Teachers’ Lounge

, Sarah Carlsruh, Leave a comment

Teachers’ unions have made it nearly impossible to rid schools of incompetent teachers.

On August 31, The New Yorker published an article on the “Rubber Rooms” (Temporary Reassignment Centers) of New York, to which teachers accused of misconduct are reassigned pending arbitration resolution. These approximately 600 teachers accused of incompetence, “in a system that rarely calls anyone incompetent,” punch in and out of these rooms each day “for the same hours that they would have kept at school—typically, eight-fifteen to three-fifteen,” reported the New Yorker.  The United Federation of Teachers requires that charges be heard by an arbitrtator, and so teachers wait out the long process in the Rubber Rooms, reported the New Yorker, while getting paid— teachers “draw their salaries and accrue pensions and other benefits.”

The average teacher in these reassignment centers has been there for approximately three years “doing the same thing every day—which is pretty much nothing at all” explained the New Yorker, which described a room in which teachers were sleeping, chatting, and playing card games. Unless a teacher loses their arbitration hearing, any teacher with at least three years of seniority is given tenure.

Sarah Carlsruh is an intern at the American Journalism Center, a training program run by Accuracy in Media and Accuracy in Academia.

*Blog entries by interns reflect their personal opinions only and not that of Accuracy and Academia.


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