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Friday, August 5, 2011

The Nitty-Gritty Details of ATR Deployment

It has been nearly impossible to get specific information about the new agreement regarding the deployment of teachers in the Absent Teacher Reserve (ATR).  One UFT representative sent me some details she remembered from a meeting, but asked me not to publish them; a city councilman I petitioned for help told me I should speak to the UFT.  

Thanks to our friends at ednotesonline, we now have a link to a DOE presentation that explains to principals the details of the agreement: click here for the complete audio presentation. 

Here are a few of the key points:

* ATR teachers may be deployed to different schools within their district on weekly basis, based on the needs of the DOE.

* The weekly assignments will begin in early October of the 2011-2012 school year. 

* Vacancies created by long-term absences will be covered by ATR teachers on a "trial basis," prior to a school using a per-diem substitute.

* A principal may remove an ATR teacher from such a "trial" coverage at any time, at which point the teacher will remain in the school until the end of the week.

* "Clear vacancies" will be be offered to 3 ATR teachers on a "tryout" basis, prior to using a substitute. 

* The tryout period has no minimum duration; the ATR teacher may be removed from the tryout position at any time.

* A school may hire a non-ATR candidate to permanently fill a clear vacancy, without previously trying out any ATR teachers. 

* At the conclusion of a 2-week tryout period, the ATR teacher may be hired by the principal either provisionally for the remainder of the school year, or permanently, or may be returned to the ATR for assignment to another school. 

* The Division of Human Resources will arrange for all schools to interview at least two appropriately licensed ATR teachers per term.
* Questions may be addressed to:

Confused? So am I.  NYCATR will attempt some analysis in the near future.  In the meantime, your comments are welcome. 

1 comment:

  1. I listened to the webcast last week and am currently pondering the possible ways this agreement can be used to further the political goal of forcing out the ATRs.

    My initial reaction to the "Three ATRs and you can hire from outside" rule is that the ATRs will be put into positions that they have no actual chance of getting. The principal will have a (cheap, untenured, and pliable) candidate from outside the system in mind,(a neighbor's nephew or a daughter's friend, perhaps?)and will rotate three ATRs through the position just to meet the requirement for hiring the outside person. The ATRs will never be really considered for the position as they are just place holders until the principal has tried three so he/she can "say" they tried to hire an ATR but didn't like any of them. (And why DID the presenter keep saying, "If you don't LIKE this person, you may..." or "If you decide this person is not to your LIKING, you are under no obligation to..." What's LIKE got to do with it?)

    And in the end, watch for the media and Tweedies to blame the ATRs when the principals make good use of this loophole and leave the ATR pool virtually untouched.