Education

New York's Absent Teacher Reserve Hears Call to Action, Goes Back to Reading the Newspaper

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New York City recently pledged to rid itself of the infamous rubber rooms where unemployed and unemployable teachers sat—sometimes for years—while accruing seniority and pay. But today The Wall Street Journal reports on a scam even sweeter than sitting around in a room doing nothing all day for pay—sitting around wherever you want doing nothing all day for pay.

A majority of New York City teachers who lost their positions at schools earlier this year have neither applied for another job in the system nor attended any recruitment fairs in recent months, according to data released by the Department of Education Thursday.

The city spends about $100 million a year on 1,800 teachers currently in the pool who don't have full-time teaching gigs. In theory, these teachers, some of which have been enjoying this ride since 2006, are part of a reserve corps of teachers who can be called up at a moment's notice to fill vacancies and do substitute teaching: The Absent Teacher Reserve. (Notice that Reason magazine gets along fine without retaining a reserve corps of bloggers ready to spring into action at a moment's notice.)

But there are 1,200 vacancies in the system. While 59 percent of the teachers haven't applied to any jobs through the official system, the rest are presumably being rejected by principals, even with union-negotiated arrangements that put outsiders at a distinct disadvantage.

Who cares what unemployed teachers are up to, you say? Well, there's this:

New York is the only city in the country where teachers are guaranteed pay for life even when their school closes and they are put out of a permanent job.

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  1. Maybe if they read LewRockwell.com they would be inspired to shed their moral turpitude, become rugged individualists, refuse to accept another penny confiscated from those who make and produce something and join the campaign to end compulsory public education.

    1. Or just be wary of black people.

    2. This must be what happened to Ron Jeremy. Despite his gainful employment, I believe he still retains his 1970s-era license to teach in the state of NY.

  2. (Notice that Reason magazine gets along fine without retaining a reserve corps of bloggers ready to spring into action at a moment’s notice.)

    (I’ve offered my services for when all of you contributors without buns in the oven are otherwise occupied with some Poseidon nightmare cruise next year.)

  3. These are highly trained, dedicated professional educators. We cannot allow this precious human resource to go to waste.

    1. SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE!

  4. “New York is the only city in the country where teachers are guaranteed pay for life even when their school closes and they are put out of a permanent job.”

    Why did I not become a New York City Public School teacher?

    1. Personal standards?

    2. And yet there are 1,200 vacancies – they can’t give those jobs away.

    3. Also, you probably have to sit through two years of mind-numbing “education” classes first. I’m not entirely sure the trade-off is worth it.

  5. The city spends about $100 million a year on 1,800 teachers currently in the pool who don’t have full-time teaching gigs.

    At the low, low price of $55,555 per teacher.

    1. And I only get $52,200 to sit on my hands and wait to be authorized to do work.

      What a gyp.

  6. I wondered where they always get that crowd that travels to Albany to demonstrate for more dollars for teachers.

  7. To paraphrase Woody Allen’s joke about the old ladies in the Catskills, the lousy food, and the small portions:
    “The teachers in New York are so lousy.”
    ‘Yeah, and they don’t spend any time in the classroom!’
    OR (just as bad,maybe worse)
    ‘Yeah, and they spend time in the classrome.’

  8. If you are guaranteed pay for life, why work?

    1. Ask the Supremes that?

  9. Perhaps we should hang out and post at The Blaze until reason is willing to pay us to comment?

    Soros is willing to pay an army of union goons and community organizers, why don’t the Koch’s pay us.

  10. I’m not entirely sure what the big deal is; any effort to stop public school teachers from ruining the minds of their students (including paying them to not go near students) should be commended in my mind.

  11. More Lives Touched. Be happy.

  12. Just More Lives Touched. By Me.

  13. More “lives touched” by government!

  14. Can’t their lives be shortened?

    1. Lives touched or shortened are counted the same.

      1. Hush, children. My Plan is not done yet.

      2. The death panels are waiting for you Reason posters. Oh, fuck yeah.

  15. “New York is the only city in the country where teachers are guaranteed pay for life even when their school closes and they are put out of a permanent job.”

    I know this is New York, but come on.

    How could they be that stupid?

  16. “New York is the only city in the country where teachers are guaranteed pay for life even when their school closes and they are put out of a permanent job.”

    I have to admit, you’d have to pay me a hell of a lot of money to be a teacher at a random public school in New York City, but that’s ridiculous.

    …when the federal government does stuff like that, they call it “stimulus”.

  17. Does anyone really want these people in contact with children? Does anyone want any of the current population of NYC teachers in contact with children?

  18. “New York City recently pledged to rid itself of the infamous rubber rooms where unemployed and unemployable teachers sat?sometimes for years?while accruing seniority and pay.”

    Why are you calling them teachers?

    That’s the last thing they are: They lack the competence to be used in the classroom, which is why they are sitting around.

    So don’t confuse matters by talking about New York’s non-existent “Absent Teacher Reserve.” Be plain about the nature and scope of the problem: The government is confiscating millions in taxes annually to pay completely useless people to sit around for life.

  19. Pay-for-life? Wow. What a sweet deal.

  20. This is a perfect reason to dislodge education from the control of the state. All parents should have the freedom to select the educational institution of their choice and forgo the onerous burden of taxes which server neither parents or the children. Let parents keep their taxes. If government run schools want to continue to exist, these institutions should have to produce tuition bills which parents can either pay or not as the choose. Once these state run educational systems must compete for students will they reform as so many have desired.

  21. (Notice that Reason magazine gets along fine without retaining a reserve corps of bloggers ready to spring into action at a moment’s notice.)

    And it would appear, without a reserve for the crabby lady in the Department of Redundancy Editing Department.

  22. If you were trying to piss me off Katherine. It worked.

  23. My first job after college was as a New York City public school teacher. That district is a disgrace.

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