Providence Pink Slips II
The ProJo has more on the Providence School district sending pink slips to all teachers. Basically, it was Mayor Angel Taveras’ call based on economic reality and trying to have as much flexibility as possible.
The mayor said the unprecedented move was necessary because of the depth of the financial crisis facing the city and the schools….[Providence School Superintendent Tom Brady] said the mayor alerted him about the impending crisis about two weeks ago. As Taveras became more alarmed, he asked Brady to come up with a solution that would give the city and the district “maximum flexibility” to respond to the city’s financial deficit, expected to top $57 million.
I also forgot that Providence Schools currently don’t follow the traditional seniority hiring practices.
The district now fills openings based on an interview process that requires teachers to submit a model lesson and a writing sample.
It remains unclear how seniority will be used when teachers are rehired under the dismissal system, however….Supt. Tom Brady said it was too soon to say whether seniority would be eliminated in its entirety. The district is still embroiled in a lawsuit filed by the Providence Teachers Union that seeks to restore seniority, although both sides are reportedly close to an agreement.
Part of what spurred this is a loss of $14 million in stimulus money, which was used primarily to pay teachers. Additionally, the ProJo reports that an additional $11.5 million is needed to cover increases in health insurance and other benefits. It is also pointed out that Providence teachers pay 15% of their health insurance and will receive no pay raise this year. Unfortunately, they’re learning what the private sector has already learned: making sacrifices for one year doesn’t make you immune from making more sacrifices in subsequent years. I wish it were not true, but it’s reality.