Monday, August 7, 2017

Chalkbeat, Subsidiary of Ed Deform, Beats the Anti-ATR Drum

...why should they talk to working teachers when Students First and others pay people to spout The Gospel According to Gates and Walmart, both of whom fund Chalkbeat?... NYC Educator
Have you been wondering about the obsession of ed deformers over the ATR question, not exactly the most pressing education issue of our time? I and others have talked about what is behind this. But count on their shills in the press to keep the issue going hot and heavy.

Chalkbeat, that paragon of ed deform journalism, once again leads with the ATR issue in Monday's morning report

Rise & Shine: Who is in New York City's controversial Absent Teacher Reserve?  Five things we still don’t know about who is in New York City’s Absent Teacher Reserve

Oh, goody -- they are finally going to talk to ATRs to get some answers. Let's see now:
A 2014 report from the advocacy group TNTP estimated that 25 percent of teachers in the ATR pool then had been brought up on disciplinary charges. 
You mean that TNTP, founded by Michelle Rhee 20 years ago? Now there's a group to believe. I wonder if they contribute to Chalkbeat.

Let's see, maybe after TNTP they actually talked to some ATRs:
Even if teachers are strong performers when excessed from their schools, one principal told us, the time they spend outside the classroom and in the ATR could be harmful, since they are unlikely to receive the same professional development as teachers in full-time positions.
Of course, go talk to principals and cite "some critics":

New York City principals balk at plan to place teachers in their schools; some vow to get around it

More principals' opinions -- this one is a fun one:
some critics have raised concerns that the teachers would be placed primarily in low-income areas of the city, in the struggling schools likely to suffer most from teacher vacancies.
Wow - they are so worried about placing ATRs in low income areas but have no qualms about hiring brand new teachers. Yeah, trust principals.

This is the Chalkbeat lead-in:
Much of the debate around the Absent Teacher Reserve revolves around the qualifications of the teachers in the pool, and what kinds of schools they work in. We rounded up questions we've asked the education department and union officials about the ATR, but haven't gotten answers to. ... Chalkbeat
Really? Much of the ed deform debate we read (here, here, here)
revolves around how ATRs are treated, how they are products of bad ed policy and bad union policy, how fair student funding incentivizes principals to not hire high salaried people, etc.
I think of the great crew of teachers we met last year in the struggle over the closing of JHS 145 in the Bronx. Are some of them ATRs?  Our CPE1 pals could have very easily been ATRs if they were found guilty of even the most minor charge -- their principal was removed the day after they were exonerated - proving she fabricated the charges -- we believe in consort with higher ups at the DOE - yet she is still functioning somewhere in the DOE.

After all, she vus just following orders.

But Chalkbeat must present the anti-ATR position and they do so by raising questions they don't have answers to -- a tactic used to create doubt. They have been criticized for not talking to ATRs -- there are only a thousand and I guess they are hard to find -- though we see them all over the blogs.
DRAIN THE POOL A new policy for placing educators from the Absent Teacher Reserve into schools -- even potentially against a principal's will -- has raised many questions and pushback. Here's what we still don't know about the educators who are in the pool, despite multiple requests for information. Chalkbeat
Look at the title -- Drain the Pool -- remind you of someone we know who was going to drain something but loaded it with more swamp creatures. But then again deformers try to brand ATRs as swamp creatures.

[By the way - at least one reader claimed I was mistaken to say I was an ATR back in 1967-1968 when I was exactly that - we were on the organization sheet under that category- but on one school.]

Arthur did good job of savaging Chalkbeat - read it here:

Monday, August 07, 2017

Reformy Chalkbeat Doubles Down on ATRs, Informs Readers It Knows Nothing


NYC Educator said...

Let's organize a dozen people to stand around outside the Chalkbeat office with signs that say "Chalkbeat Sucks." We won't give reasons or anything, because why bother? Then let's post our photos all over and claim they are important. We were standing there, we had the signs, and therefore Chalkbeat sucks. Since they don't bother with any real reasons, we don't have to either.

ed notes online said...

I'm ready. We can call ourselves people for excellent schools - PES.

NYC Educator said...

Families for Excellent Reporting. Bad reporting hurts our people. It hurts our children, who we always put first.

ed notes online said...

FER - has a beat and you can dance to it.