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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Gypsy Teacher reports from first encampment

The following report was submitted by a contributor who would like to be known as Gypsy Teacher.  

The first week of this ATR nightmare has come to an end. I spent over an hour to get to my placement so I could spend the day putting home contact cards in alphabet order, doing lunch duty and, for one day, actually covering classes! 

The school was a very small specialized school and the students and staff were wonderful. Did I mention the staff were all YOUNG? Out of the 30 teachers on staff, I don't think any of them was over 30! The assistant principal was a kid and the principal not much older. I still don't understand why I was sent to a school that DOES NOT even offer any courses in my license area. The principal and I had a nice chat about it and he seemed to be confused also.

Anyway, there were also two "resident principals" (I suppose from the Leadership Academy) on board learning the ropes. Like I said,  everyone seemed nice but then again I was only there for a week. I was introduced to everyone and I kinda felt "ashamed." Why was I in this predicament? I know deep down it is not my fault but how do others view us? As losers or as capable professionals?

One other note: a gym teacher was hired. A young gym teacher. I doubt he had been an ATR so how was he allowed to be hired? The union and DOE are doing nothing to protect us! I know that day-to-day subs are still filling vacancy positions! I called the union and asked about the newly hired teacher and the subs still in vacancy positions..and guess what???? Oh we have to look into this, I was told! Bull! The principals are getting away with murder, the DOE is treating us like crap and no one is doing a damn thing to protect our rights! We have to have a voice. We have to be heard! And soon! 

Oh, and next week I am placed in another small school that doesn't have any classes in my license area. At least the commute will be better!

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  1. I had almost the same experience. The computer "randomly" chose the school which is very far from my house. I spent an hour an a half to get to the assigning school. My next "randomly" chosen school is in the same area. The principal of the previous school did not see me niether once. He was very busy to meet me. My boss was one of the secretaries who explained me what kind of the clerical work I had to do every day. All teachers in that school were not older than thirty. I also felt ashamed for my situation.

  2. Wow! Sames exactly like my story! We must do something about this! I keep emailing my so-called union reps and they say that's the way it is! Well it shouldn't be. Who came up with these districts anyway??? So angry and frustrated!

  3. You are not required to do clerical work, you are there as a teacher. One of the things we need to do is make it clear we are not going to be just given whatever chores they like. Put a stop to it by pointing out that you cannot be given a work assignment that is not teaching related.
    Absolutely Teaching Ready