Friday, December 19, 2014

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The Call Blog: Mayor Bloomberg Delivers "State Of The City" Address

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If Mayor Bloomberg's legacy is tied to education, he may not want to watch the 3am replay of tonight's show. 99% of our callers criticized his policy decisions. And as you can read below, 99% of our emailers agree. Legacy? What legacy?

Mayor Bloomberg delivered his 11th "State of the City" address today, and spent much of the time talking about education. Bloomberg touted his administration's past accomplishments improving graduation rates, and unveiled a plan "raising the bar for teachers" moving forward.

Under the plan, teachers at struggling schools would face evaluations through new "school-based committees." The committees would enable the Department of Education to fire 50% of teachers who receive low ratings. Bloomberg also said he would offer $20,000 raises to educators with high ratings for two consecutive years.

The Mayor also outlined visions to spur the economy, including a plan to redevelop the Kingsbridge Armory in the Bronx, and the sale of three office buildings in lower Manhattan. He also announced support for a statewide increase in the minimum wage, while acknowledging the struggle of "those at the bottom of the economic ladder." What do you say?

How would you describe the state of the City? Do you support Mayor Bloomberg's plan to "make sure every classroom has an effective teacher?" Are his economic visions helping low-income and middle-class New Yorkers?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

I can't wait till he is gone but the prospects of having Quinn as Mayor is also disappointing.

Midtown East

There were many education-related items that I had serious problems with, but the most heartbreaking and infuriating one was this: "All told, our goal is to open 100 new schools over the next two years – including 50 new charters. And we’ll do that by asking our most successful charter school operators to expedite their expansion plans, including the KIPP Academy and Success Academy networks." It is so sad that, rather then do their job and fix the schools they run, this administration is farming out our kids' educations to private companies, which are not accountable to the DOE. Bloomberg does not care to acknowledge how much work he should instead be putting into our neighborhood DOE schools. This administration has systematically run struggling schools into the ground and then proposed them for closure without first providing teacher development, leadership changes or extra resources for schools with high needs kids...nothing. Over the last few years, they have been serving up the space in these schools to the likes of Success Academy, the most divisive education entity in our city, against the wishes of communities and elected officials. Charter schools are all about profits. Standardized tests are all about profits. Unwanted technology increases are all about profits. Sadly, it is clear where this Mayor's priorities lie, and it is not with the million or so schoolkids he is meant to serve.

Upper West Side

The mayors plans for education are negotiable, but what will he do about the number reason why folks leave the city namely the high cost of living and the lack of affordable housing, which only adds to the homeless dilemma in the city.

Bay Ridge

Am I the only one suffering with nausea at this point? It truly boggles the mind how this pompous piece of protoplasm feels compelled continually pat himself on the back. The Public education system in nyc is in ruins, redeveloping the Kingsbridge Armory (one day) is not the answer to the homeless and jobless and hunger problem in this once great city. Money for his pet projects- no problem. Money for making accommodations for tourists- no problem. Helping the struggling people of New York- just not in the budget. By all means, keep up the good work.

Bay Ridge


Mayor Bloomberg has done nothing other than cause city conditions to worsen. The city is becoming more and more expensive & he uses his power to further implement bizarre laws - from his "muni-meters" to his new plan to ban alcohol. He simply continues to put tax money in his own pocket. No wonder he's the 12th richest person in the U.S. We're doomed!

-Maggie, Brooklyn


Herr Bloomberg has to be the most vile and destructive political figure in the US. He is the Hitler of NYC, from on high demanding and commanding, issuing edicts telling everyone what to imbibe, ingest and inhale.

The sooner he is out of office, the quicker we can start rebuilding the City that he and Adolf Giuliani destroyed.

Port Richmond, SI

Every teacher in NYC must have a master' s degree and thirty credits above that master's to hold permanent NYS certification in addition to two yearly evaluations by a certified supervisor in the teacher's license or subject area in order to keep his or her tenure. So, when Major Bloomberg mentions "raising the bar for teachers..."and offering $20,000 merit raises for "high-rating" teachers, he is opening a "Pandora Box" endangering seniority rights guaranteed under the current tier system. Worst still, he will be eroding employees' right to due process when proving or disproving unsatisfactory evaluations. The major is pushing for subjective and questionable criteria to label teachers "good" or "bad" where the most likely to be negatively impacted will be the most senior teachers because these are the highest paid. Ultimately, these incentives are a distracting way to dismantle tenure, higher salaries, and pensions. Gains accomplished by decades of collective bargaining by the United Federation of Teachers.

People must ponder thoroughly these means of assessment because they too might find themselves in that unfortunate position as they age disregarding their profession. Seniority rights should be inalienable rights.


"No pupil left behind" must also include, the concept of "No teacher left behind". The truth, is that teachers are mostly evaluated NOT on their 'performances' but on their total agreement with the principal's decisions. Any teacher who is a strong Union advocate or who disagrees with a principal is targeted and 'classroom observations' become a slanted and misused tool to cull those teachers out. Under Mayoral control, despotism by principals is encouraged. There is a system wide disingenuous, under this Mayor who has ordered that 'student failure', must now be officially re-labeled, ' student deferred success'. Teachers must be allowed the same latitude to likewise improve.

Mayoral statistics are more crucial than standards or honesty. The Mayor may have purchased his two consecutive terms but he cannot purchase teacher or parent respect with such disingenuousness. Under his leadership children are socially promoted and teachers punished for HAVING standards.

Paul, teacher of science for thirty-five years

This mayor is proof that outsized egos and outsized bank accounts are dangerous when in the hands of persons in positions of power. This guy is out of control. Hopefully the people will see through the lies - like lower crime, higher graduation rates etc. Give me a break.

Allen, East Village

More Mickie B BS.


Hi John,

How are we to answer this? It's the same thing over and over, again and again. Who will do the evaluations on these so called high ratings for two consecutive years in a row. WHERE ARE THE JOBS THAT WE NEED? WHEN DOES HE DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE HIGH RENTS? I SEE NO LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL FOR ANY OF US.

Thank you John,

Hello John........

Here he goes again. Another one of Bloomies tactics to get the more senior teachers out to let the new ones in---cheaper ones of course. He is in LaLa Land. Another dream that will not come true!! Earlier this week he and the UFT were in consultation to finalize the new evaluations system. They were so, so close and the City didn't like something and the deal was gone. If Bloomie doesn't get his way........he gets angry and that is why today during his State of the City address, 50% of his speech focused on education, because he has ruined it so, he has to try to bring it out of sheer destruction. I know that the UFT will work tirelessly to make it right for ALL!!!!


"Giving teachers money for the results of student productivity will not determine wether or not students are learning or getting a good education."

-Rox In The Hieghts

The Mayor should be embarrassed, listening to his speech today one might think that the UFT is behind nearly every problem in this city.

I don't understand how he expects to attract and retain teachers when he keeps attacking them.

History will show the "education" Mayor's legacy: misleading statistics, no accountability at the top, contractor corruption, community voices silenced, and our children are left no better off.

I give him an "F". Mayoral control has been a failure!

Dyker Heights, Brooklyn

Do you think the Mayor could have made all of these proclamations at once, and saved a whole lot of time? Guess now that your show is on for an hour he is going to want his 15 minutes, every day. As for his claims, they are more spin from his PR team. 25% of High School students can't do entry-level college work, and the testing system that New York clings to does nothing to help better prepare students for life in general. That fits in with the Bloomberg's "vision" for the future of this City though, which is to create an army of maids, janitors, busboys, and nannies to serve the rich.

As a life-long Bronx native the Kingsbridge Armory project has been one of those urban legends that nobody takes seriously, for good reason. None of the politicians do anything of any value for the Bronx and only seek to bury the citizens of this borough under more garbage. Kind of like the water filtration abyss sitting up at Van Cortland Park. Did the Mayor also mention the golf course he's letting Trump build in the Bronx ? Because that will help the unemployment problem here.

Sad fact is that Bloomberg is not the only problem, the Democrats in this city and state are not much better. Cuomo is proving to just be terrible in general, and the Democratic choices for Mayor are the like the old saying where would you rather get punched, in the face or in the gut....

The Bronx

The state of the City is in dire need of repair. The City is falling apart, department by department. A transit system that has no money, a school system that has no money, cutbacks to police, fire and sanitation departments, etc. etc. How can he say we're in good shape aside from the education system which he has destroyed.

Mayor Bloomberg has lost touch with the people of the City of New York. He has no clue what is going on in households all over the City. People who are broke, people who are unemployed, depressed, struggling to make ends meet, etc, etc. Children in these houses across the City, come to school each morning with the problems and worries of the adults they live with. They are not focused on the teacher or classroom environment, they are there physically but mentally they're worried if they will have food to eat, a bed to sleep in, etc. None of his economic visions are going to help these people. No amount of closing schools, opening charters, replacing staff, is going to make a difference for these children. Mayor Bloomberg has no idea. He is Mayor to his own Fantasy City, not New York City.

Not one of his plans in education has helped to improve education. He is the only one that is praising his reforms. Wasn't it just in the paper the other day how in the past 8 yrs there has been no improvement in Literacy scores for 3, 4, & 8th graders. Where is the data he is drawing his statements from? Data created by he, himself. Certainly not the true data that the State and Federal Governments use to make these statements.

How many of his created schools have succeeded? Not many - in the paper today was that 2 more are closing. These were schools that replaced schools that he felt were failing schools.

A teacher evaluation system that is fair to all teachers, no matter grade or subject taught, based upon criteria that partially includes student test scores (tops 20%), needs to be created by working with the UFT to come up with a plan that is agreed upon by all parties. Stop playing tough through the press and let him sit down at the table with all parties to settle on something.

The best thing he could do for the people of the City of New York, is step down before his 3rd term is finished. Maybe then we have a chance of surviving.

Jessica, Staten Island

Its disgusting the way Mayor Bloomberg pretends to understand the educational needs of the children in this city. Dangling the carrot at the end of a stick for merit pay is not only a slap in the face to teachers as their profession, but shows the insensitivity of an ignorant person who doesn't realize that he will be pitting teachers against each other. What this means is that colleagues will not share best practices with each other to benefit students because they will be in "competition" with each other to see who makes the cut. Is this what we want to become of the educational profession? This is not a corporation! Real emotional issues have to be dealt with, real learning issues must be dealt with, and real family issues must be dealt with. These all add up to the student grade. A teaching professional does not graduate knowing how to teach in practice, but in theory. It is only after 5 years at least, that a teacher will have had time to put into practice what works and what doesn't. For this reason, it does not matter a teacher that graduates at the top of their class if they do not have the practice of different elements.(ex. classroom management). Something that can not be learned from books. Without this very essential element, learning does not happen. Think teaching is straight forward? Think again! Only the best have survived! This isn't an office job. The Education Mayor, REALLY? Maybe the Mayor needs to stick to topics he really does understand.

Marie - Bensonhurst

Who is minding the quality of Mayor Bloomberg's army of misfit administrators? During the past decade, incompetent, inexperienced bureaucrats with no management experience, no inter-personal skills, and absolutely no idea of how children learn or how to teach them are left running a corrupt system that plans for failure to be replaced by profit-center organizations. The crimes and misdemeanors of the Bloomberg administration will leave a legacy of college and career bankrupt children. I'm just fortunate that my own children got out before Bloomberg got in. No more mayoral control: especially not from a billionaire mayor whose cronyism desecrated the entire NYC school system. We are not Wisconsin or Ohio...we are New York City and we know full well that the "emperor has no clothes"...

D. Grant

First off thank you to NY1 for posting the complete speech online (video) so I could watch the whole thing without distractions.

It was more of a "State of how I want it to be for NYC" than the true state of NYC, was it not? If the current Mayor gets even half of the goodies he dangles out there it'll be a good thing indeed. The UFT takes a beating once again, it seems, as he does an end run around their power, or what's left of it. Hoping for a LIVING minimum wage but knowing that THAT won't happen in my lifetime, I'll settle for a raise in the current minimum as that's all we're going to get.

Peace, Nick
Hell's K.

I can honestly say that I saw the first part of Mayor Bloomberg's speech and the way that he walked into the Bronx auditorium with everyone standing at attention clapping and kisses on the check like he was the President of the United States giving the State of the Union made me ill. His focus on teacher evaluations was of course not surprising especially the way that he blames the UFT for breaking down talks when it was education officials who walked out of negotiations. And his nonsense about those 33 struggling schools and forming a School Based Education Committee to evaluate the schools and teachers -- one must ask is he copying Governor Cuomo's State of the State Address? However Governor Cuomo at least said that his Education Committee would be bipartisan. What is Mayor Bloomberg's School Based Education Committee going to look like -- 12 puppets in a row?? I don't trust him one bit when it comes to caring about the children of New York City or evaluating teachers. He is always trying to blame the teachers and works diligently of finding ways to get rid of them -- never honestly looking at fault of the DOE. It was no misunderstanding that he spent the later of 2011 up in Albany trying to end LIFO. Why not hire younger inexperienced teachers -- right it saves money . . . but they are not necessarily good teachers.

What I found most appalling was everyone in the auditorium standing up and clapping and the kisses on the checks. GOVERNOR CUOMO'S ADMINISTRATION HAS A LOT MORE CLASS -- AT LEAST THERE WERE SEVERAL OTHER POLITICIANS SPEAKING!


Bloomberg has no idea how to improve education. He buys adolation and support, and the toadies suck up to him for his wealth. Just go away.


Who decides what an "effective" teacher is in a typical school? Who defines "effective?" It's all so political.

ELA Teacher

Educational Crisis, I concur! Mr. Bloomberg was the same person who hired Cathie Black and suggested teacher teach classes of 70 students. Mr. Bloomberg is evidently not very intelligent if this is his brilliant plan. The Department of Education needs to reorganize and develop a better Organizational Behavior Plan that includes training and supervision. We have a created a system concerned with statistics and not with student-centered, individualized education. Bloomberg should have no say.

Guidance Counselor - DOE Employee

Everything Bloomberg has done since he took control of the school system has been a complete failure. Ask Cathie Black. He couldn't care less about the education of the poor and working class children of our city. His only concern is trying to break the teacher's union and create more non-union, for-profit charters for his country club pals to get richer off of. Ask yourself this question, honestly: Whom do you think has a greater concern for the kids of our city, the dedicated, professional educators who chose to dedicate their working lives to helping them, or a billionaire politician who sent his own child to private boarding schools?

College Point

I do agree with the mayor decision about the teachers who graduate at the top of the class but not for anything else, education today in this country is not a priority, bad teachers need to be fired. period!


My name is Stuart I am a teacher at the High school for Law and a public service in Manhattan and I am disgusted by the amount of disrespect the mayor has shown the city of NY in regards to his education policy. The mayors proposal on Merit Pay is only going to pin teacher against teacher just as Merit Pay has done in the past. how is that going to benefit our students? The reason why the city is unable to keep teachers is not because of salary it is because of lack of support. the mayor has all this money for merit pay why isn't he putting the money into the schools to ensure that the students are getting all the resources they need For a quality education. Why didnt the mayor discuss the budget cuts that have left class sizes oversized and schools unable to hire more teachers which is what we really need.

I have my disagreements with the Mayor, but I gotta believe he values education and good teachers. The Teachers Union should start making some accommodations, or they will lose in the court of public opinion. Their intransigency has already cost the School System $58 million. It's time to clear out the dead wood.

Bobby G
East Village

The schools are in trouble! Seventeen years ago when I started teaching, every child had a textbook, a workbook to take home to do homework and access to a computer room. Now I have books for one out of three kids, no workbooks and non-functioning computers. All we hear about is teacher incompetence; the public is being misled about the real problem; the schools need money for materials; where has it gone? How do they expect to close the achievement gap between white, Asian, Hispanic and African-American kids when the latter groups don't have the materials they need to achiev e success?


No I don't support his failing policies on education Here goes the mayor bashing teachers to cover ip his own failures!! The education mayor has not done anything to improve education. Don't blame the teachers union for protecting it's teachers & students. Teachers have not gotten a contract in 3 years & work under very inadequate conditions. We deserve a raise as was promised by the mayor years ago.

From Brooklyn

Well yes, I do agree with Bloomie for statewide increase in the minimum wage, it's time they HIKE up on the minimum wage !


The City will improve greatly and the morale of the teachers and all citizens will rise when we get rid of Bloomberg. I hope he's not planning on buying a 4th illegal term.

East Village

The mayor has this crazy notation that he knows what is right for the schools, yet he has no education background. He blames the teachers non stop for any little thing and never praises, even when we accomplish his ridiculous standards.


Our wonderful Mayor is crazy... As a teacher I am appauld... He has money for everything else but no money for our children! We have NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND....But there is no money to fund it... We have these networks who have people that have never taught but they are our new administrators....there is no support from them...Then merit pay.. Forget about it. It would pit teachers against principals and other teachers because there will be tons of competition. Is this what we want? All he is doing is dangling a carrot in from of them...Children first??? HE is full of it! He is all about the buck... He is a BULLY.... Let's get it together Mayor Mike!

Alisha, Queens

I feel that the city is definitely in crisis. After placing my daughter in a school which I feel is better for her due to the small class sizes and a solid structure based on life long habits, that may be threatened due to her requiring additional services. I feel that the schools are pressured because of the testing and funding the schools and teachers need. My daughter will be lost in the cracks. The school system would rather throw her to the dogs so their standards look good on paper instead of helping her and those like her . This is an S.O.S to wake up!!


Dear John,

Who will replace the fired teachers? This is an incredibly difficult job. The mayor has misplaced his resources in data, testing and computer systems. It is time to focus on the real issue: poverty. Is it an accident that the worst-performing schools are in the poorest areas? I think not. Again, I ask, who will replace the fired teachers? Mr. Bloomberg? I think not.

Shelley, Park Slope

PS: Congrats on a great show and another half-hour-----woohoo!

Once again our out of touch mayor is on the attack against the hardworking teachers of our city. His $20,000 raise is nothing but a divide and conquer tactic to try and pit teacher against teacher. If he really thinks that the principals that he put into position through his leadership academy have the ability to determine which teachers are highly effective and which are not, he is sadly mistaken. Merit pay will be doled out to lackeys and kiss-ups, and those teachers who dare to speak out for the rights of their students and colleagues will be deemed ineffective and fired if he has his way.In reality, his lack of respect and support for teachers will only drive away "good" teachers, not attract them. The worst mayor ever.

A teacher in Queens

The way to protect good teachers from abusive principals, like the ones making obscene remarks in schools, and stealing overtime money, is have a fair appeals process from a principal's evaluation. What is wrong with that?

Robert from Bellerose

The education Mayor?? Bloomberg's legacy has been the destruction of the NYC school's system. Bloomberg may have bought his mayoral role but he can't buy the teachers. We have much too much integrity and love of our profession to let ourselves be lured by his money.

A teacher in Brooklyn

There was a period in our history, where all a teacher needed, was a slate blackboard, a textbook, and the conviction that no matter the circumstances, their charges will be educated to the best of the TEACHERS ability. My sympathy for teachers has waned, in direct and opposite direction with the reports of more children not graduating, or graduating with a poor education.

It's time for both parents and teachers cease our hand wringing, and over righteous protestations, and assume equal responsibility. Mayor Bloomberg's plan is bold, strong, and in my opinion, long overdue.


I agree with Stuart completely. Mayor Bloomberg has made a mockery of our educational system. He has manipulated the data that he presents to the general public so that he can look good. What he doesn't realize is that John Q Public will not be fooled that easily. We are not stamping out cars or manufacturing ice cream. We are educating children with a myriad of strengths and weaknesses. Bloomberg needs to put the money for his so-called merit pay into real services and resources for the children.

Thank You!!

Bloomberg is all about patting himself on the back, and most of his claims about improving the city and eduction are a crock. The city is dirty, overcrowded, full of construction sites because he sold the city to developers and the public schools are terrible, also dirty as well as dilapidated, overcrowded, lacking supplies, books, enough teachers and now lacking school aides. Bloomberg blames the teachers for everything and himself for nothing. The government has abdicated its responsibility for quality public education, period.

meryl from manhattan

Education is not a business and children are not the product. We cant disregard these products if theyre not perfect. ( these children are not a burnt batch of cookies, that we throw away) The more we try to treat education this way the less the children are the focus. We need to focus on teaching! Not on paper work and politics.

Additionally adding merit pay to this equation will just put more stress on the relationship between teachers and principals. Principals should be helping teachers not trying to find ways to rate them unsatisfactory. Enough is enough- this is about the kids!

Meredith =0)
A teacher on staten island

Bloomberg, has no idea, there is a new teacher at my school is quiting in the middle of the year due to no support from administration and piles of pointless paper work, teachers dont want merit pay, pay parents to have students show up to school with notebooks and supplies.

College Point

We should close the public schools, and have a private free market in education. Then kids will finally get the quality educations they deserve.


I give the mayor an Ineffective rating because he has failed NYC school children for 10 years.He has been a Miseducation Mayor and as a result we have not seen any improvement in the NAEP scores for all the years he has been in office. What a SHAME!. This school based committee that DOOMBERG is professing is a SHAM. It will be as corrupt as TWEED historically has been. The chancellor should be fired since implementing this fake Danielson Evaluation which Charlotte Danielson herself has reported that no one in NYC has the training to implement. She recently spoke in Indiana " Districts who administer the rubric and are not trained will result in lawsuits and teachers will win" What else can we say you heard it from the person who developed this rubric.


Bloomberg is failing our kids and teachers, this time on the health front. About 750 public schools have old lights that leak poly-chlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) which are a serious health threat to our kids and teachers. PCBs are suspected cancer causing agents!
Bloomberg has agreed to get rid of them in ten years. Ten years is way too long. Where is the outrage? They should be removed immediately!


Mayor. Bloomberg has. Distroyed NYC Education. System


The mayors ability think is super ceded by his inability to understand. That's why education is in the shape it. Thank god for the dedicated teachers we have. It's time for a new Mayor.


Good Evening John,

I am a 5th grade ESL teacher in one of the poorest districts in the city (District 9 in the Bronx). My school and district are plagued by oversized classes and undersized budgets. I am fed up with Emperor Mike/Bully Bloomberg and his failed educational policies. He is not, nor will he ever be the "Education Mayor." The Board (now Department) of Education has been destroyed under Bloomberg's leadership. There has been a decrease in the number of students who graduate and are ready for college. Fewer students are performing at or above grade level. Social promotion is alive and well, as teachers fight to hold back students who aren't for the next grade and their professional judgment is undermined when those students are promoted. Working conditions have deteriorated: Teachers are harassed by their principals (especially principals from Bloomberg's Leadership Academy who are indoctrinated with his anti-teacher credo); we are assaulted by students and disrespected by parents and administration. Bloomberg loves to talk about teacher accountability, but where is the accountability for students and parents and for DOE and its failed policies? I'm still not clear on what defines a "bad teacher" (I guess having a class where 100% of the students don't pass all standardized tests), but if Bloomberg and DOE insist on talking about bad teachers, they must accept responsibility for the decline of the system. After all, teachers are hired by the DOE, and not by the UFT.

Washington Heights

Anybody who thinks test results or evaluation ratings is what makes a great teacher, clearly has not set foot in a classroom.

Forest Hills

Everyone has some righteous opinions about what should and shouldn't be, but Mayor Bloomberg has some nerve putting all the education reforms and ridiculous made up systems, on the teachers and only the teachers.... Who does he think is going to teach the students? He is a Czar. A know it all. The man even put himself in office without a vote because he knew he'd be outed... Where's the democracy.... Arrogance and obnoxious behavior. He can make money off of us but refuses to pay us. He rather pit us against each other. He has screwed up everything he put his hands in when it comes to education.

Amy. Teacher nycboe 17 years.

I went to school and studied hard because my parents showed great interest in my education. What difference is it if the teacher is a great teacher, but the child's parents show no interest and are not supportive of the the student. President Obama, himself, recently called out to parents to take part in the educational process.

A simple study would show that schools with strong parent turnout on open school night have good grades and those schools without a good parent turnout rate have poor student grades. Who has the nerve to suggest such a study? Do you have the courage to air this email?


I am a high school teacher in manhattan with 23 years experience. This year class sizes went off the charts. Thirty-four students in a class is too many. The mayor and his educrat cronies should try teaching for a few days in an overcrowded classroom. Also, why are teachers expected to pay for instructional supplies out of their own pockets? This year's supply budget was "0"! Do edy eats at tweed have to pay for their office supplies? Teachers need support!


He ignores the most recent studies on motivation research which find that monetary incentives don't work for tasks that involve higher cognitive function. This study comes out of MIT, Carnegie Mellon and U of Chicago. It's no surprise therefore, that the best teachers I have worked with over the years weren't there for the money.

The best teachers I have seen in my 21 years as an educator were never there for the money. The mayor needs to do some research into what motivates people in the helping professions. It's not the same as in business. The research in motivation theory bears this out.

Murry Bergtraum High School Teacher

I'm a NYC public school English teacher, and I really wish Bloomberg would be empathetic to students who lose teachers year after year. By firing 50% of teachers, students are sent a message: there is no one there for you.


I have taught for 14 years and I have seen a demand for paperwork that is unbearable. As teachers, we have to plan for every hour of our work day, we have to implement those plans and keep records/ anecdotes as the lessons are taking place, we are told to take notes of how students are responding to the assignments, we then have to reflect on the lesson and adjust our plans accordingly. The demands for evidence of our teaching are overwhelming and are having a negative impact on our classrooms. We are so concerned with documenting everything that unfortunately our real focus (the students) get blurred.


I am a high school teacher in manhattan with 23 years experience. This year class sizes went off the charts. Thirty-four students in a class is too many. The mayor and his educrat cronies should try teaching for a few days in an overcrowded classroom. Also, why are teachers expected to pay for instructional supplies out of their own pockets? This year's supply budget was "0"! Do educrats at tweed have to pay for their office supplies? Teachers need support!


I am a proud NYC school teacher and member of the UFT. I am all for a new teacher evaluation system, but it must be a system that is unbiased and educationally sound. The evaluation system should be about improving teaching. Teachers are life-long learners and we are always trying to improve on our teaching methods and skills. The impasse on the evaluation system has been caused by the Bloomberg Administration, not by the UFT. The mayor has created an environment of competition between teachers instead of a community environment where teachers work together for the benefit of the students.

Thank You!

How can Bloomberg brag about all these imaginary gains our schools have made under his rule, and still bash teachers? If the schools are doing so well, and heading in the right direction, and teachers, as the mayor says, are the most important factor, how can they be doing a bad job?

College Point

Interesting. The mayor hypes the great state of education and gives himself credit. Then he goes on to bash teachers and the union. Somehow schools are better because of him but at the same time failing because of "bad" teachers. Schools have become testing and data factories and now they want to use these unreliable scores to divide teachers with merit pay for their randomly applied measures of effectiveness.

Demoralized yet again, I consider myself an extremely devoted teacher but thanks to the mayor (and the others of the pseudo-reform movement) I am rethinking my career.

Bay Ridge

The mayor is proud that 66% of students graduate in 4 yrs & 75% graduate in 6 yrs, is he kidding? If the school system & parents were doing what they were supposed to then graduation rates would be closer to 85-90% in 4 yrs.


To get tenure in the current system, a teacher must do the following: Six years of study to obtain A Master's DEGREE and thousands of dollars of debt Three years probation period involving 18 formal observations by a principal If this isn't a rigourous evaluation system, what is?

Jackson Heights

I have been a NYC teacher for over 20 years and our Mayor's disdain for teachers is disgusting. What he needs to do is use the merit pay to hire more teachers to lower class size! We are overworked, underpaid and harassed by administration! I work so hard yet feel so disillusioned by the continous pressure which is placed on us to heal all of societies ills. It's an possible task!

Staten Island

I feel bad for the teachers that believe that the mayor has the wrong perspective on education. He doesn't, he just cares for himself and his buddies who are taking over school buildings for free, subsidized with public money for the new private schools. How much more are New Yorkers going to take this abuse?

Melly, Upper East Side

I am in my 20th year of teaching. My first 10 years, while far from perfect, at least allowed me to exercise my professional judgement as a pedagogue The last ten years have been a jumbled mess of constant new innovations, one heaped upon the other. None of them have been successful, and have only served to take our attention away from our students. The past ten years I have seen my profession all but destroyed by this mayor.


I would rather work in a school with more guidance counselors, an attendance teacher, more funding for after-school programs and more copier paper than receive a $20,000 raise ANY DAY. And I have huge student loans.


My final point is this... The Mayor can't realistically believe that these new procedures are effective. Every child goes through years of education with many different educators, if reinforcement is being made at home and a collaboration is an all around effort, a positive outcome would prevail. He can't think that this paper overhaul is working. We can't even give time to the students, if we are writing notes to attain data the whole day.


Why aren't the curriculum and teaching methods looked at? That's the real problem. When was the last time either was changed?

Rhonda, Brooklyn

I don't know what Stephanie from Springville is talking about. I am a teacher and none of my colleagues send their children to private school. They all have children in public schools. We can't afford to pay for private school! I don't have any children, but I can barely pay my rent, let alone think of sending my future children to private schools!

5th Grade ESL public school teacher

Hey my name is Sergy and i just want to say that the new york public school system is horrible, i attended a public school and i was told to attend special education so my mother pulled me out and put me in a private school and now i am on the honor roll, they are just lazy individuals who are waiting on a check and not on answers to classroom questions, i look at my old problem as a blessing from GOD

Offering $20,000 raises to teachers for good "ratings" is like giving bonuses in private business. Bloomberg has been running the city like a corporation from day 1, not like a city full of people, and this is just another example. He's clueless about what would really help the public schools and the city. we need him to go back to his billion dollar private life.

Meryl from manhattan

Please tell Stephanie that the reason the kids in her daughters private school are better behaved is probably because they come from homes where parents actually have an interest in their kids and show them right from wrong, and also have the money to pay for private school. Also, I don't know where she gets her data, but I'm a public school teacher, and my kids go to public school as do the vast majority of the children of my colleagues.

College Point

I'm a N.Y.C. teacher and because of budgetary shortfalls I along w/ my colleagues buy our own paper, chalk, dry erase markers, scantron sheets etc... the list goes on. Are our schools going to receive the funds we need to instruct our kids properly or are funds going to be diverted to "highperforming" teachers in Bloombergs latest hairbrained scheme?


I think that his speech was great. People keep talking about where is the proof or statistics, look at the charter schools,eg KIPP NYC and SUCCESS ACADEMY. They have to be doing something right, there is structured teaching from the day they enter the school and the students are expected to perform. The UFT is the main culprit in holding back the teachers to perform at their best, increased pay maybe the answer to changing the way teachers handle issues with students. The Chancellor from Washington, D.C, tried this same approach and yet still the Union again shut the changes down. So I think if the Public Schools implement the same standards the Charter Schools are using maybe we will see a change in our children, where they can use their critical thinking skills to answer questions and pass tests.

Leslieann, Brooklyn

This mayor has to go. All he does is say that city budget is low, but over his term he tripled his wealth. There is something terribly wrong. He is part of Corporate America, the organized crime of the 21st century. We would been off electing John Gotti.

Mayor Mike attended the DSNY graduation ceremony on Wednesday and had the nerve to say how he was so supportive of sanitation to the new hire’s. it is a disgrace to all civil servants who do their job. If this is the case why did he hire Goldsmith and id he kept Cathy Black, DOE would have had the same problem.


Does Stephanie from New Springville work for Billionaire Bloomberg? If you live in "New Springville" what would she know about students in Harlem or Bed Stuy?

Mel From Harlem

My name is Jessica and I am a High School student in Brooklyn. I would like to simply say that I am horrified with my supposed "Education Mayor" and his attempts to improve the way information is taught to me. I am a student, not a score. I am child, not a toy. I require care and nurture along with supportive teachers and funded programs, not a greedy politician who needs an excuse to hide missing funds and plainly sees the city's youngsters as money bags not yet in his pocket. I am a growing innocent child and my future is not part of his toy chest, nor is any little one's who come after me.

I have been a teacher for 26 years and have realized that it has come to the mayor's'personal agenda and the children are the last ones on the agenda! Principals are also like Bloomberg they are about their own agendas also. Principals are not helping teachers they are hurting them.Not once does the mayor mention the behaviors teachers have to deal from unrulely students! He never lowers claSs size . I would love to see if he could do my Job its not easy.I have never seen in all my years the intimidating from Principals toward teachers.


Bloomberg showed how much contempt he has for the teachers and pupils of New York City's public schools when he appoint Cathy Black as Chancellor. An drunken old hag with no qualifications for the job.

East Village

With all due respect, the Mayor is clueless on this one. Why should any teacher's rating be based upon a student's test--- a student who sometimes uses the answer grid as a coloring exercise rather than reading the question? These tests will determine a raise? How absurd! Many students are unable to read the test unassisted---think about it---please This is called common sense---a first grade teacher probably taught the entire city government this one---

Chris from Whitestone

Mr. Bloomburg should work with teachers. It is extremely unprofessional to bash them. The emphasis on testing is unrealistic. Children are human and fail tests. It is not a indicator of their intelligence. These tests destroy their self worth. Additionally, the push to send every student to college will only turn out young people deeply in debt who are not prepared for careers. They need to bring back vocational training and listen to what teachers have to say. It may also help if he taught. Take over different class rooms in different settings for two weeks at a time, in different boroughs and socio-economic settings. Make a committment of six months. Then let the teachers on site rate his performance.


Are you kidding me? Bloomberg is more clueless today than he was when he started! He really hasn't done anything to fix the schools. He can keep the $20,000! Just as merit pay has destroyed the economy it will destroy education! Greed leads to corruption for sure. Those of us who really teach DO NOT teach for the money! I have taught in the NYC public school system for 20 years now. Why is the mayor only focusing on teacher effectiveness?As one caller stated, where is the accountability for the principals? Washington Irving HS is slated to close, guess what? The former principal( we received two "F"s under her leadership- 8 years) she got a smaller school in the same building). Now the current principal is supposedly getting one of the new schools as well. I guess the criteria for getting a small school is receiving an F! No accountability for the chancellor or the PEP either! Most "schools" aren't struggling! The students are struggling, their parents are struggling, society is struggling!

Bronx NY

I am a teacher in a high needs area, and first of all my child does GO to a NYC public school.

What the previous caller fails to realize is that as teachers, we have to follow a chain of command. I can't tell you how many times I've contacted parents of disruptive kids, sent them to the dean, had conferences, etc. I'm talking about kids who constantly disrupt the learning of others, and even have been physically aggressive to both adults and other students. How many times has that child had detention or been suspended? None. I've done my part, but the principals and administration don't want to follow up or report incidents because they're rated on the number of those incidents. That leads us back to our mayors policies. So consequently, those disruptive students are allowed to do what they want making it LOOK like us teaches aren't doing our job. Yea, thanks for the support.


The city needs to set up a program where teachers can go into a classroom of a charter school to see how the students are being taught and especially how students answer questions and interact with their peers. Also they need to set up more weekly teacher trainings to enhance their teaching skills. Teachers have tenure of 14, 20, 25 years of teaching and is stuck in the same habits of teaching, they need to invent new ways to teach these students who come from different backgrounds and is purely influenced by peer pressure. Teachers are finding too many excuses as to why the students fail. There are too many Chiefs and not enough Indians as the saying goes, the main focus is to get the students to succeed in whatever they do everyday not to say its the parents fault or the students fault. Schools also need to allow parents to be more involved in their child's academic advancement and not wait till parent conference night to address issues. I have a second grader and I already see the faults in the school system and teachers. I went on a few tours of charter schools and have a friend whose child goes to charter school and it's a world of a difference in the way the students learn and communicate with their peers to answer questions in class, the way teachers teach and the amount of parent involvement they allow, they also allow email and phone number exchange between parents and teachers so that the parents can feel involved and they can communicate with the teacher when they need to. Everyone is complaining that it's not going to work, maybe it's because the union and the teachers have been brainwashed as to how things should be that any change will cause a problem. Teachers and parents need to watch a few documentaries on Netflix called 'Waiting for Superman', 'The Lottery' and a few others and they will actually learn something about the way things work in this city. The key thing here is quality education for all children, so they can graduate and have the skills to get a job if they don't go to college right after, if the white neighborhoods can get it and there are fewer dropout rates and students actually going to the best colleges, why can't other neighborhoods strive to achieve that. Instead of the money going to salaries, it should go to supplies and hiring new teachers and adding, music, art, and theatre every day in all schools not just once a week in some schools. I have a niece that is in high school now and she said the teachers just sit there and say they don't care if they learn they getting a check regardless. Everyone is blaming the government for school failures, but it's parents, teachers, and students all need an attitude adjustment and maybe it can work. The Mayor made these initiatives because he sees the difference, he sees the flaws and is willing to change it. The unions always have issues and is ultimately not concerned with students success, that's what it's portrayed as, it's just going to be an uphill battle and more and more high school dropouts will continue to end up in jail.

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