ALBANY, N.Y. June 12, 2018 — With the clock ticking down on the 2018 legislative session, New York State United Teachers will send musical acts — including bagpipers, a gypsy jazz trio and a brass marching band – to serenade Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan and other Senate Republicans on Wednesday. The musicians will play themed musical numbers drumming home the message: Time is running out. The Senate must fix the state’s testing and evaluation system by passing S.8301 with no strings attached. Sen. Flanagan’s proposed add-ons, which include millions for the charter industry and loopholes for private and religious schools, are tone deaf.
The musical acts will begin playing below the third floor window of the Senate majority conference room at noon Wednesday, June 13. The various bands will set up on the State Street side of the Capitol lawn — opposite the State Street entrance to the Legislative Office Building — before moving to the Empire State Plaza concourse.
“Why is the Senate majority playing such sour notes?” asked NYSUT President Andy Pallotta, who will be there at noon to talk to reporters. “Instead of passing a clean bill that has 55 Senate sponsors — including all the Democrats and the vast majority of Republicans — to reduce testing and fix the evaluation system, Sen. Flanagan is tying it to millions of dollars for the charter industry and his donors, and loopholes for private, religious schools. Our message has not changed,” Pallotta continued. For Sen. Flanagan, we hope this orchestrates a willingness to pass S.8301 with no strings attached.”
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.