They taught at schools that were closed down.
They taught programs that were discontinued.
They are over 30 years old.
They are not young and beautiful.
They don't belong to the right ethnic group.
They have been teaching for more than 5 years.
They have been union members speaking out for people like you and your children.
The UFT sold them out when they gave up the right of seniority transfers and the Principal's got the right to hire only those that fit the mold.
I'm not an ATR. I don't like change and by staying in the same school for more than 20 years I have unknowingly protected myself. My school is a good school so it is not likely to be closed down or reorganized. I teach math so there is no way that my position can be done away with. I am safe.
But, suppose I was not the teacher described above. Would it matter that I have been teaching for over 30 years? Would it matter that I am well liked by parents and students? Would it matter that I always get good results and that I spend countless hours of my own time helping my students? Would this have meant anything?
No Principal would ever higher me. Once I leave this job, I know the door will be slammed behind me. Exit only. Unlike years before, retired teachers who changed their minds were welcomed back. Once I leave I know no one will let me come back. (That is why I am holding on now--until I am sure I am really ready to go.)
Check out this article in the Chief to read about this ATR art teacher who has done for more for her students than all you doubters out there will ever know.
Our wonderful union is running workshops on how to interview and how to write a resume. These people are not incompetents. They know how to do this. Our union is making videos to show them off. Since when have teachers become pets to show off in a store window?
All you newbies out there, think ahead. If you are fortunate, you will one day be a senior teacher like the ones out there now. You too might be an ATR. Maybe you should start taking an active role in the union now.
Let's stop blaming the ATRs for the position they are in. Let's stop blaming everyone and put these teachers back in the classroom where they belong and where they want to be. Let's help the city solve its budget crisis by letting the people already on the city payroll do the job they were hired to do.
I know that this blog is an open forum for people to comment and to express their thoughts but some of those words make me sick.