New teacher evaluation system receives backlash

If districts fail to cooperate, they could lose out on increases in state aid.

If districts fail to cooperate, they could lose out on increases in state aid. (4/1/15)

WOODBURY - The new state budget, which includes an overhaul of how teachers are evaluated, has received backlash from residents and educators.

Under the revised evaluation law negotiated this week during budget talks, teachers would need to achieve "highly effective" or "effective" ratings for three out of four consecutive years before they are granted tenure. The evaluations would be based on both standardized test scores and classroom observation.

If districts fail to cooperate, they could lose out on increases in state aid.

Former Brentwood School Superintendent Mike Cohen says the new teacher evaluation system puts an unfair emphasis on state tests. One teachers union leader went further than that, calling the new evaluations "a waste of time."

New York State Assemblyman Mike Fitzpatrick, however, says that tougher oversight of teachers is long overdue and that unions have been calling the shots for too long.

"I am glad the governor has taken on the unions and has called for true oversight, tenure and disciplinary reform -- it is long overdue. Given the amount we spend on education, the results need to improve and these reforms will help in these efforts," said Fitzpatrick.

The new teacher evaluation system will be put into place by June 30.

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