If you ever needed more proof of how corrupt the Delaware Department of Education really is, this will prove it beyond a shadow of a doubt. The Delaware Talent Cooperative is a program to bring teachers to high-need schools. Obviously, based on the below email, the Teacher Leader Effectiveness Unit can manipulate who sees what and when. This is tantamount to fraud on many levels. We have Chris Ruszkowski, the leader of this unit, blatantly manipulating wording without even bothering to check if it is able to be done or even legal. And it is more than obvious the DOE was very selective about who they wanted in this program. They can’t have “sabotage”!
And here is the letter Ruszkowski edited clearly showing his financial enticement to lure teachers into this program:
3 thoughts on “Breaking Exclusive News: Delaware DOE Fraud & Manipulation Revealed”
What schools/districts signed up for this? What a sham. Offering money ONLY to those schools…”although you may already teach in a high-needs school…” but your current school didn’t want to accept so NO MONEY FOR YOU.
Here’s the text of the email I sent to RCEA Members last May as a result of DoE’s attempt to work around Districts and “poach” our teachers to join this ill-advised and farcical program:
Last year at a monthly meeting of our Representative Council, the body voted unanimously to send a message to the Department of Education when it came to the idea of rewarding teachers with bonuses if they would either move to or stay at a high-needs school: NO. We shared the results of that vote on the “bonus” program with District leadership and, thankfully, they agreed that Red Clay should not participate in this program and they informed DoE of as much.
In the discussion at that Representative Council, it was made clear the strings attached to participate in this program: The teacher would have to commit to working in a high-needs school for two years. The teacher would receive a bonus of between $2,500-$20,000 over the two-year period. The teacher would have no right of return to the building he or she previously worked before taking the two-year assignment. Most troubling for the Rep Council was that NOT ALL CLASSIFICATIONS of teacher would be eligible to partake in this bonus opportunity. For instance, a great third-grade teacher who teaches reading and math would be eligible for the bonus, while the kindergarten teacher at the same school who may have had a huge impact on those students three years ago wouldn’t be eligible because he or she doesn’t teach a DCAS-tested grade or subject. Early on, RCEA realized the deficits in this Cooperative and we were out front to join the District in working against it.
Red Clay and RCEA sent a clear message to the state Department of Education: We do not want your divisive bonuses that little-to-no research shows will increase student achievement at our highest-needs schools.
I was shocked to come into school today and get approached by a colleague who asked me “Mike, what is the Delaware Talent Cooperative?” She showed me a copy of an email she received from detalentcoop.org urging her to apply to the Cooperative. I did a little more research and followed-up with some more members: It seems a good portion of teachers in Red Clay received this email. I do not know the method DoE used to identify these educators, though I’m guessing it’s based on the effectiveness rating you received on DPAS at the end of last school year.
Let me be clear: My email isn’t meant to sway you one way or another, but to provide you some perspective in how RCEA approached this program, which is a component of the soon-to-expire Race to the Top plan. It should also be noted that because Red Clay opted out of the Cooperative, none of our schools have been identified as participating in the program. So, if you are interested in applying, then not only will your right of return be denied, but you would no longer be working in the Red Clay School District, as we are not a participating District (and neither are a majority of the rest of the school districts in the state.)
In short, I have concerns with how this has been handled by DoE. When I first saw the email this morning, my immediate and almost comedic reaction was: “They are trying to poach our teachers!” Make no mistake about it: The idea of rewarding teachers with bonuses who go to high-needs schools is not one borne out of research or best practices; it’s one of ideology. As society continues to turn a blind eye to the rampant impact of poverty in our communities, many in the education reform movement are reaching for something — ANYTHING — that they can to rationalize the achievement gaps between our most affluent and our least affluent schools. While RCEA recognizes that quality teachers are an integral piece of a student’s success, we also realize that the factors outside our schools generally have a greater impact on that student’s success when they do enter our buildings every day.
Should you have any questions regarding the Delaware Talent Cooperative, I certainly urge you to use the contact information on the email you received. I would also be available to discuss with you the process by which RCEA reached its decision to reject the idea of this program early last year.
Wishing you all the best,
I feel badly for those that work at the DOE and see the soulless machine circling around them. I desperately want to believe some of them are as horrified as we out here in the public are at the routinely morally bankrupt work they do in the DOE.