Posts tagged "state of the state"
January 9, 2013
The state will underwrite costs for schools that keep students in class an extra 300 hours per year, according to a top proposal floated today in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s third “State of the State” address.
Extended learning time was one of several proposals Cuomo mentioned during the education section of his speech, which lasted more than an hour and covered a variety of non-education issues, including a strict ban on assault weapons, decriminalization of small amounts of marijuana, raising the minimum wage and a new plan to build casinos in upstate New York (the revenue of which will mostly go toward state school aid).
The proposals were part of a “more and better” approach to education reform that Cuomo is crafting for 2013, a year after he targeted education “lobbyists” and school bureaucratic inefficiencies. Cuomo said he also wants to invest in expanding early education programs and creating schools that provide health and social services for poor communities.
Cuomo is making the funds available in the form of competitive grants, which he has used in the past in an attempt to fast-track education reforms. The grants would only be eligible to districts and schools that craft plans that adhere to best practices prescribed by Cuomo.
The previous grants have encountered resistance, both from union officials, the Board of Regents and State Education Commissioner John King. They all agreed that a $250 million mini-Race to the Top grant would be be better used if it were redistributed into the state’s general school aid formula. (more…)
January 4, 2012
Students have a new representative in Albany: Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Right now, Cuomo is delivering his second State of the State address, titled “Building a New New York … with you.”
Education issues account for one and a half of the speech’s 33 pages of prepared remarks. As expected, the governor is calling for an education commission to propose reforms to the state’s education system. That commission will look for ways to boost “teacher accountability and student achievement” and “management efficiency” — both topics Cuomo targeted during his first address a year ago — and will work with the legislature.
He’s also appointing himself chief lobbyist for students, calling them the only group in schools that don’t employ lobbyists of their own.
“This year, I will take a second job — consider me the lobbyist for the students,” he says in the prepared remarks, which he has been known to depart from. “I will wage a campaign to put students first, and to remind us that the purpose of public education is to help children grow, not to grow the public education bureaucracy.”
Some educators are already taking umbrage at the idea that students’ interests aren’t being represented. (more…)
January 5, 2011
Two more Races to the Top could be coming to New York — this time courtesy of Governor Andrew Cuomo.
In his first State of the State speech today, Cuomo proposed creating two new competitive grant funds for state school districts, worth $250 million each.
The first grant would reward districts that boost students’ academic performance. The second would go to districts that find ways to cut costs that don’t affect the classroom.
It’s not yet clear if the addition of the grant competitions would alter the state’s current formula-based education model. But the governor was critical of the model, which he said gives districts no incentives to improve.
“Competition works,” Cuomo said, pointing to the state legislature’s passage of a charter cap lift bill as part of its (eventually successful) bid to win Race to the Top funds.
Cuomo’s plan would follow the lead of the federal government, which the governor said has “actually been more innovative in this area.” The U.S. Department of Education still doles out most of its money to states according to formulas, but under President Barack Obama has also begun granting billions of dollars based on the outcomes of competitions. (more…)