Sorry for not writing for a little bit.

Sorry for not writing for a little bit. My professional life has been in a bit of a disarray, and my personal life has not been exactly stable. (On that, I’ll mention a little later.)

The journey so far. Not exactly sure where I can begin to catch anyone up to speed. If you recall in previous posts, I detailed my “dismissal” or leaving “Lean on Me High School” in Harlem. Quick summarization of the event basically would force me to reaffirm an idea I learned a few years ago about NYC schools. That is, principals are the weakest members of the faculty. This is partially why Bloomberg and Joel Klein agreed to allow these “Children First” networks to come in and function as support in regards to hiring staff, professional development etc.

In regards to the Ap of Curriculum and Instruction at Lean on Me HIgh, she ironically could not provide me with assistance on curriculum and instruction regarding two classes I taught – Forensic Science and ELA. When I joined the school in October, I basically had to create my own course using research and my own ideas. She couldn’t provide any assistance as to what materials had been taught, or should be taught. Which is pathetic considering she had taught one section of the class.

Particularly troubling were the 2nd and 5th period English classes. One student who has behavioral problems decided to light a worksheet or textbook on fire. The matrix of students in 2nd period clearly was not considered when making their schedules. These were not freshman.

5th period was hell. My original roster, which came on two separate attendance pages was just contractually, and morally illegal. One sheet had 29 students. The other had 17 students. Yes, the math adds to over 40 students. Eventually, it came to light that it was an ICT (Integrated Cooperative Teaching) class, which meant there were Special Ed. students included which General Ed. Students. According to federal IDEA laws which deals with disabled/special Ed. student law, that class should have never idealistically gotten to be over 25 kids, depending on the range off students.

Add to co-teacher, Ms. Different, who I just don’t have time to explain again. Eventually, I Ms. Different, Ms. Payroll Wishy-Washy and AP. DSL PMS came to an agreement on how I could split the class with Ms. Different. After negotiating students, the schism occurred.

My students and the smaller setting was fantastic. Ms. Different’s? Well, if you are what you eat, well your classroom is reflective on how you teach. I hear they were chaotic, but she too loved the extra space.

Ap Clit had issues with this and decided to tell us to stop. But as the original scenario was dangerous, and our courses were divergent according to our plans, adequate preparation would be needed. And despite hours after school, and hours of research on ICT teaching and petitioning to the guidance counselors and social workers, no logical conclusion that didn’t make me complicit to violating moral, and federal laws could be made. Thus, the classes weren’t joined. AP Clit knew this, observed Ms. Different with half the class gone, and never called anyone on it. Until, I sneezed or did something to piss her off.

Thus, we tried and failed to rejoin the class. Have you ever watched a 16 year old boy cry because he couldn’t learn? My kids were suffering in the joined class, and I bit the cyanide capsule and pulled them out of the ghetto AP Clit wanted to maintain. A month went by before she noticed it.
And then there was the incident which consequently precipitated the bitch (excuse my English) to write me up everyday for breathing. Often twice a day. And then to have a meeting with a union rep. on each separate one, even when multiples could be handled.

Finally, after 4.5 months, my time and journey there came to and end. Eventually, I ended up working at the “Bronx school for a lot of girls and a few boys 100 blocks away” which was to lead to a full time Special Ed. Job this fall, with a course on Art History thrown in. The AP’s and other teachers also recognized my hard work and effort and my teaching skills. They were also seemingly impressed with the rapport I developed with some rough students, who came to depend on me to assist them when their lead teacher had failed. Most of the classes were ICT and after Lean on Me, I had experience with that. Not too many, enrolled full time for graduate school to grab a certification in Special Ed. My eventual GPA would be above 3.0 and clearly this was a good match.

Again, interviewed for a position, and this fall, I’d have my own hall pass to give kids again. However, I received a mystery email in July which was weird and no one at the Dept. of Ed. could confirm its existence. It was ultimately a fluke. But then, come August, Mr. Hot AP form the “Bronx school for a lot of girls and a few boys 100 blocks away” informed something was blocking him from adding me to the school roster.

Eventually upon investigation, I learned that Lean on Me school had placed two Unsatisfactory ratings in my file. One from 2 year before when I first subbed for about three months there intermittently and then one for last year. These things didn’t stop me from working for a full year, or for after 1 month of no work. How AP Clit has done this? I and the union don’t know. My file histor has vanished from the Dept. of Ed. How does this happen? Why me? I excuse my real talk but I DON’T KNOW HOW THESE SEEMINGLY IMPOSSIBLE SCENARIOS KEEP FUCKING HAPPENING TO ME.

So I have a grievance in with the board but Lean on Me High won’t provide me with or access to my file history, which is contractually wrong. And yet, the true battle can not be waged without their participation. As I’ve taught and normally practice, the best way to piss off a person or to make something disappear is to ignore it. Because either will result in that person going away to over, around or above you. Yet, without that paperwork, I can’t really do that.

But here is my new declaration – I’ve decided “no more mister nice guy, not the same guy, not going to let you rock my world.” I know I’m a rock star teacher, and teaching is the only thing I can see myself doing, and I’m not going to let this ineffectual, unhappy, and poorly trained Assistant Principal inflict her bureaucratic malarkey on me especially she separate me from my kids.

The Tomfuckery ends Monday.

Chester Kent

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