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Reaching Fellows (reprint)

June 28, 2009 am30 7:27 am

This was originally published in June of 2008. Some things have changed:
the number of NYC Teaching Fellows is far smaller; teachers are being excessed from schools; there is a hiring freeze.
But there are still new Fellows, they will become new teachers, and now is the perfect time to start talking to them.
One more detail: The “Do Not Apply” list may be much more of a “Be Cautious If You End Up There” list given the likely tightness of jobs.

— — —

Given that the Fellows, as a group, are indifferent or even hostile to the union, how could we possibly talk to them? Organize them?

Before the union meets the Fellows, they have already been carefully inoculated against us. That first summer is key.

And what happens in the first summer? They get bossed around by the Fellows and the DoE and their university. They face arbitrary decisions, rules that don’t make sense. They get assignments they don’t want. They work/study brutally long hours, with massive amounts of homework.

And they do it together, in groups of 25 or so.

Wouldn’t it be nice for us (current teachers and our union) to find ways to reach these small groups of fellows? to have conversations? to clear up misconceptions before they occur?

They are being badly treated. This is the moment when they may be first open to hearing from the union. This is the moment when the Do Not Apply list, if it existed, would be most useful.

And they are sitting together in groups. Can’t be that hard to find them, right?

Reaching fellows with a pro-union message, giving them advice, survival skills, saving them from signing up at career-ending schools, this can and should be done.

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 29, 2009 pm30 8:50 pm 8:50 pm

    As a current Cohort 18 Fellow, I thank you quite a bit for your blog and for your posts. Admittedly, I know very little about the union, but reading your posts (including the archives) gives me some idea.

    Silly questions to ask, but where can I find out more information, how to get more involved, more information from veteran teachers in the union, etc?

    Thank you again.

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