Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Merryl Tisch To Andrew Cuomo: Let's Fire More Teachers, Raise Charter Cap In New York City

Clearly Regents Chancellor Tisch, acting NYSED Commissioner Beth Berlin and Governor Cuomo are all on the same page when it comes to next year's education reform agenda.

Here are the details of Tisch's reply to Cuomo's letter earlier this month asking about education reform issues to pursue this next legislative session:

The letter from Chancellor Merryl Tisch , who heads the New York Board of Regents, was also signed by Beth Berlin, who will become acting commissioner of the State Education Department on Jan. 3. It urged lawmakers to:
  • Expedite cases to dismiss teachers, by replacing the group of independent contractors who hear these cases with a new state office to do so. This would give the state more control over who decides these cases and limit expensive delays, the letter said. Now unions and district officials must agree on the choice of arbitrators.
  • Change the burden of proof in a dismissal case so that a teacher with two consecutive poor ratings is presumed incompetent.
  • Extend the time it takes to get tenure to five years. Now it usually takes three years of acceptable service.
  • Make teacher evaluations more stringent and consistent statewide by reducing certain measures in them that are negotiated by districts through collective bargaining.
  • Continue mayoral control of New York City schools after it expires in June.
  • Raise the cap on the number of charter schools.
  • Add more money to grant programs that boost the pay of talented teachers who take on leadership roles, or work in high-poverty schools or hard-to-staff subjects.
  • Enable districts to come up with compensation plans that reward excellence. Unions generally back salary scales that increase pay by longevity.
  • Give the state more power to restructure, and in some cases replace, chronically failing schools. One idea is appointing a receiver to take charge.

The details around the charter cap in Tisch's letter go like this:

More later.


  1. Yes Tuschie, even after King John departed we need to keep moving forward. No one will grasp that the Common Core was devised in 2010 because people were beginning to figure out that the No Child Left Behind promises were not being fulfilled despite spending huge sums of money and making Pearson shareholders very happy. If we would not have followed up our expanded testing regime with a new Common Core Curriculum the entire nations would have figured out how phony NCLB reforms were. So now we have a few more years to ride the Common Core pony before the public figures out we do not have a clue. After the public figures out that the CC or another scam--we intend to just declare all of public education hopeless and move forward our real agenda-- Cheater Schools. As long as we reformers remain a moving target--we can never be held accountable despite the fact we have been in charge for ten years and our agenda is setting back our nation!

  2. Who is Elizabeth Berlin to serve as acting Commisioner?

    Elizabeth Berlin will bring to the Executive Deputy Commissioner position extensive knowledge and experience as an administrator with experience managing cross-systems initiatives. Elizabeth is currently the Executive Deputy Commissioner at the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance and has served in that role since October 2007. As the Executive Deputy, she oversees the day-to-day operation for the State’s supplemental nutrition assistance, homeless housing, public assistance, child support, home energy assistance, disability determination and refugee programs. Elizabeth has also served as Commissioner of the Department of Social Services for the County of Albany and as Health and Human Services Coordinator for the Office of the Albany County Executive, Michael Breslin. Her leadership experience in both state and county government will be an asset as she serves in this role.

  3. In other words.....she has no real education background.

  4. In other words she is a puppet.

  5. Well, the one thing that doesn't keep me up late at night, despite the fact that it is 4:25 am on January 1, 2015, is knowing that our good and capable friends at NYSUT are all asleep now in Albany waiting to jump out of bed on Friday morning to do battle with Andrew Cuomo and Co. with as much success as St. George had with his dragon.

    I'm sure teachers all around the state share my relief and confidence that our NYSUT knights on white horses will sally forth like St. George and slay a few reformista dragons.

    Of course, it could be that I drank a little too much champagne last night and I'm confusing NYSUT with John Lewis and the CIO, a man who knew a few things about slaying dragons--that happens to me all the time.