It is not at all surprising that the State Legislature on its final day agreed to continue mayoral control of New York City schools for another year or that the Senate Republicans and Independent Democrats tossed in a couple of "poison pills" to attack the mayor and public schools.
The Assembly should have said no deal and let mayoral control expire.
One new provision calls for each city school to report more extensively on its budget sources to the state. My guess is this is a divide and conquer rule to show that certain schools are favored when it comes to funding.
The second new provision allows many charter schools to set their own standards. From Perdido Street School via the NY Times:
Charter schools can be authorized by three agencies - the State Education Department, the city's Education Department and SUNY - but all operate according to the same state law. Although the announcement of the agreement did not offer details, the Senate’s proposal would exempt SUNY schools from the usual state standards and free to set their own rules, two officials with direct knowledge of the negotiations said.
Most charter schools in the city are under SUNY and more could switch under this agreement.
Charter schools free to set their own rules and exempt from the usual state standards? I wonder what the details are here.
For those wondering what the UFT position is on mayoral control, we have the usual double talk in the minutes of the latest Executive Board meeting. It says in President Michael Mulgrew's report: "We support mayoral control, however, not the current version. We would like the PEP panel not to be controlled by one individual." Then that would not be mayoral control.
Chalkbeat is reporting that the last minute deal also includes an extension from September 1 to the end of the year for districts to negotiate yet another new teacher evaluation plan.
No victory dance from the UFT or NYSUT leadership as far as we know yet.