Wednesday, January 4, 2017

ATR Time Travel

Since being an ATR I have been trying to put my best face on and do what I have to do with a smile. I go into every school and every day wanting to do the very best that I can. But at times it can be difficult.

At times it seems like I am living in some type of time warp. That feeling was prevalent when I returned last December from my suspension realizing that I had been out of the classroom, and a school, for 2 1/2 years. It was like I was returning from the dead or had been in some type of extended cryogenic stasis.

Things were so new. I been besides the fact that the teachers I have been seeing were suddenly a lot younger. Or maybe I had just gotten older. But there were more Smart Boards, more tablets, that transparency thingy that shows stuff on the Smart Board. It was whole new world.

Gratefully, I have, or it is starting to look like I had?, (OK, I am going to get grief for the question mark and the comma. I am sorry!) a background in educational technology so I was able to pick up on the technological aspect rather quickly. But one bugs me.

It's the lack of availability of relevant professional development.

Yeah, Mondays are nice. But most of the PD's I have been blessed with being in attendance don't, in my opinion, lead to practices of best teaching. Mostly these PD's deal with data, motivational readings, etc.. I, and I am sure many ATR's, want something we can really sink our teeth into.

Why can't ATR's when we are assigned to a school get time with all the consultants that come in to do training with the staff? Why can't ATR's be made aware of the latest methods, insights into reading, writing, math?

There are schools that I have been at that have had a week of Teachers College consultants come in to spend an inordinate amount of time with staff. Are ATR's invited? I haven't been.

Where are the workshops for Go Math that would help me familiarize myself with this curriculum?

Wouldn't having more knowledge of the latest curriculum of the moment better serve ATR's to assist us in getting permanent positions?

What about being sent off-site to PD? It's a no go.

Yes, I understand that there implementation difficulties involved, but.

Why then can't the the DOE make available off-site to ATR's by borough after school, on Monday's (Hey we are stating late anyway)? Yeah, they might have to pay training rate or per session, but hell, back when I was a staff developer we had this! We had after school staff development in which teachers showed and were interested in learning something new.

At the very least, our union, our UFT, the people we fork over $100 a month to should make the PD the teachers in the schools are having, what the teachers in our districts are learning available to all ATR's. Or does this count, because there ain't much there. Same lack of quality here.

ATr's can't and shouldn't be treated as an afterthought when it comes to best practices of teaching. We are invited to the dinner, but we don't get the entire meal. Just a taste.


Anonymous said...

Many have said the same thing over the years. Francesco with Solidarity did PDs for SmartBoard training and other technology. That these trainings in school or out aren't being offered by the DOE is further evidence that we are a completely unwanted group. Why spend money on these trainings, if you never want to see ATRs back in the classroom? For those who've survived their 3020a hearings this is common and fully disclosed information - you are barred from ever teaching again. You are just a Sub - Please don't touch that SmartBoard, just give out the handouts and make sure the kids use a pass. Unless of course, you're are getting observed - then you will be treated just like any other teacher and all that information and technology you've been barred from will be used against you. UFT is fully aware and could care less.

SBSB Groupie said...

The PD is bullshit. I'd rather be given a catalog of workshops I can attend, during the work day, for a certain number of days a year. ATRS don't get to go to the Go (The Fuck Away) Math trainings, or the Fundations, etc because we are left to cover the teachers. And I've been turned down for full day trainings during the school day because "we need you to sub here". Stop plotzing over it. No one cares. No one is going to hire us at this point, when they can get two cupcakes at starting salary and intimidate them into toeing the line. I refuse to suck up and scrounge for a job. I already have one. I've been a DOE Literacy Specialist for 16 years. I get a DOE paycheck monthly. It's up to THEM to allow me to do my job, I'm not going to beg them to work me harder, pile on paperwork, and find fault in the way I turn the key to the bathroom. Paycheck stays the same either way. And these principals will not buy the cow when they are getting the milk for free.

Unknown said...

Who cares. If you have 5 years or more in and can't teach, you deserve to be fired.

Highly Effective King Clovis said...

It's weird, but I've realized I haven't really gone to any PD's this year. On the one hand it's great, most PD is bullshite anyways. But some PD's are great or at least, educational.

It's an odd concept, being an ATR. I have an interview later this week, but I wonder if I should stress hard over it. As an ATR, I've been getting good ratings and I didn't try half as hard as when I was a regularly appointed teacher. At my current school, if I do more than just, hand out work, I get glowing responses back from admin.

At this point, I kind of want to ride this ATR thing out.

Anonymous said...

I was written up in an informal observation as not being attentive during Tuesday pd.well this particular pd which was sighted in my informal was really a secret santa party where teachers were exchanging gifts and eating.oops the principle forgot to mention that in the informal observation document.thanks to uft it was read into the record in front of an arbitrator.