Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Thinking about becoming an alcoholic...but not quite there yet? Join NYCTF!

Many of you obviously remember those signs on the trains....
My first few years of teaching, through NYCTF, my "fellows" and I re wrote those signs...
"What do you call a room full of sociopaths and psychotics? Your first period class. Join NYCTF"
"Wanna learn how to duck chairs? Join NYCTF!"

So, some words on Fellows, TFAers, an the "alternate certification" thing:

Almost all of us have good intentions

Our training sucked. We got shafted. We literally know nothing. (Case in point: In June of my 2nd year I was asked for a kids AIS folder. I said "What's an AIS folder? What does AIS stand for?" ) We don't even know what questions to ask our first years. We also were fed all kinds of ego stuff - we were told we were "the cream of the crop" ad nauseum, so we think we know when we don't. Veteran or mentor teachers, or admins try to be sensitive to that...AND TELL US STUFF.

Many of us use it as a stepping stone to other things, that's unethical at best. If one teaches for a few years and decides it's not a good fit, that's one thing - but if you "get into" one of these programs for the prestige, or because you just graduated and dunno what to do with yourself - I suggest you pass. If you're 22 and wanna party - NOT the way to go.

For more veteran teachers, don't write one of us off immediately, for every Rueben Brosbe and E4E douche, there is another that really wants to be a good teacher - and we want your ideas, your support and sometimes your shoulder.


  1. Found you from Mr. Talk. Good luck in your career from one who has just finished hers, but still loves teaching. From now on I will only be a the college, where I will be appreciated by admins as well as kids.

  2. Also found you from Mr. Talk. Good luck in your career. District 75 teachers definitely have their work cut out for them. My first job ever with the DOE was working in a D75 class of emotionally disturbed children.

  3. Thank you, ladies! It's nice to know I have a voice that's being "heard" Hope you continue to read and comment

  4. Hi Love,
    I applied to both NYCTF and TFA, was rejected from TFA and accepted to NYCTF, hence how I met you! (<3) Something interesting about TFA: I attended an information session before applying to TFA in my senior year of college. They actually encourage people to use their program as a stepping stone to things beyond. There used to be (not sure if it still exists) an incentive for people who applied and were accepted to such places as Goldman-Sachs and JP Morgan Chase to defer their acceptance for two years so that they could participate in TFA. I don't really think that is what NYC kids need...anyway at least NYCTF is trying to attract people who genuinely want to teach, even if they don't know what to do with themselves for the first few years. (Don't even get me started on NYCTF training...)

  5. Mariaa,
    I didn't know you were rejected from TFA! Their loss!
    That TFA incentive program is DISGUSTING to me, but not surprising... you're right, NYCTF seemed to want to attract people who were going to stick with it, a co worker of mine applied to become a NYCTF "selector" (what a strange connotation!) and he said they really wanted the selectors to find people who were going to stay.
    I am planning a post or two about the actual NYCTF training, so do "get started," I think it's imprtant that people know.