote letters. Jennifer even bound
everything nice and neat before submitting it to the superintendent.
Unfortunately, it was all for naught. She was ultimately discontinued
and her probationary period terminated. Jennifer was now red-flagged in
the DOE Human Resources system, and assigned a “problem code” next to
her name. This meant that none of the other 1700+ principals in the NYC
DOE could hire her.
Jennifer is not alone. From
2011 to 2013, over 450 teachers were discontinued and problem-coded.
Many have been barred from teaching our 1.1 million children only
because of personality conflicts with one administrator. In many cases,
when attacking pedagogy was not enough, the administrator also submitted
trumped up charges with the Office of Special Investigations, the
Special Commissioner of Investigation or the Office of Equal
In light of a new mayor and
chancellor in New York City, we are calling for a full and unbiased
evaluation of the problem-coded railroaded teachers. These teachers
-Discharged with malice by limiting or preventing their ability to work as a teacher in other schools.
-Coerced to sign paperwork extending their tenure. Many of these teachers were terminated.
In the end it was another casualty and point for the attack on tenure and the teaching profession.
Katherine Rodi, New York City Department of Education Human Resources
OPI Problem Code, New York City Department of Education Human Resources
Ursulina Ramirez, New York City Department of Education Chief of Staff
New York City Department of Education, Chancellor Fariña
Please consider reevaluating the way these probationary
teachers are problem-coded with Human Resources and the Office of
Personnel Investigation. You have the power to undo the previous
administration’s methods and help competent teachers, like Jennifer, be
allowed to teach our children again.