teachers refusing to write any recs.

<p>D came home tonight with the announcement that all the teachers at the high school are no longer writing any college rec. letters. They are also no longer supervise any clubs including mock trial. And all sports practices will end at the end of the school day.They will not be available either before or after school for extra help and will not be doing anything that is not specified in their contract. Basically they will only work 8-3.
The teachers and the district are at a standstill over the teachers contract.</p>

<p>D had a friend go home in tears as she has a rec. due Monday for a scholarship at a private university and the teacher will not give it to her. She called the college and they will not make an exception.
I can't imagine this going on for to long or at least I hope not. A teacher strike is also possible.
Interestingly my D feels that the teachers are wrong to use this tactic to pressure the school board and feels she does not want me to complain. She feels they are wrong to use the kids as pawns.<br>
Has anyone had an experience like this.</p>

<p>Unbelievable! The parents of your D's friend ought to send the school board a bill for the scholarship prize. I've never heard of this - but I imagine these hardball tactics have been used before. If I were your D's friend, I think I'd get a rec letter from a non-teacher and also write a letter to the teacher, the school principal, the school board, the college scholarship office and the college president -- telling them what the situation is in a very matter of fact way. The teacher won't get in trouble. As you say, they want this to create trouble for the board. The college president might take a much more sympathetic view than the bureaucrats in the scholarship office.</p>

<p>That's outrageous! Perhaps the parents of some affected students should go to the press and publicly threaten to sue the teachers' union for lost scholarships and admissions opportunities.</p>

<p>Why did the teacher refuse to give her the rec?? When did the girl ask her to write it, and what time did she go to pick it up?? I can't imagine that is the WHOLE story....is it? Amazing if so.</p>

<p>I, too, am wondering when teachers made this announcement. In the case of her friend, did the friend give the teacher the recommendation form weeks ago, and is only now hearing that the teachers are refusing to write recommendations? If the friend just asked the teacher about a recc that's due Mon., many teachers would not write a recommendation on such short notice.</p>

<p>The situation is something to take up with the school board and local media.</p>

<p>Teacher "work to the rule" non-strikes are semi-common in areas where teachers are not allowed to Strike. They basically mean that the teachers don't do any work for which they are not paid. </p>

<p>As awful as it may seem for the children, when you have no other bargaining tactics, it is one.</p>

<p>Frankly, I have more issues with the college not accepting the student's issue than the teachers.</p>

<p>Without further details about why the teachers have decided to work to rule, I agree with Muppetcoat. Anytime a group goes on strike, there are innocent victims, be they stranded passengers or in this case, students. Unfortunately, striking or working to rule is the one weapon employees have, while bosses can fire them, often at will. I have no idea what the issues at stake are but I hesitate to condemn teachers out of hand. Working to rule actually underlines for the public how much teachers do besides showing up for class.</p>

<p>I also agree with Muppetcoat that the college is unreasonably inflexible. The student should appeal to the college president as well as publicize her plight in the local press.</p>

<p>I think it is time that colleges and scholarship organizations drop the teacher rec thing. In general they don't tell anything. And frankly it is a lot of burden on teachers. In large public schools, the teachers do not 'know' the kids and recycle half a dozen letters they have writen in the past. It is also harder for kids to keep reminding - chasing after the teachers to send those damn letters. </p>

<p>UC system and specifically Berkeley doesn't require any teacher or councelor rec, and to maintain uniformity you write your own on-line transcript and there you go. Once admitted, you do have to submit official transcript.</p>

<p>I think it's disgraceful that the school is permitting such an outrage... and shame on the teachers themselves! Plenty teachers profess that they "LOVE TEACHING" and "LOVE CHILDREN", yet they are really such phonys! It's really about the money and the percs!! I'm so sick of teachers complaining about their contracts! Where else can a person have a permanent job (tenure) even though they may be very, very bad at it (my son has had his share of horrible teachers that should have retired ages ago or just should not be kept on because they just didn't do their jobs well)? The teachers in NJ don't have to pay very much (if at all) towards their benefts! They get paid up to $5000 for clubs they are advisors to that only meet once a month and virtually do nothing! They get annual raises that are not too shabby at all!They have the option of getting another job over the summer. I know that they have to deal with certain issues and problems, but so does anyone working in any other field!</p>

<p>I would definitely go to the press; go to the board of ed! This is not morally or ethically right! </p>

<p>Again, it makes me ill to know that these are the same people that say they "love kids"... Oh, such bsers they are!!</p>

<p>I think they do wonderful jobs, and they need money to live too.</p>

<p>Simba, I do agree that many teachers do wonderful jobs, and they should be praised and respected! However, unfortunately, plenty do not "earn their keep". I think it is an awful thing that the teachers that do not do a wonderful or even good job, get to remain in the system because of tenure. It boggles my mind that there is such complacency for people that are just not good at what they do and that they are allowed to stay in a position that they no longer earn. In every other job, employees need to (and should) constantly display and prove their worth and value. </p>

<p>I do believe however, even the teachers that should remain in the system - the ones doing a good job, need to be grateful that they have the security and benefits they have... I know of no other field offering the kind of security they enjoy.</p>

<p>All that said, I still see no reason for a teacher that professes they "love what they do," and that they "love children" should do such a disservice to kids they proclaim to love, in the name of money. These kids in need of teacher's recs will never get another opportunity. Also, I thought a teacher giving a recommendation was more a personal thing, not so much a "teacher's obligation"... I know that it's part of their job, but I'd think a truly caring teacher, one who says they "love what they do," would write the recs, in spite of their fight for more money... because it's the RIGHT thing to do.</p>

<p>What Simba said! Excellent point. (That’s what I like about CC, I get the benefit of opinions from people who are smarter than me).</p>

<p>We have 4 counselors at our school, they are franticly trying to finish up the 100 reccommendations they each are writing before school stops for the december break.
Many of the schools in our district have advisory groups, a teacher is assigned to a group of kids and follows them through graduation. Since only a few kids in the groups are seniors, it makes sense for the advisor to write recs.
Even at my daughters school, she waited too late to ask her advisor/mentor( nov) for a rec, and she had to ask someone else.
I think that while teachers get and need stipends for coaching or sponsoring groups after school, writing 5 or so reccomendations should be part of their job and covered under contract just as time for correcting papers is.
I do think that colleges need to be flexible, I think submitting a graded term paper or two along with recommendations from other adults could substitute for an academic recommendation</p>

<p>My S's English teacher told class she had enough recs to do, so ask other teachers. I didn't think that was wrong to say in Dec.</p>

<p>This whole thread underscores a VERY important point. Students should make their recommendation requests EARLY. DS actually gave his teachers the recommendations he wanted and addressed and stamped envelopes in May of his Junior year. This gave the teachers plenty of time to do his recommendations. </p>

<p>I do agree, however, with an above poster...Recommendations basically tell very little. The reality is that no one is going to ask a teacher to write them a letter of rec unless it's going to be a good one!</p>

<p>lelalellen-- perhaps we should find out where these teachers are? It's great that NJ teachers make a living wage, in plenty of places, they don't.</p>

<p>When my teachers "worked to the rule" (it was my jr. or sr. year, I forget which), I felt they had a reason to. I supported them. Plenty of the teachers at my school I have no connection with... however, there are some with whom I was really close, and there's no way I can doubt their passion for teaching. In some cases, my teachers are the reasons I survived certain classes.</p>

<p>That doesn't mean that eating wasn't also on their list of important things to do.</p>

<p>"we" believe that you get what you pay for. I think "we" would respect teachers and their jobs more if we acknowledged the percentage of public money that goes toward education and if we acknowledged their salaries in terms of time on the job.</p>

In the 2000-01 school year, the average teacher made $43,250, according to the AFT's most recent salary survey. By comparison, midlevel accountants earned an average of $52,664 and lawyers, $82,712.</p>

<p>To Podgursky, those comparisons are misleading because teachers generally have shorter workdays than other professions.</p>

<p>And typically they are on the job fewer than 190 days a year — or about 30% fewer days than an accountant or lawyer, even after vacation time, paid holidays and personal leave are taken into account, he said.<snip>
When salaries are computed on an hourly basis, public school teachers generally earn more than registered nurses, accountants, engineers and other middle-class workers, says Michael Podgursky, chairman of the University of Missouri's economics department.</snip></p>

<p>The figures cited by Podgursky are in line with the results of a Tennessean report last month showing that Metro teachers will make $30.41 an hour next year during their 10-month contract — more than civil engineers, registered nurses and police officers in the city.</p>

<p>Some teachers also enjoy fringe benefits superior to those in the private sector. Under Missouri's pension system, for example, teachers with 30 years of service can retire at 55 with 84% of their annual salary, Podgursky said.<snip>


I think if we had a more accurate pictureat the risks and rewards including monetary of teaching, we would attract more talent to the field</snip></p>

<p>Taking the issue to the press or the school board is not going to do any good, most likely. This is a union issue. The individual teachers should not really be blamed, they are following union directives and have no choice in the matter. Although I agree that it's a problem for many students, I have to agree that it's time for colleges to stop requiring teacher recs. My D3 is applying to Canadian schools and they do not ask for any letters of recommendation, and they seem to be able to make their admissions decisions just fine.</p>

<p>We had the same situation at my sons' school over a threatened strike. When seniors couldn't get ED recommendations written, a letter of explanation from the principal's office was sent. This is strictly a band-aid approach, and I don't know what the colleges decided to do about missing recommendations. Our strike issue was settled before ED deadlines, so I hope it worked out for everyone. The teachers I know bent over backwards to remedy the situation once their union gave the go-ahead.</p>

<p>I must comment on the lack of logic on the part of the poster who decries the salaries paid to HS teachers, then complains about the lack of high-quality teaching. Let's inventory the requirements for a good HS teacher - intelligence, education, energy, superior people skills, attention to detail, perserverance, ability to work within a highly regulated system ...... in other words, these are people who could excel at a thousand other jobs. How are the schools to attract such talent unless they offer high salaries and perks? The security and benefits can be enough of a lure to convert computer programmers, actuaries, and engineers to teaching. I know, because these are three professions that my sons' best math teachers have given up. To say that "love of kids" should be the determining factor is naive.</p>

<p>Wow, now I see the benefit of having gone to a private school. My school was unbelieveably small (6 people graduated last year) and the teachers have sooo much spare time. They didn't mind doing about 8 recs each for me. The councilor had to fill out 12 school reports for me, and they did so without any complaints!</p>