Friday, November 30, 2007

Poor Leo

Leo Casey, Randi Weingarten's internet mouthpiece, is having a bad day. It appears that nasty old Mickey Mouse may have removed his name as teacher of the year (from back in one of those years when Mr. Casey was a teacher). Mr. Casey feels this is because he signed a letter protesting one of John Stossel's idiotic anti-teacher hatchet jobs (sponsored by ABC, which is sponsored by Disney).

I think Mr. Stossel ought to write the mouse personally and urge Mr. Casey's reinstatement. While Mr. Stossel can wave his mustache up and down and condemn teachers, it takes a guy like Leo Casey to really worsen their working conditions. And since Mr. Casey has been a UFT official, things have gotten way worse. So take this, John Stossel:

1. City teachers now report in August, and listen to several days of useless indoctrination that benefits no one.

2. Teachers now work an extra 30 minutes per day. High school teachers spend this time teaching a sixth class (that Mr. Casey maintains is not a class. After all, he doesn't have to teach it).

3. Teachers once had to do hall duty once every three semesters. Then, they were relieved from it permanently. In Mr. Casey's tenure, however, teachers have been assigned to do hall duty, lunch duty, potty patrol, and other equally important duties forever.

4. Mr. Casey's party cleverly negotiated a 2% raise this year, then just as cleverly found a way to give most of it right back to the city.

5. Mr. Casey's party put an end to the practice of teacher transfers without a principal's OK. Now scores of them wander about as permanent subs because principals would rather hire newbies for half the price.

6. Teachers can't appeal letters in their files, no matter how preposterously inaccurate they may be.

7. Though Rod Paige abhors teacher unions, he openly admires Mr. Casey's UFT.

8. I'm a working teacher. Yet Leo Casey had no qualms whatsoever about libeling me on Edwize, the UFT blog I'm compelled to support with my dues. Though he was factually inaccurate, Mr. Casey neither withdrew his statement nor apologized, preferring to side with a charter school leader who proudly opposes both tenure and seniority rights.

For these, and many other reasons, I think John Stossel should examine the situation in detail. Leo Casey is most definitely his friend. Without the cooperation of Leo Casey and his party, none of these things could ever have been achieved.

Related: EIA Intercepts thinks there's something fishy about Mr. Casey's claims. Could Casey be overreacting, like the time he accused a UFT opposition party of Nazism?

Thanks to Schoolgal
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