Friday, August 4, 2017

On "Fair" Student Funding, ATRs, Chalkbeat Deformer Reporting

I blogged yesterday (Farina to Principals - Wink, Wink - Go Get Em - Schools With Placed ATRs Must Absorb Salaries) about that ridiculous Chalkbeat story echoing the Families for Excellent Schools line on ATRS. Why a deformy group would focus so much attention on ATRS -- not exactly the crucial education issue of our time? The answer it that they are using it as a wedge as part of the broader attack on seniority, tenure, highly paid teachers, disparaging certified teachers- the "hey, anyone can teach" etc.

Arthur Goldstein took on Chalkbeat on his blog --
Reformy Chalkbeat Deems Paying Teachers Inconvenient - Who'd have thought that Chalkbeat NY, after taking all that money from Gates and the Walmart family, would suddenly go all community service on us. Arthur was as perturbed by that phony demo photo used as I was.
 I just adore the photo Chalkbeat chooses to recycle, the one of a dozen people organized by the well-financed so-called Families for Excellent Schools standing around stereotyping ATR teachers. It would take me about five minutes to organize a dozen people to stand outside the Chalkbeat office with signs that say "Chalkbeat Sucks."
Not a bad idea to illustrate a point.

Then there is a parent shill named Nicole Thomas who writes a piece at the Daily News assaulting ATRs. Nicole just woke up one day and decided the existence of 800 ATRs in a system of 100,000 education personnel is the most important threat to her children's education. Nicole is one of those bought parents by the deformies. I bet she was at one of those phony 20 people rallies.

ATR Peter Zucker took Nicole Thomas on and ripped her op ed to piece.
I know where your bread is buttered Nicole. StudentsFirstNY butters it, and butters it well. You want to hang with these people? You think for a moment that StudentsFirst cares about you or your family, or even your community? You are being played like a fiddle and when you outlive your usefulness, see how long, if ever, it takes Jenny Sedlis to return your calls.
But if you want to hang with these people, know that StudentsFirst is the evil spawn of Michelle Rhee. Read this and tell the world how you would feel if Rhee was your child's teacher. These are the type of people you are being a sycophant for.
SOUTH BRONX SCHOOL Open Blog Post to Nicole Thomas (ATR Basher) Parent at PS 256 in Brooklyn

Now we know that one of the wedges used to attack teaching as a career is the fair student funding formula.

Leonie Haimson savages the Fair Student Formula in a must-read blog:

Fair student funding & the ATR system - two bad policies undermining NYC schools

Today Chalkbeat covers the budgetary ramifactions of the new agreement between the UFT and the NYC Department of Education in which the DOE will place ATR teachers (on Absent Teacher Reserve) in schools with vacancies, whether the principal chooses these particular teachers or not.  In addition, unlike earlier years, the principal will have to pay the full amount of their salaries – which are often much higher than the average teacher salary, even though the school only receives funding for the average salary under the Fair Student Funding system, implemented by Joel Klein in 2007, after much controversy and protest.
Let's look at how our stalwarts at the UFT are handling the situation. Arthur comments:
 I'm also disappointed in UFT leadership, which seems to believe that, even with the idiotic so-called Fair Student Funding, that there will be no issue hiring senior teachers. In fact, schools themselves now have to pay teachers out of their own budgets. Why would a principal hire a 100K teacher when a 50K teacher would do? After all, who values experience anymore? You could stock your whole building with newbies and turn them over every three years before they get tenure and start speaking up.
 Mulgrew, given an opportunity to point out certain essential truths, punted. I will urge our high school ex bd people to hold their feet to the fire on making a strong stand -- including educating the public - on the damages of FSF.


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