It's teacher hunting season!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

What is mayor Bloomberg's point with insisting that schools stay open in a blizzard?

What is Mayor Michael Bloomberg's point in keeping the schools open in a blizzard?

There is no great utility in this. Large percentages of students stay home. The large fraction of teachers at outer-borough schools live in Long Island. The news reports and the transportation authorities urged people to stay home and told of special trouble in Long Island. The insistence on the schools remaining open while practically every other municipality in the region shut down schools is placing a great imposition on the innumerable teachers, administrators and other staff that must drive from Long Island or narrower streets in the outer boroughs.

Again, a huge fraction of students stayed home on January 12. What sense does it make for teachers to introduce new material when half or more of a classes' students are gone for the day? And what happens, in terms of staff scheduling? The remaining staff or administrators need to scrounge for substitutes, and in the case of deficient numbers of teachers, the staff/administrators must reschedule or consolidate classes.

All in all, staff go through hell, riding near empty public transit or driving on snow-slogged non-arterial roads.

The smart teacher is the one that doesn't listen to the news and just goes into work. Today demonstrates that it is pointless to expect school closings. (Last winter's closing was announced at 6:00 AM, after many staff are on the road or trains to begin their commute.)

So what is the point, Mr. Mayor? No serious new educational targets can be accomplished, as half or more of the students are absent.

Blog reading teachers, please submit your reports of how many students actually were in attendance in your classes in online poll at the right.


  1. He wanted to prove a point - everything was under "control." That was the message - not only by keeping the schools open, but also by announcing ALL after school activities would go on as scheduled.

    The message was: the city was open for business.

  2. Great points!
    Funny thing, though, is that after-school programs at schools were actually canceled.

  3. Two reasons:

    - the unwritten policy that, under all but the most extreme
    conditions, children of working parents must be provided with day
    care, and middle schoolers and high school students must be kept
    off the streets.

    - the wheels of production (which is how the schools are really
    seen by these folks, despite their image/brand consultant and
    focus group-generated slogans) must not cease.