Education

Targeting Teachers

By Brian Freedman — November 16, 2007 1 min read

New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is taking steps to rid New York City schools of unsatisfactory teachers, including hiring new teams of lawyers and consultants to build cases against tenured teachers, according to a New York Times article.

The new plan, at a cost of $1 million a year, will pair education consultants with principals to help improve the performance of struggling teachers and then, if the efforts fail, work to remove the tenured teachers from the school system.

This new strategy follows last week’s release of the results from Bloomberg’s new, complex A-F grading system aimed at unearthing the city’s failing schools. About 12 percent of schools received an F; more than 60 percent received an A or B.

Randi Weingarten, the head of the United Federation of Teachers, the city’s teachers union, lambasted Bloomberg’s new pack of lawyers, calling them a “teacher gotcha unit.” Weingarten added that it encourages principals to get rid of teachers instead of working to support them.

In a typical year, only about one-hundredth of 1 percent of tenured teachers are removed for ineffective performance. New York City has about 80,000 public school teachers.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Web Watch blog.