Unassigned teachers, many deemed ineffective, could head back to NYC classrooms

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A disheartening piece of news came out of the Empire State this week.

The New York Daily News ran a story that New York City Chancellor FariƱa is considering sending the 1,200 teachers in the absent teacher reserve (ATR) back into classrooms. The article paints a dreary picture of these unassigned teachers including highlighting a teacher who was arrested for bringing heroin to jury duty. That's an extreme example (I hope), and it seems that a lot of these teachers are in schools as substitutes on a regular basis now. That said, assigning ATR teachers to classroom positions rather than allowing them to interview (as is currently the practice) would undermine principals' ability to select the teachers that work in their schools. 

Since the Olympics have just begun, I'll use a sports analogy. Pulling these teachers out of the reserve and placing them in schools is like taking players off the sidelines and putting them into the game against the coach's recommendation -- it's no way to build a team or staff a school.