This matters because adopting these and other proposed measures by Hoyt would greatly enhance New York's competitive position for federal Race to the Top funds, which could amount to hundreds of millions of new dollars for the state. In fact, the bill contains numerous provisions that parallel President Obama's education agenda for states.
Governor Paterson, last week, just proposed $5 billion in budget reductions over the next two years, including nearly half a billion dollars in school aid cuts this year. He's called for the state legislature to return later this month to act on his proposals. Yet, a spokesman for him has taken no position on the Hoyt legislation, though he told the Assemblyman privately to "go for it." Swell.
It's one thing not to have a position on the bill, but usually gubernatorial spokesmen will tell the press on a new proposal, "we're studying it," which would have been a more apt response, especially if he's already been encouraging Hoyt to put this together.
It's significant how seriously many states are taking this Race to the Top competition. New York is not one of them. Assemblyman Hoyt is pointing the way. Now, the legislature plans to return to session shortly. New York has both a financial crisis and a education crisis, judging by the NAEP scores discrediting New York's test results. The time to act is coalescing.
The Governor needs to be a little bolder and get behind this Hoyt measure --now. What reason remains for him to not?
for The Chalkboard
Disclaimer: The Chalkboard is hosted by the New York Charter Schools Association (NYCSA) as a place where members, public education advocates and others can view and respond to informed commentary on timely public education and charter school issues. The views expressed here are not necessarily the official views of the NYCSA, its board, or of any of its individual charter school members. Anyone who claims otherwise is violating the spirit and purpose of this blog. To comment on anything you read here, or to offer tips, advice, comments, or complaints. please contact TheChalkboard.