Statement by Executive Director Jenny Sedlis in reaction to the New York State Joint Budget Hearing on Elementary and Secondary Education
"Governor Cuomo has committed more funding to education than ever before in New York's history. New York spends more money on education than any other state, yet places 37th in graduation rates. We need to find ways to improve student performance that don't just involve higher spending. Governor Cuomo has done just that by prioritizing measuring, developing and rewarding excellent teaching. Governor Cuomo's efforts to implement the Common Core standards and teacher evaluations are high impact ways to improve the quality of instruction in our classrooms that also bring in much-needed federal funding.
The unions cannot be asking for more money while simultaneously asking for less accountability. NY unions agreed to teacher evaluations and the Common Core standards and are now backing away from those agreements. Governor Cuomo is making tremendous investments in education while NYSUT is seeking to dismantle the progress that's been made."
"In today's budget address, Governor Cuomo showed strong support for the Common Core State Standards, which are among the most important education policy reforms in recent history. This new panel demonstrates the Governor's commitment to implementing Common Core as quickly and effectively as possible. Governor Cuomo is a leader who is willing to use the full weight of the state to get stakeholders working together to ensure our schools have rigorous and rich learning standards."
Statement by Executive Director Jenny Sedlis in reaction to Alliance for Quality Education's (AQE) rally
"Improving education needs to be about the students, not the bureaucracy. New York already spends $75 billion on education across the state every year, from public schools to state funded universities. That’s more than the entire annual budget of 47 other states. We know that transforming our schools will lead to thriving and successful communities but what we need is to make smart and effective investments like rewarding teachers for their innovation and effectiveness. Governor Cuomo has been a leader in education reform, from his support of the Common Core to his efforts around teacher evaluations. He has our kids' best interests at heart and strongly deserves our support."
"With his bold announcement of the Teacher Excellence Fund and $20,000 bonuses for highly effective teachers, Governor Cuomo has positioned New York as a leader in the national education reform movement. New York's innovative teacher evaluation system allowed us to finally recognize teachers for their performance and now we can compensate them as the professionals that they are. Governor Cuomo knows that the quality of the classroom teacher is the single greatest factor in a child's success, and he's investing New York's precious dollars where they will have the greatest impact: teacher quality. Governor Cuomo is to be applauded for his unwavering commitment to the children and families in New York State."
Statement by Executive Director Jenny Sedlis on the Selection of Carmen Farina as New York City Schools Chancellor
"Carmen Farina has walked more school hallways than most will in a lifetime. We share Farina's commitment to high quality teaching and teacher training and we hope that the historic reforms that helped make New York City the nation's model are not rolled back. While we have concerns about her aversion to assessment-based measures of accountability and the possibility of a rollback on new schools in the pipeline, we look forward to working with the new chancellor on our shared goal of ensuring that every student in New York City has access to a world-class public education."
StudentsFirstNY Executive Director, Jenny Sedlis, released the following statement in reaction to Senator Flanagan's Legislative Proposals on Education:Read more
NYC Schools Chancellor Says Failure to Agree on Evaluations will Result in "Extremely Painful" Budget Cuts
If union leaders and city officials fail to reach an agreement on teacher evaluations by January 17th, NYC schools will lose nearly $300 million in state funding -- a cut that Chancellor Walcott said will be "extremely painful."Read more
"Despite spending more money per student than any other state, New York is in the middle of the pack when it comes to educational achievement, leaving many of our students unprepared for college and future careers."
"Parents deserve to know how their child's school is performing and eliminating the school report cards would disempower parents, reduce transparency, and be a terrible step in the wrong direction," said Jenny Sedlis, Executive Director of StudentsFirstNY.
The lesson from Tennessee and DC is that implementing the rigorous Common Core standards and aligned tests, along with strong teacher evaluations is the most effective way to make sure students have a shot at the American dream.