Our last post on the potential for an evaluation deal for teachers has produced multiple comments expecting teachers to be sold out by the UFT. Not one person thought there was much hope for the UFT to stand up to the mayor and governor and refuse to accept a new teacher evaluation system that is not fair to teachers. Or to put it another way, the fix might be in.
Time will tell if the naysayers will be proven correct. At the present time, what all of us must do is to tell the teachers in the schools that the UFT can ignore the arbitrary deadline set by the governor for a new evaluation system and remain under the current one.
The UFT could then sue for the $300 million in lost state aid that we stand to forfeit if there is no agreement. How dare the governor deny the schools money because the mayor won't negotiate a fair deal with the teachers. The UFT sues based on many different grounds.
Buffalo teachers are in court right now. They will not negotiate on the evaluation system until the city agrees to honor their contract in other areas. They are risking state aid. The UFT should also be contemplating using this tactic.
If we are not going to wage a fight now in New York City when the governor and mayor are basically trying to destroy tenure and make us employees who can be dismissed based on value added measures (junk science) that are totally invalid, then when will we ever stand up for ourselves?
NYC Educator has some ideas for a UFT commercial on this subject. His plan is to put it out there for the public and the teachers. We should show a graphic that explains how inaccurate value added assessments are and have Mulgrew look into the camera to truly tell it like it is. We have been singled out by Bloomberg for punishment so we haven't received the salary increases that all other city unions got four years ago. Now he wants to fire us on phony data. It is time to go on offense. The advertisement could be for the UFT membership as well as the public. "This is why we Fight" kind of stuff.
Meanwhile the Epoch Times has put out a lengthy article on the evaluation system negotiations where this blog is quoted. Gotham Schools even linked to our last post which is very unusual.
Norm Scott also chimed in on the evaluation system at the UFT Executive Board the other night during the open mic period. Norm and I haven't been there for a long time. He made the case that the UFT should not make a deal with the mayor on a new evaluation system that uses junk science but Norm and others are calling the January 17 deadline an "educational fiscal cliff." I do not concur with that term as losing an increase in state aid is not taking anyone off of a cliff. While the state funding is nothing to sneeze at, there is so much money that is wasted in the school system on non-education items that I am fairly certain the $300 million could be absorbed without the classroom being impacted. Would much of the $300 million even find its way to the classroom? This is what a UFT mobilization campaign needs to be about.
If all the commentators are correct and we are about to be thrown to the wolves, it's time for the membership to pressure the leadership to do what is right by us.