Where's teacher? - Page 3

Layoffs at Horace Mann show how low SFUSD's proposed budget is willing to go

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"It's almost predictable that students who have a lot of unpredictability in their lives will suffer for this," Sanchez told us. "It will be destabilizing for them. Teachers will get disrupted as well. A lot of what you do in schools has so much to do with outside the classroom, and it takes a lot of time to get acclimated." At a tough school like Horace Mann, he says, "there's been a lot of professional development and new programs."

Borowski stresses the sentiment forcefully. "It'll be devastating if the pink slips go through. It'll be a huge mess."

Both teachers participated in the massive statewide protests against the cuts on March 4. But other than letting Sacramento know how public educators feel, nothing concrete has come out of it. Sanchez suggested that it might be possible to sue the state for violating its statute on the minimum number of school days. Even SFUSD, at the last Board of Education meeting on March 23, didn't rule out the possibility of suing the state for lack of adequate funding.

Negotiations are ongoing between the district and the United Educators of San Francisco teachers union about final layoffs. Those will be finalized May 15. Meanwhile, teachers at Horace Mann and across the district will continue to do their jobs despite how grim the outlook may be. As Eigl puts it, "It's like out of a book from a bad future."

Comments

I think it's important to draw attention to the fact that the schools suffering under the brunt of the layoff notices - 811 teacher notices were sent out in SFUSD - are on the southeast side. Schools with higher percentages of underserved, high-needs students will lose more teachers. At the top of the list are the identified "hard to staff" schools, which will remain "hard to staff" until SFUSD and California decide that teacher retention is worth more than lip service.

As always, it is the poor and children of color who will suffer the most.

Posted by Guest on Apr. 07, 2010 @ 7:40 pm

There is a leadership crisis in Sacramento. Why did the governor allow the budget crisis to happen in the first place?

Posted by Earl Richards on Apr. 07, 2010 @ 11:03 pm

The teachers' union, UESF, is the reason layoffs have to be based on seniority, and the reason the lowest performing schools on the east side of the city are being wiped out. These are the schools that need stability the most - and they are being hit the hardest. It is terrible that the school district has to do layoffs at all, but the fact that they also have no control in who they layoff is unconscionable. It is criminal that UESF is still insisting on seniority-based layoffs. In no other profession are employees protected from accountability the way teachers are.

Posted by Guest on Apr. 08, 2010 @ 8:02 am

Mr. Welch's reporting of the tragic state of the California public education system was both intelligent and insiteful. Knowing something of the writer's background, his reporting on the topic was probably reminiscent of the struggles faced in South Carolina and that underfunded public education system; where the writer himself was educated.
Kudos to those educators everywhere who, in spite of all political manuvering, remain dedicated to their profession, and continue to teach & inspire all of us.

Posted by Dan on Apr. 12, 2010 @ 3:49 pm