Tax-freeze rebate checks are still coming from NY. This article focuses on who's getting checks (Beacon already cleared) but also goes into the stressful impact on districts' finances, For one, they needed to come up with a Government Efficiency Plan. At the same time, there's that property tax cap, especially onerous this year as it's not 2% but 0.12 percent, which is close to zero. Point is made that the checks are a disincentive for any municipality or district to go over the tax-cap limit. click here for full article
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: January 6, 2016
More information contact:
Lisa Rudley (917) 414-9190; firstname.lastname@example.org
Jessica McNair (315)-368-7550; email@example.com
NYS Allies for Public Education (NYSAPE) www.nysape.org
Press Release Link
Chancellor Tisch & Vice Chancellor Bottar are both stepping down from the Board of Regents, after serving on the Board for twenty years. It was during Tisch’s term as Chancellor and Bottar’s term as Vice Chancellor that the students of New York State suffered the damaging effects of the failed Regents’ Reform Agenda, which included the implementation of the flawed Common Core standards and modules, and an increased focus on high-stakes testing, including a disastrous new teacher evaluation system based on student test scores.
Both also supported the dangerous NY Education Department plan to share a wealth of personal student data with inBloom Inc. without parent notification or consent, which was eventually blocked by an act of the Legislature.
Now, the statewide coalition New York State Allies for Public Education and Opt Out Central NY are calling on candidates to apply for these seats, including one at large candidate to replace Tisch and one from Judicial District V, Bottar’s current seat, which covers Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida, Onondaga & Oswego Counties. Applications are due by mid-January; click herefor more information.
“Under the leadership of Chancellor Tisch and Vice Chancellor Bottar, we have seen a myopic focus on high stakes tests, massive collection of personal and sensitive information about children and families, and the theft of local control from elected school boards,” said Lisa Rudley, NYSAPE founding member and Westchester County public school parent.
In response to the Regents’ failed test-centric agenda, Central New York school districts within Judicial District V had some of the highest opt out rates from the state exams, signaling the public’s discontent with the Regents’ test and punish agenda. For example, the 2015 state math tests were refused by 77% of students in New York Mills, 73% in Sauquoit, and 70% in Whitesboro.
“Parents are rightfully concerned with the negative effects of the test and punish agenda ushered in under the watch of Chancellor Merryl Tisch and Vice Chancellor Bottar and they are refusing to participate in a system that they feel is unfit for their children,” said Jessica McNair, Opt Out CNY co-founder, Oneida County public school parent and educator. “Until and unless we obtain a Board of Regents representative who is responsive to the experience and input of parents and other stakeholders, and the Board as a whole changes course, parents will continue to opt out of high stakes assessments at both the state and local levels to protect their children and their public schools.”
“Parents want state leaders to support their children’s schools, not set them up for failure and threaten them with a state takeover. Both Regents Tisch and Bottar failed to act in the best interest of students, and ignored the concerns repeatedly brought forth to them by the constituents they are supposed to serve,” said Tonya Wilson, Onondaga County public school parent.
There are no specific qualifications to serve as Regent, but New Yorkers should be represented by Regents who understand that the path the majority on the Board is currently pursuing is punitive. New Regent Board members should offer positive, research-based child-centric solutions instead. Click here to apply to become a Regent and/or be endorsed by NYSAPE and Opt Out CNY.
NYSAPE, a grassroots organization with over 50 parent and educator groups across the state are calling on parents to continue to opt out by refusing high-stakes testing starting on the first days of school. Go to http://www.nysape.org/resources.html for more details on the how to be part of #OptOutNY2016.
Board of Regents approved an emergency regulation that makes adjustments to the Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) for teachers and principals
NYSED's summary of the recent Regents regulations:
Last week, the Board of Regents approved an emergency regulation that makes adjustments to the Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) for teachers and principals as the State continues its transition to higher learning standards. The emergency regulation removes any consequences for teachers' and principals' evaluations related to the grades 3-8 English Language Arts (ELA) and Math State Assessments and the State-provided growth score on Regents exams until the start of the 2019-2020 school year.
The emergency regulations approved by the Board prohibit the use of results from the grades 3-8 ELA and math State assessments and State-provided growth scores for grades 9-12 principals in evaluating the performance of individual teachers or principals for the next four school years. During this time, districts and BOCES will continue to implement their approved APPR plans and provide teachers and principals with their HEDI scores and ratings calculated pursuant to that approved plan. However, districts and BOCES will also provide teachers and principals with "transition scores" and HEDI ratings that exclude the results of State assessments in grades 3-8 ELA or math (including where State-provided growth scores are used) or on State-provided growth scores on Regents exams.
The transition scores and subsequent ratings will be determined based on the remaining subcomponents of the APPR that are not based on the grades 3-8 ELA or Math State assessments and/or a State-provided growth score on Regents examinations. During the transition period, only the transition score and rating will be used for purposes of evaluation, and for purposes of employment decisions, including tenure determinations and for teacher and principal improvement plans. State-provided growth scores will continue to be computed for advisory purposes and overall HEDI ratings will continue to be provided to teachers and principals. Additional information will be forthcoming.
Here is a link to the New York Common Core Task Force Final Report:
Dear NYSUT member,
Today we celebrate a significant breakthrough in public education.
Thanks to the dedicated, non-stop activism of NYSUT members in solidarity with parents, the era of test-and-punish is on its way out!
We are proud to share with you this week's major developments that open the door for a much-needed transformation in public education.
In a just-released report, the state's Common Core Task Force -- appointed by the governor -- is calling for:
The state Board of Regents is expected to vote in January on these recommendations, which would then immediately take effect.
Meanwhile, after tireless advocacy by AFT and NEA, President Obama signed legislation yesterday that bars the federal government from mandating the use of student test scores to evaluate teachers.
These changes -- vital to end the high-stakes pressure that has eroded the joy of teaching and learning -- are the direct result of the dedicated activism of NYSUT members and parents.
THANK YOU for everything you have done: the rallies, forums, testimony, letters, e-blasts, protests and more. Your union called, and you answered.
We are grateful to each and every member, parent and activist whose passion and dedication on behalf of students has brought us to this moment. A sea change is underway in public education, both here in New York state and at the federal level. This is an amazing achievement -- and it is a shared achievement.
But make no mistake: We are not done.
Now we must redouble our efforts to ensure these and other necessary and transformative changes are realized in every classroom across New York State.
As we press forward on all the vital priorities that remain, we are inspired by this belief:
Together, we can move mountains.
By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS DEC. 10, 2015
WASHINGTON — Putting an end to more than a decade of strict federal control of public education, President Obama on Thursday signed a sweeping rewrite of the No Child Left Behind act that returns power to states and local districts to determine how to improve troubled schools. click here for full NYTimes Article
In response to NYSED and Education Commissioner Elia's controversial Common Core 'AimHighNY' survey, NYSAPE has created its own user-friendly survey.
This survey will allow the entire public to participate in giving feedback to the Board of Regents, Commissioner Elia, the Governor's Common Core Task Force, and the NYS Legislature on the Common Core standards, curriculum, and testing.
Please take a few moments to complete this survey
and have your voices heard.
Read NYSAPE's Press Release on NYSED and Commissioner Elia's controversial Common Core 'AimHighNY' survey.
If you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your time to complete this survey.
Panelists will be speaking on Tuesday December 1st, 2015 @ 7:00PM at SUNY New Paltz Coykendall Science Building Auditorium.
Massachusetts, a state considered a leader in education reform, decided last week to reject student tests based on federal Common Core standards--tests still used in many other states. Instead, the state will develop its own exams to measure student progress. New York Times reporter Kate Zernike joins Alison Stewart with more.
Opinion Piece by Alan Singer for the Huffington Post New York Blog:
According to the Council of Chief State School Officers, at least 18 states are in the process of revising the Common Core Standards adopted in 2010. That includes New York where Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia is involved in a mandated review of math and reading curriculum. Governor Andrew Cuomo, who supported Common Core as "state of the art" from the start, has called its implementation in New York State "flawed." He blamed blunders in the rollout for causing "frustration, anxiety, and confusion for children and parents." But Cuomo has never questioned the validity of Common Core, which suggests the mandated review will largely be for show. click here for full article