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In reference to the story headlined “Leading from the classroom” [Dec. 4], “career ladder” positions for which the teacher receives additional compensation are a slap in the face to those of us who have been teachers assigned on network teams for years. We do the same work for not one extra penny but have been working an extra-long day and year contractually.
I had a thought after reading the article “UFT, special ed advocates call for better reading instruction” [Dec. 4]: Teach kids to read by going back to the basics. How did you learn to read? With a book. Stop investing in fancy reading programs that do what anyone can do. Teach the kids phonics with a mix of sight words.
My condolences go out to the family of Maria Portalatin, the former chapter leader for paraprofessionals. She was a UFT warrior for paras. One of the best — she made noise and was not afraid to speak her mind! Gone but never forgotten.
It should be obvious to everyone that an unexpected increase in retirees last June can only benefit the DOE financially, immediately and in the long run. Most will have to be replaced, but by educators at a much lower salary level, on average.
I'm sure there's some room for negotiation regarding the UFT's call to end tax breaks for absentee co-op and condo owners to cut class sizes to 15. But even if we could lower class size to 20 in kindergarten through 3rd grades, the results would be dramatic.
As a retiree with 20 years of service, I strongly urge all UFT members to contribute as much as you can afford to your TRS retirement program. I returned to teaching after a 23-year absence and retired in 2005. During that time, I maximized my TRS account as best I could while working after school for the Home Instruction Office.
Regarding the Know Your Benefits column about maternity and child care leave: We are one of the only countries that doesn’t give full pay to mothers who have given birth. There are countries where mothers have two years of paid leave to take care of their children!
Klein, believe it or not, just published a memoir about how he fixed the school system, entitled “Lessons of Hope: How to Fix Our Schools.” The reviews on Amazon are obvious plants, praising him as an innovator and true visionary.
So, Joel Klein’s ARIS system has finally been dumped by the new administration. That’s good news for everyone. Most teachers and parents don’t use ARIS, and there is no data to support that the $95 million was useful for anything.
I am the parent of two sons who have successfully grown into self-reliant adults. Both my sons are examples of a successful public school system that works when both the parents and the student want an excellent education and are willing to work for it.
Retired Teachers Chapter Leader Tom Murphy is at it again with his lies. Obamacare is not effective. Medicare is not in better shape than pre-Obama.
So there are more than 3,500 classes above the contractual limit [New York Teacher, Oct. 2]. What exactly is the legal hurdle to getting more room to create smaller classes? It’s clear that lower student-to-teacher ratios would equate with a higher success rate. So what’s up? Why does it happen so often?
The charter school TV ad shows that now more than ever we need to stick together. Infighting within our union is exactly what these “deformers” want. They want to break up our unions.
Chancellor Carmen Fariña’s new evaluation system for schools comes as a relief for those in the trenches. It is about time to put the joy back into the schools for both the teachers and the students. It should be fun, not paranoia.
Regarding the article headlined “History lesson” about the teachers who used a grant to visit Japan to develop a curriculum on World War II: I would not be writing this email had those two bombs not been used.
The questions and discussions of how teachers are to be evaluated has awkwardly silenced the real question that needs to be asked: How can teachers be helped?
I am a pupil accounting secretary. If charter schools are public schools, then why do they send back students to the school I work in who have behavior issues or learning disabilities or language barriers? If charter schools are public schools, why are their books closed to the public?
Regarding the story about the agreement reached to reduce paperwork [Oct. 2]: Only teachers can make the necessary changes in their schools. Tell your union reps. Band together. Invite your district representative in. Do whatever it takes!
Comments | October 2, 2014 >>
I have often wondered why there has never been a study involving teachers who transfer between poorly rated schools and highly rated ones. It would be interesting to have a study that placed a number of teachers from successful schools into failing schools and transferred an equal number of teachers from failing schools into successful schools. What would be the progress of these students?