September 19, 2015 |
The firm hired to staff Philadelphia classrooms with substitute teachers has been put on notice: "Continued poor performance puts this partnership in jeopardy," Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. said Thursday night. Source4Teachers was awarded a $34 million contract to provide substitutes, promising it would fill 75 percent of vacancies on the first day of school. It has done no better than about 15 percent to date. School Reform Commission Chair Marjorie Neff also said the Cherry Hill company's work "has been unacceptable," and said the SRC took full responsibility for its vote to approve the contract.
September 18, 2015 |
ONLY SIX DAYS into the school year, the School District of Philadelphia is re-evaluating its decision to overhaul the management of substitute teachers. Superintendent William Hite last night said he was disappointed with the performance of Source4Teachers, the company hired in June to recruit and manage subs, since schools opened Sept. 8. The firm has filled fewer than 25 percent of empty classrooms so far, leaving many kids and teachers in the lurch. Hite said the district is working with the Cherry Hill-based firm to increase the so-called fill rate by increasing pay, adding more recruiters and streamlining the hiring process.
September 14, 2015 |
For years, Lincoln High never had trouble finding subs. Even though it is a large, comprehensive high school, temporary teachers wanted to work there. That changed last week, when a private firm took over managing the Philadelphia School District's substitute services. Source4Teachers, based in Cherry Hill, received a $34 million contract and promised it would fill 75 percent of vacancies initially, ramping up to 90 percent by January. But Source4Teachers achieved its highest "fill rate" of the week on Friday, when just 12 percent of the 456 city classrooms that needed substitute services had them.
September 1, 2015 |
The firm hired to staff Philadelphia School District substitute-teaching jobs has a pressing need: hiring 5,000 qualified people, as soon as possible. To achieve that goal, prepare for an onslaught of advertising - billboards on I-95, posters in train stations and other high-visibility areas - trolling for people looking for "flexible and fulfilling part-time work in education. " When a Cherry Hill-based firm recently hired by the district won the $34 million contract to fill sub jobs, it promised it would staff 90 percent of all openings by January.
July 13, 2015 |
Dr. Morton Botel, 90, of Philadelphia, an educator in the field of literacy who profoundly changed how reading and writing are taught to children in America, died Monday, July 6, of pneumonia and other causes at St. Vincent's Hospital in Dublin, Ireland. At the time of his death, he was visiting relatives in Ireland, a country he had grown to love, according to a death notice in the Irish Times. Dr. Botel was affiliated for many years with the University of Pennsylvania, first as an undergraduate student in 1942, then as a master's and doctoral student, and later as professor and professor emeritus of education at Penn's Graduate School of Education.
July 3, 2015 |
Inez Sullivan Jackson, 82, a longtime Philadelphia schoolteacher and advocate for children, died at her North Philadelphia home Friday, June 19, of natural causes. Ms. Jackson was highly regarded by students she taught during her decades-long career in the Philadelphia School District. Some of her former students spoke at her funeral, Najah Jackson said, calling her grandmother an example "of what a teacher should be. " After working as a substitute teacher, she received her master of education degree from Temple University in 1977.
July 1, 2015 |
RETIRED TEACHER Linda MacNeal is no longer a member of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, but yesterday she found herself back in the union's office to vent. The school district's new system of placing substitute teachers had been introduced at a morning informational session, prompting frustration and anger among some teachers over a cut in compensation. The new per-diem rates teachers would earn under Source4Teachers is "just insulting to me. And it says that [the company]
June 20, 2015 |
The Philadelphia School Reform Commission voted Thursday night to outsource more than 1,000 substitute-teaching jobs, awarding a $34 million contract to a Cherry Hill firm to recruit, hire, and manage the workers for two years. The unanimous vote came over the protests of the teachers' union, which currently represents subs. Jerry Jordan, president of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, vowed legal action, including a possible claim of unfair labor practices, and said the move was part of a plan to "privatize public education one position at a time.
June 19, 2015 |
WHILE STUDENTS headed home for the summer yesterday, the School Reform Commission approved the first of two staff outsourcing plans with the intent to cut costs and staff empty classrooms. The SRC voted unanimously to give Source4Teachers, based in Cherry Hill, N.J., a $34 million contract to manage substitute staffing services for two years. Chairwoman Marjorie Neff and Commissioner Sylvia Simms missed the meeting but cast their votes in a conference call. "The vendor was able to commit to us to provide high quality substitutes at a 90 percent fill rate by January of next year," said Naomi Wyatt, the district's head of human resources.
June 12, 2015
CITY COUNCIL this week advanced a package of bills that raises taxes to provide an additional $70 million in aid to the School District of Philadelphia. Only it doesn't. A provision nestled in one of the bills would divert $25 million of the $70 million to Council's own budget to be held hostage, as it were, until the district satisfies Council that it is doing the right thing when it comes to unspecified items. Neither Council President Darrell Clarke nor other members have said publicly what they want.