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State Education Chief Says New Evaluation System Will Improve Teaching And Learning

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) -- The New York state Education Department has imposed an evaluation system for New York City teachers after the city and the teachers' union failed to agree on a way to measure teacher effectiveness.

State Education Commissioner John King says Saturday the evaluation system he imposed will improve teaching and learning in the city.

King also imposed an evaluation system for principals.

The city and the unions missed a Jan. 17 deadline to agree on an evaluation system.

The new evaluation system will include measurable factors like student test scores as well as observations.

Student surveys will count for 5 percent in grades 3 through 12.

New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott and United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew both said they were pleased with the plan.

"We're very pleased with the decision and we're really going to put this in motion," Chancellor Walcott said.

The plan would provide for a poor performing teacher to be removed, but only after receiving two ineffective ratings in a row.

Under the new system, forty-percent of the teacher's overall ranking will be based on student performance and test scores. The remaining sixty-percent will be made of subjective benchmarks, including observations by principals and assistant principals during unannounced classroom visits.

This system replaces the old one which marked teachers with either a "S" or a "U" for satisfactory or unsatisfactory.

City school officials estimate that anywhere from three to five-percent of teachers could fall into that category.

On Saturday Mayor Michael Bloomberg released a statement commending the new evaluation system.

"This is a clear win for student that will benefit generations of New York City public school children," the statement said.

Mayor Bloomberg said the new system would put students first.

"It will put students first, further empower our principals, and solidify our accountability measures," he said.

Jonathan Schleifer, Executive Director of Educators 4 Excellence-New York echoed those sentiments.

"Commissioner King has composed a very promising evaluation system that not only includes a variety of measures, including multiple observations and student surveys, but also provides teachers with a real voice in how their performance is evaluated," he said.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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