Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Will Shilling For The ADVANCE Evaluation System Be Mulgrew's Downfall?

Norm Scott at Ed Notes:

In all my years of activism one of the happiest moments I had was seeing James Eterno's face as he emerged from the Delegate Assembly yesterday. I was in the midst of trying to get people to take the MORE newsletter, MORE Stuff in Your Mail Bx" and get them to sign up to distribute in their school. I didn't have to work too hard as there were a batch of MOREistas over half my age - one may have been young enough to be my grandchild doing the same thing. I left it to them and went over to James: "It's happening. It's finally happening," he said.

Michael Fiorillo in a comment here at Perdido Street School:

The UFT long ago stopped being a bona fide trade union, independent of management, but instead is something closer to a company ombudsman, at best representing workers from within the hostile confines of the DOE, and making a deal with the Devil to maintain the leadership's perks at the expense of the membership.

They've been able thus far to successfully count on the rank and file's distraction, intimidation by management, apathy and/ or complacency, but their ability to do so is fast disappearing. Faux tough guy Mulgrew's agreeing to RttT, VAM and Danielson, and then disgracefully shilling for them, may eventually lead to Unity's long overdue downfall.

An anonymous comment left on another post here at Perdido Street School:

The AFT/NYSUT/UFT support for the common core and evaluation systems connected to Danielson will be the undoing of their vice grip on teacher unions. The first shots were heard yesterday from those who attended the DA at 52 Broadway. The CTU Local ! has shown that all things are possible!

I think one thing is clear. 

The leadership is hearing that the rank and file is not happy and feels that they have been thrown under the bus.

The leadership is feeling enough of the heat to respond to the complaints very early in the ADVANCE implementation.

But as Michael notes above, when the UFT leadership has signed onto to the Common Core, test-based accountability, data-driven education and the like, when they have sponsored the evaluation system that contains so much of what teachers are upset about, it's not like they can turn their backs on this without angering the neo-liberal powers they've done their dirty deals with.

So they're stuck in the middle, trying to defend a system that is indefensible while making it look like they are hearing the concerns and complaints of the rank and file and doing something about those.

This moratorium resolution is nothing more than an act of face-saving.

It has no chance to happen because the state bureaucrats are not going to let it happen, not unless the evaluation law gets changed first.

And since the union leadership helped develop this evaluation law in the first place, the chances of the Assembly and Senate changing the law and Cuomo signing that change are nil.

In the end, where this could very well be a turning point for the UFT leadership is that rank and file teachers aren't being fooled by these kinds of face-saving acts anymore.

As I have written again and again since APPR went into place, the UFT leadership is used to dazzling (or drum-beating)the leadership with lies and bull#$%^ and just wearing most people down into saying, "Oh, all right - have it your way."

But lies and bull#$%^ will not save the leadership this time.

Teachers see for themselves what a horrific mess ADVANCE is, how awful the MOSL process is, how unfair it is to rate teachers using test scores of students they don't teach in subjects they're not licensed in, how stupid it is to give the state and the city the power to create "value-added" and "growth" algorithms and roll them out mid-year totally unpiloted with high stakes attached to them.

The UFT resolution calls for a brief moratorium to the high stakes so that the kinks in the system can be worked out.

But the kinks cannot be worked out in a "gotcha" system that at its core is rigged to give the district the power teachers almost indiscriminately.

This system must be destroyed and another system, a fairer system that actually supports teachers, put into its place.

The longer the UFT leadership defends this system , the better for the opposition.

They own this piece of crap and almost all of the rank and file teachers know that.

There are a few who may be dazzled or drum-beaten by the UFT propaganda around ADVANCE.

But at my school, I see people who used to give the UFT the benefit of the doubt who do not do so any longer.

They know Mulgrew and his merry double pensioners down at 52 Broadway are full of crap over this system and they're not happy about either that or the crap system being used as a bludgeon on them.


  1. Take nothing as a given. A serious challenge to Unity will not spring out of spontaneous combustion. MORE has potential -- but only if it takes care of building a democratic (unUnity) organization with outreach to many schools -- and people actively working in these schools to educate and organize their colleagues. People showed up to support MORE yesterday but it will take 10 times those numbers before MORE impacts deeply. And don't forget, even it MORE grows exponentially over the next 2 years, the UFT election structure dominated by retirees remains in place. It will take winning the schools one by one -- and one day all the MORE-istas sitting together in one section may expand. Actually, rather than sitting in scattered areas where the impact is lessened we learned yesterday that by sitting together we had an impact - even if Mulgrew kept turning away so as not to call on MOREs -- but got fooled when Vincent hit him from the 19th floor. Oh, what fun!

    1. There are no givens, I agree. In fact, de Blasio's winning City Hall will probably help keep Unity in power. If Bloomberg had another two years in, APPR would have Unity on the ropes...