April 6, 2009
Live from New York, "Oh...Nevermind"...
Are you a high school teacher recently arrested in a sweep with a dime bag of marijuana in your pocket while hanging out in front of your assigned school with your students? The DOE says, "That's okay". In just two weeks, you can return to working with your students as if it never even happened. Your record will be spotless just as long as you stay out of trouble for the next 6-8 months.
Or maybe you're an elementary school teacher who got arrested in a domestic dispute with your husband? Let's just say, (for fun, of course) that your husband is a high school principal and that you have two small children who were home at the time of the incident. Perhaps you spent two whole nights in jail after your husband called the police. "That's okay", says the DOE. You too can return to your school in only two short weeks.
What do thes cases have in common? Well for one, they are both "outside' cases, having occurred outside of the school buildiing. The first however, took place on school grounds. "Oh, nevermind", says the DOE. Both cases were primarily handled by the police, not school principals. In both cases arrests were made. Both teachers were required to sit in the rubber room until their cases were heard in the NYC court system. Both were settled so quickly that one would find it impossible to identify the fracture in their absence from their schools. Regardless of their serious nature and where these incidents took place, both teachers were returned to their school and happily resumed their positions (Not ATR Positions) after spending 2 weeks in the rubber room.
I brought this up in my May 20, 2008 article on DOE's "drugs not hugs" article.
April 13, 2009 7:40 AM
I have been reading your blog and I just want to say to you and the other teachers who are "reassigned" and blog: thank you.
You and others are doing a great service by teaching the general public about these rooms and what is going on there.
So, first of all, know this: you are being heard.
And, as a teacher myself, I am sympathetic.
What I have learned in the twelve years since I first became a certified teacher in Florida is that most other teachers will say and do nothing to help you.
They don't because they think they can't. They are too afraid.
And, IMO, it is this fear that is really adversely impacting public education. Because when teachers are afraid, others can and do seize power -- and then engage in wrongful acts to keep power.
But, what you and the other teachers who blog are doing that is right and just and powerful is blogging. People know more because of you and others. Thank you again.
In a way I hate to say this, but try to remember others who have been held captive and written, and remember them.
Remember them because: They inspired. You inspire. Think Anne Frank.
I noticed that one teacher who was blogging was told to take down his blog if he wanted to return to the classroom (actually I think he was an assistant principal). He did, but he kept posted some of his archived material.
I would suggest the same. Do not ever take down all of your blog, even if they demand it. Your blog is helping you. It is helping you teach, even now. It is a record of their wrongful abuse of power.
It is important that you blog.
Thank you again. You are doing a great job of teaching, right now. Remember that. :)
May 1, 2009 8:12 PM
Blogger Floraine Kay said...
Yeah, I remember knowing a few people, one caught with drugs while driving, who got sent back, "No problem".
The system is insane. Like any insane system it stays inconsistent in order to build fear.
You will get out. It will get better. Don't try to make sense of it and never try to make sense of anything DOE again. Trying to stay alive is hard enough.
May 3, 2009 10:05 PM
Blogger A Teacher In The Bronx said...
Don't give up. The squeaky wheel gets oiled every single time. Get on a mountain top and don't stop until you get what you want!!
Email me please.
May 5, 2009 8:03 PM