November 17, 2007

At winking and nodding, Weingarten excels


A person named Nat had this to say about UFT president Randi Weingarten:
"Any objections Weingarten has to the school grading system, or the school system itself, are done with a wink and a nod."

She's really good at winking and nodding. Here's the opening paragraph of the statement she put out on New York City's new grading system:
First, we congratulate the schools that have done well on the school Progress Reports. Not surprisingly, schools with more collaborative relationships between teachers and administrators received higher grades.

Weingarten clearly buys into the Bloom/Klein grading system, and not once but twice.

Despite a groundswell of disdain for the new system in the past two weeks, which is dishonest, educationally unsound, and meaningless to its core,
her first sentence actually congratulates the schools that got a good rating. She proceeds in her second sentence to make a gratuitous and entirely unfounded connection between good grades and what she calls a "collaborative relationship" in these schools between teachers and administrators.

Weingarten, thus, supports the grading system de facto. If she didn't, she wouldn't be congratulating anyone or offering an explanation of why these schools got the good grades they did.

She starts wiggling around in paragraph no.2, where she says that the union has always supported accountability systems that strive to get clear and accurate assessments, and that she knows "that this is what was intended" by the Department of Education.

Weingarten has known all along what kind of grading system Klein was designing and carrying out. It's no secret that it's been built around test scores, faulty surveys, and an extraordinary lack of input from experienced rank-and-file educators and parents. Only when the grades have been published and the horrendous stupidity and evil of the thing is there for the whole world to see does she feel the need to jump on board and speak out against it.

Weingarten can't have it both ways: You either support the grading system (her para 1), or disavow it from the start, for being corrupt of vision and limited on truth. She'll say all right that she's always been against unfair, unclear and inaccurate assessments (para 2), but her interminable lack of response on the issues involved here show her for the fabulous winker and nodder that she is.

Ever the maneuverer and political hack, Weingarten dissembles to suit her personal agenda. She's been mum for years, some would even say complicit, as Klein takes apart the teaching profession piece by piece. She's so willing to collaborate with the movers and the shakers, the very people that are running public education into the ground, that I suspect she doesn't even recognize anymore how two-faced her written statements have become.

5 comments:

ed notes online said...

Right on target here.
You need a graphic that shows her speaking out of both sides of her mouth.

Anonymous said...

You nailed it!!

Randy doesn't recognize right from wrong anymore. She stated that ... schools with "collaborative relationship" (teachers and administrators) did better in the school report. Do we really have collaboration in the NYC schools between teachers and administrators? We are living in the times of the feudalism in education. What a shame.

NYC Educator said...

It's remarkable what passes for wit in the 40 million dollar per annum Unity patronage mill.

They posted that thing three times on my site today, and if you look, you'll see it on other posts in your blog too.

Woodlass said...

Yes, I know. I've added an explanatory mark to the instructions for leaving a comment on this blog, which you must have already seen.
Does Unity leadership order this kind of thing, or condone it, tolerate it, or condemn it? Couldn't be the latter or it wouldn't be happening so frequently.

NYC Educator said...

What I really notice is that this is what they seem to consider a response. Living in a bubble, surrounded by paid minions, you take it for granted that you can speak about people like this and it's just fine.

What's horrifying is here are all these high-powered people and none of them are able to muster an affirmative argument. This nonsense is something they apparently consider effective.

And I can't help but wonder whether they take the same idiotic half-wit approach toward negotiating teacher contracts. Despite her consisten failure to deliver, Ms. Weingarten is very smart. Still, I see no evidence of intelligence or creativity in any of the gang with which she surrounds herself.