Thursday, June 12, 2014

Anti-Tenure People Try to Have it Both Ways

...flaws in reasoning... were in full bloom from the minute Judge Treu announced that court was in session. How else to explain the paradox by which teacher tenure laws apply to the state’s wealthiest school districts and its poorest, but only violate the civil rights of students in the latter? Or how about the related and even paradoxier claim beloved by Students Matter fans, including Arne Duncan, that while experience doesn’t Matter, the inequitable distribution of experience (which doesn’t Matter) is the civil rights issue of our time?..... EduShyster
The anti-tenure slugs make contradictory points. They claim that the worst teachers end up in the highest poverty schools. They claim the best teachers gravitate to the higher income areas.

Examine the experience and salary and tenure level of teachers in these high income areas and compare it to the low, high-turnover poverty schools. You will find younger, less experienced and more untenured teachers in the latter schools.

EduShyster continues:
who are the great teachers that Save Great Teachers seeks to save? Hint: while *fresh,* *young* and free from the burden (and price tag) of *experience.* these great teachers are not the same as the inexperienced teachers who overwhelmingly teach poor minority students in this country.
Joel Klein played this 2-sided game from the very beginning. In the early years he went after seniority transfers, saying the experienced teachers transfer out of the higher poverty schools, claiming these schools needed experienced teachers. Then he turned his attack dog Leadership Academy principals on the senior teachers, setting them up with the fair-funding formula that penalized schools with higher salaried - meaning, experienced - teachers.

California supposedly has 18-months to tenure rules. I agree that is too short a time. Here in NYC, we have a 3-year MINIMUM tenure but in reality, unlimited time to tenure, given that principals can extend tenure for years, and often do so.

I found that teachers whose tenure was extended into their 5th year often try to get out of their school and into one where they have a better shot at getting tenure, hoping their new principal would not hate them because they didn't like the color of their tie -- or their skin, which increases school turnover.

When you have a tenured teacher who is not very good, the reason that that teacher doesn't get dismissed is not tenure but a lazy principal. In fact, some of the worst teachers who couldn't care less about kids or teaching often become lousy principals - who even without tenure, are never fired unless they are caught red-handed eating a child for lunch.


Anonymous said...

Amen, Norm! Lazy or incompetent administrators have the DOEs and Mulgrew's blessing until they make the front pages of a NY rag.

Anonymous said...

Excellent points all around Norm but I am compelled in the name of truth to make one correction which I assume was a misprint. You write that " lousy principals - who even without tenure, are never fired unless they are caught red-handed eating a child for lunch." To my knowledge a principal caught red handed eating a child for lunch is well within the boundaries of appropriate Leadership Academy principal decorum. The line is crossed when a principal is caught red handed having sex with a child at lunch and the DOE has been known to place letters in said principal's files almost immediately.

Anonymous said...

They could be on the front page of a NY rag and still keep their job. Like the woman in Rockaway. Whatever happened to her anyways?

Michael Fiorillo said...

According to Leadership Academy Principals I've spoken to, kids taste like chicken, and require a schmeer of spite and vindictiveness to bring out the full flavor.