ALBANY, N.Y. July 12, 2018 — As part of its commitment to support leaders who stand with educators, students and public school families, New York State United Teachers today endorsed a bipartisan group of seven Senate and Assembly candidates in this year’s legislative elections. In addition to Senate Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, D-Yonkers, NYSUT endorsed three Assembly candidates and three Senate candidates.
“Throughout her time in the Senate, Andrea Stewart-Cousins has been a true champion for public schools in every part of New York State,” said NYSUT President Andy Pallotta. “Now, more than ever, we need strong leaders who fight for working families, students and public schools. She has clearly earned the NYSUT endorsement, and we intend to work hard on her behalf.”
In Suffolk County’s 5th Senate District, NYSUT endorsed Jim Gaughran’s campaign to replace Carl Marcellino.
“After every single Senate Republican and several Democrats turned their backs on New York teachers and public school students at the end of this year’s legislative session, NYSUT vowed to remember who failed to stand with us,” said Pallotta. “In this critical race, Jim Gaughran is clearly the better choice for public school teachers and their students. We are committed to standing shoulder to shoulder with Gaughran as we fight to restore local control of our schools and advocate for working families.”
In Senate District 22, which represents parts of Brooklyn, NYSUT endorsed Andrew Gounardes.
“New York’s public school students deserve a true champion, which is precisely what they have in Andrew Gounardes,” said Pallotta. “His commitment to reducing class sizes, ensuring full funding of our schools and increasing the availability of after-school programs will help families in his community and ensure opportunity for students in New York.”
In Orange County, NYSUT endorsed James Skoufis to represent Senate District 39.
“Throughout his time in the Assembly, James Skoufis has been a strong supporter of public schools, teachers and students,” said Pallotta. “He has long resisted efforts to impose a reckless test-and-punish scheme on our students, supported returning control over teacher evaluations to local schools and advocated for fully funding public schools. We know he will continue that support as a member of the State Senate.”
In the open seat representing Assembly District 130, NYSUT endorsed Republican candidate Jerry Fremouw. In addition to serving as mayor of Clyde, NY, Fremouw is a mechanic for the Clyde-Savannah school district.
“As a public school employee, Jerry Fremouw understands the need to invest in strong schools,” said Pallotta. “He is a true public servant and a champion for working families in his community. He would be a terrific addition to the State legislature.”
In Assembly District 111, which covers Rotterdam and other parts of the capital region, NYSUT endorsed Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara’s re-election bid.
“Assemblyman Santabarbara has been a leader in the fight to scale back the use of standardized testing and to reform New York’s broken teacher evaluation system. His re-election will ensure we have a true partner in our fight to restore local control of our schools,” said Pallotta.
In Assembly District 142, which covers West Seneca, Orchard Park and slivers of Lackawanna and Buffalo, Pallotta said Patrick Burke, an adjunct professor at Buffalo State and a NYSUT member, emerged as the clear favorite among local leaders. “As a county legislator and community activist, Burke has been a fighter for the working people in his district. We see him carrying to Albany that same passion and dedication for doing what’s right,” Pallotta said.
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.