Deadline Approaching for Teacher Evaluations

March 22, 2012 Updated Mar 22, 2012 at 10:47 PM EDT

By Ed Reilly

March 22, 2012 Updated Mar 22, 2012 at 10:47 PM EDT

(Buffalo, NY) The Buffalo Public School District stands to lose over $9-million dollars if a new teacher evaluation plan is not submitted to Albany by Friday March 23rd.

"This is the 11th hour," adds School Board President Louis Petrucci.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has made school performance a major goal this year, and the State is withholding funds from school districts that don't have a proper teacher evaluation system.

The issue in Buffalo is whether absent students should be counted in performance evaluations.

So far, the Buffalo Teachers Federation and the Buffalo District have been unable to negotiate a compromise concerning absenteeism.

"This is nothing really to do with a student's education. It has to do with the teacher evaluation, as to whether they should be evaluated based on students that aren't in school," says BTF President Phil Rumore.

"We've been close to a deal for a long time. but the devil is always in the details," comments School Board President Louis Petrucci.

The School District has said that losing the money could force teacher layoffs or re-assignments.