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Recruiting Teaching Fellows

June 6, 2008 pm30 3:33 pm

Recruiting Teaching Fellows? Not into the program. The Teaching Fellows and the NYC Dept of Ed already have that down. Whiten the teaching force. Make it younger. Make it turn over faster. (Contrast here)

They recruit kids with degrees from good schools. They recruit visitors to New York. They recruit future doctors and lawyers and kids who just don’t know what they will do, but it’ll be something corporate, but who need a few years before they go back to school, or a program that let’s them stay in New York for a couple of years, some resume building, or maybe just the equivalent of some Peace Corps experience, without the vaccines.

Far too many (not all) come in thinking they will cure the system. It’s what the New Teacher Project teaches them. They look at us (teachers) as broken parts.

Far too many (not all) come in with anti-union animus. Some will have careers in management. Others resent collective action, chafing against their self-confidence. They come in willing to work hard (for 2, 3 years, not a career) and look down at teachers who protect their own rights. The union is, for many of them, another part of the broken system, and a part that does harm.

The DoE gets a more compliant workforce and overall lower salaries. The New Teachers Project reaps a $$ bonanza with their planned obsolescence, and an ideological bonanza with their pool of confirmed anti-union former-teachers.

But what is the response of the rest of the teachers, and of our union?

Some options, in the next post.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. educatorblog permalink
    June 6, 2008 pm30 3:50 pm 3:50 pm

    I look forward to your next post. How can we empower teachers already working in the field? (

  2. June 6, 2008 pm30 5:04 pm 5:04 pm

    Here are two practical (and perhaps uncomfortable) questions:

    1) Is a multi-decade decline of the “public sphere” (in both political support and financial and other logistical support) a serious problem for schooling?

    2) Will participation in schools from a teachers’ perspective make future “movers and shakers” more likely to see the public sphere as valuable?

    I suspect the answers to #1 and #2 are “yes,” and I think that HAS to change how we look at “short-timer” programs such as Teaching Fellows and TFA.

  3. June 7, 2008 am30 2:40 am 2:40 am

    I’m sure you know how I feel about the recruitment vs. retention issue.

  4. June 7, 2008 am30 4:54 am 4:54 am

    interesting side note…when I was a teaching fellow I went to a workshop on the politics of the job…this is where I learned things like how to get to know the payroll secretary as well as what a chapter leader is. The best damn teaching fellows workshop I ever attended. This year, I am working as an fellow advisor, and I mentioned that I wanted to do a workshop on this. I was shot down then and there. I need to do a workshop on Data Driven Instruction.



  1. What to do about Teaching Fellows? « JD2718
  2. Teaching Fellows or the Teaching Fellows? « JD2718
  3. Do Not Apply « JD2718
  4. Posts from last summer about new teachers « JD2718

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