Monday, April 29, 2013

Gaming the Aesop Substitute System

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Competition for substitute teaching jobs in this county is fierce.  In times past the school secreatries and the teachers basically had their favorites, and breaking into that circle was nearly impossible.  With the recent transition to the Aesop Substitute system, that all changed, for a little while.

The system consists of online accounts for the teachers calling sick, and oline accounts for the substitute, one account for each individual involved.  I was in the system and getting jobs very nicely back in January and February, but then I took a vacation for March and April, except for the last week.  Much to my amazement, according to Aesop, nobody was sick last week.

Not believing this by Thursday I called up one of the Districts in the county, to see what was up.  I was informed that indeed, on Friday they were using 13 subs.  I have my computer on continuously all of Thurday and through the night on Friday, connected to my home theater , with the volume set to put the cat on the ceiling and leave the neighbors wondering if an earthquake had struck.

Still nothing.

Did the same thing all weekend, and added in SubAssistant, a second program that watches for posted jobs and keeps a record.  It is now 5:18 am, on a Monday morning, and across the three districts I am monitoring, on a Monday morning, not one person has called in sick.

I can only conclude that the old inner circle system is back, and that what is going on is that the teacher on the phone or the secretary in the office is literally letting the desired sub know the very second a job is posted.  By hitting the refresh button a fraction of a second later, that sub is the first to see, and then accepts the job, such that no one else ever even sees the job.  In the event someone else DOES see the job, the requesting teacher or secretary can then cancel the job, wait a minute or two, and relist list the job until the "right" substitute gets it.

Old Boy Network wins again.

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