Gov. Andrew Cuomo has stayed mostly quiet during the lead-up to the deadline he set for districts to adopt new teacher evaluations or lose funding. But now that the due date has arrived, he has released a stern statement repeating the ultimatum he laid out a year ago today:
Today is the final deadline for the handful of school districts, including New York City, that have failed to get their teacher evaluation systems in place. Please hear me — there will be no extensions or exceptions. Since we established one of the strongest teacher evaluation models in the nation last year, 98% of school districts have successfully implemented them. The remaining districts and their unions have until midnight tonight to do the same or they will forfeit the increase in education aid they have been counting on and both parties will have failed the children they serve.
New York City is one of six districts that had not submitted even a first draft of its evaluation plan by last week. But as of last night, city and union negotiators were still locked in a room trying to work out the remaining details, some of which seem to be significant.
“They’re definitely discussing serious stuff in there,” a union spokesman told GothamSchools late Wednesday.
A meeting of the union’s Delegate Assembly, which must approve a deal if one is made, is set for five hours from now. If there is no deal by then, UFT President Michael Mulgrew told members last week, the meeting will be used to plan an offensive against Mayor Bloomberg.