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Teachers discuss evaluation deal

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Buffalo: Teachers discuss evaluation deal
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Members of the Buffalo Teachers Federation met Monday to discuss the details of the union's teacher evaluation agreement with the school district. The union's president tells YNN's Ryan Whalen it's not a foregone conclusion until they'll agree to it.

Last month, the President of the Buffalo Teachers Federation signed off on a plan to evaluate district teachers pending the ratification of the union.

"I think the teachers will probably approve it, but then again, you never know. They're educated people. They'll have to take a look at it and see what makes sense to them. I mean, there are a lot of factors,” said Phil Rumore, BTF president.

Rumore says many of the educators he represents were disappointed in the process and have not made up their minds.

"They're feeling like they're being rushed. They don't like the idea. The only thing that we have is that we have to see if we developed something that's at least fair."

Rumore says if the union doesn't approve it, the district risks losing more than $30 million and could have an evaluation system imposed on teachers anyway.

"Possibly having the Governor doing what he's doing in New York City and say there is going to be binding arbitration and have the commissioner enforcing it."

The Buffalo Teachers Federation hasn't had a new contract in eight years and has been operating under the existing contract.

"That doesn't make it any more palatable but at least we do have a contract."

Rumore says the district has already set aside $60 million this year to renegotiate and that could be jeopardized by the evaluation vote.

"You turn it down the district says, well alright, we're going to take $30 million dollars out of the pot for negotiations, so I don't know how far that gets us."

The Council of Delegates vote is scheduled for March 20th.

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