Ruben's Waterloo. The comment reads as follows: "Newsflash! Ruben is Harvard bound in 2 weeks so tenure is NOT a thought. Let the loathing commence…"
I have no idea whether this comment is true or not, but it sure sounds as it it were written by the man himself, especially the "Let the loathing commence" part. The comment was posted by someone with an IP from New York College of Podiatric Medicine. Is Ruben now studying podiatry? Perhaps he wishes to learn how to remove the foot that is perpetually lodged in his mouth.
True or not, I have to say that this comment got me started thinking about something that has troubled me about the tenure debacle. Bloomberg is claiming all kinds of credit for making it harder to get tenure, but the truth is that a lot of folks were denied for no other reason than they had about 24 hours to put a portfolio together for their superintendent. I honestly don't know if I could have put something together on such short notice that would have made me tenure-worthy.
What's troubling me is all these extensions. If you've been extended, you simply have to start evaluating your other career options. I'm sure that a lot of new teachers who were extended are looking for jobs elsewhere or throwing in the towel. If you've been extended twice, like Ruben, you simply must have an exit strategy, as it seems to me that principals will think really hard before they grant tenure to someone who has twice failed to receive it.
By making tenure so arbitrary and basing it largely on TDR scores that have little validity, the mayor has guaranteed that many promising young teachers will flee the system.
All of this is bad news. We have senior teachers under attack by astroturf groups like Asshats4Education, and newbie teachers under attack by a mayor who wishes to burnish his education legacy before he slinks out of office.
Whether Ruben stays or goes is of little consequence. What does matter is that NYC is making a concerted effort to make teaching a temporary career, by hook or by crook. This can only harm the profession, and in the end, the children who pass through our doors.