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Teachers and top pols in Albany have come to a last-minute evaluation agreement that should safeguard some $700 million in imperiled federal education funds — barely making Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Feb. 16 deadline.
And New York City has come to its own evaluation accord at 5:30 a.m., just in time for its cutoff point to do so, Mayor Mike Bloomberg announced.
Though Bloomberg has long pushed for tougher teacher standards, he and United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew disagreed over the specs.
But Bloomberg’s annoucement should make everyone happy — the current pass/fail evaluation system will be replaced with a more “rigorous and comprehensive” approach, similar to that of New Haven, Conn., he said at a press conference.
Struggling profs will also be given training and aid, Bloomberg said. If they’re still inadequate, though, they’ll be “moved out of the classroom.” At other junctures, Bloomberg got flack from educators’ reps for being too eager to fire faculty members.
The mayor also stressed that the agreement will not keep his administration from carrying out with its plan to get rid of the worst teachers in New York’s 33 “most struggling” schools.
Bloomberg said that a few details need to be settled, but the “lion’s share of the most difficult issues” has been addressed.
Earlier today, a Quinnipiac University poll suggested that New Yorkers trusted Cuomo to look after kids’ educational interests more than the teachers union. The state had to agree upon evaluation guidelines and come up with a way of measuring student success, or was in jeopardy of losing federal Race to the Top money.