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UFT President, Schools Chancellor Face Off Over New Teacher Evaluation System Deadline

New York City schools chancellor Dennis Walcott (file/credit: John Moore/Getty Images)/President of the United Federation of Teachers Michael Mulgrew (file/credit:Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

New York City schools chancellor Dennis Walcott (file/credit: John Moore/Getty Images)/President of the United Federation of Teachers Michael Mulgrew (file/credit:Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – The clock is ticking for the New York City Department of Education and the teacher’s union to strike a deal on a new teacher evaluation system or risk losing a large chunk of state funding.

In order to meet Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Jan 17 deadline, New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott said a deal with the union on teacher evaluations needs to be hammered out by Dec. 21.

WCBS 880’s Jim Smith reports

“And then submit that deal before the 17th of January for the state to review and hopefully approve,” Walcott told WCBS 880’s Jim Smith.

If no deal on teacher evaluations is reached soon, Walcott warned in a speech on Wednesday that the city stands to lose $250 million in state funding.

The loss in funding would not trigger layoffs, Walcott said, but principals would face cuts in staff size, libraries and after-school programs.

“Fewer services in our schools. If a teacher leaves in mid-year the principal may not have the ability to hire a new teacher, potentially a larger class size,” he told Smith.

In a written statement, United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew responded to Walcott’s comments.

“We’re not going to have an agreement until Mayor [Michael] Bloomberg and Chancellor Walcott stop playing politics with our schools. Rather than establishing bogus deadlines and threatening parents with the loss of teachers and services, they should be focusing on reaching an agreement that will actually help make the schools better,” Mulgrew said.

The Jan. 17 deadline for a deal was set by the governor and state Legislature.

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