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RIFTHP Issues Press Release on Teacher Evaluation Bill

Press Release

For Immediate Release                             Contact:  Frank Flynn
Date:  July 10, 2014                                    RIFTFrank@aol.com

RIFTHP Thanks General Assembly
for Passing Teacher Evaluation Bill

The RIFTHP is pleased that the RI General Assembly passed legislation relieving effective and highly effective teachers from all aspects of the current evaluation system for two and three years respectively, while ensuring annual conferences between teachers and supervisors.

This legislation creates a more manageable evaluation system, relieving administrators of the current, unnecessary burden of evaluating teachers whom they have identified as Highly Effective and Effective every year in the same way, allowing them to focus their time where it is needed the most, supporting new teachers and those in need of improvement.

Sign the Petition!

Alex and Ani: Cease advertising with radio station WPRO as long as habitual misogynist John DePetro remains on the air.

On September 27, 2013, WPRO talk radio host John DePetro referred to a number of women demonstrating outside a political event as “W-H-O-R-E-S” (as well as other derogatory terms, including “cockroaches” and “hags”) on the air.  This is not the first time DePetro has made hateful statements against women in a public forum—notably he was dismissed from radio station WRKO in 2006 for calling Massachusetts gubernatorial candidate Grace Ross a “fat lesbian” on his show. He has promoted a “blame the victim” ideology in at least one instance involving the brutal rape and murder of a Massachusetts woman. And earlier this year, he was accused of sexually assaulting a female co-worker.

Please click here to read and sign the petition, and share it with your family friends.

Let Teachers Teach

On May 20, 2013, teachers and support personnel from across RI came together to voice their concerns regarding the direction Commissioner Gist is leading education policy and procedures in their State.

RI Teachers Issue Stinging Indictment of Commissioner Gist

85% of Teachers Believe Her Contract Should Not Be Renewed

Providence, R.I. - An independent survey of Rhode Island’s public school classroom teachers today offered a stinging indictment of the leadership of Deborah Gist as the state’s Education Commissioner. The survey, conducted by Fleming and Associates from April 22 to April 24, consisted of a telephone survey of 402 randomly selected Rhode Island public school teachers. The entire survey is attached.

Rhode Island Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals President Frank Flynn stated, “For too long Commissioner Gist has spoken of her support among classroom teachers. We decided to put that notion to an independent test. This survey found that she is not supported by classroom teachers. In fact, there is overwhelming evidence that her leadership is almost universally rejected.”

The survey highlights speak for themselves:

  • 82% of RI’s classroom teachers feel less respected today than they did when Commissioner Gist started a few years ago.
  • Commissioner Gist’s highly touted Race To The Top initiative has been nothing short of a disaster for RI education. Classroom teachers, in overwhelming numbers, felt it was somewhat ineffective 22%) or a waste of money (60%).
  • Teacher morale is abysmal under Commissioner Gist. Classroom teachers, at the rate of 68%, thought morale was poor, and 22% just fair. A remarkable 88% of teachers feel morale is unacceptable in RI schools today.

The Rhode Island Pension Problem

Rhode Island Retirement Security Coalition
tutorial on the pension situation in Rhode Island To learn more visit: www.rhodeislandretirementsecurity.org 



By Diane Ravitch

Imagine that you are a teacher in a high school in a high-poverty district. Many of your students don't speak English. Some don't attend school regularly because they have to earn money or baby-sit with their siblings while their parents are looking for work. Some come to school unprepared because they didn't do their homework. But you are idealistic and dedicated, you work with each of the students, you do your best to teach them reading, writing, science, math, history, whatever your subject. But despite your best efforts, many of your students can't read very well (they are struggling to learn English), and many of them don't graduate. If your school eliminated all its standards, you could easily push up the graduation rate.

Bob Kerr: The teacher, the dentist, and the numbers

Providence Journal Website
01:00 AM EST on Wednesday, March 3, 2010

OK, can we at least admit that things have gotten strange and twisted when members of the Howard Beale Society give a standing ovation to a woman for putting people out of work?

What next — a bus tour of underperforming schools at which Society members could get out to yell “Send out the teachers!”

There is damage being done here. In this eagerness to support the wholesale firing of veteran teachers, people are not thinking about what comes next. Will good teachers want to go near schools that have been set up as free-fire zones for zealous reformers? And will teachers who are willing to take jobs in schools that are being forced to fit into federal guidelines have any understanding of the community they’re in or the particular needs of its students?

Former AFT President Sandra Feldman Dies at Age 65

Sandra Feldman, who rose from her position as a second-grade elementary school teacher in New York City to become president of the 1.3 million member American Federation of Teachers, died September 18, 2005 after a long battle with cancer, AFT President Edward J. McElroy announced today. Feldman would have been 66 years old next month.

Sandy's death is a great loss for the AFT personally and professionally and for the children of our nation, said McElroy. She was a leader without comparison and will be remembered for her vigorous commitment to better the lives of the teachers and school staff she represented and the children they served.

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