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Sources: Cuomo Could Impose Binding Arbitration On NYC, Union Over Teacher Evaluations

Gov. Could Force City & UFT To Submit Wish List And Have State Decide Plan
(credit: CBS 2)

(credit: CBS 2)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Governor Andrew Cuomo is ready to declare an impasse between the city and the teachers’ union over the creation of a new evaluation system.

He’s moving to impose his own plan to make sure only qualified instructors are in the classroom.

Cuomo has apparently had it with the inability of Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the union to come up with a plan to evaluate teachers and get the bad ones out of the classroom, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported.

He’s set to introduce legislation this week to impose his own plan on the city.

“I understand that the governor needs to be responsible for leading the state as far as trying to get an evaluation deal that will benefit the entire state,” said Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott.

Walcott said the city and the teachers union are still negotiating, but Gov. Cuomo isn’t going to wait.

Sources said his plan will, in effect, impose binding arbitration. The city will get to submit its wish list, the union its wish list and the State Education Department will decide.

“Our goal is to make sure we have a fair evaluation system that allows us to…evaluate teachers not based on a system that’s been in place since the 1930s,” Walcott said.

The city already lost $250 million in state aid when it failed to meet the deadline for having a plan in place and it could lose another $224 million in September.

The major sticking point?

The union is only willing to agree to a one-year plan. The city said no way and the schools chancellor remained adamant about not giving in.

“Money is important, but bad policy is bad policy and I’ve been consistent all along about that,” Walcott said. “Bad policy will hurt the system.”

United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew said that the teachers would prefer a negotiated settlement, but they will accept one from the state if it becomes necessary.

The legislation would give the city and the union until September 17th to negotiate a deal. If they fail, the state plan goes into effect.

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