Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Confusing First Day Back for Rubber Room Detainees

Some people like myself had received notification of where and when to show up while others had not. However, by September 7 there had been enough networking among us, that most people had some idea of where to go.

I was to report to the DOE Administrative Offices at 45-18 Court Square, Long Island City, NY 11101. I didn't put that address on this blog because I predicted that quite a few people would be sent there, and I didn't want any unofficial welcoming committees waiting to harass us. But I needn't have worried. The only gauntlet we had to navigate was composed of huge vans full of film equipment and a film crew setting up to shoot somewhere in the vicinity. Breakfast was being served to the crew by craft services right outside the door of 45-18.

Once inside I followed the signs to "Reassignment Staff Orientation" and found a room packed with people--clearly more than the DOE had bargained for. I would guess that there were at least 200 people, maybe more. A question and answer session was drawing to a close, but it was clear that some people had shown up without assignments. Everyone was seated, orderly, and patient--after all most of us had been through many such Board of Ed snafus. The administrative staff looked somewhat nervous to be in close proximity to so many "Reassigned Teachers", probably because of the picture painted of us by yellow journalists, but they obviously had nothing to worry about from this crowd--other than the fact that it was a fire hazard to have that many people in one room.

It would seem that the whole purpose of calling us there was to give us the address of the site where we would be working. Before they started calling us up to get our new assignments, a UFT representative spoke to us for about 2 minutes and gave us the essential information that we might have to punch in and out, if that is what everybody else at our new site was doing. Yes, that was the full extent of the information provided to us by our union representatives, and I am sure that everyone there was just as grateful as I was for their reassuring support.

After receiving my new assignment I was free to go, and I was told not to show up at the new site until Monday.

3 comments:

The Veteran Teacher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
moriah said...

Congratulations on surviving your 3020a. I hope it went well for you. I followed the link and was unable to get into your blog because it was open to invited people only.

I am sure that your story would be of great interest to me and to many others.

Fidgety said...

I would love to be invited to read the Veteran teacher's blog. Your experience is what we need to hear!
I finally headed to Long Island City after repeated calls to the UFT. It seemed that no one there knew anything...are you surprised?? Prior to the first day, I received zero notice as to where to report. When I arrived at the LIC location, the admins were completely overwhelmed and arguing with each other...in contrast, the Reassigned teachers were sitting patiently waiting to be called.