Friday, August 12, 2011

The Audacity of Corporate Nonsense

I'm struck by the recent revelation that E4E shill/ Gotham Schools mouthpiece Ruben Brosbe is leaving for the greener pastures of an educational leadership program. E4E, as you know, is a Gates-sponsored shill organization designed to destroy union from within. Its leaders are not even teachers anymore, but rather employees of the organization who work in schools every now and then.

E4E exists primarily to support demagogues like Bloomberg in their efforts to fire teachers, and particularly to eviscerate the reverse seniority-based dismissals that would occur if ever he decided to fire teachers, with or without reason. In recent bills supported by E4E, Bloomberg's layoffs were not actually layoffs but dismissals, since there was no right of return. And one of the categories to be dismissed would have been teachers who were unable to get tenure. Brosbe's now had two extensions of tenure, and surely would have been cut under this scenario.

Personally, I've seen extensions of tenure for various reasons, some better than others. I don't always agree they're necessary. However, E4E is all about this stuff being valid, all about the quality of teaching, and does not much question the methodology of its corporate sponsors. By their logic, Brosbe does not qualify as an exclusion to the next layoff list.

So my question is this--how hypocritical is it that someone who does not meet the standards for teacher tenure would move toward educational leadership? Ought not our leaders be able to master the most basic and important job in education--teaching? Should someone like Brosbe, unable to meet the standard his group feels is so important, be placed in a position to evaluate others?

I'd love to take a year off and go study at Harvard. Regrettably, like most of my colleagues, I actually have to support myself. This is a problem that affects a lot of us, and our children. It's a problem folks like E4E don't have, what with the corporate sponsors, and who knows who else, that take care of them.

We don't need educational leaders, particularly of Brosbe's ilk, all that much. We need real teachers. And real teachers need real protection from those who'd fire us for our opinions, most of which are eons away from those of Brosbe and company. Those of us who'd advocate for children (and for the working people our children will grow up to be) need support.

Folks like Brosbe and E4E make sure they're in a good place and don't appear to give a damn about anyone else.
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