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5 things to know about the District's decision to open schools on time

Photo: Kevin McCorry/NewsWorks

Superintendent William Hite says schools will open on time, but with another round of "hopefully temporary" cuts aimed at narrowing a large budget gap. At Friday's announcement were (from left) Deputy Superintendent Paul Kihn, Hite, SRC members Bill Green, Farah Jimenez, Marjorie Neff, and Sylvia Simms.

Flanked by four members of the School Reform Commission, Superintendent William Hite announced Friday morning that Philadelphia schools would open on time Sept. 8, but that another round of "difficult and hopefully temporary" cuts would be made to narrow the District's $81 million deficit.

Here are five key points about the School District's latest plan for dealing with its budget gap.

1. Temporary cuts and budget adjustments totaling $32 million were announced. These include discontinuing TransPasses for 7,500 high school students who live less than two miles from school, eliminating 300 slots in alternative programs for students at risk of dropping out, making 27 more elementary schools share police officers, reducing school cleaning and repairs, cutting extra professional development time at the District's Promise Academies, and eliminating some administrative positions. "These are cuts we want to treat as temporary," Hite said. "We want to restore them."

2. The District is still counting on state approval and implementation of a $2-per-pack, Philadelphia-only cigarette tax by Oct. 1, which would generate a projected $49 million this year. In seeking revenue for its current fiscal year, Hite said that was the District's focus.

3. The District is dropping its demands that the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers make wage concessions, but insisting that the union offer benefits concessions to allow for the restoration of cuts. Hite did not put a dollar amount on benefits savings he seeks, but said the District is looking for "substantially more than what's been offered" by the PFT at the bargaining table. As for the work-rule changes that the District has called for and the PFT has balked at, Hite said, "some of the work rule changes are extremely important to us," and so "it's a process of negotiations."

4. There are no mass layoffs now; cuts will result in only about 20 layoffs of District staff, mostly in the central office. Additionally, some vacant positions of police officers and others are not being filled. And the $2.2 million in cuts to alternative programs will almost certainly force the outside providers of those programs to lay off teaching staff. Hite said the layoff picture would worsen if the hoped-for cigarette tax revenues and labor savings don't happen soon: "We will be forced in mid-October to cut into school budgets."

5. Hite cited multiple reasons for rejecting the much-discussed idea of a delayed opening of schools: Because the District wants to avoid "the loss of classroom time for students;" because many salaries and contracts would have to be paid anyway; and because a delayed opening could cost the District if it caused a new flow of students from District into charter schools. Hite also cited assurances from Gov. Corbett and legislative leaders that the state will approve the cigarette tax.

 

 

Superintendent Hite's statement:

Today, just three weeks from school opening, we once again find ourselves having to make unbelievably tough choices. As we announced more than a month ago, we have an $81 million shortfall in our current year budget, which must be closed through additional revenues or cost reductions.

For the sake of minimizing disruptions for families and for the sake of educating children, we have made the decision to make a series of additional difficult – and, hopefully, temporary – cuts in order to open schools on time.

In reaching this decision, we focused primarily on the hardship that not opening schools on time would create for students and families – most importantly, the loss of classroom time for students. As a school district, our priority is maximizing the opportunity for student learning. To delay school opening – during which time we would be required to continue paying employees, make our charter school payments, and meet other contract costs, all while students are not being educated – punishes students for adult failures.

We also took into account the fact that delaying school opening until we have more certainty about additional revenues potentially could further exacerbate our deficit if, for example, additional students exited to charter schools.

Finally, we considered the public assurances we have received from the Governor and the House Majority Leader that they will do everything they can to ensure that the cigarette tax authorizing legislation is passed when the General Assembly returns next month. We appreciate the ongoing support and leadership of the Philadelphia delegation and the Mayor in this effort.

Weighing all of these factors, we determined that opening on time with these further cuts was the least harmful decision for students and families. Accordingly, we are implementing the following service reductions:

• High school students who live within two miles of school will not receive transportation support (an increase from 1.5 miles). As a result, approximately 7,500 students at District, charter, and non-public schools will no longer receive transportation support.
• Approximately 300 students will be impacted by reduced services in the multiple pathways to graduation programs, which will result in fewer higher-quality options for students.
• Elimination of preparation and professional development before school opening for teachers at some of our most challenged schools, the Promise Academies.
• Schools will be cleaned less frequently and have access to fewer cleaning supplies; repairs at schools will be delayed.
• The District will leave school police officer vacancies unfilled, reducing the overall number of officers available to support school climate and safety.
• Additional departmental staffing reductions will result in reduced direct support for schools and families. Details regarding these reductions will be announced as we work through a process with our staff.

We are also assuming – and these are high-risk assumptions – that we will be able to negotiate lower pricing with key vendors, realize significant revenues from additional building sales, and keep our charter school payments manageable though state payments solely for authorized enrollment levels.

As we cut so deeply into our core functions, we again implore our funders and several labor unions to help prevent further harm to our schools and our students’ educational experience.

We implore our state legislators to quickly enact the Philadelphia-only cigarette tax, which is expected to generate approximately $49 million this year if implemented by October 1st. Each month of delay in authorizing this tax results in the loss of millions of dollars of revenue.

We implore the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers (PFT) to make concessions in line with those already made by principals, blue-collar workers and non-represented staff. We are not seeking across-the-board wage reductions from the PFT, but rather benefits changes that would enable us to restore essential services to schools.

If the state and the PFT do not find a way to close what remains of the $81 million gap after the cuts announced today, we will be forced in mid-October to cut into school budgets, which can only mean increased class sizes and an increase in combined or “split” classes.

To be clear, filling our $81 million gap will only allow the District to return the inadequate and insufficient resources schools had last year. To make transformative investments in our schools, we need both new recurring revenues, including a fair funding formula at the state level and responsible cost restructuring, and overdue reforms to our employee benefits structure.

Adults have the power to make right the wrong being done to our students and schools. Providing all children with a rich, high-quality education is not only a basic right, but a moral obligation. I am hopeful that all Philadelphians will join the District in pursuing what is best for students.
 

Chief Financial Officer Matthew Stanski gave a brief presentation on the District's budget gap, cigarette tax revenue projections, and the details of the $32 million in cuts.

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Comments (142)

Submitted by Education Grad ... on August 15, 2014 12:08 pm

This is certainly a better set of cuts than mass layoffs.

I do worry about the environmental conditions in many schools. Many schools need important repairs for issues such as water damage. Some schools would benefit from a new coat of paint to make the schools more inviting for students. 

With regard to transpasses, I hope that the change does not result in more truancy or does not create an undue hardship for students whose families may not have cars.

The fact that the District is taking the wage concessions off of the table is a huge victory for PFT members. It is proof that the concessions were never really necessary, but just an "easy way out" of "solving" the budget problems.

The fact that Dr. Hite mentions the prospect of more students going to charter schools if District schools opened late just illustrates how detrimental the excessive number of charter schools has on the District's finances. 

Now we have to wait and see what happens in mid-October. So we are left holding our breath yet again. 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 2:53 pm

I agree that the talk of wage concessions is a huge victory for the PFT and I am going to hold my breath on the stopping of laying off 1300 staff today. Why am holding my breath because it is still that may be revisited in October, which would be horrible for the students as well as for staff.

As for the elimination of transportation for students who live less than two miles from their schools, well, this may not be something that students and parents like, but it could get our youth back in shape physically. Maybe those little Mom and Pop stores will not open until 9:00am and those little black bags won't show up to school, cutting back on the junk that students eat in school and he trash that those little black bags generate. 

As for the schools getting cleaned less frequently, some classrooms aren't cleaned any way or the teachers end up mopping the floors in their rooms anyway. Not saying that the all cleaning staff aren't great, because many are and and here's a shout out for Miss Felcia and Miss Charmaine! 

Schools not receiving repairs, now that could be very dangerous and a health issue. Schools not being painted, I bet some teachers would be more than willing to paint their own classrooms, but than that brings on a union issue. 

I am happy that schools will open on time. Everyone is going to have to do their job and about two other people's jobs, but so be it! Hopefully, schools will be safe and learning will take place!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:44 pm

 Eliminating transportation "could get our youth back in shape physically"?? It's amazing how people can rationalize and adapt, trying to look on the bright side, when they are losing their rights.

Making kids walk two miles (in the middle of winter??) to school is just another way to undermine the public schools.   They are putting in universal enrollment in this September and this will require busing kids all over the city. This is just one more thing to make charters appealing to parents and the public schools unappealing. In Newark universal enrollment has been a disaster. (Read the comments):

http://bobbraunsledger.com/camis-newark-school-bus-plan-volunteers-needed-to-keep-kids-safe/

Submitted by Education Grad ... on August 19, 2014 12:46 am

Where is your source that universal enrollment will be happening this September? 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 19, 2014 1:02 am

There has been no announcement, but given past experience, since this has been in the works for a year, it will be done quietly with no announcemnt in the hopes of getting it under the radar.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/10/philadelphia-universal-enrollme...

 

Submitted by Rich Migliore (not verified) on August 19, 2014 7:37 am

I am sure PSP still has designs on getting universal enrollment snuck in under the radar. Gleason and his crew want to control everything that has to do with education in Philadelphia, from who gets assigned to which schools, to who is appointed as the principal for schools, to which schools get closed to force students into charter operators' schools.

It is insidious and anti public education. It is also anti democracy.

It is like Diane Ravitch once said to me, "They have more money than us and they are giving it to our legislators and governors."

All the while our public schools are being starved and so are the schoolchildren being starved of the very essentials of a first rate, 21st century education.

I never thought I'd see the day when the school district and the profession I love would turn to what it has become. It is so sad to watch, but it is incumbent on us all to stand and say "enough is enough."

Who was it that said, "Eternal vigilance is the price of freedom?" So is eternal vigilance the price of democracy and fairness to all.

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 3:19 pm

How is it a victory???? This December will mark 3 years with no raise and still paying $700 to $1000 every school year for supplies that technically should be supplied by the District       

Submitted by Good Thing (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:52 pm

I agree.  I guess it depends on how people define "victory."  Perhaps a victory is that we weren't round up and shot in the heads.  

Submitted by Anon (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:44 pm

I wonder how many PFT staffers in charge of our negotiations still need their steps to reach their top salary?  I know many teachers in my school, including myself, that want those step increases!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:01 pm

With the exception of those at the top of the salary scale, don't other teachers get step increases?  Other districts and charters have had actual salary freezes imposed.

Submitted by Paul Socolar on August 15, 2014 10:00 pm

Teachers have been working under a "status quo contract" for the past year since their contract expired. Status quo means teachers are getting paid whatever they were paid in June 2013 and are not getting the automatic step increments they might qualify for due to working an additional year or acquiring an additional degree. So it's effectively a salary freeze: for most teachers the last step increase was in 2012, and the last across-the-board increase was 3% in Jan 2012.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:58 pm
Its the same ol ca-ca! !!!
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 8:36 am

How right you are! But I'm going to do my bit to bring down District costs. As of Monday, I'm quitting. I'm fed up to the eyeteeth with the disrespect, the brutal manipulation by politicians and administrators, the media witch hunt against educators. Who the hell needs it? THE SDP can go find itself another high school Math/Physics teacher (if it can). I'm outta here.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 8:39 am

Please go on the news and voice your concerns before you quit because Hite hears only through newspaper. That will be a major help for all of us who dont have a choice like me. I wish you "Good Luck".

Submitted by Ex-SEL (not verified) on August 17, 2014 12:18 pm

Though I'm not Math and Physics. I'm Spanish and Special Ed, I have come to the same decision. I've reached the end of my rope with this poisonous school district. God damn Corbett, Broad, Hite, the SRC and all those greedy basta**s who purposely destroyed one of the nation's largest public school systems for personal profit. May you all burn in the hottest hell there is. Good luck to charter schools in keeping their overly-abused and underpaid teachers on staff. Good luck to the SDP, staffed with an army of harrassed, resentful educators who continue to work under the gun only because they have nowhere else to run. (The "Philly taint") Good luck to the only remaining Special Ed teacher at my school of 400+, who will now have to write 70-some IEP's, teach, and serve as SEL all by herself. Still 81 mil down from last year? I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for it. No, this will be the School Year from Hell - with plenty of nasty surprises still to come. So adios! Write me care of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 2:38 pm
Me too. Putting my house on the market and as soon as it sells, I'm out of SDP and Philly. Ive been a teacher since 1990 and still love my kids. However, I can't teach in this district. I've had it!!!!
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 3:52 pm

omigod! my sister and I - both speech therapists for the District - have just today decided to resign. We're going to work in stroke rehabilitation rather than endure another year of this rotten public school district. My girlfriend, who teaches English and Social Studies and Learning Support, is quitting later this week and going to work for a Lutheran school in September. We're all worn out from way, way too many years of unnecessary stress. I feel like I'm getting off the Titanic just before it hits the iceberg!

Submitted by Anon, anon, we must go anon... (not verified) on August 17, 2014 5:20 pm

Be careful, if you do not give the state-required notice (60 days), they will legally be allowed to ask the state to take your certificate.  The SDP never used to bother with this, but they have been doing it the last couple of years--and they are within their rights to do so. The stete will do it.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 5:19 pm
Untrue! In the state of PA, they cannot take away your teaching certification because of leaving without notice. Researched.
Submitted by Anon, anon, we must go anon... (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:35 pm

You are technically right.  The job abandonment clause does not provide a MANDATORY punishment. However, it does constitute a violation of the School Code (which, ironically, the SRC suspended certain sections of), and the SDP has been filing complaints with the SDP and they have been asking for various sanctions.

Here is the language from the PDE site:  "At a minimum, failure to provide the requisite notice (aka contract abandonment) may be a violation of the Code of Professional Practice and Conduct for Education for which a reprimand may be imposed. Teachers should be cautioned that a complaint with the Department of Education may be filed against them if they fail to provide the 60 day notice.  It is always recommended that teachers work with their employer to obtain permission for less notice in the event that there are exigent circumstances."

 

http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/educator_ethics...

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:53 pm
Filing complaint doesn't mean you lose certification. It essentially a scary sounding threat that means nothing.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:05 pm

It can't be contract abandonment if we're working without a contract.

Submitted by Anon, anon, we must go anon... (not verified) on August 17, 2014 8:19 pm

We are under a "status quo" contract---no changes, which is why no step and educational attainment raises.  It sucks, but it is still a contract.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 11:15 am

Yet let can lay you off today if they see fit at any time.

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:10 pm

I'd be very interested to hear about this. I knew a special ed teacher who quit last year after being force transferred to an emotional support classroom at one of the worst high schools in the city. This was just before the start of school and he thought he was going to be in a Life Skills Support class at an entirely different school This guy had already been assaulted  several times and he'd been force transferred from one hellhole to another. He finally couldn't take it anymore and he quit. They tried to revoke his teaching cert for good but they could only suspend it for a semester. But he was still able to sub at private schools and this is what he did. Do you have any written documentation to back up your assertion? Thank you.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:11 pm
The only thing that happens is you can never teach for SDP again. Boo how.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:21 pm
The only thing that happens is you can never teach for SDP again. Boo how.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:24 pm
My union 32 bj district 1201 gave back 100,000,000 dollars. This is totally not right or fair.this is sooooooo wrong...
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:43 pm

You think the PFT cares? The PFT cares ONLY about the PFT.

Submitted by Really? (not verified) on August 18, 2014 12:45 am

No, the PFT doesn't think any of the unions should have caved - but can only make decisions on its own contract.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:56 pm

       32 bj district 1201 just got sooooo screwed,its not even funny omg,this is totally wrong and shameful....

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:49 pm

i hope and pray to god that the cigarette tax does not get passed now...

 

Submitted by railroaded (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:22 pm

          1201 is the only ones to give money back,omg not right at all...how dare you s.d.p. SHAME,SHAME SHAME .THE LOWEST PAID WORKERS GET SHAFTED, UNREAL.........HOPE THE S.D.P GOES BANKRUPT NOW...NO TO THE CIGARETTE TAX...

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:08 pm

There is nothing more important than an education for a child. Try becoming a teacher and do the job. It isn't a piece of cake. I'll switch jobs with you.

Submitted by fed up (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:01 pm

  no you would not....

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 12:15 pm

You would not be able to do my job for 1201 as I couldn't do yours so please do act like you would trade. As for 1201's decision to take pay cuts that was our own faults..... They started to fight then caved like scared children of the boogie man. Casa has taken some big cuts also their choice. We in 1201 have made our own beds so stop "bitchen" we did vote those of us who voted no lost get over it, myself included. I am a working mother of 4. I couldn't afford those cuts but I'm making do....... PFT fight the good fight don't let the SDP beat you up. Your stong, if you stick to your guns and stick together you shall beat them!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:25 pm

I guess those temporary step increase freezes from last year will continue to be temporarily frozen.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:47 pm

The step increase freezes are permanent. Count on it.

Submitted by Stwriley (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:48 am

 

You're probably right on that. I'd bet that one of the changes that Hite finds so necessary will be some bogus "merit raise" system that has about as much validity as the VAM measurements in our new evaluations (i.e., none.) But they'll do almost anything, no matter how useless or disproven the idea, to avoid paying experienced teachers what they're actually worth.

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 1:22 pm

1201 should be outraged by the so called cut of schools being cleaned less frequently, these schools are cleaned every day by the hard working people of 1201. Busting our humps over the summer to get everything ready for the kids and teachers.

Submitted by 1201 and fed up!! (not verified) on August 15, 2014 11:00 pm

We are, but George rechezza needs to do something about this immediately,or else....

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 9:51 pm

Does anyone know why schools will  be cleaned less frequently ?

Submitted by fed up (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:26 pm

yeah what does the do-do mean by that,he dint go into details  ....................

 

Submitted by Eileen M. DiFranco (not verified) on August 15, 2014 2:33 pm

Isn't it amazing that the city who hopes to bring the Democratic National Convention to town can't manage its own schools? If I were a member of the DNC, I'd say, "Thanks, but no thanks. Just can't take a chance on a city like this."

Submitted by Christina Puntel (not verified) on August 15, 2014 3:13 pm

And, Democrats should also say, "use whatever money you were going to spend to host us and make sure schools can host their students, parents, and community with panache."

Submitted by Philly Parent and Teacher (not verified) on August 16, 2014 5:25 am

Thanks, Christina.  If Philly hosts the Democratic convention, it is reported to cost $100 - $110 MILLION.  This does not include "inkind" costs (e.g. police, sanitation, etc.)  Then, Philly is hosting the World Meeting of Famlies in Sept. 2015.  Multi-millions also have to be raised to cover the not "inkind" costs.  

 

Yes,  Philadlephia will get attention and fill its coffers with hotel fees and taxes.   Corporations, including "non-profit" Independence Blue Cross, will put millions into funding the two events.  CEOs and politicians will have many photo ops.

 

Meanwhile, there is NOT enough money to adequately staff schools, clean schools, maintain schools, etc.  Nutter will end his mayoral reign welcoming fellow Democrats and Catholics while allowing, along with the SRC/PA Legislature/Governor, to let the SDP sinking ship  go down without it "captains."    Shame!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 3:05 pm

This entire scenario is nothing but making the PFT give back. Corbett wants this resolved before the election. He wants to show that he got the PFT to give back. That was his goal all along. November 4th will determine if Corbett gets back into office. If he does LOOK OUT!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 3:17 pm

Relax....he isn't getting back in.

Submitted by Eileen Claire (not verified) on August 15, 2014 3:00 pm

TWO THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT OPENING DISTRICT SHOOLS ON TIME:

1.  Give us a cost of living raise.  We haven't had a raise in years.  Philadelphia city workers have.  Septa has.  WE DESERVE A RAISE.

Then we will consider benefit reductions.

2. In regard to this statement:  Schools will be cleaned less frequently and have access to fewer cleaning supplies;  repairs at schools will be delayed.

The United State Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration,

otherwise known as OSHA, has rules.  One of them is as follows:

"Housekeeping."

1910.22(a)(1)

All places of employment, passageways, storerooms, and service rooms shall be kept clean and orderly and in a sanitary condition.

Under the OSH Act, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthful workplace.

Keep this number handy, fellow teachers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If you have questions, need additional information, want to file a complaint, or would like to contact OSHA, please call 1-800-321-OSHA (6742)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:16 pm

Great idea. Bring in OSHA so then Hite will have to lay off more teachers instead of cutting back on cleaning. SMH.

Submitted by Eileen Claire (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:37 pm

You are willing to work in squalor.  I am not.  Nor do I want my students to be subjected to it. School may be the only place that is actually clean and safe for them.  

Our school is rampant with mice.  There are days when our trashcans are not emptied, and our floors are not swept.  It's unacceptable. 

We must stand up for decent standards of cleanliness and safety.  Stand strong, PFT members!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:49 pm

You would rather more teachers get laid off than have your trash can emptied less often? I doesn't appear that we can have both.

Submitted by Good Thing (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:53 pm

Actually, yes we can.  There is money.  

There are choices - make ourselves heard.  Truly cause a riot - demand that SEPTA pays its back taxes.  Demand that the companies using our state's natural resources, Marcellus Shale, are taxed.  Taxed, like every other company.  Jesus Christ.  Demand that Nutter get his head out of his ass and stop wasting money (like the city janitor supposedly working 18-hour days and making more than almost any Philadelphia teacher) and hire a few people to collect those property taxes or put the houses in foreclosure and sell them.  

 

Or: shut up, roll over, and take what is given us.

 

How many people have come together for PFT rallies etc.?  We have over 10K members - they have shown they don't care by the lousy turnouts at marches etc.

How many registered voters actually do it - VOTE! - in every single election, including primaries?

 

When I was a young teacher, I was terrified of losing my job because of strikes and layoffs.  I angrily suggested that the PFT should take paycuts in order to save all members.  The PFT did not and I am grateful for this.  One, all teachers laid off were hired back.  Two, that is actually what 440, Corbett, Hite et. al. want: teachers to have less and less.  This is the reason why unions were created in the first place - so there would be due process, rights for workers, decent working conditions.  Decent working conditions include CLEAN, vermin-free classrooms.

Corbett has the sickening indecency to use today's crisis as a platform for syaing that the PFT should give concessions?!  That man is sinful.  He is disgusting and cares nothing for this city, its residents, and especially its children.  Why should he - they're not rich.  How about, Governor Corbett, you tax those gas companies instead of telling teachers to make even less money (as they have over the past three years with the cost of living increases)?

Submitted by Eileen Claire (not verified) on August 15, 2014 8:49 pm

When I was a young teacher, I was terrified of losing my job because of strikes and layoffs.  I angrily suggested that the PFT should take paycuts in order to save all members.  The PFT did not and I am grateful for this.  One, all teachers laid off were hired back.  Two, that is actually what 440, Corbett, Hite et. al. want: teachers to have less and less.  This is the reason why unions were created in the first place - so there would be due process, rights for workers, decent working conditions.  Decent working conditions include CLEAN, vermin-free classrooms.

 

Thank you for this awesome post!  

 

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:58 pm

Please spread the word amongst the younger teachers who often feel that they don't need the union, as I have often heard from younger teachers. I think they often feel the way that they do because they truly don't get what the union is really about. Yes, today's union isn't what yesterday's union was, but it beats no union. I remember the strike of 1981 because I was there!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:15 pm

Veteran teachers should sit and have meetings with new teachers and fill them in on how it is important to have the union.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 10:19 pm

I know I have tried to tell the ones that I have heard talking poorly about unions, but many of them just don't get it and they feel that they don't need the union. Many of them don't attend the union meetings and if they do attend, they are busy on their cell phones,tweeting and posting what is going on at the meetings on Facebook.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 8:09 am

I know of a few social studies teachers that are atill laid off.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 8:55 pm

I am already mopping the floors in my classroom, with my own purchased Swifter. I was told by the cleaning staff to go to the Dollar Store and buy fabric sheets and put them in the closets, in the corners of the room and change them monthly to keep the mice away. I did, I didn't see any mice. And my classroom smells nice.

I don't  want to see any more staff laid off! I will do what I feel is reasonable to do to keep my classroom clean.

Submitted by Education Grad ... on August 19, 2014 1:06 am

If your trash cans weren't emptied and floors weren't mopped, then the custodian wasn't doing his/her job.

At my school this past year, my trash was emptied daily and floor swept daily. The most heavily-used portion of my classroom's floor was also usually mopped every day as well. Yes, there were mice in the school, but it wasn't due to a lack of cleaning! This school had a wonderful custodial staff, but the principal also insisted that the building be clean.

I worked at another school as a paraprofessional and that school was filthy. The trash was emptied in the classroom where I worked and that was about it. The first floor near the entry and front office was cleaned, but the rest of the school was quite dirty. This principal did not run a tight ship. 

It is important that schools be as clean as possible for the health of students and staff as well as for optimal teaching and learning. 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 12:54 pm

SDP is not covered by OSHA. check out OSHAs web page.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:36 pm

SDP is not covered by OSHA. Check out OSHA web page.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:09 pm

SDP is not covered by OSHA.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:13 pm
If PD has been cut back, when will we be required to go back to school??
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:27 pm
I guess we will be providing toilet paper as well as copy paper.
Submitted by g (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:37 pm

If we do not get rid of Corbett-WE WILL BE DETROIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Every single Philadelphian must vote him OUT in November. Another four years with him will doom our district and our city.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:12 pm

LOL! Detroit has had only Democratic mayors for the last 50 years. It was Democrats pandering to public sector unions that bankrupted them, like the gift of a 13th month pension payment until...the money ran out.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:46 pm

Just like Philly hasn't had a Republican Mayor since 1952. Can't blame the city mess on the Repubs.

Submitted by g (not verified) on August 16, 2014 9:45 am

I said governor-not mayor

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 12:49 pm

You mentioned Detroit. That is a city. Governors are in charge of states. Mayors are in charge of cities.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:27 pm

Due to the crisis in the Philadelphia School District, how come there is no mention of the cuts that need to be made to the charter institutions?  After all, isn't the district "footing the bill" for them to be in operation?

Submitted by Paul Socolar on August 15, 2014 5:19 pm

Payments to charters are per-pupil, mandated by state law, and are based on last year's District spending levels per regular-ed and per special-ed student. So when the District lowers its per pupil spending, that hits charters the following year.

If the District didn't pay charters what they are owed based on last year's per-pupil spending levels, charter would protest to the state and the state would likely forward the money to the charters and deduct the amount from the District's state aid. This is what has happened before when the District has withheld payments to charters for various reasons.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 6:46 pm

The SDP budget icreased by $200 Million this year. That means the charters will get more money next year, not less.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 7:04 pm

AHHHH, their cost of living went up!!  Guess what, so did teachers costs.  Why then are we frozen out?????????????

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 4:27 pm

Is bus transportation being cut for the Charter schools also?

Are the facility costs for the charter schools that occupy our public schools also being cut?

 

Submitted by Paul Socolar on August 15, 2014 5:17 pm

The new 2-mile rule (instead of 1.5 miles) for high school students doesn't only apply to District students ... it's for anyone getting transportation through the District.

Charters that are in District buildings are paying a licensing fee to the District but I don't know that any are using District maintenance and cleaning staff. Maybe other readers can clarify that point.

 

 

Submitted by Maria (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:41 pm
That is my question too what about buses for charter schools? Are their services being cut?
Submitted by anon (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:39 pm

yes, bus service for charter schools cut.  taxi and limo service only now.

Submitted by BePositive (not verified) on August 15, 2014 5:22 pm

I understand many people are unhappy. I'm a teacher, too. So let's take a deep breath and be grateful for what we have. First and foremost, we have a job. Secondly, our colleagues didn't get pink slips today. Hopefully all who start in September, will still be employed in June. No, it's not perfect but honestly-high school students will survive blistering cold days. Schools need to be aggressive about coat drives and asking the community for assistance in donating hats, scarves and gloves. Many teenagers have coats but don't want to wear them (ask them and ask their parents-they've told me). As for cleaning-buy a broom and dustpan from the dollar store and assign the job to a different student every day-many kids who love to interrupt class also like staying busy and helping out. It's sad that some teachers spend $700 or more (???) on supplies, that shouldn't happen. I've worked in "poor" schools but when I asked parents for sanitizer, pencils and tissue, they bought it. I'm sure some parents, even if there are only 2, will be willing to help out with supplies. I've never used it but I advise everyone to submit a proposal to Donors Choose and ask for classroom materials. Like I said, I'm a teacher, too and the cuts suck but I'm glad I have a job and a salary to support my family. Enjoy your summer everyone!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 7:18 pm

BePositive  Are you serious?

Submitted by anon (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:19 pm

BePollyanna

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 8:12 pm
I agree with you BePositive. I have a Swifter that I purchased in my classroom for spills, I have paper towels, broom, dust pan, etc. Last year, I asked parents to supply things like tissues, paper towels, hand sanitizer, copy paper, crayons, etc. they donated NOTHING! Sad, I am teaching their children. I ended up buying the things that were needed, as I have done for the years that I have been teaching. I have done very little shopping for my classroom this year, not knowing if I would be laid off. I would hope that parents will step up and make donations to the schools since they are aware that the District is not supplying the things in the schools that are needed and used by their children. I am so happy that I did not get laid off, but am still concerned because some will be laid off on September 1st and some may be laid off come October 1st. It is just a very scary time now for everyone.
Submitted by Education Grad ... on August 19, 2014 2:38 am

It's fine for parents to send in some school supplies. It is even normal in more affluent schools and private schools to do so. It is not fair to ask parents to send in supplies in order to make up for the District's cuts. Instead of appealing to Donor's Choose and generosity from parents and community organizations, everyone needs to be pressuring District leadership and politicians in Harrisburg to give our children what they deserve! 

Our schools are NOT A CHARITY. They are a constitutionally-mandated service and deserve to receive adequate supplies and resources!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 19, 2014 8:44 pm

And while we wait for the pressure to be applied, parents should be contributing to supplies in our schools that have nothing. Teachers should not have to spend hundreds of dollars for supplies!

Submitted by Paul Socolar on August 15, 2014 7:00 pm

A clarification on point #3 in the story. In addition to taking District demands for wage concessions off the table, Hite in a post-conference interview did not take a hard line on work rule changes, and emphasized the need for a settlement. He said "some of the changes" the District has called for are "extremely important" but it's all subject to negotiation.

Submitted by anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 7:28 pm
There is a really interesting breakdown from a teacher at Palumbo of how much the district saved last year from not giving raises at www.workingeducators.org The total came to $52.6 million. The SDP needs to stop pretending that PFT members haven't given back, especially while they are buying tons of school supplies that the district refuses to provide.
Submitted by Paul Socolar on August 15, 2014 8:46 pm

It was a good idea to make an estimate, but there are some math and logic flaws behind the $52.6 M estimate. Someone will need to do a more thorough analysis of this ... it does seem likely that the figure is in the tens of millions.

According to the District's April 2014 consolidated budget, there were only 8,425 teachers last year (out of 17,000 employees) - not 18,000 teachers as cited. So total savings from the lack of step increases in 2013 would be less than half the total he estimates. Another thing he doesn't address that inflates his estimate is that some teachers are at the top of their scale and not eligible for steps. And obviously using an average step increase can skew the result one way or the other.

 

Submitted by Rich Migliore (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:13 pm

Other than schools starting on time, the only thing I like about what happened today is the last two paragraphs of Dr. Hite's statement. Especially the last paragraph where he said:

"Adults have the power to make right the wrong being done to our students and schools. Providing all children with a rich, high-quality education is not only a basic right, but a moral obligation."

The first step in solving problems is acknowledging what they are. Accurate analysis of the budget and where the actual money ends up and being honest about it is the first step. The next step is getting the resources to the students in the form of qualified teachers and support staff.

What percentage of the budget actually makes it to the students? We have less and less teachers and support, yet the budget just balloons and balloons.

We count on the Notebook community to ask the tough questions and get us accurate answers.

What I think we, as a total school community need most -- is to readjust our moral compass. We seem to have lost it somewhere along the way.

That is sad.

 

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 15, 2014 9:28 pm

It's the union members fault. PFT members need to contact Jordan and have a clause put in the contract that the District will give each teacher at least a $500 stipend for supplies OR the District is responsible for any and all supplies for teachers. Heck, Plymouth-Whitemarsh goves each teacher a $1000 stipend for school supplies. Philly teachers get  $100.

Submitted by anon (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:56 pm

no one is forcing you to buy copy paper, etc.  you do have an ethical obligation to spend the $100 reimbursement legitimately, but that is where it ends.  we ought to stop providing copy paper to the sdp for a month or two, just to make a point.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:11 pm

So what do we have the children read since we often have to come up with something in place of the books we no longer have or never got?There is no longer day than the one when you have nothing to keep your thirty-some students on task.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:38 pm

The textbook allocation in the budget last year was 0%. I'm sure that hasn't changed.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 2:05 pm

Call Bill Green, Mayor Nutter and the Governor's office and ask them

Submitted by Mary Louise (not verified) on August 15, 2014 10:01 pm

Transportation should be cut, for everyone. That includes non-public and charters. No more Transpasses to students. If anything, they can purchase tokens. It's called school "choice", which means you have a choice in the high school. If you want to go to Girls High and live in SW Philly, then go, no one's stopping you. If you live in the NE and want to go to Central, same thing. Just 20 years ago, that was the deal. I paid for transportation and so did every one else. Yeah, it sucks to schlep out of bed early and grab that bus at 6 a.m. but it actually taught me time management and got me ready for college. I commuted to Drexel every day, which in turn got me ready for the "real" world. And what happens to SPED kids whose neighborhood schools don't have services? Aren't they bussed to the closest school that has those services? My school is one of the few remaining schools that services ES kids and they come from all over, including siblings to "save" parents time from going to two different schools. THOSE deals should not be brokered by principals anymore. Especially if the siblings are behavior issues. Neighborhood schools for every one.

Cleaning services cut? Do these people realize that the students' environment, their "customers", are our environment also? DUH! The SRC thinks we're cry-babies because we complain about a little dirt. Out of 180+ days, my classroom was cleaned a total of maybe 20-25 times. My trash was rarely emptied more than once a week! Every morning I emptied my trash into the hallway bins. My PFT rep told us to take pictures of our little dirt piles. For what purpose? What happens if a child vomits in class or spills milk or juice in class from the lovely breakfast program? Who's responsible for that?

Corbett, stop with the deals! You're not giving any "extra" money. You're presenting the SDP with the money you're required by law. it's just for show. All I can say is ... Good luck and God bless!

Submitted by Education Grad ... on August 19, 2014 2:12 am

Regarding students with IEPs, my understanding is that the child's address is a major factor when determining where students attend school. I imagine that the District tries to place children at the nearest school with the appropriate placement/services. However, this is not always possible, particularly if a class at the closest school has reached the maximum caseload. The self-contained classrooms (ES, AS, LSS, MDS) are not equally distributed throughout the city so some students have quite a long bus ride in order to attend school.

Also, some children move, but remain at the same school. This is often a good thing as it allows for continuity of the educational program. Sometimes, parents are faced with the choice of an early pick-up time for a child or transporting the child to school themselves. Some parents will opt to transport their own child to school sometimes even when transportation is made available. 

The District operates three bus garages and also contracts out to various private bus operators. It is possible to pick up students from various neighborhoods on the same bus route without much of a problem. For example, the District operates a garage in the Eastwick section of the city. It is conceivable that students from SW Philly and West Philly could ride the same bus route to a school in West Philly. 

Submitted by 1201 and fed up!! (not verified) on August 15, 2014 11:47 pm
We need to have a sick out 1201 !!!
Submitted by Dave M (not verified) on August 17, 2014 4:38 pm

I agree.  We should have done that some time ago.

Submitted by IntheTrenches (not verified) on August 16, 2014 5:39 am

Jordan sent an email stating not only does the District want payment into health care - okay, we expected to pya the same as principals (7%) - but NOT furlough days.  Furlough days is a pay cut.  Principals did NOT get a pay cut - they went back to 10 months and get paid for 15 days in August.  This amounts to earning an additional $8500.  Do furlough days mean students will not attend 180 days or, instead, they will cut PD days?  

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 8:16 am

I'd be open to furlough days if there are no more than two. and I could choose my days.  Or give us the Monday and Tuesday before spring break as furloughs, I won't complain if it costs me to get that entire week off.

Submitted by anon (not verified) on August 17, 2014 11:35 am

i believe hite is proposing a furlough from pay, not from work.  otherwise, they'd just need to hire a sub to cover for you.

Submitted by Dave M (not verified) on August 17, 2014 4:12 pm

Cut the PD days.  They're useless.

Submitted by inthetrenches (not verified) on August 17, 2014 5:19 pm

According to Hite's statement on 8/15/2014, the only PDs cut to date are extra PD days for Promise Academies.  If additional PD days are cut and turned into "furlough" days, it will be during the academic year.  So, plan to show up at school on September 2.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 19, 2014 8:57 pm

With the cut of PD's, how is this going to impact on getting one's 180 hours in to maintain one's teaching certificate?

Submitted by Anon, anon, we must go anon... (not verified) on August 19, 2014 10:16 pm

It is only the extra, paid PDs that occur at Promise Academies and Renaissance Schools that are being cancelled--NOT the regular, mandated PDs during 1/2 days and full PD days.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 20, 2014 3:11 pm

Are they going to do away with the "bonuses" as a money saving measure?   After all, they are not doing the extra hour or weekend classes.  And, they are no different than any other high school in the city.  I speak from experience in having taught in one in that they are a gross waste of money and resources.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 10:54 am

As a teacher I am very frustrated with the consistent calls for PFT members to "step up". PFT members skipped a raise in 2013 saving the district $52,643,827. That is more than half of the current deficit. For this upcoming school year step raises for years of service is also not in effect. Again this will amount to a give back of over 105 million dollars. Please remember that teachers have families with bills, mortgages,and children to feed and cloth. For the past several years teachers have used their own funds to buy paper, pencils, notebooks, soap, toilet paper, and countless other supplies to keep schools running and clean. The PFT offered last summer to make concessions on health care...the SDP rejected the offer. STOP BLAMING US! Teachers are not the cause of this crisis and fiscal mismanagement.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 5:03 pm

But Joe Public continues to cry that it is time for the PFT to step up, because the SD and the Governor says that we need to. They fail to say what the PFT has offered and that they refused the offer that the PFT made. When we someone start running ads detailing what the PFT has already given up. It's gotten to the point that I don't even want to tell anyone that I am a teacher out of fear of what the reaction will be.  When will the public be told the truth? 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 8:39 pm

What will happen to you if you stop spending your money on supplies ?

Submitted by inthetrenches (not verified) on August 16, 2014 9:43 pm

A few students will bring basic supplies (pencil/pen, notebook) and others will not.  They may ask a friend but if not, they will sit.  If there is no copying/paper, students will have to use what books are available and copy.  This is assuming there is something to use to write on the white/chalk board.  If a teacher has a smart board / promethon board, s/he can project what students need to read / write / solve. (This is assuming there is a working bulb.  The bulbs are very expensive - about $250.00 each).    If the SDP cuts cleaning supplies, the teacher will need a broom, dust pan, towels / cleanser, etc.  If a student has a runny nose, the teacher better have tissues.  

 

If you work in an office / construction site / etc., image having nothing to work with unless you bring it.  This is the reality in many schools where students/families do not supply basics.  Schools with fewer students with low SES generally ask families for supplies - from paper to white board markers to tissues.  Those of us in neighborhood schools either pay out of pocket or go without.  Far fewer students will bring in supplies.  (In other words, Masterman, Central, SLA, etc. will be fine while B. Franklin, Franford, Southern, etc. teachers will beg, buy or go without.)

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 10:32 am

I agree.  PFT members - take a stand. Not one more penny out of our pockets for supplies and resources that the District and State need to supply.  They want give-backs, fine, that's my give back

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 21, 2014 10:46 am

Can anyone please tell me what could happen to a PFT member if he or she decides to stop buying school supplies with their own money   Thank you

Submitted by Anon, anon, we must go anon... (not verified) on August 21, 2014 11:34 am

Legally and contractually, nothing can happen to you.  The school district shoul be supplying us with what we need to run our classrooms.  Practically speaking, your principal could start picking on you if your classroom does not look as good or have as many supplies as others in your building. However, if you did get written up for, for example, not having a nice bulletin board up, a good building rep could come right back at the peincipal and ask if the teacher was provided with supplies.  I wish we would all stop buying things so people can see what the SDP does NOT provide us with---but teachers hate to do this because we care about our students!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 21, 2014 12:06 pm

Can you tell how a teacher who has taught on the elementary school level, suddenly gets sent to high school when the district identified the teacher as being able to teach 2,3, and 4th grade, math, reading, science and social studies? 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 21, 2014 2:37 pm

This is not legal unless they have certification in high school "social studies, etc." They should tell the parents that they have been placed illegally.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 21, 2014 1:46 pm

agreed.  NOTHING can happen to you, other than possibly being harassed by your Principal.  BUT a good Building Rep who is doing their job probably can counter that with the arguement that there is no requirement (contractually OR morally) that forces you to take noney from your own kids and family and bills to buy supplies that the District and State are obligated to supply.  We all need to stand together and say enough, and stop using our own funds.  They want concessions, fine, think how much money the 13,000+ teachers are giving back, if we do not use our own pocket money for supplies?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 7:24 pm

Yeah, as a teacher-my "steps" are frozen, so I can't step up or I will hurt myself!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 2:47 pm
What's the first day of school for staff?!?
Submitted by inthetrenches (not verified) on August 16, 2014 5:17 pm

Sept 2

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 6:57 pm
Sept 2 starts PD days. I thought they were cut.
Submitted by anonymous (not verified) on August 16, 2014 10:11 pm
If PD Days were cut or there were furloughed days, would principals and cleaning staff get pay cuts to or would they get to show up and get paid on those days too?
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 8:02 am

PFT members...I say it is time for new leadership in our union.  The statement made by Jerry Jordan was insufficient. He says the same thing everytime. We need new STRONG representation that will clearly articulate the voice of its members.

 

WE NEED A NEW LEADER NOW!!!!!!

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 10:47 am

so give us your NAME and STATEMENT or be quiet

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 10:50 am

PFT IS DEFINITELY BETTER THAN CASA.  Jordan is strong and no teacher is laid off. Look at the CASA, AFTER GIVING CONSESSIONS, 8 APs WERE LAID OFF AND HITE IS STILL HIRING PRINCIPALS, HIS FRIENDS, WHAT A SHAME. CASA NEEDS NEW LEADERSHIP.Principals are screaming for more support and Hite is not listening,

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 10:28 am

absolutely. Jordan may nor be LOUD and Brash and speak without thinking first, but has done a fine job keeping the Union intact and fighting against all of the concessions and give-backs that CASA and other Union leadership have given up just ask the members of other Unions such as CASA and 32BJ 1201 who have done nothing but give up money and take pay cut after pay cut how happy they are with their leaders. Meanwhile PFT members have kept their benefits intact and have not given back one penny in salary (granted we have been in a basically "pay freeze" for three yearsnow, BUT no wage reductions)  The District has now been PUBLICALLY forced to admit that the wage reductions (those 13% pay cuts) that District has been clamering for have been dropped!   Jordan is standing strong on not giving back any benefits (but we are willing to pay more into the premiums).  Don't confuse quiet with ineffective.  I just wish the other Unions would stand WITH the PFT, instead of "caving in" so easily, we all would be a lot stronger standing together

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 10:48 am

The sad part is CASA MEMBERS ARE STILL GETTING LAID OFF and the LAID OFF ASSISTANT PRINCIPALS ARE NOT CALLED BACK. THE UNEMPOLYMENT IS DENIED.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 1:53 pm

Standing together is not going to happen. In the end the SRC and SDP will win .

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 12:25 pm
I have one frustration with Jordan though. He seems always to be in the defensive roll. When talking about givebacks why doesn't he mention what we have already, involuntarily, given back, specifically withholding all step raises, as well as no overall raise in years? I saw in a post from the AFT, that these 'take backs' totaled over 100 million dollars. When the district asks for concessions, it would be nice to see him mention what we have already conceded so far. So it doesn't appear that we are unwilling to 'share in the sacrifice', but that we already have!
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 21, 2014 2:58 pm

OK. Name me a person out there and tell me how the SDP, or the work lives of PFT members would be better with this person in charge. What about Karen Lewis? Would we all be going back next month with 10% pay raises if she was in charge here instead of Chicago? Ted Kirsch? What about him? It's not like he's retired and hanging out in Miami everyday. He's here in Philly working for the AFT. What? He lost Jerry's cell phone number, and can't call him? What would be going on if Ted was still at the helm?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 7:24 pm
I have a Phd and I'm supposed to mop my room. Seriously?!
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 9:08 pm

if it needs it, yes. you and your students will spend 8-10 hours a day there.  who cares if you chose to extremely over qualify yourself for your job.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 9:42 pm

You know what you can do with that phd.........seriously

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 9:14 pm
Exactly! Who needs a highly educated teacher? It's a waste.
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 8:34 am

You've got to be kidding me! Apparently you are still in the classroom, so who cares about your post graduate work! Unless you are teaching full-time at a college or university something went wrong. What narrow subject was your dissertation on? 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 23, 2014 11:24 pm

What does your Phd have to do with having a clean classroom? How clean is your home? Guess what? When you're in school, it's your home during the day. The students are your kids. If you really think your Phd makes you too good to keep YOUR OWN classroom clean, you're in the wrong profession. Maybe you and your Phd should be teaching on the college level instead of on the k-12 level.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 17, 2014 11:58 pm

As a person who cleaned her classroom when I had only a BA degree and now an Ed.D, I can say I have always and will continue to clean my room and when needed, dump my trash because as I tell my kids "we all do work in this room and we all can keep it clean"

That other teacher with  the doctorate degee who posted must have the privlege of maid service at his/herhome to think the way he/she does.

 

Linda K.

 
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 23, 2014 11:05 pm

I agree. I have always cleaned my classroom and washed the students' desks before going home every day. I do it because the cleaning staff at my building is often short staffed and besides,  this way, I KNOW my room is cleaned the way I want it cleaned. I have no problem doing it. I can't work in a filthy classroom. I often sweep while my students are at lunch,  too. No, it's not a part of my job description, but I really don't mind. On days when I have an appointment after school, I make sure to let the cleaning staff know so that someone does clean my room. It's well-known that I keep a clean room and only need the trashcans emptied at the end of the day. Mr. or Ms. Phd, it's called helping out.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 24, 2014 4:35 am

Teachers help out in many ways. Not everyone can clean their room due to time constraints (picking up your kids, doctor's appointment which you set for after the school day). I have swept the floors on occasion, but have to do so much more now with a bigger class and less supplies. We lost a custodian who was stealing from the staff. The district thanked us by failing to replace him and our rooms were often left unswept after that point, until we swept them.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 24, 2014 11:09 am

When I went to Japan for a teacher seminar, I visited schools and guess what I saw? The students cleaned EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE. That's right. It was considered part of being a good citizen. Now they did have custodial services for the kitchen, the gardening, and heavy duties that you never would want a kid to perform but daily wiping, dusting and sweeping jobs including pulling mats for the daily exercises were tasks performed by the high school students. Elementary kids did sweep, dust, wipe and even mopped in that they are smaller they were not allowed anything heavier. We could do that here, but I am sure someone would have a beef.

Linda K. 

 

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 8:35 am
What other highly educated professional is required to mop floors?
Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 1:09 pm

the only people that are REQUIRED to mop floors are the cleaning staff.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 8:50 am
PhD to babysit. What a joke. Pick up your mop and get to work.
Submitted by anonymous (not verified) on August 18, 2014 9:27 am

Your disrespect for the professionalism of teaching and tor the students we serve negates any point the might otherwise be made.

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