Nearly all of the New York’s school districts had submitted teacher evaluation plans to the state at the year’s end with a costly deadline looming just weeks away.
About a dozen districts have not yet submitted, a state Education Department spokeswoman said Monday. The department does expect more submissions before students return to classes this week.
Of New York’s roughly 700 school districts and 37 Boards of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES), 709 had submitted plans to the department as of Friday, and 537 had received approval. Many districts have been given feedback on submissions and are nearing approval.
Those without approved plans by Jan. 17 will lose a scheduled 4 percent state aid increase—a consequence that Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently said would be strictly enforced.
Cuomo said it is a “hard deadline” and that the state would only reward performance.
“It was not a good faith effort by that date. It was accomplishment by that date. It was performance by that date,” he said after a cabinet meeting at the Capitol Dec. 18. “That’s what the law said. That was the directive from very early on.”
Last year, Cuomo and the Legislature decided to cap increases in education funding at the rate of personal income growth in New York. The state allocated the maximum, 4 percent, about $800 million, for this year. New York allocates about $20 billion to schools in total.
Having an approved, union-negotiated plan for evaluating teachers and principals based on student test scores and observations is a requirement for districts to receive the money.
Education Commissioner John King recently warned districts that had not submitted yet: “The clock is ticking.”