New York state lawmakers last week voted to prohibit school districts from denying tenure to a teacher based on the performance of the teacher’s students on standardized tests—an idea that has been championed by New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. (“Mayor Backs Off Plan for School Funding Method in N.Y.C.,” May 2, 2007.)
The measure, pushed by the New York State United Teachers, would have a sunset clause ending it after two years. During that time, a study group would be put in place to recommend further standards.
But the bill, enacted at the last minute as legislators hammered out the annual state budget, was controversial. The state school boards’ association had accused the union of trying to sneak the measure past the public, before agreeing to a compromise, according to the group’s lobbyist.
The $121.7 billion budget eventually approved by lawmakers includes a record $1.75 billion increase in school aid, to about $20 billion. That includes a guarantee that no district will receive less than a 3 percent increase.
A version of this article appeared in the April 16, 2008 edition of Education Week