Oct 17, 2008

DC Teachers and Providers Speak Out: From The Trenches !

Here's a post just in from the trenches. DCPS related service providers speak out about our real working conditions that you rarely hear about in our mainstream press as well as the cronyism and nepotism and politicism that are still pervasive even under the helm of our school chancellor. Check this out from a DC School Psychologist.

"As always thanks so much for all you do, keeping everyone informed and working tirelessly on our behalf. First, please write to the Obama campaign and respond to Obama's most ill advised praise for our Chancellor and the "great" Mayor for all they are doing for education in this city. They ( Obama and his campaign advisors ) need to see/ read those voluminous articles to the contrary.

Michelle Rhee went to the Democratic National Convention and berated the democrats as shameful for only being concerned about unions and NOT about education of the inner city students ! Can you believe the gall ??? Here in DC we have classes with 35 and 45 students, some reform that is. Her only methodology for reform in fire, fire, fire, hire non-educators - anyone she can find, and let the classroom teacher:student ratio's be damned! Obama just might lose votes by aligning himself with those two DC lightening rods for public contempt.

Most people recognize the "destruction of public education ", and it's replacement with poorly conceived privatization, to be a republican initiative. Just as their repetitive attempts to dissolve the US Department of Education keep coming to the surface. Remember when Service master replaced all school custodians.... and what was the benefit there other than more privatization ?

Secondly, every new DCPS administration comes along with the battle cry of "down with the pernicious practice of friendship, kinship, cronyism and nepotism" as the #1 problem with DCPS staffing. Well, the 5 new School Psychology heads ( including the two who subjected us to the most elementary " ethics training " session recently, are all tight friends, schoolmates, cronies from way back and also long associated through family friendship with one of the administrators under Dr. Phyllis Harris as reports have it.

Additionally, these "program managers" are the least seasoned, least experienced of all the psychology workforce. But then, that's what apparently qualifies one to work under the current regime. When reading the published Human Resource job description for program managers, there is such a massive list of responsibilities that they clearly don't have time to hold "peer review/ case conferences" in addition to staff developments, which rarely develop anything because of a pervasive lack of psychological acumen and creativity."
Anonymous DCPS School Psychologist. Posted by The Washington Teacher.


Anonymous said...

Stop Hating and Congratulate.

Burton said...

Thanks for posting this piece from the trenches. I think many are afraid of hearing the 'real truth' especially from our front line workers in public education. The adage the truth shall set us free rings true here. It's not about hating it is about being misinformed. I liked the suggestion to write Obama's people about what's really happening in our city. Keep up the great blog Candi !

Anonymous said...

Did you see this on D2 route's blog: http://d2route.wordpress.com

Deborah Menkart on Michelle Rhee
Published October 17, 2008 DC , public education 0 Comments
Tags: Michelle Rhee, DCPS, NCLB

Debate Fallout: * Economic Discussion * D.C. Education System * Colombia

Executive director of the D.C.-based group Teaching for Change, Menkart is co-author of Putting the Movement Back into Civil Rights Teaching. She said today: “It was unfortunate to hear both Obama and McCain endorse the actions of D.C. Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee, though Obama made important points about No Child Left Behind being an unfunded mandate and the need to provide meaningful supports for teachers. Rhee’s approach, on the other hand, has been almost exclusively punitive, firing teachers and principals and closing schools. What’s missing is a plan to improve the quality of instruction through professional development or other critically needed supports for quality teaching.”

Michelle Rhee is like the Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland, “Off with their head! Off with their head.”

jmannii said...

"almost entirely punitive?"

Under Rhee, DCPS has given huge financial awards to schools for producing quantifiable results and offered teachers substantial pay increases to go along with their tenure.

Many teachers have better looking classrooms and more school supplies now.

Many teachers across the nation would love to be "punished" by Rhee in these ways.

Anonymous said...

Not to mention re-writing educational laws as she goes along !

Anonymous said...

Contracts ? Rhee can move to impact bargaining and it's decided by an arbitrator ! Good luck getting teacher's in DC !Meet the operational needs and resources required to effectively run school buildings !

Anonymous said...

McCain and Obama recognized DC Schools "was a mess" in the debate and Obama said it has been for a while.