ALBANY, N.Y. Feb. 23, 2015 - New York State United Teachers President Karen E. Magee released the following statement in response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's misinformed comments about New York's teacher-principal evaluation law:
"The governor's cluelessness about teacher evaluations and his disdain for the teaching profession have never been more apparent. The only thing skewed here is the governor's logic.
"Each teacher evaluation plan uses multiple measures and was reviewed and approved by the State Education Department. Many were sent back for required changes. The department lists the NYSUT-suggested scoring rubric on EngageNY as meeting its requirements for fairness and rigor (www.engageny.org/resource/guidance-on-new-york-s-annual-professional-performance-review-law-and-regulations - see page 111). It is insane to once again scapegoat teachers for a process that the state controlled, reviewed and directed.
"If a teacher is rated 'effective' based on a student's standardized test scores, 'effective' on locally developed measures of student achievement and 'effective' on the 60-point observation portion of the evaluation, that teacher should be rated 'effective' overall. That's common sense.
"The governor is so enthralled with his billionaire hedge fund pals, he continues to ignore a growing body of research and what the rest of the nation - including Texas - now knows: Student test scores are not reliable, accurate or stable measures of either student achievement or teacher effectiveness. Standardized tests should be used to diagnose student learning and inform instruction. NYSUT supports evaluations that respect local control and are meaningful and fair. We will continue to stand with children, parents and communities against the governor's harmful 'test-and-punish' agenda."
New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members in education, human services and health care. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.