Classrooms: Life In The Reassigned Pool

What's it like to be in the reassigned teacher pool? Here's one teacher's experience -- I'm sure there are many others just as interesting.  "Having never been a sub and never having tuaght any grade higher than fourth, you can imagine my fear. As it turned out I ended up being a push - in. What totally amazed me was the lack of teaching. I sat there during the literacy block watching children do vocabulary sheets, and comprehension quesitons. My afternoon consisted of students doing work that was written on the chalkboard. I saw some students quietly doing the work, others doing nothing but talking, drawing or just sitting. I am hoping that maybe it was because it was Friday and maybe Friday was some kind of test day or work on your own day - who knows."


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  • Welcome to the real world! It is up to you to make a difference!

  • Anonymous Troll states that: "A teacher gets laid off but gets this incredible -- I mean INCREDIBLE -- severence package of essentially a year of full pay and benefits for 8.5 months of work -- and I am supposed to feel sorry for him/her because s/he did not do her job while on substitute assignment because s/he was afraid?!"

    Our friend the Troll thinks this package is incredible. I do not. When the clearing brokage firm I was an officer of at the Chicago Board of Trade closed and was taken over by another firm, I was given one year's full pay, health care coverage for one year, and the cash value of my small part of the partnership in the company. I did have to sign some non-competitive agreements. Within in few days I had a new job in the commodities industry which I eventually left to go back to teaching for the CPS in the 1980s.

    I know that Trolls normally live under bridges and have rather limited contact with outside world, but the deal laid off CPS teachers get doesn't look "INCREDIBLE" to me. I guess it depend on ones perspective, things apparently look different looking at the world from under the bridge.

    Rod Estvan

  • Yes Rod, but that was 1980s. Today 2 weeks per year of service is considered generous. And forget about any benefits, HAH! If they let you go on the 15th you're lucky they keep you on benefits through the end of the month.
    That is the issue - the unions are still living in the 1980s when everyone got good deals. This is NOT today's world. If you want today's world salaries you have to expect to live with today's world uncertainty as well.

  • I agree severence packages were maybe at their best in the late 70s and early 1980s. But hospitals are still today paying out for management layoffs, in fact in the last month in the case of one hospital in Chicago, paying out six months full salary for middle level management with benefits. It is also still not unknown to be paid in severence one month's salary for each year of service over 5 years up to 20 months max in numerous sectors of the economy for college educated workers and sometimes for non-professional workers.

    Many CEOs and even VPs are still getting very good severence packages. Some CPS teachers have to work to get the severence package they do get if their school is closed, those just cut for budget reasons have gotten no such deal.

    Some us who have been cut in the private sector really just get handed the check in return we generally agree to certain conditions, be they keeping trade secrets, non competitive agreements, or not litigating against the firm for the firing. I can still recall my lawyer working out the deal that I got in terms of exactly how my agreements would read.

    My point is that I always find it a bit disturbing when people are arguing how good teachers have it, or for that matter other public employees have it. There are many, many people in this country who are getting a far better deal than are CPS teachers or public employees like police officers. There are also many more people getting a worse deal than public employees. There are also millions with no deal at all who are on the street without even unemployment comp.

    I can understand how an experienced teacher could be very upset being made a substitute teacher with limited chances of getting a full position, even in the current economic situation. The reality is that even with the TIF dollars coming to CPS, next year will be a fiscal nightmare and more teachers working in CPS and other districts could be on the street.

    In fact many more of us working at not for profits could be on the street next year. Access Living where I work at has not seen any payments from the State for over one year for services we are owed money for. We are currently owed from the Illinois Dept of Humman Services about $450,000 out of our $3.5 million annual budget, about 13% of our budget. Other social service providers in central and southern Illinois have closed shop already. Most not for profits are attempting to pay laid off employees severence, in some cases they can not because the situation is so bad.

    I know of one agency that closed shop so they could in fact pay all employees severence before they ran out of reserves. I think we should aspire to taking care of our workforce as much as possible in layoff situation, I think it shows the staff who remain that the company, not for profit, and yes even a school district values its workforce.

    Rod Estvan

  • cps says 56 percent of laid off teachers have found jobs, according to this catalyst update on the court case:

  • danny davis and bobby rush are getting involved now, says progress illinois

  • In reply to AlexanderRusso:

    video from the danny davis bobby rush event, via sunny neater dubow

  • 52 weeks

    I wish all those pundits of the private business world would consider this fact.
    When a worker in the private sector is laid off they go on unemployment forever.
    Teachers get no unemployment and are required to WORK as a
    Substitute teacher whenever and wherever they are sent for that entire year.
    Now if this did not save the Board money it would not be done. Pretty good deal
    For The Board.

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