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“Be Not Afraid”

June 11, 2012

Update #2:  The tentative agreement passed, but the result- 58% to 42 % was much closer than was predicted.  The message to UTLA leadership: The natives are getting restless……

UPDATE: According to the latest numbers, very few or no high school art positions will be saved. Please vote no on the TA

To my dear fellow colleagues:

It would be so easy to fold, so easy to run, but let’s not.  Yes I know, you may have received a RIF notice that won’t be rescinded or maybe you got this insulting little email from a group called Teach Plus declaring that Teach Plus Fellows call for the phasing in of AGT! They claimed that “teacher’s recommendations are released as Judge tentatively rules that LAUSD must include student progress in teacher evaluations.” 

There’s so much bullshit in that sentence I don’t know where to start.  First off, Teach Plus Fellows do NOT represent LAUSD teachers as a whole.  Second,  Teach Plus has no authority regarding our contract.  Third, the judge did not say AGT was to be used, only student progress.  The judge also acknowledged that there are students who will never be motivated to learn, quite a stunning statement.

As Diane Ravitch stated at the end of her speech at the Emannuel Presbyterian Church last year, “Be not afraid.” So dear colleagues, be not afraid to speak out against the scarlet number corporate “reformers”  hope to pin on you.  Be not afraid to speak out for authentic education and against the one size fits all policies of corporate backed, for profit groups.  Be not afraid to speak out for vocational education. Be not afraid to speak out for the elimination of most of the standards in favor of topic outlines that would allow us to personalize instruction. And be not afraid to vote NO on the tentative agreement that will bring back no regular secondary teachers.   If ever there was a time to send a message, the time is now.

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