Streams

Mulgrew on Teacher Contracts, Charter Schools and More

Monday, February 17, 2014

Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, gives an update on the UFT's positions on teacher contract negotiations, charter schools and weather-related school closings.

Guests:

Michael Mulgrew

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Comments [7]

Michael Sebastian from Staten Island

Though I agree with the majority of commentary here I would like to respond to Tribeca Teacher.

First, he/she states "it's policies like LIFO (last in, first out) that hurts young teachers. A teacher starting out can earn 55k while a 20 year teacher can make close to 90k-100k, solely based upon seniority. How would that attract anyone?"

There have not been ANY lay offs in NYC DOE going back to 2002 when Mayoral control was implemented. No younger teachers have been laid off nor laid off based on LIFO. So, I am not understanding the reasoning on this point on how LIFO has harmed younger teachers within the DOE.

On the contrary, once school based budgeting was implemented under Joel Klein and Mayor Bloomberg, and the UFT agreed to remove the seniority rule for school transfers and agreed to the Open Market System it is a majority of older, veteran teachers that have been excessed and placed in the ATR Pool not younger or newer teachers.

Second, he/she states "What really dissuades young teachers from retaining their positions is the meager payment and the lack of recognition for hard work."

I agree with this point on compensation, and I believe a combination of performance and seniority should be incorporated into the compensation package. Further the lack of recognition applies to ALL teachers --young/old, new/veteran. I believe the lack of a strong support structure and mentoring program (which did exist but was cut under Mayor Bloomberg) for new teachers in general is needed for support in the areas of classroom, preparation, professional development.

Last, Tribeca Teacher's comments reinforce the Joel Klein belief and mission that career educators are outmoded, incompetent, bring no value to their students and faculty, and are the main reason why schools do not function, serve their students and are consuming the vast DOE budget....over the last ten years the assault on career educators has been unrelenting and disturbing.

You cannot build a school system on a foundation of inexperienced and young classroom teachers.

Feb. 18 2014 01:21 PM
Tribeca Teacher

Mulgrew is talking out of both sides of his mouth.

While he discusses attracting and retaining teachers, retroactive pay doesn't address this issue. How does a tiny retroactive return help a young struggling teacher? What really dissuades young teachers from retaining their positions is the meager payment and the lack of recognition for hard work. It's policies like LIFO (last in first out) that hurts young teachers. A teacher starting out can earn 55k while a 20 year teacher can make close to 90k-100k, solely based upon seniority. How would that attract anyone?

Feb. 18 2014 11:25 AM
Megan Moskop

Nate (the teacher from Brooklyn) did a great job outlining so many of the working conditions teachers struggle with. I'm delighted to hear more strong teacher voices on WNYC, and I look forward to hearing more good coverage!

Feb. 18 2014 10:49 AM
scott from soho

$18,000,000,000.00 operating budget. How much of this money goes to the hardworking teachers vs the bureaucrats?

Feb. 17 2014 10:28 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

The left wing bureaucrats RULE. So what else is new? Those who can't do, teach. Those who can't teach become bureaucrats who tell teachers how to teach. Just power-mad bureaucrats.

Feb. 17 2014 12:05 PM
Harlem Special Ed teacher from Nyc

I think the greatest problem isn't excessive paperwork or data (which, at least theoretically can be useful), but the absence of time to plan. We are always compared to countries in Europe and Asia where students do better. In these countries teachers get 4 to 5 times more planning time each week. The single greatest determinant of good teaching and learning, is time to plan lessons.

Feb. 17 2014 11:49 AM
Ann from Green Gables

The paper requirements that afflict teachers are much like those that are burdening doctors. More is not always better, even though we all want accountability. And a certain point, the layers of administrative work keep you from doing the best for your students or, in the case of doctors, your patients.

Feb. 17 2014 11:44 AM

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