Tuesday, November 30, 2010

How can I find out about Rubber Rooms?

Ms. Dorothy,
I am writing my thesis on the psychological impacts of reassignment centers on teachers and administrators who are sent to them. I am at a standstill with my research because this topic is so hush-hush. I haven't found any empirical data on the topic. I also am having trouble finding teachers and administrators to speak to. I know that a lot of people do not want to admit that they did something or were accused of doing something to wind up in the reassignment centers. Do you have any knowledge of what happens in other states when a teacher is accused of misconduct or incompetence?
- Educator & Student

What an interesting angle on New York's reassignment centers. The Psychological impact of spending time in a barren room ticking off time while waiting a court date must be dramatic. I will be curious to read your thesis paper when all is said and done.

To the best of my knowledge (which is very limited on this topic), centers like these have only been used in New York City. By agreement with the union, these centers were all closed in June and are no longer in use.

Now, like most other districts in the US, teachers who are accused of minor offenses are given non-teaching administrative duties. Those accused of more serious offenses are sent home with pay. As a part of the deal, probes and hearings have to be completed within two months.

I'm not aware of any places outside of New York that have experimented with reassignment centers. Perhaps it will be easier for you to find information now that the centers are closed.

Please let me know how everything turns out with your thesis!

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