Friday, August 04, 2017

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? Evidently, it's not convenient for principals to pay teacher salaries. You know, they're expensive, and that money could go to all sorts of things, not the least of which is stocking the principal's office with free donuts and prostitutes. After all, that principal's job is stressful, what with all those pushy teachers demanding money and stuff.

And hey, isn't teaching a calling? Shouldn't teachers be begging for the right to do this job? After all, it's for the children. Shouldn't teachers be role models, waking up at 4 AM to clean stables, working nights at the car wash, and doing the whole teaching thing just because they're dedicated? Won't they then inspire children to also work for free so that Walmart, which funds Chalkbeat, can also stop having to pay people when they work? Can't the punters see how this will maximize profit?

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." I wonder if I could get papers to cover that. Probably not, because oddly enough, papers don't seem to find crappy reporting a problem.

For example, I've been reading the same story for weeks--ATR teachers suck, and they are a big drain on the budget. Why should we pay them if they aren't working full-time? Also, if they are appointed to work full-time, that sucks because they suck. Why? Well, some of them have been charged with this or that, and they therefore must be guilty, even if the process says they were not. Also, the people who haven't been charged are all guilty too, for no reason whatsoever, and therefore they also suck.

Scott Conti, some principal somewhere, is quoted saying schools might not want them and that they will cost more in the future. You know, salaries go up, and those unreasonable teachers still want to get paid, and are unwilling to work for free. I suggest that Scott Conti work for free, and lead by example. Let him wake up and clean stables and work the car wash at night. Or maybe he could get a squeegee and stand around a bridge with a rag. You know, he could set an example of good old American ingenuity.

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.

And hey, if you do get stuck hiring ATRs, why not harrass them until they leave?

At the very least, one Bronx principal said, he’d be wary of the hire. “If someone automatically puts an ATR into my school,” he said, “I would go in there and observe them quite a bit.” 

Isn't it cool how the principal knows what he's doing and therefore chooses not to be identified? And isn't it cool how Chalkbeat just goes along with it? But wait, they've saved the biggest whopper for last:

City education officials said it isn’t so easy to rig an evaluation since it relies on a “well-defined rubric based on evidence.”  

Oh yeah, the Danielson rubric is absolutely infallible. If it says this, then that's what principals will do. In fact, the only time Danielson rubric doesn't work is when, you know, principals report things that didn't happen and fail to see things that did. I saw video evidence of a rigged observation where a supervisor failed to see things that happened and distorted things that did. Yet the city cannot imagine such a thing.

Over at Banana Kelly the principal didn't even bother to show up to classes before writing observations. She got caught but how many did not? And if I saw video evidence of some Boy Wonder supervisor rating things that didn't happen, how many times could that supervisor have done it when it wasn't filmed?  And how many times is that replicated citywide?

You won't learn that reading Chalkbeat. Chalkbeat couldn't be bothered to interview a single working teacher, let alone one of the ATRs about whom they are ostensibly writing.

Great work, Chalkbeat! Orwell would be impressed.
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