Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Monday, December 22, 2014

Teachers Unions Discover Andrew Cuomo Is A Cheat And A Liar

Jessica Bakeman at Capital NY has a piece out this morning suggesting Governor Cuomo never attended to amend his teacher evaluation law to "shield" teachers who were harmed by the Common Core test scores even though he called for such a shield bill himself.

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."


  1. Great stuff as always, but really, day after day, week after week, and do on. Cuomo isn't going away and he's got 4 years to continue his reign. The posts on here are very informative but in a way, useless. There is nothing anyone can do. If you like writing about Cuomo 5x per day and the readers enjoy reading it day after day after day, I guess it makes for good material. After a while, I believe it gets old. Everyone can read this stuff until November, 2018 heading into 2019. You got a ton of time to write articles. I can't stand Cuomo but I realize it doesn't matter.

  2. Teachers are too passive like sheep being taken to be slaughtered. They are waiting for Preet Bahara to indict Cuomo.
    It won't happen because the justice system is equally corrupt and has been fixed to keep Cuomo in office.. No indictments for Cuomo, no indictments for Chris Christie, etc. etc.

  3. I'm going to echo the first comment here. We know that Cuomo, Tisch and all the other kool-aid drinkers at SED are in this for $$$ and power. Exposing just how deep the corruption runs is probably better left to the media if only because they reach a much larger audience than this blog (although, I commend you for being picked up occasionally by Diane Ravitch on her blog!).

    What needs to happen NOW is a coming together of educators across the state in an effort to PUSH BACK. The time has come for a massive confrontation. Cuomo won't listen to parents or public school educators. He obviously thinks that he has won and that whatever he decides becomes law. Don't forget, a few years back he intoned: "I am the government." "I am the chief advocate for children." "It's my commission and I can do whatever I want with it." "I am God (oops, not yet ... that's later when he becomes president, right?)."

    Cuomo cannot tolerate the subjects of his "kingdom" disagreeing with his policies. He's basically a recluse governor who goes into hiding to plot how he's going to destroy and conquer. His henchmen do all the heavy lifting and he just sits back and manipulates. Not this time. Reminds me of another republican (oh, sorry – “democrat”), Richard Nixon.

    The AFT, UFT and NYSUT union leadership at the highest levels, the NYS PTA, the NYS School Boards Association - they're ALL selling out kids, parents and public school educators. It's pretty obvious that folks ONCE feared Cuomo. Now, it's obvious that he thinks that our profession WON'T take him on. Wrong! We are too strong to fall. So, if we just sit and wait or pretend that this is ALL going to blow over without a fight, we deserve what is coming to us.

    It's time for a pow-wow, folks. It's time to engage Zephyr Teachout and to sit and plan a strategy to fight back. The gloves have LONG been taken off and our profession has been the "punching dummy" far too long because Cuomo thinks he has us (or at least, our leadership) in the bag. Well, maybe them, but not us.

    We need rallies. We need Diane Ravitch and Zephyr Teachout and Jon Stewart and celebrities, politicos and EVERY public entity to stand up to this governor. What Andy needs is BAD PRESS EVERY DAY. He needs to be hounded and without ANY let up. Think about this: for just about every day of John King’s commissionership we had to deal with new regs and change … every-friggin-day. Often contradictory, often ill conceived. We were force-fed and we caved in. No more.

    It's almost New Years ... let's resolve in 2015 to get back on track with the right message in a unified way. Our kids deserve it and God knows, public school education deserves it. Who is with me?

  4. So the upstate locals are upset? Yet they stood with Mulgrew to unseat Iannuzi who was finally developing a backbone But my question is how is this any different from what Klein did after Unity rolled over? Do these people ever learn their lessons!!!

    The UFT under Unity is a joke, but the joke is on the teachers. Teachers have to break away from Mulgrew and start their own protests--not against the governor, but Unity.

    I personally decided to leave the Democratic party and COPE. And while this might not be the best time to leave COPE, the truth is my $$$ have been going to the wrong people. Not too long ago Norm Scott wrote that Al Sharpton was also a recipient of my COPE $$$. And now we have a divided, angry city instead of a Tale of Two Cities. We have a chancellor who still follows Klein's principals and a mayor who has yet to keep his campaign promises to teachers. He originally said ATRs should be place first. Now they have lost their due process rights. Jamaica High School was closed when local pols and community leaders begged Farina not to close it. More Common Core testing, VAM and Danielson!! And the biggest FU of them all---making sure Cuomo got the WFP endorsement. All I see is the governor laughing at the stupidity of Unity leaders.