The new power accorded to principals is not to give first year teachers a raise if they suck. Teachers wills till be assigned according to seniority to new positions, so new good teachers get lopped off when cutbacks occur while the old dead wood stays.
We know that good teachers can get through 18 months of material in a year. Bad teachers get through 6 months of material. This is not related to poverty or social factors because these results can be seen in the same school. Teachers cannot be evaluated according to results so the ones who everybody knows are terrible cannot be removed.
Everybody knows who the terrible teachers are at the BPS. The teachers know, the kids certainly know. Obama is embarrassed by the Chicago teachers strike and a Boston strike would be doubly so. Instead of fighting for the kids, Menino has bailed.