ALBANY, N.Y. June 6, 2018 – New York State United Teachers President Andy Pallotta will urge Senate Republicans to take the air out of the state’s test-and-punish evaluation system, delivering balloons to senators and staff Wednesday that call for an immediate vote on legislation to decouple standardized tests from teacher evaluations with “no strings attached.”
Pallotta and others will deliver balloons to senators and legislative staff at their offices in the state Capitol about noon Wednesday, June 6. Pallotta will be available to discuss the legislation at a media availability outside the LCA on the third floor of the Capitol, also about noon.
“Fifty-five senators – including all Democrats and the vast majority of Republicans – are sponsoring S.8301, which would decouple standardized tests from teacher evaluations and go a long way toward fixing the state’s broken testing and evaluation system,” Pallotta said. “Parents and teachers want action. They want an immediate vote on this bill and they want it on its merits – with no strings attached. If Senate Majority Leader Flanagan wants to demonstrate to taxpayers the Senate is functioning effectively, I can think of no better way to do that than by passing a clean, bipartisan bill strictly on its merits. It’s time to let teachers teach; let students learn and let the Senate vote.”
The Assembly voted 133-1 on May 2 to begin repairing the breach in trust between parents and educators on one side, and the state testing and evaluation system on the other. The legislation would allow school districts and unions to negotiate performance review systems that help teachers grow professionally while meeting the unique needs of their students. It also gives school districts needed flexibility to curtail testing, especially in the early grades, and bars standardized test scores from becoming a part of students’ permanent records.
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.