July 24, 2009

Race to the Top: NYSUT confident after meeting with Education Secretary Duncan

Source: NYSUT Media Relations

ALBANY, N.Y. July 24, 2009 - Leaders of the 600,000-member New York State United Teachers said they would carefully review proposed federal regulations released today and are confident New York will be a strong contender for some of the $4.3 billion in new Race to the Top education funding.

"We will be studying the regulations carefully in concert with our two national affiliates, the American Federation of Teachers and the National Educational Association, to see if they are good for children, fair to teachers and move New York closer to ending the achievement gap," said NYSUT President Richard C. Iannuzzi

NYSUT Vice President Maria Neira - one of the 125 national leaders selected to meet with Education Secretary Arne Duncan in Washington, D.C. - noted that NYSUT, the Board of Regents and state Education Department are working together to improve teacher quality and end the achievement gap. "We are confident that New York is well-positioned to meet the challenge in the race for the Race for the Top funding."

"The Obama administration has made it clear that teachers and their unions have an important role, and that reform will be done with us, not to us," Neira added. "We are hopeful that, after studying the proposed regulations, we see a plan that includes transparency, shared responsibility and fairness to educators, so we can continue our partnership to improve teacher quality and raise student achievement."

NYSUT, the state's largest union, represents more than 600,000 classroom teachers and other school employees; faculty and other professionals at the state's community colleges, State University of New York and City University of New York, and other education and health professionals. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and AFL-CIO.

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