Teacher’s pest by Nicole Gelinas | | NY Torch

Mayor Bloomberg's latest ed-reform plan has gotten much attention. To get the teachers' union to support merit pay, Bloomberg proposes to give teachers a salary hike of $20,000 if they prove "highly effective" for two years in a row under a new teach...

School Staffs Grew in New York by E.J. McMahon | | Reports

New York State educators are warning that proposed cuts in state aid to public schools next year could force more than 14,000 teacher layoffs. Officials of the state’s largest teachers’ union claim aid cuts will “devastate” education, leading to a “drastic” reduction of programs and “much larger class sizes.”

Salvaging NY’s School “Contracts” | Reports

Spitzer’s expansion of education funding and restructuring of the school aid formula may be his most important legacy. Unfortunately, C4E has been seriously hobbled by flaws in its assumptions about the mechanisms of reform, by misguided beliefs about “what works” in achieving excellence, and by a compressed timeline for adoption and implementation.

But Remember: It’s All for The Kids | NY Torch

In a single recent 12-month period, the state's largest teachers' union spent $150 million on itself, according to a new study by the Foundation for Education Reform & Accountability.

FERA understandably found it hard to resist linking the "lavish" spending habits of New York State United Teachers (NYSUT) with the union's perennial demand for more state education spending.

Getting More Bang for CFE Bucks | Reports

The Campaign for Fiscal Equity decision ordering more than $5 billion a year in additional spending on New York City schools is likely to have little effect on student achievement in the city. Because lack of money is not a primary explanation for the city’s low student performance, additional money by itself will do little to improve the situation.

No Strings Attached? Ensuring that “CFE” Funds are Spent Effectively | Reports

The 2003 New York State Court of Appeals ruling in the Campaign for Fiscal Equity case has created a historic opportunity to reform New York City’s troubled schools. This opening was created because the court not only required changing the state aid formula to ensure a “sound basic education” for all New York City pupils, it also ordered that city schools be accountable for actually producing results.

The High Cost of Educational “Adequacy” by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

New York State needs to spend $7 billion more to finance a “sound, basic education” for all pupils, according to the group that successfully sued to overturn the state’s education finance system. What kind of tax hike would it take to pay for such a draconian solution? This memo explores the range of possible answers to that question.

Will More Ever Be Enough? New York City’s Skyrocketing School Spending by E.J. McMahon | | NY Torch

New York City's new schools chancellor, Joel Klein, kicked off his introductory news conference with the observation that ‘resources are scarce.’ True enough—although you wouldn't know it from looking at the Board of Education's budget for 2002-03. Even after the latest round of budget cuts ordered by Mayor Bloomberg, spending will keep pace with inflation. And adjusting for cost-of-living changes, per-pupil expenditures are up 57 percent since 1983.