“The District understands that it would not be fair to our teachers to use this process against them during this early stage of implementation,” Superintendent Pamela Brown wrote in a memorandum of understanding with the Buffalo Teachers Federation that was struck on the same day as the city and union agreed on an evaluation plan but was not shared with the state.
Governor Andy, the self-proclaimed (and acclaimed) First Lobbyist for students in the state, would have none of this:
In a radio interview today, Cuomo called the side deal, struck at the same time as Buffalo and its union agreed on a new teacher evaluation system in January, “very close to legal and ethical fraud.”
You see, Governor Andy doesn't believe in testing a new evaluation system before using it for high stakes decisions like ruining careers and wrecking reputations.
Governor Andy believes in action - right here, right now, without any thought or consideration of the consequences of said action.
The governor believes nothing is more important than being first out of the gate with something - whether it's a teacher evaluation system or a gun control law.
That's why he rammed a gun bill through the legislature into law, then had to backtrack on that law when it was found to be unworkable.
As the NY Times reported back in March:
ALBANY — In the wake of the elementary school massacre in Newtown, Conn., Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York pushed through the State Legislature gun control measures that included not only a tougher assault weapons ban but also a tighter restriction on the maximum legal capacity of gun magazines.But after weeks of criticism from gun owners, Mr. Cuomo said on Wednesday that he would seek to ease the restriction, which he said had proved unworkable even before it was scheduled to take effect on April 15.The gun-control law, approved in January, banned the sale of magazines that hold more than seven rounds of ammunition. But, Mr. Cuomo said Wednesday, seven-round magazines are not widely manufactured. And, although the new gun law provided an exemption for the use of 10-round magazines at firing ranges and competitions, it did not provide a legal way for gun owners to purchase such magazines.As a result, he said, he and legislative leaders were negotiating language that would continue to allow the sale of magazines holding up to 10 rounds, but still forbid New Yorkers from loading more than 7 rounds into those magazines.
So Governor Andy, ever resourceful, is making it illegal for gun owners to load more than 7 rounds into a 10 round magazine.
Gee, what a swell compromise, Governor Andy!
But maybe if you had taken some time to think about the gun bill before you had it rammed through the legislature faster than Sandra Lee whips up dinner, you wouldn't have had to negotiate such a ridiculous compromise which is as unworkable as the bill you signed into law.
Now we have Cuomo threatening Buffalo teachers and the Buffalo district with near ethical and legal fraud because they, too, see a Cuomo law - the APPR law - as unworkable until tested and shown to be otherwise.
I'm sure NYSED Commissioner John King will threaten to take money away from Buffalo if they don't agree to fire some teachers this first year based upon APPR.
But that's the kind of thing I just might take to court to see what some people with legal minds slightly less clouded by arrogance than Governor Andy's think about it.
Can the state force a district to fire teachers based upon an unpiloted, untested law?
Can they withhold money if the district doesn't fire enough teachers to their satisfaction?
I dunno, it seems dubious to me that Governor Andy and his NYSED henchmen can win this battle.
Maybe Cuomo would like to negotiate a compromise like the one he forged for the gun law?
Maybe Buffalo will agree that only 7 teachers out of every 10 VAMMED by APPR and deemed "ineffective" have to be fired, just like gun owners can only load 7 rounds in their 10 round chamber?
What say you, Buffalo?
Are you ready to accept the Governor Andy 7/10th's compromise?