Evaluating The City Council PowerPoint [corrected]

Here's the 10-slide presentation deck for [yester]today's appearance in front of the City Council.  My main question is how they hope to make the process more open without
at the same time making it even MORE contentious? That was always the argument for giving schools time to respond afterwards rather than ahead of time.  Maybe there's no perfect solution here.  What do you think? 
  

City Council Briefing on New School Actions Process_April 29 2010_B -

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  • All B.S.!

  • Okay, I see that LSC and PAC are engaged. What is the PAC?

    And why doesn't the Union have a role here? It seems to me that the PPC should also be consulted. Of course, PM at the local school level also ignores the Union.

    This is unacceptable.

  • My understanding is that principals retain control over which -positions- will be cut but HR determines -who- will be cut based on certification and years-of-service.

  • Principals are allowed to discuss the number of positions cut but are not suppose to say the actual names of the teachers who are being cut. CPS is trying to figure out based on certifications and senority who is actually being cut. I think the principals may be able to exercise some control over the auxillary positions being cut, but central office will be determining the classroom teacher cuts.

  • There is no $600 million deficit for CPS! Huberman just wants a pound of flesh from the CTU!

  • HUBERMAN BUYS NEW HOME ON NORTH SIDE, by Bob Goldsborough, special to the Tribune: "Chicago Public Schools Chief Executive Officer Ron Huberman and his partner have paid $898,000 for a five-bedroom house on the North Side. The 11-room, Victorian-style house, built in 2008, had been listed for $947,500. Features in the three-story house include 3 1/2 baths, three fireplaces, a finished basement, two wet bars, 8 foot solid cherry doors, crown moldings, Brazilian cherry hardwood floors and a chef's eat-in kitchen with Viking and stainless steel appliances, a large island and cherry cabinets. Huberman declined to comment on his purchase." P.S.- Will the teachers, career service and principals who will lose their jobs on June 30, 2010 be able to buy a new house? Will teachers, career service and principals be able to keep their current houses? Will teachers, career service and principals be able to pay their rents when they lose their jobs on June 30, 2010? TEACHERS, DON'T GIVE UP YOUR 4% RAISES FOR NEXT SCHOOL YEAR AND DON'T BE FORCED TO TAKE UNPAID FURLOUGH DAYS! I'm sorry, I forgot, Ron Huberman didn't get a raise for next year!

  • Ron Huberman says if he doesn't get concessions from the union he will cut 2700 teachers and 300 ESP's!

  • National Board Certification has no impact on seniority. Seniority is determined by a teacher's date of assignment by the Board. Subject matter certification is also relevant. A veteran teacher who is cut from one department for budgetary reasons may bump a less experienced teacher from another department if the more senior teacher holds the appropriate certification.

    For example, a principal decides to cut a social studies position for budgetary reasons. Teacher A, a 15 year veteran and the least experienced social studies teacher in the building, would be eliminated. However, Teacher A also holds an English certificate. Teacher A can then bump Teacher B, a 12 year veteran English teacher with National Board Certification.

    In the scenario above, despite the fact that a social studies position was cut, an English teacher will lose a job based on seniority and certification. The complexity of these situations is why principals determine which -positions- to eliminate and HR determines which -individuals- will be cut. And, of course, CPS doesn't have to notify anyone of budgetary cuts before the 20th day of the fall semester. (Notification at the end of June is just a nicety.) CPS is the only district in the state that is allowed by our state legislators to do this. Just about every other district in Illinois is required to give notice of budgetary cuts 60 days before the end of the school year.

    Before anyone bashes seniority, it is one of the most important rights teachers have. Without it the Board would simply get rid of and refuse to hire veteran teachers because they are more expensive. And the pension system would be destroyed because few teachers would be around long enough to vest in the plan. CPS would never get rid of veterans, you say? Veteran teachers are too important to the success of students? CPS does not make decisions based on what is best for students. CPS makes decisions on how to operate as cheaply as possible as a corporation. When is the last time the Board made a decision based on what is best for students, families, and, especially in the context of this reply, teachers?

    For perspective on veteran-less educating, take a look at the New Orleans system where their leader, Paul Vallas, views teachers as a cheap, renewable, non-professional commodity. New Orleans is a massive revolving door for young, inexperienced, non-union, inexpensive teachers. (Vallas really believes that youthful exuberance and enthusiasm will overcome whatever instructional deficits these teachers may have.) This scenario will become a nation-wide trend and it has roots in Chicago, too. CPS has been systematically closing schools and firing mass numbers of veteran teachers in favor of non-union charters with young, cheap teachers. Not surprisingly, teacher retention in charters, for the most part, is abysmal. The deprofessionalization of the field of education will destroy teaching as a career.

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