|Past Articles of Notes|
View: Underfunded schools and weak local control, Shane McGaffey (President, Pleasantville BOE), LoHud (11/18/2015); “…New York State’s tack over the last decade has been to underfund and usurp local school/community decision making. Help us to fight for the funding and local control we once had, and need, to ensure that our schools remain strong.”
Turmoil swirling around Common Core education standards, Washington Post, Lyndsey Layton as the common core shifts from theory to reality, critics are emerging. State lawmakers are concerned about the cost… Progressives fret over new exams, saying that the proliferation of standardized tests is damaging public education. Teachers worry that they haven’t had enough training and lack the resources to competently teach to the new standards. And conservatives say the new standards mean a loss of local control over education.”
How school reform became the cause célèbre of billionaires, Valerie Strauss,Washington Post (3/19/13), "Why are billionaire philanthropists at the forefront of school reform? Primer from Jack Schneider, an asst. prof. of education at the College of the Holy Cross and author of “Excellence For All: How a New Breed of Reformers Is Transforming America’s Public Schools.”..."each time they make the case for a new reform, they blast public school leaders, disrespect what teachers know about classrooms, disregard most of the research on school improvement, and frame our schools as failures. That isn’t common sense; that’s arrogance."
While rating systems have specific formulas, it is worth noting that many of the top schools have selective admissions or are in wealthy communities...My concern is that the lists are stacked. Schools with the greatest challenges can appear to be the biggest failures. At a time when public education is so data-driven, that kind of thinking can cost dedicated teachers and principals their jobs."
Triborough Blocks Fiscal Sanity, By
"...So far, Cuomo and most state lawmakers are ignoring this issue -- which might be more easily understandable if we were living in a normal fiscal environment. But as a top school board lobbyist testified before the legislature this week, "local school officials recognize that 'normal' is not coming back. "It's about time our state's leaders recognized the same thing."
Hudson Valley Schools Seek Voice to Reduce State Mandates, Journal News, (12/9/2011), Region’s top school officials are challenging state legislators to relax costly rules affecting everything from transportation to special education to employee-pension to health-care costs…which account for close to 20% of school budget. LINK to LHCSS Position Paper and Mandate Relief Recommendations
Communities Rebel Against Cuomo’s Cap on Local Taxes, New York Times (10/24/2011), "...communities, which include affluent New York City suburbs and rural outposts in the state’s extreme northern frontier, are declaring that they cannot restrain the growth of property taxes and still comply with a variety of state-mandated programs and provide the services residents expect. And now dozens of town and county boards are overriding, or proposing to override, the cap."
When Schools Depend on Handouts, New York Times Opinion, MICHAEL A. REBELL and JESSICA R. WOLFF (8/25/2011), Most state constitutions guarantee all students a sound, basic public education, rights that cannot be put on hold, even in tough times.
Administrators, union say teacher rating system is moving too fast, Journal News (July 9, 2011) "Many school districts racing to begin grading educators this fall under a new state system are concerned about the emphasis on student test scores... Some administrators say they will have to begin the process on the fly, with unclear state rules and expectations, even though... faulty evaluations can result in costly teacher appeals..."
Regents Pay a Political Price for Their Free Advisers, Dissenters Warn,New York Times (8/14/2011) The research fellows follow the views of their donors, opponents of that approach say....”
Pols, pundits should keep facts straight in education debates, Times Herald Record: Opinion, Meghan E. Murphy (7/20/2011) "While I'm used to pundits and politicians cherry-picking statistics to back up their agendas, what I find most confounding is that our nation and state leaders are putting a big dunce cap on our schools that they don't deserve."
Cuomo's Tax Cap Wins the Day; But Big Questions Linger for Locals, The Bond Buyer (7/11/2011) “…The cap ‘is likely to put additional pressure on local government financial operations already strained by declining state aid, weakened tax revenue, high fixed expenditures, and state-mandated services,’ Moody's Investors….”
WPSBA Letter to SED and NYS Regents regarding the 3012-c Teacher Evaluation Regulations (5/6/2011): "While supportive of the intent of the statute and the need to improve teacher effectiveness and raise student achievement, WPSBA cannot overemphasize the concern at the local level regarding the impact of the regulations as written." READ WPSBA LETTER.
NYSSBA survey of the impact of Governor Cuomo's executive budget on 2011-12 school district budgets, staffing and programs. (March 2011) SEE SURVEY RESULTS.
Diane Ravitch on the Myth of Charter Schools, New York Review of Books, November 11, 2010. "...There is a clash of ideas occurring in education right now between those who believe that public education is not only a fundamental right but a vital public service...and those who believe that the private sector is always superior to the public sector..."READ IT.
Tax Cap Bad for State's Neediest Students Times Union, August 14, 2010 "...But before we embrace a tax cap as the cure-all, lawmakers must realize the unintended catastrophic consequence it would have on our most vulnerable school districts."
A Few Questions for the Educators, Times Union, August 19, 2010
"...there are questions about whether the Regents exams, once considered a gold standard, have been dumbed down to the point of irrelevancy..."
Albany Times Union Editorial, June 3, 2010 READ MORE.READ ON.
|WPSBA In The News...|
|Hudson Valley leader [Lisa Davis] rallies school boards for change, Newsday, Meghan Murphy (2/9/2013), "It's the small victories that keep her going, she [Lisa Davis] says…You have to keep up the fight. You take the small little victories and keep reminding yourself that you're doing it for the kids."
NYSCOSS releases report of survey of NYS superintendents on financial matters, (Nov. 2012) “Can’t there from here: Budgeting challenges call for new directions in state policy to help schools raise student achievement.”
WPSBA Journal News Community View: Local school boards stay obligated to community, Journal News (4/22/12) "It is not so much that the players on boards of education have changed, but rather that the times have changed, and local school board members have responded to the needs of their community… School boards must continue to be financially responsive to their communities, but without immediate mandate relief from Albany on critical cost drivers, budget cuts will lead to a degradation in the quality of education provided to students."
WPSBA Journal News Community View Article- Parents, Communities Must Demand Education Reforms (5/15/2011): "...A tax levy cap is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Public education in New York State as we know it will sink unless there is substantive legislative action to addres the cost drivers... Real change will only come when parents and community members join us in the fight for public education..."
2011 Recipient of the College Clinic "Outstanding School Program Award": Manhattanville College-WPSBA Transition Task Force (5/5/2011) "In four short years, this task force has hosted two major conferences, focused on these critical issues; has administered a survey following our HS graduates into their freshman year of college to help understand areas of need; has held meetings and conversations to identify best practices among our high school programs and now continues to find new and original ways of how to best support our students as they transition and succeed in the college and the workplace."
"Now, more than ever, an effective governance team is critical to the long-term success of every district. Read the May 16 WPSBA Journal News Community View article.
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