The Rochester Teachers Association filed a lawsuit alleging that the Regents and State Education Department unfairly penalized Rochester teachers on their Annual Professional Performance Review evaluations because they failed to adequately account for the effects of severe poverty in setting student growth scores on state tests in grades 4-8 math and English language arts. Nearly 90 percent of Rochester students live in poverty.
The suit, filed by NYSUT on behalf of the RTA and more than 100 Rochester teachers, argues SED made it more difficult for teachers of economically disadvantaged students to achieve a score of "effective" or better. As a result, the lawsuit alleges the Regents and SED violated teachers' rights to fair evaluations and equal protection under the law.
About one-third of Rochester's teachers received overall ratings of "developing" or "ineffective" in 2012-13, even though 98 percent were rated "highly effective" or "effective" by their principals on the 60 points tied to their instructional classroom practices.
For more, visit www.nysut.org.