UFT Goes On The Air – & On The Offensive – vs. Bloomberg
With the Jan. 17 deadline looming for school districts to have teacher evaluation plans approved by the state or risk losing a four percent aid increase, the NYC teachers union is going on the offensive against Mayor Bloomberg, accusing him of playing politics at kids’ expense.
The UFT is out today with a new TV ad that slams Bloomberg’s entire education policy legacy over the past 11 years, saying he has adopted a “my way or the highway” without regard to teachers or students.
The 30-second spot reviews several not-so-highlights in Bloomberg’s tenure – including his failed selection of Cathie Black, a magazine executive with no education experience, as NYC schools chancellor.
“The mayor’s educational legacy is unfortunately one of missed opportunities,” said UFT President Mike Mulgrew.
“If he wants his legacy to be anything but a decade of disaster, he will put politics aside and come to an agreement on an evaluation system that helps students and teachers succeed.”
The spot will air through the Jan. 17 deadline on local broadcast stations as well as cable television networks in the New York City area. T
It will be seen during some of television’s most popular shows, including: Good Morning America, the Today Show, the Daily Show, Jeopardy, Judge Judy, SNL, and Knicks games. It will also appear regularly on NY1, Bravo, Lifetime, TNT, HGTV, USA and BET.
With this ad, the UFT is trying to hit Bloomberg where it hurts.
The mayor, who has less than a year remaining at City Hall and is keenly focused on legacy-building, made education a top priority soon after he took office.
One of the mayor’s first significant policy victories in Albany was convincing the Legislature to give him control of the city’s vast public school system – a power state lawmakers re-approved in 2009. (That’s set to expire in 2015).
New York City is the largest school district in the state, and one of only nine that have not yet submitted a teacher evaluation plan to the state Education Department for approval. (The others are: Fallsburg, Hamburg, Harrison, Montauk, Onteora, Pine Plains, Remsen and Yonkers).
An ongoing and increasingly bitter battle between the UFT and Bloomberg has prevented a plan from being negotiated. If this fight is not resolved in time, NYC will lose $250 million worth of state aid.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo this week urged the two sides to come together, saying: “It’s a pox on all your houses if you don’t come to an agreement.”
He also insisted the Jan. 17 deadline is firm, noting an “overwhelming majority” of districts will manage to meet it.
On CapTon last night, NYSUT President Dick Iannuzzi, who is involved in the negotiations between districts that have yet to settle their evaluation battles and their respective unions, insisted the UFT isn’t trying to run out the clock until Bloomberg departs City Hall and a potentially more labor-friendly mayor takes his place.
Iannuzzi did say, however, that he expects anyone replacing Bloomberg will be more “teacher friendly” than the billionaire mayor has been.
For the first time since the fiscal crisis of the 1970s, every New York City public-employee union – all 152 bargaining units – is working without a contract.
Other labor leaders have not been shy about admitting they’re willing to wait out Bloomberg until his replacement – someone hopefully more amenable to their contract demands – arrived at City Hall in January 2014.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Liz Benjamin on January 4, 2013 at 6:01 am, and is filed under Ads, Downstate NY, Education, Labor, Michael Bloomberg, Uncategorized. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|