Regent Bob Bennett says once technical language was cleared, the teacher evaluation plan was ok'd by Commissioner John King. "Now the challenge is to implement it, and if we can continue the collaborative approach, the final result will be more good performance by our students," says Bennett.
Buffalo Teachers Federation President Phil Rumore says he's ok with the district getting $33 million in state aid, but he's not entirely satisfied. "I don't think the whole process has anything to do with what will improve teaching and learning, especially because it puts pressure on students with standardized tests," says Rumore. "I almost feel like I'm an accessory to a crime."
In Hamburg, there is no teacher evaluation deal submitted to the state. That's because of an impasse, which Chris Cerrone of the Hamburg Teachers Association happened because of a remark. "We got word a district administrator made a mention during a meeting if the teachers voted no on the proposal, they may end up losing their jobs. We felt that was an undermining of the collective bargaining agreement to steer some people into voting yes," explains Cerrone.
Cerrone says there was a teacher evaluation plan in place that was effective. "The teachers get evaluated on a regular basis, with staff development built in to help improve performance," says Cerrone. Now, he says the state plan will "make schools become testing prep factories and the education of students is being harmed."