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Speaking of NYC layoffs…

May 27, 2011
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…why is the city preparing to bring in more NYC Teaching Fellows and Teach For America recruits, and place some of these teachers-in-training in high-need positions like special education, when they’re letting go of teachers they already have? Seems like it would be more cost-effective, and practice-effective, to retrain teachers with classroom experience to fill these roles, than to put completely green teachers in classrooms with some of the highest-need children. (Speaking of costs, if I were a New York City parent and/or taxpayer, I’d also be up in arms about the $20 million being spent on consultants to recruit new teachers in a time of teacher layoffs! How many current, beloved teachers could you retain with that money??)

From the New York Daily News:

Even as the threat of thousands of teacher layoffs looms, the city is preparing to hire 500 new ones for next fall, officials said.

Critics wonder why the city has accepted the new recruits – 400 from New York City Teaching Fellows and 100 from Teach for America – to work in shortage areas like special education instead of retraining teachers on the payroll.

“It’s mind-boggling that they’re hiring when I may lose my job,” said Marquis Harrison, 25, who started in the city schools with Teach for America nearly three years ago. (Read more here)

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Frederika permalink
    May 27, 2011 4:58 pm

    It is incredible to me. The lack of connected thought and logic on their side is amazing. The lack of fiscal responsibility is amazing. The lack of compassion, empathy, and goodwill is amazing.

    Not only are they paying “consultants” to recruit these new teachers, but Teach for America corps members cost much, much more than any regular teachers. My district has paid $10,000 per year per corps member above and beyond their regular teacher salaries and regualr teacher benefits as the extra fee just to have TFA in our schools where there has never been a teacher shortage. Six TFA year one = $60,000 in fees. Six additional TFA in year two = $120,000 in fees. Year three will cost us another $60,000 for the second set of six to finish their two-year commitment. The extra money goes to TFA for administrative costs, for corps members additional training, and for a free Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from a local University. Even if they stay in the profession for a few years, it is hardly worth the additional costs. Fully trained, certified, licensed teachers are avaialable to fill these jobs. In NYC, apparently, current staff are available for these jobs. This kind of action is totally unjustifiable.

  2. Dan Middleman, M. Ed. permalink
    May 27, 2011 6:12 pm

    One of the moron readers of the Daily News left this comment:

    whats wrong with the payscale solution. aren’t teachers working on the public dime? people should be paid what they are worth. quite simply, what you are worth is your replacement cost. your salary should not be based on length of enployment. if your skillsets or responsibilities do not grow, why should your pay????

    This was my response:

    To all of you that spout business rules when talking about how to run a school system, or how to pay teachers, I would say this: Let’s give the brand new “cheap” teachers to your kids. Give my kids the experienced teachers that actually know what they’re doing. It took me four years to get my feet on the ground before I fully understood the art and science of teaching. I’m far more effective now 15 years later. And to the guy that commented on “replacement costs”: Good businesses understand that relationships with clients are important. Pay more for the good employee and your business will reap the benefits. Keep replacing your employees with the newer, cheaper ones and you will find your clients going to your competition. If you really believe in that theory, you must not be a very good employee.

  3. May 30, 2011 8:53 pm

    Doesn’t NYC get “paid” for every TFA person they “hire”? I’ve heard this elsewhere, like CA, that the districts will take TFA even when their own teachers are getting laid off because most or all of the TFA salaries in low-performing schools are paid by the gov’t, so it’s like a free “teacher”. Note the part I put in quotes.

  4. Ken W. permalink
    May 31, 2011 6:45 pm

    It seems pretty clear that they DON’T WANT what the normal world thinks of as good teachers. Presumably this is because they want ignorant people who will do as they are told, people precisely WITHOUT teaching experience, savvy and skill. How else could they get teachers to do some of the stupid stuff corporations want done in the schools?

  5. RSR permalink
    June 1, 2011 11:53 am

    It’s skimming, pure and simple. The half-a-trillion dollar elephant in the room.

    So, after privatizing many aspects of military (logistics, VIP protection, etc) and the prison systems in many states, education is next on the block. There is simply too much money in it for business interests to not move to extract it.

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