NYC taxpayers pay $9 million to replace teachers on union business

Phil Boehmke

As the Obama recession drags on and government waste is finally being taken seriously by some of our elected representatives, the fine print in lucrative government contracts is being read seemingly for the first time.  Apparently when Nancy Pelosi and her comrades were busy consigning the taxpayers to financial ruin by pushing legislation which few if any of them had actually read, they had plenty of company at the state and local level.  Now that the vaunted stimulus dollars (2010 Democratic campaign funds) have dried up, state and municipal governments must trim the fat from their budgets or face bankruptcy.

 

The New York Post reports that the Department of Education is spending $9 million per year to provide additional teachers to cover lost classroom time for 1,500 public school teachers who are conducting business for the United Federation of Teachers.

 

The DOE lets 40 experienced teachers collect top pay and fringe benefits, but work just one class period a day.

 

Under a contract agreement since 2003, the DOE excuses these veterans to work for the UFT—currently 38 serve as district representatives and two as union vice presidents.  The UFT pays them another salary, plus expenses.

 

English teacher Tom Dromgoole, for instance, collects top teacher pay, $100,049 a year, from the DOE for his slot at Leadership and Public Service HS in downtown Manhattan.  But he is relieved for most of the day to serve as a UFT high school rep.  The UFT supplements his salary by $50,461, records show.

 

Dromgoole is outspoken on state budget cuts, which he blasted at a boisterous protest last March with UFT President Michael Mulgrew.  Reached Friday outside his Brooklyn townhouse, Dromgoole brushed past a reporter who asked about his UFT work, saying, “No comment.”

 

Another veteran said of the lucrative gigs, “it’s a plum because you’re not teaching.  Some principals give them little or nothing to do” because the UFT reps are powerful.

 

The rest of the 1,500 teachers paid for time away from students are UFT “chapter leaders,” who represent faculty at each school.  They get at least one class period a day “for investigation of grievances” and other union-related duties, the contract says.

 

The United Federation of Teachers collects $126 million in dues from its members and yet reimburses the DOE only $900,000 of the nearly $10 million dollars spent annually to provide additional teachers to instruct students which have been abandoned in the name of union business.  One principal wondered why the UFT isn’t picking up the tab, “They have a lot of money to run TV ads.  Should DOE be paying for this?”  Meanwhile the union and their membership assure us as that any cutbacks will affect the quality of education (as if it could sink and lower), because as we know “it’s all about the children.” 

 

As public school teachers in Wisconsin and across the nation abandon their classrooms to protest badly needed fiscal reforms they continue to show their commitment to the children by threatening strikes and slowdowns.  If there is any question of the forces which have been deployed against the taxpayers during these trying times, just pay attention to the Democrat leadership and their fellow travelers in the MSM, listen to the blistering rhetoric being spewed by the public sector unions or better yet visit cpusa.org (the official website of the communist party) and take note of their steadfast support for the “workers.”

 

February 27, 2011

 

paboehmke@yahoo.com

 

As the Obama recession drags on and government waste is finally being taken seriously by some of our elected representatives, the fine print in lucrative government contracts is being read seemingly for the first time.  Apparently when Nancy Pelosi and her comrades were busy consigning the taxpayers to financial ruin by pushing legislation which few if any of them had actually read, they had plenty of company at the state and local level.  Now that the vaunted stimulus dollars (2010 Democratic campaign funds) have dried up, state and municipal governments must trim the fat from their budgets or face bankruptcy.

 

The New York Post reports that the Department of Education is spending $9 million per year to provide additional teachers to cover lost classroom time for 1,500 public school teachers who are conducting business for the United Federation of Teachers.

 

The DOE lets 40 experienced teachers collect top pay and fringe benefits, but work just one class period a day.

 

Under a contract agreement since 2003, the DOE excuses these veterans to work for the UFT—currently 38 serve as district representatives and two as union vice presidents.  The UFT pays them another salary, plus expenses.

 

English teacher Tom Dromgoole, for instance, collects top teacher pay, $100,049 a year, from the DOE for his slot at Leadership and Public Service HS in downtown Manhattan.  But he is relieved for most of the day to serve as a UFT high school rep.  The UFT supplements his salary by $50,461, records show.

 

Dromgoole is outspoken on state budget cuts, which he blasted at a boisterous protest last March with UFT President Michael Mulgrew.  Reached Friday outside his Brooklyn townhouse, Dromgoole brushed past a reporter who asked about his UFT work, saying, “No comment.”

 

Another veteran said of the lucrative gigs, “it’s a plum because you’re not teaching.  Some principals give them little or nothing to do” because the UFT reps are powerful.

 

The rest of the 1,500 teachers paid for time away from students are UFT “chapter leaders,” who represent faculty at each school.  They get at least one class period a day “for investigation of grievances” and other union-related duties, the contract says.

 

The United Federation of Teachers collects $126 million in dues from its members and yet reimburses the DOE only $900,000 of the nearly $10 million dollars spent annually to provide additional teachers to instruct students which have been abandoned in the name of union business.  One principal wondered why the UFT isn’t picking up the tab, “They have a lot of money to run TV ads.  Should DOE be paying for this?”  Meanwhile the union and their membership assure us as that any cutbacks will affect the quality of education (as if it could sink and lower), because as we know “it’s all about the children.” 

 

As public school teachers in Wisconsin and across the nation abandon their classrooms to protest badly needed fiscal reforms they continue to show their commitment to the children by threatening strikes and slowdowns.  If there is any question of the forces which have been deployed against the taxpayers during these trying times, just pay attention to the Democrat leadership and their fellow travelers in the MSM, listen to the blistering rhetoric being spewed by the public sector unions or better yet visit cpusa.org (the official website of the communist party) and take note of their steadfast support for the “workers.”

 

February 27, 2011

 

paboehmke@yahoo.com