From Cami to experienced teachers: Go to hell

 Cami to teachers: drop dead
Cami to teachers: drop dead

Cami Anderson, appointed by Gov. Chris Christie to run the Newark schools, has issued an email in which she lamely tries to explain while she will try to fire experienced teachers–who have high salaries–while retaining less experienced teachers who will cost the district less to pay and owe their jobs to Anderson’s regime and devotion to Teach for America (TFA).

She sent the email shortly after 11a.m., when many teachers were busy standing in front of their classes.  The full text is below but it coyingly informs men and women with children and mortgages and college tuitions and medical bills and elderly parents that, well, she just couldn’t do anything else–as if her own policies were not to blame for the drop in student enrollment and loss of public revenue: “Layoffs are difficult and I realize that some of you will be personally affected.”

Anderson doesn’t say how many teachers she will fire but she has told other media sources that as many as 1,100 of fewer than 3,800 instructors may be fired–about a third of the teaching force.

Under Christie, the state had backed a concerted effort to expand charter school enrollment in Newark–with an accompanying decline in public school enrollment. The state has failed to make needed repairs for years despite availablility of construction funds.  The charter schools have consistently not taken a concomitant share of children with special needs. Like the murderer who kills both parents and appeals for mercy because he is an orphan, the state administration has neglected public education then argued that is failing and should be replaced by privatized schools.

Shortly after I reported that Anderson, a former TFA executive, would ask the state for permission to do that, I also reported that she was expected to withdraw her request for a state “equivalency or waiver.”

I still believe she will, but, to the extent I created the impression she already had withdrawn her application for a so-called state waiver, or imminently would, that impression was wrong and I apologize to my readers, especially to the victimized teachers who may have drawn false hope from my report. I still believe she will eventually withdraw the application  and that the waiver will not be enacted, but it won’t be imminent.

As I said then, I do believe she still will lay off hundreds of teachers.

I could explain why I posted that blog, but that would be inside baseball. It also would violate my promises of confidentiality to some people. I must say my biggest mistake was trusting the official spokesman for the Newark schools who, in a series of emails with me, created the distinct impression I was right when I told him I believed she had withdrawn, or was about to withdraw, the waiver. He will deny this and that’s fine; it was my fault for believing and trusting him. Won’t happen again.

I also promise I will not let up in providing the evidence I believe shows the Christie/Cerf/Anderson  administration of the Newark schools has been a disaster tinged with corruption.

The reason I am writing this now is the sending of an email to all Newark teachers in which Anderson explains–lamely–while she wants to punish experienced teachers for their years of service and short-circuit an already flawed evaluation process. Here is the email from Cami Anderson:

Dear Teachers,
As I have shared in many conversations, brown bag lunches, press articles, and informal briefings over several months, NPS is facing a serious budget shortfall. As student enrollment has fallen dramatically and is projected to continue falling, we must make difficult decisions. I assure you, we delayed teacher layoffs as long as possible by making cuts to central and administration budgets. But, we are at a point where we must plan for the future and, unfortunately, that will require reducing the size of our teaching force to match the size of student enrollment.

Layoffs are difficult and I realize that some of you will be personally affected. Unfortunately, we have no other choice.  As a result, I am now trying to make sure that as we conduct them, we do so in a way that is least disruptive to our students’ learning.

Current state regulations would make this bad situation even worse by forcing us to completely ignore teacher effectiveness in making layoff decisions and consider only years of service. Therefore, last week, the district asked the New Jersey Department of Education to make performance a key factor, alongside years of service, when making decisions about teacher layoffs.

If the state grants our request, we could ensure our most successful teachers—many of you who have served our city for years—remain in the classroom. I have heard personally from many effective teachers (and national research would support) that good teachers want to work with colleagues who push them to be better. We also know that good teachers have a life-long impact on students. I believe including performance as a key factor is the best thing to do for students and teachers.

Whether or not you agree with me on this issue—and I realize that some of you may not—I want to be clear that we will need to conduct layoffs even if the state does not grant our request. You are likely to have many questions about when layoffs will occur and how many people will be affected. While we don’t have the answers yet, I wanted to reach out to you as soon as possible with the information I do have.

I promise to keep you updated along the way as we learn more specifics. My staff and I will also be hosting Q&A sessions in many schools over the next several weeks and months to update you and clear up any misinformation. Look for more details about these events soon.

During this difficult time, I know you will stay focused on the students in your classrooms and for that I thank you. As always, I deeply appreciate everything you do on behalf of our students every day.

In Service,

46 comments

  1. mark

    thx for clearing that up bob. we still love u.

    Bob Braun: I haven’t entirely cleared it up, I know. I will some day. But thank you.

    • Jdtmar

      Unfortunately, the teacher evaluations are not “fair” and it gives those school principles who are “mini-me’s” of Cami Anderson the power to target teachers. If as a teacher you don’t agree with the adminitrators evaluations who do you turn to? There are many strong tenured teachers who have been targeted – if she truly wants to ensure we keep good teachers ensure that the process is fair! Give the teachers someone to turn to when they don’t agree with the administrators evaluations – I’ve read some of the evaluations and can’t believe the “contradictions” that in any other organization would never be allowed to be part of the employees file.

  2. Becca Field

    If it were not for your fine reporting we would not know principals had been suspended, or perhaps about the waiver, and much else that has gone on in Newark – until days later if at all. You shared with us in good faith what you had been told. I suppose it only demonstrates that no good faith is warranted in dealing with the state control of Newark. That is on those in control the district, not those that write about it. Keep on doing what you are doing. Please.

    Bob Braun: Thank you for your faith, Becca.

  3. Rani

    An important point about the declining enrollment in NPS is that the charter schools in Newark are not considered to be part of NPS. The declining enrollment in NPS may in some part be explained by changing demographics, families moving to the suburbs, etc., but much of it is due to NPS students moving to charter schools, as encouraged by Cami Anderson’s own One Newark plan.

    Cami’s protests that layoffs are “difficult” and that she’s taken steps to avoid them are outrageous in light of the fact that her push towards charter schools is driving down enrollment numbers in NPS schools.

    This point is important to emphasize because the general public may not understand that the Newark charter schools are not counted toward NPS enrollment. Enrollment tally methodology varies nationwide, and other cities around the country, for example Chicago, count charter school enrollment towards total district enrollment.

    Also, charter schools frequently claim to be public schools, so parents and community members following this issue might be surprised to learn that charter enrollment is not counted toward the total enrollment of the local public school district.

    In Newark, with the proliferation of charter schools being actively pushed and promoted by Cami Anderson, she is perversely driving students out of her own district and causing layoffs for the teachers that she leads. Obviously Cami Anderson has loyalties and priorities beyond NPS and NPS teachers.

    BTW, slight of hand regarding “NPS TFA teachers” was used by TFA to try to minimize the number of TFA teachers they have in Newark. TFA reported the number of teachers they have in NPS and conveniently left out the fact that there are additional TFA working in Newark at charter schools. (Details on that here: http://commonal.tumblr.com/post/78003721842/tfa-in-newark-act-as-if-the-facts-matter )

  4. Michael Iovino

    Bob…your reporting is part of what instills me with hope…as one of those veteran teachers they are persecuting.

    Bob Braun: Thank you, Michael. I loved your remarks at the last school board meeting.

  5. Steven Delpome

    Just have to wonder, seeing as you are one of the few speaking out about Anderson’s sham tactics, if the spokesman was intentionally misleading to dent your credibility. Well, okay, I don’t have to wonder, it’s pretty obvious.

    Would love to see this research Anderson cited about teachers liking to be pushed, like this were a training camp QB competition. Do teachers like to collaborate with other excellent teachers? Indeed! Pushed? Sounds like an interpretation on her part to justify her actions.

    Bob Braun: Re: Your first paragraph. It’s fairly standard in journalism–and law, by the way– that a reporter should be able to rely on a source’s failure to deny an assertion as an unattributable confirmation. I would have expected the spokesman to deny flatly my assertion that Anderson would withdraw the application. He didn’t. Combined with information I had from other sources, I decided to go with it. It’s my fault and my responsibility and I won’t shift the blame elsewhere. Did the spokesman do it deliberately? I won’t judge motive. Maybe he is not familiar with traditions in the business and thinks offering an irrelevant response to a controverted assertion is just, well, offering, an irrelevant response. Unless he decides to make a career of trailing behind Cami Anderson, I feel sorry for him and all others who have staked their own credibility on this awful regime. I don’t think Anderson will be remembered as a great education reformer. And a lot has to do with the second paragraph–making up research as she goes along. I am still waiting for the proof for the 10,000-child waiting list for charter schools.

  6. Geoff

    Leaving aside, for the moment, all of the other ways in which Cami Anderson is quite awful, someone who sends to their employees a letter filled with that level of tone deafness shouldn’t be allowed to manage anything.

    “Layoffs are difficult and I realize that some of you will be personally affected.” That’s a rather mild way of putting it! And again: “You are likely to have many questions about when layoffs will occur and how many people will be affected.” No kidding Cami–people generally do want to stay informed about the possibility that their entire income will soon be taken away from them, so I guess that is “likely.”

    But as a teacher (not in the Newark school system) I think the following sentence enrages me the most (and I can imagine how it makes teachers here in Newark feel): “During this difficult time, I know you will stay focused on the students in your classrooms and for that I thank you.” Damn straight they will lady, and you know why? Because the vast, vast majority of teachers always stay focused on their students, and don’t need your patronizing, condescending “thank you”/reminder in order to do so.

    Bob, thanks for all of your work on this issue–I think your blog is a must-read, particularly for those of us who live (and/or teach) in Newark.

    Bob Braun: Thanks for the kind words. Excellent point. It’s the same sort of tone-deafness she showed when writing a letter to parents saying that, if their kids stayed home from school, the crime rate would go up. I’m not a shrink but I think the woman has little feeling for other people–not exactly someone you would want running a school system (the reviews from District 79 were similar, by the way).

    • Source1

      Bob,
      I am not a mental health expert either. However, I think Anderson has some real mental health issues.
      But then again, like the saying goes, “You don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing.”

      Bob Braun: A lack of sympathy for others is the perfect temperament for a top manager. It’s not really mental illness if you’re equipped for your job–assuming firing others is your job.

  7. Karen Lewis

    Whenever you hear the phrase “difficult decisions”, hold on to your wallet. How are “effective teachers” defined? Is it in the contract? State law? Doesn’t matter because these people hate seniority. After all if Cami had to wait her turn to run a district…

    Bob Braun: Thank you, Ms. Lewis. You should be familiar with the concerted effort to neglect public schools while promoting privatized options. Why don’t you come on out to Newark and enjoy the struggle here? Provide some advice from Chicago–we’d love to see you.

  8. WL

    If enrollment is down and they have an excess of teachers why haven’t they reduced class sizes? Their own studies show students do better in smaller classes, why not try reducing the class sizes from 25 or 30 to 10 or 15 student and see if the so call “failing schools” improve.

  9. Camy

    Thanks for reporting this. I had seen the email elsewhere but wondered about its authenticity. Your reporting makes it legitimate in my book.

    I feel that my first name is tainted here in NJ. And to think I have a daughter with the first name Christie.

  10. Source1

    Since the beginning, Superintendent Anderson has stated she wants to attract the best and the brightest teachers and administrators to Newark. Of course she does, what superintendent would want anything less?
    However, what teacher or administrator worth anything would apply for a position with the Newark Public Schools? The District is planning to lay of more than a thousand ( one third ) of its instructional positions, the District suspends Principals for advocating on behalf of their schools, more than 70 administrators and supervisors lost their positions this past September, the Superintendent has alienated every single possible educational constituency, top central office administrators are leaving the District in record numbers, and individuals who currently work in the District are working in a climate of fear and intimidation.

    Sounds good to me. Where do I get an application?

    Anderson has to go…..and she has to go now….

    Bob Braun: The workplace of the future will be a few permanent administrators, a rowdy gaggle of consultants (many of whom will be related to the administrators), and desperate recent college graduates willing to work for near-minimum wage for a few years anywhere. This could be a public school system, a university, a private enterprise. Work means nothing, craft means nothing, skill means nothing. Those of you who badmouth unions–this is what you have wrought and it’s only going to get worse. Good luck with it.

  11. Tony

    Hey bob great article. Do you know how much we pay for the advertising on buses? The ad campaign on newark buses is alarming. There is a new poster aimed at educating us poor people about charters being free. Funny this money can go towards books in my kids clas or a teachers salary

  12. annie

    Bob,

    Maybe this isn’t the best article for my comment, but I’ve been watching what’s going on in NYC. DiBlasio, whom I’m not a fan of, is against Charter Schools, so maybe I’m becoming a part-time fan. But now we are inundated by TV spots focusing on children being deprived of a good education because of DiBlasio’s stand. Who’s funding those TV spots? Do Charter School owner have that much available money?

    Bob Braun: I don’t know specifically because I haven’t seen the ads but, yes, there is a lot of money behind charters–Gates, Broad, Zuckerberg, Bradley, probably Koch. Read Ravitch if you haven’t already.

  13. annie

    Maybe wit would be worth an article on your blog.

    Bob Braun: Probably would be. There are plenty of connections between NYC and Newark–Anderson, Cerf, a good percentage of central office staff here. I’m sure, after she’s done firing teachers, Cami will hire refugees from DeBlasio’s NYC DOE.

  14. willie

    This has been the plan since she was appointed.She had administrators excess senior teachers before she closed any schools. This is just the latest attempt to fire top earners. If she wants them out this badly, why doesn’t she offer them a buyout?

  15. Melissa Tomlinson

    Bob,

    The fact that you even apologized for for an error in judgement when trusting a source just adds to the credence of what an incredible reporter you are. Never stop what you are doing. You and Jersey Jazzman have created a team that produces honest reporting in a state full of lies and slanted half-truths.

    Bob Braun: Wow. Thanks so much. Especially coming from a woman who faced down the clown king himself.

  16. P. Grunther

    When I talk to friends in other states they simply cannot believe that a criminal investigation has not been launched; it is hard to explain to them the climate that Christie has created and the cowardice and backroom dealings of Democrats that have allowed him to do so. The selling of public schools to for-profit companies and the connections between all of these characters and the profit they stand to gain from supporting each other is not just unethical – I believe that laws have not only been bent but have been broken. A campaign to put pressure on NJ Senate and Assembly Democrats should be organized by the Newark Teacher’s Union. Hope to see you all at the rally on March 18th!

  17. SRK

    In one way, she insisting hiring TFA teachers, but other way she is saying the reason behind lay off is reducd student population. Her own two statements are conflicting.

  18. Educator

    Lost in this unfortunate mess is the concept of education and achievement. Has anyone asked Ms. Anderson the critical question. Namely, you have been in Newark for almost three full years, have NJASK test scores gone up or down in English and Math in that time? Use 2010/11 tests as baseline and compare 2012/13 results as they are the most recent.

  19. Tara

    Mr. Braun:

    I am a long time reader of your SL column and although this is my first time commenting, I am a regular reader of this blog. I have tremendous respect for what you are doing. Please continue reporting on Newark Public Schools.

    As a former newspaper journalist, I am offended by what the profession has become, especially here in New Jersey. Newspapers used to report on corruption, and it was a proud moment when a determined journalist uncovered something unscrupulous or even illegal. Now it seems newspaper either look the other way due to relationships with politicians and businesses, or have been stripped to the bone so badly due to budget cuts that the thin reporting staff cannot be bothered with investigative journalism. Instead “newspapers” now offer trivial reader polls (READERS: What do YOU think of 1000 teacher layoffs?) and so-called reporting that consists of speaking to one source, often the first source. Your blog inspires me and reminds me why I even entered the field of journalism in the first place.

    I was also a former employee of NPS up until I willingly left last year to accept a position in another district. Though I am years away from it, I had hoped to retire from NPS. It still saddens me that I had to leave terrific students and some of the hardest-working colleagues I ever had the pleasure of working with. However, the climate in the district has became so negative and the future has become so uncertain that I could not allow myself to stay any longer. Emails such as the one at the center of this article do absolutely nothing for the morale of the staff members. For Anderson to send that email and suggest to staff that “During this difficult time, I know you will stay focused on the students in your classrooms” is the ultimate insult.

  20. Jeff B7

    The declining enrollment claim is a canard! Recent court appearance by an NPS attorney claimed that the 37,000 Newark students would be shortchanged if a woman with a severe medical condition was granted $15 million settlement including $3 million in punitive damages. 37,000 cited by their attorney in open court.

  21. Bill Wolfe

    What is the cause of the (alleged) decline in enrollment?

    Is it demographic, i.e. fewer kids, or is it because kids are going to Charters and private schools?

    Surely there must be data on this.

    What is the financial picture? Where are funds being allocated? I get the sense that the State is laying off public school teachers and shifting those funds to charters and private schools.

    The declining enrollment and shift in revenues to Charter/private schools is outrageous.

    It follows a right wing republican playbook: assume power, privatize, deregulate, cut budgets, and staff government with incompetent cronies. Then after government fails, use that failure to justify more privatization, deregulation and punitive budget cuts.

    • Bill Wolfe

      BTW, if there is a true demographic basis for driving reductions in enrollment, that could lead to consolidation and school closings, but it in no way justified layoffs or Charter/private schools.

      The enrollment decline argument is a diversion from the ideology and policy choices.

  22. Joe

    So the teachers who have invested many years of service in the school district and who may have acquired advanced degrees are just so much excess garbage in the eyes of Cami Anderson, Michelle Rhee and their ilk? We are at a sad, pitiless and destructive juncture in education in this country. Teacher morale has to be at an all time low; teachers are cursed if they do and damned if they don’t. It’s an all-out war against public school teachers, it’s as if they are being hunted down.

  23. Becca Field

    The other shoe may drop if reports of a possible fiscal take over of the city of Newark have any credibility – such an act could allow circumvention of public employee contracts and allow for such acts as a waiver on seniority….

  24. Sue

    I have been a teacher in Newark for ten years. I have been rated “proficient,” “distinguished,” “effective” and this year “ineffective.” Administrators were told they are giving too many “effective” and “highly effective” ratings to teachers. These administrators then have to decide who will no longer be “effective.”
    My administrator only likes “yes men” and I am a professional who brings up issues at meetings in hopes of finding solutions. She does not like this. She has chosen to make me “ineffective.” Her biased observations are now going to destroy my career because she doesn’t like me. This is the same administrator that rated me “effective” last year.
    I continue (and will continue) to go to work every day and do what is best for my students as others do less and are “effective.”
    This is an example of why we need tenure.

    Bob Braun: It is, of course, the height of naivete to believe that principals are not affected by central staff pressure in awarding ratings. Everyone is a victim in the Republic of Fear.

    • Jdtmar

      Sue- thank you for sharing! The teacher evaluations are one sided with administrator having all the control. One person has too much control with no neutral party assigned to review and ensure fairness and accuracy. I wish the media did more to report on how unfair the evaluations are because those outside of the system don’t know. Therefore, believe that this process is going to highlight the true ineffective teachers. They don’t see this for the “witch-hunt” it truly is!

      Bob Braun: I don’t disagree but tell me how I could highlight the unfairness of the evaluations. DO they differ from evaluations in other districts? How specifically can they be made fair?

      • Kate

        If principals are being directed to assign lower ratings or fewer “good” ratings (before they conduct observations, no less), the evaluations are a farce. Unfortunately, most teachers will have only one evaluator due to cuts in supervisory positions. If that one evaluator is inexperienced, or intimidated, or looking to move up, he/she isn’t likely to provide evaluations that serve the purpose of improving instruction. (In previous contracts, teachers were given the right to request evaluation by another administrator if they felt a particular evaluation was not accurate. I’m not sure if that right has been deleted from the current agreement.)
        Teachers should gather all their previous good evaluations to counteract the inevitable, and most likely random, poor evaluations to come. Evaluators are also in fear of their jobs, and likely will act in their own interest.

  25. NJGS

    What Superintendent Anderson does NOT address is the fact that student enrollment has fallen dramatically mainly because of Superintendent Anderson’s continued support for charter schools and continued lack of support for public schools.

    In fact, the One Newark Plan announced this school year is closing five public schools and converting them into charter schools. If each of these schools have a total of 500 students, and this is just a guess on my part based on public enrollment records, that means approximately 2,500 Newark Public School students will be removed from the Public School Roster and put on the Charter School Roster.

    Newark Public Schools is a big supporter of collecting “data.” Apparently, this doesn’t count when the issue of public school vs charter school is the topic. There is no “data” to support the hypothesis that charter schools are better at educating our students. In fact, the “data” is showing the opposite.

    So the question, once again, is: Why are our students being denied an education in their neighborhood public school and forced to move to either another public school, not in their neighborhood, or a charter school?

    To add insult to injury Superintendent Anderson, in her e-mail, tells teachers to continue educating their students.

    Superintendent Anderson, please understand that as a teacher I do NOT need to be reminded that each and every day that my first responsibility is to my students. I always put my students first, often at the expense of my own family and yes, even now, when I know at the end of this school year I will no longer have a “home school.”

    I would like to comment on two previous posts. One about the advertising the Charter Schools are placing on the public buses and billboards. I am wondering if there are 10,000 students on a waiting list, why is this advertising for students necessary. I also agree that the money being used for advertising should be spent on the students instead.

    The public needs to understand that charter schools are NOT public schools. They do receive public monies to operate and they need to follow the rules for having highly qualified teachers in the classrooms, but after these two points the similarities between public schools and charter schools stop.

    The second comment is regarding class size. The poster made an excellent point. We have schools in Newark with 30 first graders and one teacher. Why not divide this class in half and have two classrooms with 15 first graders and one teacher. Everyone would benefit, especially the students.

    Why not return the staff that had been previously removed, such as reading recovery teachers, music, art, dance, gym teachers, lead teachers, language teachers, and many more. Why not return the attendance people to the schools to help insure all students are in school.

    I also wonder why Superintendent Anderson is cutting staff from the bottom, the ones in the classrooms, and not from the top, the ones that are at 2 Cedar Street and the ones that are consultants. Why not do as the former Mayor of NYC did and instead of taking a full salary, take $1.00. Superintendent Anderson, I’m not suggesting anyone at the top work for $1.00, but why not say, “Thank you for the $50,000 bonus governor Christie you just gave me, but I would rather see this money be used to hire a teacher and/or to put supplies in a classroom.”

    All teachers could benefit from this considering we use our own money all the time to purchase supplies for our students and/or classrooms.

    Heck, I need a small fortune to purchase the additional materials required just to implement the Amplify curriculum that I am using in my classroom.

    My biggest fear is with the waiver on “hold,” more teachers will be evaluated as “partially effective” or “ineffective” as a means to downsize and to “prove” Superintendent Anderson’s assertion that the Newark Teachers need to be released based on evaluations and not seniority.

    Right now, the evaluation system is being incorrectly used in many schools, often to punish a teacher or “get you.”. I’m hoping the administration in each school will follow the law as it was written and treat their staff as they would like to be treated, fairly!

  26. Sherry Geno

    Sir ~ Thank you for your fine reporting on this mess. Experienced, seasoned teachers have earned their “high salaries” which I bet are a good deal less than Cami’s salary, benefits package & golden parachute. Please let me know what I can do from red state Idaho to turn up the heat!

  27. NJGS

    Join Newark in rallying against what is happening to Public Education, because either we take action, or…WE LOSE OUR SCHOOLS,
    OUR STUDENTS, OUR COMMUNITIES, OUR JOBS!

    TUESDAY, MARCH 18, 2014
    4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

    MASS RALLY at
    BROAD and MARKET Streets

    Then…

    March to #2 Cedar Street (Superintendent Anderson’s head quarters)

    and…

    RALLY OUTSIDE ADVISORY BOARD BUSINESS MEETING!

    Spread the word!

  28. NJGS

    Please continue to write your elected officials, school board members, state, governor, state officers, other news media, and anyone else you can think of, to let them know what is happening in Newark regarding the dismantling of public education.

    We NEED their support and their attention. ONLY by informing them in mass letters / e-mails / telephone calls can we get the information of what is happening in the Newark Public Schools out and hopefully we can stop to what is happening in Newark.

    I know we have recently obtained “support,” but we cannot stop now informing people, especially people that can pass legislation to stop, Superintendent Anderson’s One Newark plan and her proposed waiver that are designed to destroy the Newark Public Education system, not rebuild it.

    Please let our elected officials know that our children and their public schools are NOT for sale at any price.

  29. Stressed

    I’m wondering if this is a bully tactic to get teachers at the top who can retire to do it rather than wait and get axed. Christie threatened pensions in 2010 and when the mid-term elections were over – the day after actually – he said, “We won’t do anything with pensions this year.” However, over 500 educators retired that year statewide out of fear of losing everything.

    Every time I read one of Cami’s edicts, I think I’m going to throw-up. I have eight months left and I shake and quake every day that it’ll all be taken from me. Even the TFAs are saying they can’t stand the way we’re being treated and won’t stay because of it – not that they were going to stay anyway.

    Bob Braun: I think there is truth to the idea Cami wants to frighten the most experienced teachers into retiring.

  30. Educator

    Bob

    Why would a veteran teacher retire before getting fired? What would be the benefit? I don’t think their pension would change at all?
    I don’t doubt for a moment that Mrs. Anderson is using fear as a weapon, I just don’t think there is anything to gain by retiring early. In 2010, people retired because they didn’t want to lost a portion of their pension. That is not in play here.

    Bob Braun: Assuming you are eligible for a pension, why would you want to continue to work in Newark? I am not encouraging people to retire–just saying you can get heartsick about facing the likes of Cami and her band of refugees from New York and New Orleans.

    • Stressed

      If you are laid-off (fired is such a terrible term for this) you will lose your retirement benefits and you will not be able to cash in your unused sick and personal days. Some people stock pile them. I don’t know what it would do to your monthly pension check for life – it may mean you get what’s in your fund and when that’s gone you’ve got $0.

  31. Kate

    I notice that Superintendent Anderson expressed a desire to conduct layoffs in “a way that is least disruptive to our students’ learning.” Does this mean she actually knows that disruption is bad for students’ learning?

  32. Pingback: Weekend News Roundup & Open Thread for March 8-9, 2014 - United Americans

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