Mayor Bloomberg's proposed budget also calls for cutting thousands of teaching positions. But as WNYC's Beth Fertig reports, the mayor and Schools Chancellor Joel Klein are also trying to use the power-of-the-purse, to reform the whole teachers union seniority system.
REPORTER: Chancellor Klein sent a memo to principals right after the Mayor's budget was released, warning them that if the lay offs happen, because of seniority rules, the city would have to lay off most of the elementary school teachers hired since the Fall of 2007.
So the Chancellor is clearly going after the union here. But that policy isn't likely to change. State Assemblyman Jonathon Bing introduced legislation to end the seniority rules. He said: "it's an election year, I don't think my colleagues are going to have the courage to pass it."
REPORTER: Under the worst-case scenario, the city would cut about 6,400 teaching positions - about 4,000 through layoffs, and the rest through attrition.