Sunday, February 28, 2010

Yellow Journalism

The New York Post has written various articles on the New York City’s Rubber Rooms and  teachers assigned to them.   The facts are few and far between, and mostly uncorroborated.  However, the words engulfing those facts have been obviously chosen with care.  I have decided to list these articles by date, and the negative words in them.

Not one to deny credit to the earnest wordsmiths who wrote these articles, I have made sure to include their names.  Their mothers must be so proud.

creep’s; detention; haul; doing nothing; rubber room; hasn’t set foot; accused; lewd; staring; butts; filled in; absent; sexy; uncomfortable; creepy; leers; guilty; slap on the wrist; conduct unbecoming; scruffy; deemed; dangerous; fat pension; accumulated; largesse; multimillionaire; lords over; oldest; cavernous; cluttered; smells; hasn’t taken a shower in months; insults; losers; deadbeats; doles out; oversees; empire;  charges; posed a risk to kids.

rubber room; slam; lashed into; dangerous teachers; sentencing; do-nothing; rubber rooms; gift of several million dollars; incompetent; former; infamous; drags its feet; refuses; allegations; misconduct; incompetence; fumed; suspended with pay; trashed; accused; sexual misconduct; angry; fed up; rotten; outraged; free-ride; hasn’t set foot; exiled; criminal allegations; sexually molested; impregnating; awaiting; disciplinary proceedings; banned; lewd; leering; exiled; overseeing; snapping pictures; rubbing up against; reversed on appeal; technicalities.

02/08/2010  ANDREA PEYSER
rubber flubbers; beats working; Franz Kafka; mental ward; recalcitrant children; spy; Patron Saint of Idle Teachers; rubber rooms; oases of waste and neglect; accused; sexual abuse; stealing; incompetence; crawl; glacial pace; costing; tens of millions; deficit; disgrace; sat on his rump; caught leering at backsides; lewd comments; wrist slap; bizarre sight; suffocating room; how to beat the rap; groundswell of outrage; shutter them; torture; acrimony; nail biting; hand twisting; rubber room; disgrace; siphoning; flexes its muscle; insanity; fire the bums.

exiled; knocking up; three strikes; allegedly; impregnated and married; sexually molested; rubber room; beating; criminal; disciplinary; charges; rubber room; accused; misconduct; get rid of; hands are tied; fired; terminate; disciplinary proceedings; exiled; duds; banned from classroom; lewd comments; leering; overseeing; worse record; charged; abusing; porn pictures; suggestive poses; pants down; rubbing against; sued; expunged.

02/14/2010  YOAV GONEN
Rubber room; perv; bounce; creep; probe; denizen; rubber rooms; allegedly; ogled; not content; leer; followed; probe; rear ends; butt; rubber-roomer; sex; fraud; charges; allegedly; impregnated; doing nothing; outrage; rubber room; shut down; ax; misbehaving.

Sleazy 6; rubber room; on the hook; rubber-room; dangerous; benched; alleged; sexual misconduct; limbo; misconduct; adjudicated; impossible to fire; exposed; misdeeds; chancellor’s discretion; oversaw; lewdness; impregnated; molesting; criminal conviction; technicality; dishonor roll; shoving; pants; hugged; nice ass; missed opportunity; infatuated; exiled; rubber room; terminate; dirty half-dozen;  arrest; alleged; sexual abuse; arrested; allegedly; sexually assaulting; accusations; wrongdoing; idle; rubber rooms; chancellor’s discretion; cost; millions; wrist slap; lewd comments; overseeing; suspension; accused; fondling; learning disabled; not credible; lewd comments; accused; sexually assaulting a child; alleged victim; recanted; impregnated and married; sexually molested; rubber room.

Susan, Cynthia, Sally, Andrea, Kathianne, and Yoav (if these are your real names):  It won’t be easy, but let’s see if we can sweep aside the yellow journalism and find some facts.

1.    FACT: Many of the facts that you cite are part of New York Department of Education private personnel files that are not available to anyone outside the DOE.  For example: The exact number of years that a teacher had been teaching;  the number of sick days he had accumulated;  the exact salary; the exact wording of the charges.

2.    FACT:  You give private information from the personnel files of six different teachers who worked at different schools and in different districts all over the city.

3.    FACT:  There were no rubber rooms before Chancellor Klein established them.  Teachers who were awaiting the outcome of investigations were put behind desks at their district offices.

4.    FACT:  When Chancellor Klein was appointed by Mayor Bloomberg, he stated that he wanted to be able to hire and fire all NYC teachers at will. 

5.    FACT:  NYC teachers are civil servants and like policeman, fire fighters and other state and city workers they cannot be fired without just cause.

6.    FACT:  If the six teachers you wrote about are still on Department of Education payroll, it is because an independent arbitrator ruled that there was no just cause to terminate them i.e. not enough FACTS.

I’ll stop at six FACTS because this seems to be the magic number for your little articles:

660 teachers in the rubber room (actually more than 700)
6 sleazy teachers (according to you).
6 sleazy reporters (according to me—and any journalism teacher alive).

This is not a FACT, but a DEDUCTION.  I think your facts were provided to you by the DOE and all you did was cut and paste them into your articles.  You disguised the absence of hard fact with gossip and incendiary words.

Real journalism is about finding the facts that insiders don’t want you to know, and/or finding out why they are providing you with insider information.  

Tell us something that Bloomberg and Klein don’t want New Yorkers to know, and then maybe you can call yourself journalists.


FidgetyTeach said...

Dear Untamed, This was an excellent piece of work. Your six points were right on the money. It is about time that the so called "journalists" get their facts straight...Thanks again.

Moriah Untamed said...

Thanks fidgety. Keep up the good fight.

Chaz said...

Great post. How come they forgot to metion that judges and Arbitrators cleared them and it is Joel Klein's fault that they are still in the rubber rooms?

The DOE's motto; "don't let the truth interfere with a good story".

Moriah Untamed said...

I don't know what the truth is about these six gentlemen. I only know that the only evidence against them seems to be nothing but gossip and heresay. The Post hasn't gone to the trouble of finding new evidence or documentation. Neither has Klein for that matter.

Anonymous said...

Moriah, I haven't read your blog, or commented, for quite a while, but was doing some catching up tonight.

Personnel files of State and local public employees are not "private" in New York. They are accessible, to a certain extent, under the New York Freedom of Information Law.

You may wish to do an updated post on this issue.

Please review the following advisory opinion by Robert J. Freeman, who is the Executive Director of the NYS Committee on Open Government:

Anonymous said...

Hey, How come Mulgrew was quoted on ABC chanel 7 Sunday program saying that all reassigned teachers have returned to their classroom duties when 100's of them are working in DOE facilities?

He has forgotten about us.:(