She reports that NYSED changed the release date for teacher evaluation ratings this year, moving it from October to December, something which Cuomo used to beat back the bill he himself had called for:
Cuomo said last week during a cabinet meeting at the Capitol that new data regarding the results of the second year of the evaluation system, which included New York City for the first time, caused him to reconsider signing the bill.
“I think we should reevaluate the evaluation system in light of this data, and I don’t know that those changes would make a significant difference to this data," Cuomo said when asked if he would sign the bill.
It turned out to be convenient for Cuomo that the Education Department released the data—which showed that the vast majority of teachers were high performing under the system—the day before the “safety net” bill was sent to Cuomo’s desk.
Last year, the education department released the results from the first round of teacher evaluations in October. This year, officials presented the data two months later, allowing Cuomo to explain his plans to veto the bill after re-election by arguing that new information had changed his mind.
The bill was among the last to be sent for Cuomo’s approval after the recent session; more than 600 bills were delivered to the governor before this one, and a recent Capital analysis showed that the later a bill is sent to Cuomo’s desk, the more likely he is to veto it. If he vetoes the bill, it will be a first for Cuomo; so far, he has signed all 67 of the program bills that made it to his desk.
Did Cuomo's office coordinate with NYSED to have the release date of the evalation system ratings coincide with the exact time that the "shield bill" was being sent to his desk to sign?
It certainly was a fortuitous change in ratings release, wasn't it?
And Bakeman spends much of the article reporting how Cuomo really didn't want to change anything about the evaluation system at all.
Teachers union leaders tell her they're mad over this:
Leaders of local teachers’ unions are offended by what they argue is a reversal on Cuomo’s part.
“He should be a man of his word and honor his commitments to sign the bill,” said Phil Rumore, Buffalo Teachers Federation president and another active member in the W.F.P.
Adam Urbanski, president of the Rochester Teachers Association, said Cuomo is using teachers’ union as scapegoats for New York’s education problems in order to pander to pro-charter school billionaire hedge funders who have donated millions to the governor’s campaign.
“Even if he prevails, he is no closer to the solution, because the real problem is not teachers and their unions,” Urbanski said. “The real problem is concentration of poverty and wrong-headed policies that are clueless about how teaching and learning really work.”
NYSUT did not respond to requests for comment but released a statement last week quoting the governor’s previous comments on the “safety net” bill.
“This is the governor’s own bill,” the union said. “He proposed it, and it was negotiated in good faith.”
NYSUT is wrong, of course.
As the Bakeman article makes clear, Cuomo did NOT negotiate the "shield bill" in good faith.
It was a pre-election head fake, that's all.
And this does have consequences for teachers, despite Cuomo's and State Senator John Flanagan's insistence that it doesn't:
And Cuomo’s delay in signing this bill was especially impactful because the legislation, which would have taken effect immediately upon its signing, had implications for the start of the school year. Some teachers and principals are months into completing intensive professional development plans individualized for their improvement that they wouldn’t be required to undergo if Cuomo had signed the bill by September.
The lesson the teachers union leaders MUST finally learn here:
Andrew Cuomo does not negotiate in good faith - he is a cheat and a liar and they should not trust him in any negotiation.
His track record is there for all to see.
Just ask the teachers who got dinged on the Common Core test scores and now have to live with the "intensive professional development plans individualized for their improvement."