« Fall Books! | Main | Educational Malpractice? Why NYC School Progress Reports Deserve an F »

Miscellany: NYC Teaching Fellows Conundrum, Absenteeism, & Dorn-onomics

1) 8% of This Year's Teaching Fellows to Be Let Go in December: 139 teachers, or 8% of the 1840 teachers who joined the NYC Teaching Fellows June 2008 cohort, will be let go on December 5th because they have not yet been placed in a teaching position. As Gotham Schools reports, they are now organizing. Matthew Rudansky, a teaching fellow speaking for a group of Fellows that have banded together, explains the situation below:
By no fault of our own, we face December 5th dismissal from a program for which many of us have made huge sacrifices. Fellows in the Reserves picked up their lives and shouldered huge expenses to relocate to New York so they could teach children in our neediest public schools. Now these same noble people face uncertain futures and housing costs they possibly cannot afford a short few months into their leases. Others, like me, left stable careers because we bought into the Fellows' pitch that we'll make excellent teachers owing to our impressive professional and life experiences. I personally know three PhDs in the Reserves and another four with Masters degrees. It is strange that these qualified candidates haven't secured permanent jobs. Now the DOE would prefer we simply disappear. And stranger still, that despite a hiring freeze, the Fellows Program continues to recruit even when the ATR and RTR total over 1400 teachers.

USA Today reported [last] week that the Wall Street bust will be a NYC Teaching Fellows boon. The Program expects a spike in highly qualified candidates from all those bright people laid off from the shrinking financial sector. And we should simply go quietly into the night? It all smacks of further poor planning; the DOE disregarded the economic realities last spring hiring 1800 Fellows and more Teach for America applicants. And now we suffer not only the fallout from these Fellow Program miscalculations and DOE missteps, but also the humiliation they'll hire a batch of new Fellows while showing us the door.
2) Broader, Bolder Plan to Address Absenteeism?: 20% of New York City elementary schoolers missed more than a month of school last year. I'm sure these kiddos enjoyed the fruits of the accountability revolution in NYC from home. Gotham Schools has a nice map up and the summary.

3) Dorn-onomics: A debate up over at Sherman Dorn's on educators as rational calculators is worth checking out. The two of us teamed up in this TC Record commentary to dispel local tall-tales about the closing achievement gap in New York City. And in the comments of Dorn's post, we learn that economist of education Jenn Imazeki has a blog, Economics for Teachers.

Thanks for the link love eduwonkette! Guess I better get some decent posts up... :-)

If it's 20% for elementary school kids, can you imagine what the "real" numbers are for high schoolers? But, that's okay, the NYCDOE has "credit recovery" to deal with that.

Thanks for the link but ... DORNONOMICS??? Yikes.

We love Gotham Schools, but anyone interested in seeing the absentee report can go directly to it at the Center for New York City Affairs website (www.centernyc.org). And, yes, we do include the "real" high school numbers as well. They are quite large and worth checking out. I would love hear from the Eduwonkette audience since this blog has been an inspiration for my data work.

I certainly can empathize with the difficult conditions that this latest group of Fellows are encountering. But perhaps I see the issue through a different lens than most.

I joined the Fellows a number of years ago as a "Midyear" Fellows. At the time, I was required to consent to a list of conditions attendant to my admission, including one that provided a specific date by which I was required to find a school placement. Like other midyear Fellows who have been subsequently admitted, I agreed to find a placement with full knowledge of my responsibilities and the consequences that might result. I did not take the matter lightly, and only accepted the offer having a plan should I be unable to find a placement.

Unlike the current Fellows protesting, midyear Fellows were not provided with any cushion at the commencement of training. We were allowed to work as OPDs (occasional per diems - substitutes) at the hourly rate. We did not receive a full salary, any health insurance, or any of the benefits of the UFT Welfare Plan. And yes, we all took that risk with full knowledge of the attendant risks.

Each and every one of the Fellows now protesting agreed to similarly specific terms, but with far greater benefits while they search for a position. I can not speculate regarding the DOE's projection of vacancies. I wish these Fellows all the best in their pursuit for positions (many of whom I have helped find appointments through contacts), but feel that the matter must be framed in context.

Technically, it appears that the city has the right to fire any NYCTF members w/o a placement by Dec. 5th. But I have to say that I would be beyond upset if I were one of those people who didn't have a placement yet.

When I signed up for NYCTF I was under the distinct impression that there was such an urgent need for teachers that the district was pulling out all stops to hire them -- including hiring idealistic 22 year-olds like myself (then) and other people with no classroom experience and, frankly, no idea what they were getting themselves into. It's a big decision for a lot of these people to do the teaching fellows, and a big part of a lot of these people's decision is that they think they're needed. It appears as though they're really not (unless the staffing system is just horribly inefficient) and for that I would fault the city for what amounts to false advertising.

Comments are now closed for this post.


Recent Comments

  • Corey: Technically, it appears that the city has the right to read more
  • Fellow: I certainly can empathize with the difficult conditions that read more
  • Kim Nauer: We love Gotham Schools, but anyone interested in seeing the read more
  • Sherman Dorn: Thanks for the link but ... DORNONOMICS??? Yikes. read more
  • Pogue: If it's 20% for elementary school kids, can you imagine read more




Technorati search

» Blogs that link here


8th grade retention
Fordham Foundation
The New Teacher Project
Tim Daly
absent teacher reserve
absent teacher reserve

accountability in Texas
accountability systems in education
achievement gap
achievement gap in New York City
acting white
AERA annual meetings
AERA conference
Alexander Russo
Algebra II
American Association of University Women
American Education Research Associatio
American Education Research Association
American Educational Research Journal
American Federation of Teachers
Andrew Ho
Art Siebens
Baltimore City Public Schools
Barack Obama
Bill Ayers
black-white achievement gap
books on educational research
boy crisis
brain-based education
Brian Jacob
bubble kids
Building on the Basics
Cambridge Education
carnival of education
Caroline Hoxby
Caroline Hoxby charter schools
cell phone plan
charter schools
Checker Finn
Chicago shooting
Chicago violence
Chris Cerf
class size
Coby Loup
college access
cool people you should know
credit recovery
curriculum narrowing
Dan Willingham
data driven
data-driven decision making
data-driven decision-making
David Cantor
Dean Millot
demographics of schoolchildren
Department of Assessment and Accountability
Department of Education budget
Diplomas Count
disadvantages of elite education
do schools matter
Doug Ready
Doug Staiger
dropout factories
dropout rate
education books
education policy
education policy thinktanks
educational equity
educational research
educational triage
effects of neighborhoods on education
effects of No Child Left Behind
effects of schools
effects of Teach for America
elite education
Everyday Antiracism
excessed teachers
exit exams
experienced teachers
Fordham and Ogbu
Fordham Foundation
Frederick Douglass High School
Gates Foundation
gender and education
gender and math
gender and science and mathematics
gifted and talented
gifted and talented admissions
gifted and talented program
gifted and talented programs in New York City
girls and math
good schools
graduate student union
graduation rate
graduation rates
guns in Chicago
health benefits for teachers
High Achievers
high school
high school dropouts
high school exit exams
high school graduates
high school graduation rate
high-stakes testing
high-stakes tests and science
higher ed
higher education
highly effective teachers
Houston Independent School District
how to choose a school
incentives in education
Institute for Education Sciences
is teaching a profession?
is the No Child Left Behind Act working
Jay Greene
Jim Liebman
Joel Klein
John Merrow
Jonah Rockoff
Kevin Carey
KIPP and boys
KIPP and gender
Lake Woebegon
Lars Lefgren
leaving teaching
Leonard Sax
Liam Julian

Marcus Winters
math achievement for girls
meaning of high school diploma
Mica Pollock
Michael Bloomberg
Michelle Rhee
Michelle Rhee teacher contract
Mike Bloomberg
Mike Klonsky
Mike Petrilli
narrowing the curriculum
National Center for Education Statistics Condition of Education
new teachers
New York City
New York City bonuses for principals
New York City budget
New York City budget cuts
New York City Budget cuts
New York City Department of Education
New York City Department of Education Truth Squad
New York City ELA and Math Results 2008
New York City gifted and talented
New York City Progress Report
New York City Quality Review
New York City school budget cuts
New York City school closing
New York City schools
New York City small schools
New York City social promotion
New York City teacher experiment
New York City teacher salaries
New York City teacher tenure
New York City Test scores 2008
New York City value-added
New York State ELA and Math 2008
New York State ELA and Math Results 2008
New York State ELA and Math Scores 2008
New York State ELA Exam
New York state ELA test
New York State Test scores
No Child Left Behind
No Child Left Behind Act
passing rates
picking a school
press office
principal bonuses
proficiency scores
push outs
qualitative educational research
qualitative research in education
quitting teaching
race and education
racial segregation in schools
Randall Reback
Randi Weingarten
Randy Reback
recovering credits in high school
Rick Hess
Robert Balfanz
Robert Pondiscio
Roland Fryer
Russ Whitehurst
Sarah Reckhow
school budget cuts in New York City
school choice
school effects
school integration
single sex education
small schools
small schools in New York City
social justice teaching
Sol Stern
Stefanie DeLuca
stereotype threat
talented and gifted
talking about race
talking about race in schools
Teach for America
teacher effectiveness
teacher effects
teacher quailty
teacher quality
teacher tenure
teachers and obesity
Teachers College
teachers versus doctors
teaching as career
teaching for social justice
teaching profession
test score inflation
test scores
test scores in New York City
testing and accountability
Texas accountability
The No Child Left Behind Act
The Persistence of Teacher-Induced Learning Gains
thinktanks in educational research
Thomas B. Fordham Foundation
Tom Kane
University of Iowa
Urban Institute study of Teach for America
Urban Institute Teach for America
value-added assessment
Wendy Kopp
women and graduate school science and engineering
women and science
women in math and science
Woodrow Wilson High School