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Please understand as you relatively new-to-the-game teachers, that this abuse that took Mr Esquith out, has been ongoing for 20 years.
The war on teachers began with this PROCESS which was used to ‘take-out’ tenured teachers whose work was so successful, that it would be impossible to ‘evaluate them’ out of the system without charges of criminal behavior.
In my case, as I was a celebrated educator in NYC, resume at my author’s page:
The war on teachers continues in NYC and across the nation as the media refuses to give the public THE TRUTH AS TO WHY THE SCHOOS FAILED. and to uncover the CONSPIRACY to SILENCE THE VOICE of TEACHERS and END THEIR AUTONOMY (and their benefits) . Only then could the common core crap be foisted on our children.
http://www.perdaily.com/2011/01/lausd-et-al-a-national-scandal-of-enormous-proportions-by-susan-lee-schwartz-part-1.html is the original essay I wrote and put on my first blog, Speaking As A Teachers (which went down when Apple took down iweb.) I had no idea even then that this would be DEATH KNELL OF MY PROFESSION, and that it was the FIRST ASSAULT on the iNSTITUTION of public education, to be followed by NCLB, VAM and the CCC — the alphabet soup that poisoned our schools.
Perdaily introduces the piece:
“What follows is ex-NYC school teacher Susan Lee Schwartz’s article on just how pervasive the corruption is throughout the United States in a public education system where you have “NO CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS.” Get in touch if you would like to be involved with a national alternative movement for Alternative Public Education Restructuring and the non-mainstream media campaign we are in the process of putting together to make people around this country aware of their silenced majority status in this fight for the reconstitution of quality public education for all.”
A CONSTITUTIONAL SCANDAL,
by Susan Lee Schwartz;
Educator of Excellence 1998; The New York State Council of English Teachers [NYSEC] and Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers (’94,’98, 2000).
“Teachers are the targets, as education is now a business, and the reward is not the education of the kids, but the profits gained by ‘cleansing’ the system of tenured teachers, and preventing new teachers from gaining tenure. The bottom line in not enriching the schools so learning can occur, but the enrichment of the administration at the top, and the profits of businesses which thrive on the failure of the public education system.
“THROWN INTO DETENTION CENTERS, WITH NO RIGHTS TO DEFEND THEMSELVES OR TO HEAR THE CHARGES AGAINST THEM, OUR DEDICATED TEACHERS HAVE LOST ALL CONNECTION TO THE CONSTITUTION, AND ARE BEING HOUNDED OUT OF THE SYSTEM BY THE THOUSANDS in a manner that should embarrass every American citizen. (NEW YORK CITY RUBBER ROOMS: THE LEGALITY OF TEMPORARY REASSIGNMENT
CENTERS IN THE CONTEXT OF TENURED TEACHERS’ DUE PROCESS RIGHTS By Bree Williams)
“How is it done? It is all about accountability. You see, these people have broken the law for so long, they have come to believe THAT THEY ARE THE LAW!
“We have seen what happened to the banks when no one was examining their actions. The failure of the banks was visible and drew the attention of the media and the public. The reasons for the failure of the schools is HIDDEN, and there are no journalists or legislative investigations to uncover the truth.
“Thus, across the country, a corrupt bureaucratic system has put into in place a procedure that circumvents the union contract, education regulations and basic civil rights laws, in order to remove any teacher. This process is the total abrogation of the civil rights of Americans… who just happen to be teachers!
“This “process” has so infiltrated our school systems, that now our teachers’ careers, reputations, health care and financial security are destroyed and there is ABSOLUTELY NO RECOURSE TO THE LAW! Teachers have difficulty finding lawyers to represent them, because few lawyers have the deep pockets to litigate against an entity whose deep pockets are filled by your tax dollars. Litigation, in any case is a financial nightmare. Moreover, the judicial system is stacked against the teachers, as judges routinely rule in favor of the administrations. Teachers lose.
“It is simple to grasp!
The union is the legal representative of teachers, and they fail miserably to represent them, at the beginning. Grievance procedures are a sham. By looking the other way when teachers are accused of incompetence or heinous and even criminal behavior, the union has withdrawn the oversight that keeps principals and superintendent from breaking the law. The reasons for this are many, but this essay is not the place to explore the motives of union bureaucrats, who themselves will never go back into a classroom or be subjected to what any teacher faces for standing up to corruption.
“The inescapable irony of this is the perception of the public, thanks to propaganda put forth by the media, that it is the UNIONS that protect those bad teachers. NOTHING IS FARTHER FROM THE TRUTH.
“In the process of removal, to break tenure, wonderful teachers are humiliated in ways that are reminiscent of slavery. (See David Pakter’s story and valiant fight in Federal court, to expose the truth, It should have been front page news!
• ” TEACHERS WHO SPEAK OUT ABOUT UNSOUND EDUCATIONAL PRACTICE, the ‘whistle-blowers,’ are the first to be singled out. Their voice cannot be tolerated.
• “Senior teachers, with strong voices on the subject of GENUINE LEARNING, AUTHENTIC CURRICULA and real PEDAGOGY, are next to be targeted, particularly if they are higher on the salary scale.
• ” They are followed by any teacher that is disliked by some petty, failed human being with a personal grudge or agenda, often with poor or no classroom experience, but given power to ‘supervise’ teachers.
“The personal agendas of administrators and publishers replace curricula; thus talented teachers find themselves on a one-way journey OUT of their practice.
“In NYC, there is a long delay in the putting out of charge. This civil right for speedy justice is guaranteed by the constitution! But, with no oversight by the union which should demand immediate investigations and genuine grievance procedures, teachers are removed from their practice immediately and sent to the District Office (i.e ‘rubber room.” go to: http://www.doubletongued.org/index.php/dictionary/rubber_room/
“Not a single journalist or reporter explored how such literal incarceration was effecting the emotional lives of dedicated professionals who had devoted their lives to a noble profession.
“When the public began to notice that there were teachers being paid FOR YEARS, to do nothing, a cry went up, and NYC supposedly ‘disbanded’ the rubber rooms. Now, In a typical maneuver, the cynical bureaucrats in NYC hide these ‘disappeared’ teachers, in school offices throughout the city. Awaiting their ‘hearings” (those sham kangaroo courts) these teachers are stapling papers and doing menial office tasks… and the DOE in NYC thinks NO ONE WILL NOTICE THESE SHENANIGANS. I noticed. So should YOU!
“The media makes no effort to expose this practice. There are NO investigative journalists looking into the civil rights abuse of teachers. NO ethnic minority could be treated like this without intense media coverage!
“Those ‘business managers’ at the top — principals and superintendents who call themselves “educators” — in an astonishing number of systems have as their HIGHEST PRIORITY TO MAINTAIN THEIR POSITION, and to ensure that THE CASH-COW continues to be THEIR PERSONAL BANK ACCOUNT.
They are given tacit permission by a system that fails to protect teachers, and immunizes them from lawsuits. With no impediment and no accountability, they stoop to tactics that are so egregious that people find it hard to believe. ”
That was written over a decade ago, and today October 16 2015, here at the Ravitch blog I shout; NOT ANY MORE! IT IS “ANOTHER INCONVENIENT TRUTH” and it is about time it ended and teachers were given their civil rights in the workplace!