I was really stunned by my UFT representatives today at work. I know that we would all like to work in a collegial environment, where the whole school community...admin, teachers, parents, students are striving for the same goal. How is passing out an adversarial survey with leading questions creating more unity? I've worked phone banks for the UFT and attended numerous rallies. I would like to think I did not partake in these things in vain.
I came to this school with the real hopes of school reform. DEAR and advisory were one of the main building blocks that separated this school from other high schools within the NYC BOE. SHAME on the teachers that claim to represent a union of professionals entrusted with the education of our youth who so blatantly disregard the educational philosophy at this school.
The questionnaire that was administered to our staff this afternoon was in no uncertain terms a pejoratively loaded commentary on the principles upon which this school was founded. Questioning DEAR, advisory and Teaching Institute?… why not ask: “ Should all races and academic abilities really take math class?” These are the same type of polls that republicans take to tell the “temperature of the
(eg. How bad did Bill Clinton screw up this country? A. a little B. a lot)
There is no way out!!!!
The questions, were almost totally “Catch 22’s”. I am embarrassed that new teachers and returning teachers think these ridiculously worded questions are representative of our professional colleagues. Are there holes in programs? Yes . Are teaching assistants part of the fabric of the unique culture of learning we have created here? Absolutely. (go outside the main doors that teachers no longer use and look up at the sign)
Lets us take for Example question number 4. ahhhh number 4!
“Do you feel distributive leadership is a myth and that decisions are made without considering the opinions of the staff?”
Is the question suggesting that our administration does not take teacher opinions to heart when making decisions? I am personally appalled. I have worked in four different schools before finding this administration. I have never found one that is more concerned. This question is so unfounded. A veteran teacher in the NYC BOE knows that all established “big schools” have Teacher vs. Administration squabbles that bog down real school reform. Are we trying to establish that sort of environment here???? What type of dynamic are we attempting to set up?
If this is what my ?union? wants, then I want out, I never annointed anyone to represent me but Mike (who ran unopposed). Who are these other people? How were they chosen? Who is Zevinon? We need to have elections for community representatives!!!!!
Re: # 1 “….common planning times between communities..” Is this suggesting that content area departments would better serve the student? Are you saying students are better served by teachers meeting about content rather than teachers meeting about the holistic interdisciplinary student? How so?
Re: # 3 "... not considered a prep..."Here is my lesson plan for DEAR-----“ READ”…. What’s so hard about that? Have your students read. You are not required to do anything else but read… I would never forgive my ???? REPRESENTATIVES?????? For screwing that part of my day up… IF the authors of this survey are struggling in DEAR… I’ll help…when is your DEAR… I’ll come and read.
Re # 10 “…the workload at QHST is too excessive” … if its too hard here ask your AP or Lead teacher for help. 2 out of three times AP’s and Lead teacher would love to help.
Re #11 “….over the past four years” Most of the representatives haven’t been here four years… worry about now!!! Lets stay focused on what’s happening I the building now!!!
Re#12 “… there needs to ba a more balanced approach…” Who is stopping you in your classroom?. get some guts!!! Teach!!!! Sound education decisions will never receive a “U” rating.
Re #13 “ I wish the administration was more considerate with my time” I have never been asked to stay without being compensated.. Teaching is vocation not a mere 9-5 occupation..
Re #14 “…open to dissenting opinions” I wish you could come to a Montessori Lunch and speak to us….we dissent and argue respectfully and honestly without hidden agendas or loaded questionnaires. How can we expect the ability to express a dissenting opinion when even our own UFT blog doesn't allow for dissent?
We need to meet as a Union!!!!
We need to meet soon!!!!