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Information About Teachers / Fremont from Drew Middle School Staff Member

July 12, 2010

I spoke with a Drew Middle School teacher today who provided me with some interesting details about the candidate who almost became the Fremont Title 1 Coordinator that should scare you. He also explained that about nine teachers from Drew were sent to Fremont and surprise, surprise, they were hardly Drew’s best teachers. So this just adds evidence that this reconstitution was never about quality of education and the dismissal of Mr Labat has more to do with who would control the monies in Title 1- someone that could be controlled.

The person who was supposed to be the New Title 1 coordinator who was transferred from Drew was not considered the most competent individual at Drew and was described as “shady” by this staff member. There was more said but the nature of it was such that I would not print it right now. And since he was not elected to the position, there is no point. He was sent back to his home school when he didn’t receive the threshold of votes needed to be the coordinator. Mr. Balderas decided to retaliate against Mr. Labat since, lets’ face it, he could hardly fire 66% of the staff he had just hired- that is the percentage that voted against the hand picked candidate of Mr .Balderas. That is the mark of poor leadership and not the way to raise test scores or improve education.

This Drew staff member had a friend who went to Fremont for an interview just last week and decided it wasn’t for him after he noticed the campus seemed disorganized and he encountered an extremely stressed out and harried AP. The friend said he actually felt extremely sorry for the AP. It isn’t clear if he was offered a job but he did decide he did not want to work there due to the atmosphere on campus.

In addition, an out of classroom teacher from one of the local districts explained that she knew the reconstitution of Fremont was “all political” and she was comfortable speaking out due to her out of classroom status. She also knew that teacher quality had nothing to do in the selections and she confirmed the “weird” environment on campus. Fremont was a hot topic on the minds of many at a meeting I attended today and someone from LA High believes they will be next. I told them if they believe that then they need to begin organizing NOW.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. A Teacher Who Did Not Reapply permalink
    July 12, 2010 5:54 pm

    What’s very disconcerting about this reconstitution is that Cortines, McKenna, and Balderas NEVER had a solid plan as to how this reconstitution should proceed…even after they announced that reconstitution was the only way to “save” the school. They had two goals: get the six million dollars and get rid of teachers. Beyond that they simply lied and cobbled together whatever paperwork and plans were needed on a day by day basis. And it sounds like they’re still continuing on with this same unfocused and make-it-up-as-we-go reconstitution plan. These administrators lack vision, competence, and the heart to do what is really best for the students which they claim (lie) is their first priority.

    A lawsuit should be filed by UTLA against all these administrators for fraud, but the high-ranking UTLA officers don’t want to rock the boat because of the kickbacks and perks that they’re receiving.

  2. Fremont Teacher permalink
    July 12, 2010 7:01 pm

    I agree that a lawsuit should be filed and there are many ways it can be successful. Just the process alone of rehiring teachers was a fraud.

    If you notice, UTLA didn’t even bother to negotiate one single aspect of this reconstitution, to the point where teachers who left or were not rehired cannot get letters of recommendation. It is truly terrifying to think the union abandoned teachers to this degree.

    The worst part is that the stability and cohesiveness that is needed are gone. The school was improving far more than the district will give the staff credit for. But I believe huge problems are in store. It is interesting that people in the know who might consider to be aligned with the administration think it is a joke.

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