Thursday, July 30, 2015

How The AP Became A Success

This is what you do when you know nothing and have zero education or experience and become boss.

Bet everyone knows an AP or Principal in this category.  I can think of a few but one really stands out.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

When The Uneducated Are In Charge

The AP realized the more students she put in main stream classes, the better she would look.  Team teaching classes seemed to be the best way to dump educate these children.  A problem with this was not enough special education teachers were available to team teach.

The AP was not one to stress about such a major minor thing.  She assigned anyone free to these classes.  So now a mainstream teacher with no experience dealing with learning disabled and emotionally handicapped children was working with a teacher straight out of college with no special education degree or experience.

As luck would have it a boy with many issues was in one of these classes.  His mom was well aware of the problems her son faced and wrote long letters explaining his disability and promising to be available whenever she was needed.  This letters went to the main stream teacher as there was no special education teacher on record at the time and then the extra teacher assigned was not even certified in special education.

After two days the young man said some very inappropriate things to the young teacher in the room.  She freaked out.  She spoke to the AP who immediately removed the boy and put him in another class.  From what I understand, he was moved around many times.

The AP whose job it is to help students like this boy failed miserably at her job.  The boy was lost in the system.  Eventually a special education teacher was assigned to the class and the remaining students got the help they needed and were entitled to.  The AP looked good as many of the students were not in self contained classes any longer.  But, I wonder how many got lost along the way?  How many never received the help they deserved?

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Fun At Work

It was 8:35 on a Wednesday morning when the phone rang.  I figured it was a telemarketer and picked up the phone ready to let loose a whole bunch of expletives.  Before I opened my mouth I heard the voice of the secretary from the community college.  She immediately apologized for calling so early but said she was desperate.  A teacher had called in sick at the last minute and she had to find coverage.  She knew I lived close.  Now, I don't like working in the summer and I especially don't like the 3 hour long classes and I hate teaching remedial but, I love the school and I love the way they treat and respect their staff so I agreed.  I folded my newspaper, turned off my I-pad, poured my coffee into a travel mug and told my husband I would be back in about 4 hours.

I managed to get to the school a few minutes early and stopped by the office to pick up a book and sign to get paid.  I thought the look of gratitude on the secretary's face was enough to make my day.  That, was not even a fraction of what happened next.

I got to the room and immediately went in search of someone to unlock the door.  The 25 students waited patiently and then filed in.  I introduced myself and then asked them to tell me their daily procedure.  I told them since I was only there for the day I wanted to do things exactly as their regular professor did them.  I found them all to be bright, enthused, motivated and extremely cooperative.  Although much of the work was familiar to them,  I threw in lots of decimals and fractions, things I knew they needed help with and they were extremely grateful.  I even emphasized that most were probably in remedial because of carelessness, not lack of knowledge and confessed to being the queen of careless mistakes.  Before we knew it, the three hours were up.  We said goodbye and hope to meet up again soon and left.

I will get a nice check for the work I did but more importantly, I had fun.  How many people can say work is fun?  Teaching used to be a fun career, a career where one can make a difference in another's  ' life.  I am so fortunate to be able to continue mine this way.  It is sad so many others cannot and so many good teachers will end up not doing what they are so good at doing.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Lower Manhattan

 Lower Manhattan is on the rise!!!!  Views from the street and cruise on City Clipper, courtesy of

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Leaving the Dog House

The AP thought her life was made.  The veteran teachers, the ones who saw through her incompetence and her negligence were gone.  She had successfully navigated them into retirement and she had carefully chosen and molded her new staff of minions, servile newbies who quaked at her wide eyed vacant stare and shivered as she yelped and barked.  She thought life was going to be a breeze.  Her minions were all in place to assist the lowest level students get regents diplomas and credit for every single course needed towards graduation whether they deserved it or not.  She figured she could sit back, her feet on the desk and spend the next few years lapping up the perks that come with the job.

The AP, hidden in her own little world was unaware of the quiet revolt going on around her.  The minions had enough.  Albeit young and inexperienced, they were bright and had morals.  They knew what she was doing was wrong and they did not want any part of it.  Behind her back they applied for other positions in schools with APs who hopefully are not so corrupt.  Being young, easily molded and cheap, they got hired.

So now the yapping, barking AP must start all over.  Yes there will be a new crop of minions ready and willing to take the vacated positions but she will have to get off her comfortable chair and start working at molding again. 

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Grade Fixing Is A Major Deal

DeBlasio thinks grade fixing is no big deal, Well, if he saw what I see in the community college, he would change his mind quickly.  I have been teaching mathematics at a community College since 2003.  In only 12 years I have seen the caliber of our students go down dramatically.  Students, not all as we do have many fine ones,  are coming in who cannot work with fractions, who cannot divide and do not even know multiplication tables.  These same students brag about passing regents exams and doing well in high school.  I have seen students who refuse to buy books or even use the free ones in the laboratory and library.  Many never do homework and don't know the meaning of the word study.  They got a free ride in high school and expect that ride to continue into college. They expect extra credit, grade forgiveness and grade curving.  They are totally unprepared for college or for much else.  Grade scrubbing improves high school graduation rates but it does nothing to prepare students for college and for life.  In fact, it hurts them infinitely more than a failing grade ever could.  As someone who has taught both on the high school and college level, I urge the Mayor to take this grade fixing seriously and do something to fix it.  Fixing it is all about the future of our city.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Dilbert Does It Again

Scott Adams must be portraying a Packemin graduate.  The prospective employee expects a paycheck with no work and no attendance requirement, exactly the way he got his high school diploma,  

Okay, no fair picking on Packemin.  Kids got diplomas requiring no work all over the city.

Saturday, July 04, 2015


It was like looking at a picture post card

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Gleeful Administrators Ruining Schools

Ratings came out and 50% of the school was rated highly effective.  Interesting that no older teacher was rated highly effective.  These are the teachers that kept the school going in Quality Reviews for years. These are the teachers that kept the school as an "A" school for years.  Interesting that the school did not do so well in its rating this year.Could it be too much emphasis on Danielson and not enough emphasis on what the older teachers know is the way to reach students?

On another note, two long time teachers retired.  The AP stood up at the end term meeting and praised one, thanked him for his service and wished him well.  The other one, she ignored.  Secretly she was happy both left.  Two less veterans to worry about.  In another meeting a different AP addressed his department.  He gleefully told them of the "troublemaker" who would not be back.  He was really talking about the 35 year old veteran teacher who gave her life to her students who was retiring.

The incompetent and inexperienced administrators of today are ruining teachers careers and reputations but more importantly they are ruining schools and no one cares.  More importantly, they are leaving today's youths in the hands of teachers not properly prepared to help them grow to capacity.