ATRs, the unrepresented -- no elected representatives in the UFT

"The right of voting for representatives is the primary right by which other rights are protected.
"To take away this right is to reduce a man to slavery, for slavery consists in being subject to the will of another."
Thomas Paine, First Principles of Government

Hello, ATRs are suing

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

NYC City Council Speaker Mark-Viverito Defends ATRs

The city council Speaker responded to ATRs appeal, printed here on March 1.

March 3, 2014

Dear Mr. Klein, Mr. Barusek, Mr. Proano and Ms. Sacco,

Thank you for contacting me regarding the plight of Absent Teacher Reserve (ATR) teachers.

Despite misleading media reports implying that many or most teachers who are assigned to the ATR pool are there because of disciplinary issues or that they are "poor quality" teachers, I have heard reports that the vast majority of ATR teachers are, as you said, "good, dedicated, hard-working professionals." In fact, most ATR teachers were "excessed" from their former post when their position was eliminated due to enrollment decline, or to the phaseout or closure of their former school.

We also understand that the policies of the prior administration, particularly the emphasis on closing large numbers of schools, have contributed to the high number of teachers who find themselves in the ATR pool.

As you noted in your letter, our city's new Mayor and Chancellor have already indicated that they want to place the majority of ATR teachers back in classrooms, rather than serving as itinerant substitute teachers. I certainly support the goal of putting more experienced teachers where they are needed–in classrooms helping students.

While the City Council has no direct authority over the Department of Education (DOE) and its policies, especially under mayoral control, we look forward to working with the Mayor and the DOE to address the issue of ATR teacher assignments.
Thanks again for taking the time to contact my office. Please don't hesitate to get in touch with me again if I can be of any further help to you.

Melissa Mark-Viverito
NYC Council
cc: NYC Council Education Committee Staff

1 comment:

  1. This is a great letter for our ATR educators. Thanks so much and finally some common sense from a leader in charge and not some bs. Thank you Ms. Melissa Mark-Viverito for you thoughtful quick response.