Jan 27, 2009

TAGNYC Comments at January 26, 2009 P.E.P. Meeting

The Reassignment Centers are testimony to the high stakes game known as educational reform. The stakes are higher political office, greater paychecks, the destruction of public education, but mainly, as we believe history will eventually show, the goal is to keep society the way we know it. An elite and a group to serve that elite. How else to explain the passing through of students while calling that progress. The Reassignment Centers are necessary to carry out this game. They can be touted by the Administration as evidence that finally, finally the roots of inner city school failure, the incompetent teachers, are being ripped out. Mayor Bloomberg says this and a delicious shudder passes through his audience. Incompetent teachers, Freddie Kruger- they elicit the same response as the Mayor well knows.

The Reassignment Centers serve other purposes: They allow unethical and scared principals to selectively, selectively remove teachers; they allow the Administration to destroy teaching as a long term career, and they rev up the voices against tenure and its due process protections. The Reassignment Centers justify the continued ignoring of who and what is really responsible for the plight of the inner city school - society and the ills it has perpetuated.

The teachers are not responsible for CFE monies not going to reduce class size or for the failure to build new schools in expanding neighborhoods or for lack of creation of adequate school libraries. The teachers are not responsible for the tons of money spent on consultants, bogus educational programs, inappropriate textbooks, suspect accountability systems; the teachers are not responsible that the future astronauts and architects are in bed and not in their first period classes. The teachers are not responsible for the horrendous abandonment of the special needs students and the ELL students. The teachers are not responsible for the decades of destruction of authority and respect for the teacher.

The Teacher Advocacy Group NYC puts out its call but always into the wilderness “Come and investigate.” Come and see what type of teacher is being put into the Reassignment Centers for “serious allegations.” Not just you Chancellor Klein but the entire panel is complicit in these McCarthy-like tactics. Righteousness is not yours. You will never again be able to lament or denounce the age of McCarthyism. You are responsible for destroying comnpetent teachers’ lives and reputations.