A Deal for the Teachers

Mayor Bloomberg and United Federation of Teachers president Randi Weingarten will announce a contract settlement later today, and my early impression of this is that Randi winds up looking pretty smart for holding out until a month before Mike’s reelection bid.

The outline of the deal: Teachers get a 15% raise over a 52-month period, compared to (corrected) the arbitrators recommendation of 11% over 3 years.

There’s no sweeping overhaul of work rules, though schools chief Joel Klein gets some of what he wants, notably an end to “seniority transfers,” by which good teachers abandon struggling schools. There’s also a compromise version of a proposal to add ten minutes of class time, and a bit more cafeteria duty for teachers.

Absent from the deal are two top items from Klein’s wish list: merit pay and an end to tenure.

One insider’s take: “It’s win-win for the Mayor and Randi — the one who didn’t get what he really wanted was Joel.”