His Students Were Struggling, So He Changed 1 Big Thing. Then Everything Changed


I absolutely love reading about new and different classroom strategies. Here I read an article about flipping classrooms: His Students Were Struggling, So He Changed 1 Big Thing. Then Everything Changed.

The principal had the idea from his time as a coach to offer the classroom lectures to students outside of class, as homework, so that the written work and discussion and projects could occur during class time with the help of the teacher.

How many times do students have trouble completing written homework, and then not receive help in class because the teacher has moved on to the next lesson?

How often do students have trouble taking notes AND absorbing the information during a class lecture? I know that I am a writer and I usually need to write things down to understand them. Writing takes time and the comprehension comes second. I am usually feverishly writing notes before they are erased or the teacher moves on, but can’t listen to the words for comprehension at the same time.

This principal tried “flipping” one classroom to see if it would be successful. The teacher recorded short video clips of the lesson approximately 10 mins and the students would watch them as homework instead of written work. This also allow the student to re-watch, pause, take notes and really get a sense of the material.

When students went to class they already had a basic understanding of the lesson and could work on written work in class with the help of the teacher. Class discussion and projects are more productive because the material has already been covered and you can just engage with each other – which is the whole point of school.

I know when I had reading homework, I rarely ever completed it. Class discussion never really required that I had read the material, I always managed to make it work. If I had been asked to watch a video instead of reading, I probably would have covered more material. Also, its easier to watch a short video when you are tired and virtually impossible to read when you are tired, which is probably a good amount of my high school and college career.

They started with one teacher teaching a flipped class to struggling kids and the same teacher teaching the same material in a traditional way to average students. The idea was to see if the students having problems would be helped at all by the switch.

And…

The at-risk kids actually outperformed the other class!

It’s not really about the technology, its more about more engagement in class with the teacher and students. Granted there could be some barriers in terms of student access to technology to access the videos and teachers have to commit the recording all the videos. But a successful strategy is always a good one! The rest can be worked out.

Analysis of district/union collaboration in Lawrence, MA

Analysis of district/union collaboration in Lawrence, MA

©Depositphotos.com/Margaret Paynich

©Depositphotos.com/Margaret Paynich

In this last post, I took a look at the state takeover / Turnaround plan in Lawrence, MA. Being touted as a true collaboration between districts and unions I wanted to dig a little deeper to see what may have transpired and potentially what could draw success in the future.

A strong leader is something I believe both unions and pro-reformers want. Lawrence was fortunate to have a leader that was willing to forge a middle ground by investing time in human capital. A strong leader on either the union side or a firm pro-reform side (or one that is simply neither) may not be able to bring about results. Finding strong leader talent is difficult, but often a very important piece.

Jeffrey Riley was appointed by the MA Education commissioner and was awarded all the powers of a superintendent and a school board. He did not have to negotiate with unions and didn’t quite at first. It appears he worked to implement certain reforms and then seeing some progress proceeded to work with unions to solidify.

Expanded learning time is usually promoted by both unions and pro-reformers, but unions only if teachers are being paid for it. Lawrence likely was able to make pay available through grants – we’ll have to see how they are able to keep it flowing through changes in school funding. It’s generally a given that expanded learning time, executed correctly is greatly beneficial to students. So what are districts to do if they can’t immediately find the money to pay teachers for the extra time? I see the teacher perspective of wanting to be paid for the extra time, but really how much extra is it? At one point someone decided that 7 hours a day was all students needed. Now it may be 9 hours. Should students have to suffer without expanded learning time in districts where there isn’t extra money for teachers?

Generally speaking unions are against charters – unless they are running them. Lawrence was able to put together a collection of charter management, union management and LPS management in the turnaround plan. So, I guess unions aren’t all against charters, all the time?

Lawrence is using a myriad of data to evaluate students and in turn teachers. This is not usually something that unions go along with. So maybe unions aren’t all against data for performance?

Successful building principals have autonomy to make changes in their own school, including staffing. However teachers did receive 2 1/2 hrs of collaborative planning time (likely assisted by the expanded learning time) in which to analyze student data and make curriculum adjustments. It was not clear on the specifics of professional development, but there appears to have been more offered.

I took a look at the Lawrence teacher’s contract and found some interesting items:

  • It provides the superintendent wide sweeping authority to make changes to school operational procedure throughout the year
  • Under Teacher hiring and promotions, Article 26: “In filling positions, principals have the authority to select the best qualified staff from both internal and external candidates without regard to seniority.” It is often the case that if a senior member of the district’s faculty wants a position he or she will get it. This allows more leeway to have the district make the right decisions for kids.
  • Another win for kids, in Article 35, when there is a reduction in force district is allowed to consider data and teacher evaluations over seniority:

“The Superintendent has the right to lay off teachers and other district staff due to reductions in force or reorganizations resulting from declining enrollment or other budgetary or operational reasons. The Superintendent will establish the selection criteria for layoffs of teachers and other district staff. Such selection criteria may include, but are not limited to qualifications, licensure, work history (including elements such as discipline, attendance, evaluations, etc.), multiple measures of student learning, operational need and the best interests of the students. Where all other factors are equal, seniority may be used as the deciding factor.”

This is also probably largely due to the law Stand for Children MA passed in 2012 which made job performance, not seniority, the primary consideration in teacher staffing decisions in every public school in Massachusetts, with the new evaluation systems being a key component of how job performance is measured.

  • Still not sure why teachers are allowed 15 sick days per year when they only report to school for 183 days (in Lawrence). Most professional jobs give you 1-2 weeks of paid leave and maybe a few sick days or those are included in the 1-2 weeks. The fact that they can accrue up to 200…what would someone do with 200 days of sick leave???

Fifteen days of full pay shall be allowed during the school term from August to June in case of illness. Any or all of the fifteen (15) days of full pay that have not been used may be carried over to the following year’s allowance and such allowance may be accumulated to two hundred (200) days of full pay.

  • Health insurance premiums which are usually a hot debate on contract negotiations are not clearly outlined. Unless teachers are buying into the statewide health insurance plan.
  • Article 66: The career ladder is one of the more interesting elements to the contract. Each level of advancement is based on certain performance evaluations, although no salary can be decreased due to evaluations, I assume the teacher would stay at the same level. I believe that in those cases the consequences of the evaluation system come into play. Often if you are at a needs improvement or unsatisfactory level for “x” number of years there are improvement plans and opportunities or consequences that take over. The career ladder also allows for excellent teachers to advance through the ladder commensurate with their evaluations. A new teacher could be eligible for the salary of a veteran teacher within 5 years.

A Novice teacher shall advance to Developing I and a Developing I teacher shall advance to Developing II annually provided that the teacher does not receive an end-of year evaluation rating of “unsatisfactory.”

A Developing II teacher shall advance to Career I and all Career level teachers shall advance a level annually provided that an end-of-year evaluation rating of “proficient” or “exemplary” is received, with “proficient” or better ratings on all four standards. A teacher with an overall end-of-year rating of “proficient” who has achieved less than “proficient” ratings on all four standards may still advance to the next level with the recommendation of the building principal and the approval of the Superintendent.

A teacher who does not receive the requisite evaluation rating can appeal for a review of the evaluation to the Evaluation Committee.

If no end-of year formative or summative evaluation is completed for a teacher, the teacher shall advance to the next level.

A teacher may advance on the salary scale more rapidly than described above with the recommendation of the school principal, subject to the approval of the Superintendent. Any such advancement will be limited to two levels above what the performance plan would otherwise provide, provided however that a teacher may not advance to Advanced or Masters status without going through the review process that applies district wide. The union shall be notified of all such advancement decisions.

Novice, Developing, Career, and Advanced teachers shall not have their salary reduced based on their performance evaluation.

Based on past experience and performance, a newly-hired teacher may enter the Lawrence Public Schools above the Novice level based on a principal’s recommendation and Superintendent’s approval.

 

The career ladder:

Master

___________

Advanced

___________

Career

Level 4

Level 3

Level 2

Level 1

Developing

Level 2

Level 1

Novice

  • Article 67 – Expanded learning time pay is included in this contract. It is not clear to me when the ELT pay is issued – as time is accrued throughout the year or as a lump sum at the end of the year. Also, I’m not sure if the pay is based on each increment, or just a flat rate at the end. For example, if a teacher works 1525 hours,  does he/she receive a one time payment of $3,000, or does the teacher receive $2,000 for hours 1400-1449, and $2,500 for hours 1450-1499…etc. FYI $2,000 for 50 hours of work is $100/hr.

Beginning with the 2014-2015 school year, teachers working an extended day shall receive stipends in the following amounts based on hours worked:

1400-1449 hours             $2,000

1450-1499 hours             $2,500

1500-1549 hours             $3,000

1550-1599 hours             $3,500

1600-1825 hours             $4,000

Total teacher hours during the normal school day for the year shall not exceed 1,825 hours, excluding functions outside the normal school day, such as parent meetings, after-school functions and other similar activities.

These stipend compensation amounts shall be included in base pay, or otherwise considered as part of the teacher’s annualized salary, for retirement purposes.

Here are some comments from AFT union leaders reported in the Education Week article:

Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, who is generally an outspoken opponent of state takeovers, has been highlighting the progress in Lawrence as an example of transformation that’s possible when the union and the district work together.

“Lawrence is succeeding because of the work between people—including the superintendent, the teachers, and parents, and now, the city administration,” she said. “Let me be really blunt. Anybody who thinks that it’s structure rather than human capital will make a huge … policy mistake.”

Frank McLaughlin, the president of the Lawrence Teachers’ Union, praises the gains and Mr. Riley, though he credits strong leadership and an infusion of resources for the positive momentum, not the state takeover itself.

It appears that concessions can be made in the right environments. I think it’s worth noting that Mr. Riley basically made it mandatory that teachers join the union. I’m sure that went a long way to making the negotiations easier….you know so AFT can bank every dollar! 😉

My public school was not a quality education

My public school was not a quality education

RI Mayoral AcadmiesI no longer live in the community that I went to K-12 school in but I am still connected to many folks through FB. This morning a Warwick, RI city councilor posted an article I did not agree with, making a comment about how she was against the Mayoral Academies. I thanked her for the post, but told her I disagreed with her position. My experience at my high school was not quality and here are some of the various reasons why:

  • There was no direction. We took classes but it didn’t mean anything. There were some outside the box classes, I was part of a marine program once a week that I left the building for, there was a business/finance class I took, we had some history electives I liked where we actually read novels of people in history. Those made sense, whereas “history class” did not. I made no connection between my classes and my life.
  • There are no guidance. In fact my guidance counselor was the worst. and guess what? She was also the head of the RI Guidance Counselors Association for a period of time. What a union waste of time. Never mind that there was no guidance in terms of what you might want to do with your life, but guidance was basically just college applications. My counselor was obnoxious and rude and did not actually help me. I had a healthy list of 7 or so schools, with at least one reach school, one safety school and several match schools. My reach school was GWU. She told me I’d never get in.
    • First – that’s a terrible thing to tell a student.
    • Second, if you are going say something that abrasive to a student you MUST offer some alternatives. I had two schools in Wash. DC on my list. She “nixed” one of them. She NEVER suggested any other DC schools. Could I have done more research, sure. But at the college fair I went to, I only saw those two schools in DC (GWU and Trinity U.) She should have asked me if I knew of others schools in DC besides GWU that I may want to apply to. Because maybe I could have gotten into UMD, or American, or Marymount or something else
    • Third, She never talked with me about what I was interested in or help me find any other schools that might have fit my needs.
  • I graduated with a B+/A- grades and had no idea what I wanted to do. As I ended up in more a social service field – why couldn’t more of the classes fill those topics?
  • The best teachers were the newest ones, which a few exceptions. One of my worst teachers was a senior teacher and he just talked all day. I don’t even remember doing any work. Years later when I returned to get involved in the community, turns out this teacher is the President of the Warwick Teachers Union. What a croc! You want to know why I don’t like teachers unions, because they have leadership that I know was a terrible teacher! What kind of representation is that?
  • I never really learned how to write. I was baffled in senior year English why I couldn’t get a higher grade. I just didn’t learn to write in the way the teacher had expected. All I could do was write in a research based manner. Look something up, and regurgitate it onto the paper. I never learned any analysis or persuasion. I didn’t figure this out until college, where I quickly figured it out and managed to learn how to write in other styles.
  • I could go on but it actually is making me sad how much high school didn’t help me. If you really want to know more, ask.

This sounds like pontificating on your part…

I started refuting Anthony Cody’s post in this blog: You know what is on its last legs? Status quo education , Now I continue with his next claim…

Charter schools: We were told that charter schools were where innovation was happening. Freed from the dual constraints of district management and union contracts, these schools were going to show the laggards in public schools how it should be done. Some even claimed to have “figured out” how to overcome the effects of poverty on student achievement. So the billionaire geniuses of corporate reform insisted that all barriers and regulations on charters be removed or minimized. This requirement was written into Race to the Top and NCLB waivers. Want federal money? Better open the door for charter schools. Want special grants from the Gates Foundation? Open the doors to charters in your district.

But now charter proponents admit they have no secret sauce beyond excluding students who are difficult or expensive to educate. Their plan is to “serve the strivers,” and let the rest flounder in an ever-more-burdened public system. The states where regulations are weakest, like Ohio, have charters that perform worse than the public schools, and even the self-described fan of free-markets, Margaret Raymond, lead researcher at CREDO, recently concluded that using market choice to improve schools has failed. In the state of Washington, where Bill Gates and other reform titans spent millions to pass a law allowing charter schools there, the first charter school to open is struggling to stay afloat, having suffered massive staff turnover in its first year. How ironic that 13 years after the corporate reformers labeled their flagship of reform “No Child Left Behind,” that now their leaders are left defending leaving behind the very children they claimed their project would save.

This sounds like pontificating on your part….Can you source this exact language? “But now charter proponents admit they have no secret sauce beyond excluding students who are difficult or expensive to educate.” I’d like to see it. Just because you say it or wrote it does not make it so. (Thought wouldn’t you love it if you could be right for once?)

Yes, there are charters that don’t perform as well as their traditional public schools. Apparently, though I have not seen the evidence or proof myself, some charters expel or exclude some students. But that is NOT a characteristic nationwide. In fact they traditionally operate themselves in areas to serve low income underserved children. You want to talk about expulsions? Why don’t you check on the school discipline policies (or lack thereof) in all of your traditionally public schools and then come back and talk to be about charters expelling.  Take a look at the movement happening in state legislatures nation-wide because of the school suspension issues in ALL schools. Instead of addressing the fact that status quo education policies, including the ineffective school discipline procedures, that are going on in traditional public schools you’re just trying to draw attention elsewhere. Why don’t you clean up your own house?

 You20141105_193833‘ve mentioned Ohio and California. What about all the other charters? Were those the only ones you can find that were under performing? I wish I could point to only  2 states where traditional public schools were underperforming – unfortunately that’s not the case. What about KIPP school? Democracy Prep? Big Picture Learning  Schools? We have some stellar charters here in GA – Drew Charter and Ivy Prep.

 Also, I’ll have you know that I believed that charters were started to try new education strategies for public schools to learn from. Well, I was informed this fall by Howard  Fuller himself, a father of charter schools in MN that charters were not started to test out new ideas for traditional public schools (though I still believe this is a goal we  should strive for), but that they were created simply to offer parents and students an alternative to their only choice of a public school, which may not be meeting student  needs.

 But feel free to keep writing nonsense, because it gives me plenty of material to work with.

Make your own choices about what to believe

Much of the work of this blog is to do just that – encourage folks to think for themselves and come to their own conclusions, hopefully having done a little bit of research. So much of what is said and written is wrong, or misguided, or lacks factual and supporting evidence. Two prior blogs I wrote talk specifically to this theme: Don’t be fooled by marketing & Look Deeper Than the Title.

This theme is essentially what I took from Rishawn Biddle’s post: LET PUBLIC EDUCATION’S FAILED LEGACIES DIE.  He makes mention of a variety of items written in the last few months that are unworthy and Biddle argues may the editor would have taken another look had it not been Nov/Dec. This reinforces the concept that you must read for yourself, research for yourself and make your own choices about what to believe.

Here are some of the points I took to heart:

The last two months of every year is what your editor calls silly season, when otherwise-sensible people end up writing less-than-sensible things. This is why your editor won’t devote many words to the latest defense of overusing out-of-school suspensions and other harsh traditional school discipline by Thomas B. Fordham Institute President Michael Petrilli. Doing so means giving the data-free claptrap more credence than the unserious piece deserves. Considering that I have tornapart Petrilli’s earlier arguments about the issue somanytimes before — and has cited decades of evidence to boot — another point-by-point response would just heap on more embarrassment for him.

I, too, took Michael Petrilli to task about the current post he is referencing in my post: Don’t leave school discipline up to Mr. Petrilli.

Yet Petrilli, Loveless, and Hess, through their respective polemics and advocacy for traditionalist thinking, raise an important question: Why do traditionalists and even more-sensible reformers advocate for replicating the failed polices and practices of American public Education’s past and present when we must do better for all of our children?

Biddle’s post reinvigorated me to write this post as well, referencing a list of things to re-evaluate from our current system that were designed in the past. What would you add to this list of antiquated elements of today’s schools?

One of the enduring conflicts, both in the battle over reforming American public education as well as within the school reform movement itself, is that there are some outdated ideas that damage the futures of kids to which some hold on to with dear life. Considering the data on how woeful American public education remains — including 33 percent of all fourth-graders in 2013 were functionally illiterate (along with another 33 percent reading at basic levels of literacy) — and that one out of every two dropouts and high school grads without higher ed training aren’t in the workforce, you would think it would be hard to justify holding on to nearly every policy, practice, and institution within it.

Yet as Petrilli, Loveless, and Hess demonstrate in their rhetoric, there are some reformers who are as keen on preserving the worst traditionalist thinking as those opposed to systemic reform.  Same also goes for centrist and liberal reformers who still oppose expanding vouchers and other forms of school choice. And like most traditionalists, they fight vigorously to preserve institutions and practices ultimately because they believe such policies and practices are worth keeping.

What is clear, in short, is that American public education cannot continue to exist in its current form. This doesn’t mean abandoning the concept of public education, at least as the system of financing high-quality opportunities for children of all backgrounds so that their geniuses are nurtured in order for them to choose their own paths to success and happiness. What it does mean is that the failed policies, practices, and institutions within public education shouldn’t be preserved.

What is antiquated about our schools?

When I returned from Washington D.C. to my home state, Rhode Island I remember a distinct interaction. One of the first meetings I went to in 2009 was a public meeting about the potential creation of the Blackstone Valley Prep Mayoral Academy. What became very clear to me while teacher after teacher talked about why the school shouldn’t happen – this is about self preservation. If this public charter school group (or anyone for that matter) comes in and says “What you’ve been doing for 30 years is not working,” it leads to instant feelings of defensiveness. No one wants to be told that everything that they have done for their career has been a waste. Even if it were true, no on would choose to believe that.

When it was my turn, my comments were along the lines of: “Our school system is over 150 years old. The schedule is based on students being able to pick crops over the summer. We have been making modest (at best) changes to our school system but it is largely an ancient design. Our teachers have been doing the best they can with the system they have been given. Our schools are not performing as well as we need them to but it’s not entirely the teachers fault. It’s an antiquated school system. Let us work to provide you a newer, better functioning school system based on modern day needs and we want you to be a part of the discussion. But we can’t continue with the structure of the school systems we have today.”

Everything needs to be re-evaluated including:

  • The school year – move away from an agrarian system and into one that doesn’t foster loss of education over a three month break.
    • I would suggest a year long school year with some combination of more frequent breaks of either 1, 2, 3, 4 weeks long.
  • Time of the day that students attend class. I know one argument is that older students need to start school earlier so there is enough time for sports and afterschool activities. Well, find another way to get it done. Have practices or meetings in the morning when you are currently sending students to school, if they are so motivated. Studies show that older students are more awake and more able to learn later in the morning than 7:30AM. Alternatively, these are the student who could feasibly get themselves to school yet they are one of the only groups of students that leaves for school when a parent normally would be able to drop off a younger child. Younger children are often up and ready earlier, but don’t start school until almost 9am? Then parents have to drop off at a school early for “day care” because they need to go to work
    • I would suggest Elementary starts earliest around 7am, then middle school, then high school. But whatever we do, lets back it up with some research not “after school activities.” You can make the buses work with a schedule like I’ve outlined
  • School Discipline & School Counseling – This is a topic I’ve spoke at length about please see: What unions should advocate for to allow teachers to teach
  • Teachers Unions & the laws around teacher salary scales – There was a time when unions were needed to help protect the public and employees. But now we have plenty of labor laws in place and even if you can argue that workers who have jobs where it is difficult to determine performance (such as a factory job) teaching is one where effectiveness can be measured and no job is the same. Why can’t school districts and principals manage their negotiations of their own staff? Why can’t I negotiate my own salary as a potential school counselor? It actually demeans teachers that there is a salary scale.
  • Function of our school buildings – We’ve done a good job I would say with new buildings, but those schools which are stuck in older building are suffering greatly.
  • Learning strategies – it is an antiquated process to have all students sit, all day long and have the teacher “lecture” to the class. Research doesn’t demonstrate that anyone, especially children and young adults are benefited or should be expected to sit all day long. Students should benefit from strategies I’ve seen work with my own sister at the Met Center in Providence, RI which incorporates internships, project based learning, small teacher lead advisories and student presentations on what they’ve learned.
  • Curriculum – I’m ok with common core, but my problem is more related to this common denominator of math, science, social studies & English. Cant we teach the standards without specifically labeling each class one of these 4 subjects? Why can’t every class be more elective based, while also teaching those standards. Can’t you have an astronomy class where you learn math and science? Can’t you have a law class where you learn writing (English) and history and public speaking and how to make arguments?…etc If one room school houses could teach all their students, we could have 9-12 in the same elective based class and provide roles to the student who could do that specific part of the project. Middle School students have an after school class called Model UN, why cant that be a class instead of just an afterschool program?

I could go on…but this getting to be a long post and what else do you think is antiquated about our schools that we should be looking at??

Showtime’s “The Affair” features NYC Rubber Room

This past Sunday, Showtime’s Season Finale of “The Affair” featured a NYC rubber room!! I could not believe it. I thought that rubber rooms were reserved for documentaries like “The Rubber Room” or “Waiting for Superman.” As someone who is well versed in education policy it was great to see a mostly coveted education practice making its way into the public sphere through the realm of television.

Go here to see the only clip I could find featuring the rubber room

affair rubber room

The video doesn’t offer commentary. In the show, we see Noah, the main character having sex with another person in the school, then going into the  principal’s office, then showing up at the NYC Dept. of Education. There he punches a time card and sits down. He learns from his neighbor, Victor, that  Victor has been waiting 2 years for his resolution to come of the accusation. Noah asks if he can get a newspaper and the “proctor” says “If you leave this  room, you are quitting your job. In order to keep your job, you need to be in this room until 3:15 everyday.”

Noah asks if he can use the restroom and the proctor says “You need to give me your license and I’ll give you a hall pass.”

Later, when he admits to his wife that he’s been accused of sleeping with someone at his school and hasn’t been to work, she says to him, “You’ve been in the rubber room?” Like it is something everyone knows about! Except, apparently this reviewer of the show:

What the hell is a rubber room? Did I hear Helen right when she was talking to Noah about his many bed buddies during their time apart? That’s what she said when referring to him being caught with another teacher in school, right? Is that some sort of weird Montauk slang? I’ve never heard it, though then again, I could just be crazy.

Everyone else got it:

He casts a lascivious eye to a pretty fellow teacher at school and proceeds to have sex with her right there in the classroom. But he’s busted and sent to some sort of grown-up detention for disorderly teachers. He arrives at the Department of Education and learns that he just has to sit around and kill time indefinitely. His seat mate, Victor, who has read Infinite Jest twice is incredibly well read and has been hanging out in this “rubber room” for two years. Noah decides to make use of his time and start back on his book.

Sexual recklessness has had consequences personally and professionally. Helen has kicked him out of the house; schtupping in the classroom after school has resulted in Noah being removed from the classroom. (The idea of a detention room for teachers who are suspended with pay is a solution with ‘government bureaucracy’ written all over it.)

And even the commentors of these reviews know what a rubber room is:

Noah was sent to the infamous NYC Dept. of Education reassignment Center or “Rubber Room”, a not very nice holding pen where teachers who have been accused of wrongdoing wait for their hearings. They do collect full pay as they are technically not guilty of anything during the wait.

As a teacher of 39 years for NYC I am proud that I never had to spend a minute in the “rubber room”. They were supposed to do away with that wonderful establishment of punishing us and giving us secretarial duties in some cases. It was not a happy place especially if you did nothing wrong.

Interesting.. I’m a young teacher and have never heard of such a thing. Is it only for professors with tenure? Or is it something used on the East Coast?

New York City. You might be able to find the New Yorker article on it and there also was a documentary film made about The Rubber Room a few years ago

May be unique to the NYC Dept. Of Ed, but boy is it infamous here in NY.

I worked in the Board of Education for a couple years as a school secretary. There is a “rubber room” and they do nothing there, but get paid for it. Most of the time its cause the teacher did something indecent, immoral or aggressive.

I have a friend who has been in the Rubber Room for 2 years because one of her students jokingly reported to a friend that she never checks for homework 😦 even if true, does not meet any of the above criteria 😦

You can thank your teacher’s union for the rubber room!