December 10, 2015

NYSUT statement on 'momentous developments' in public education

Source: NYSUT Media Relations

ALBANY, N.Y. Dec. 10, 2015 - New York State United Teachers today released the following statement:

"Today we celebrate momentous developments at the state and national level that open the door for a much needed transformation in public education.

"The recommendations of the state task force signal a commitment to restore the joy of teaching and learning in our classrooms.

"Task force recommendations that have been championed by parents and educators include the creation of developmentally appropriate New York state standards by New York state teachers for New York state students; de-linking state test scores from evaluations for a minimum of four years; and less time on testing, more on learning. The new standards and curriculum resources would be phased in gradually with full educator engagement and transparency to parents.

"These changes are essential to end the high-stakes pressure that has eroded the joy of teaching and learning and narrowed the curriculum.

"NYSUT thanks our members, parents and each and every activist whose passion and dedication on behalf of students has brought us to these shared achievements.

"A sea change is underway in public education, both here in New York state and at the federal level through the Every Student Succeeds Act. Now we must redouble our efforts to ensure these and other necessary and transformative changes are realized in every classroom across New York state."

NYSUT is represented on the task force by NYSUT Vice President Catalina Fortino; science teacher Heather Buskirk, a member of the Johnstown Teachers Association; New York City third-grade teacher Kishayna Hazlewood, a member of the United Federation of Teachers; and American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten.

New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members in education, human services and health care. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.