ShareThis Page

Duck calls greet Pittsburgh school board's vote on teaching consultant

| Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2013, 10:12 p.m.

Pittsburgh Public Schools hired Teach for America to work in the district next fall amid a hail of duck calls.

About 20 observers at Tuesday's meeting quacked their disapproval using the hunter's tool before the vote was taken. Security officers led them out of the board room in Oakland.

Board members Mark Brentley Sr., Theresa Colaizzi, Sherry Hazuda, William Isler, Floyd “Skip” McCrea and President Sharene Shealey voted for Teach for America. Regina Holley, Jean Fink and Thomas Sumpter were opposed.

The administration recommended a $750,000 contract over three years to hire up to 30 recruits a year from Teach for America.

A nonprofit group based in New York City, Teach for America recruits, trains and develops college graduates and professionals to teach for two years in high-need cities and rural areas. The group's staff would teach such areas as middle and high school math, science, social studies and foreign languages.

“I'm personally tired of having students say to me the teacher told us they don't want to be there. I don't think it's fair for kids to hear that,” said Superintendent Linda Lane.

Teach for America has about 11,000 teachers in 48 cities, including Philadelphia, in 35 states. The district wants to use Teach for America to diversify the pool of potential teacher candidates. The contract, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, will cover Teach for America's annual $5,000 administrative fee per teacher. The district will pay their $40,000 salaries.

Bill Zlatos is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at bzlatos@tribweb.com or 412-320-7828.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.