Sunday, February 02, 2014

Governor Andy and the Unions

Last month at the Delegate Assembly, Jamaica HS chapter leader James Eterno introduced a resolution to withhold support from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo in his bid for a second term. This makes a lot of sense to me. After all, Governor Cuomo ran for his first term on a platform of taking on the unions. I'm a lifelong Democrat, and he was the first Democrat for whom I declined to vote. With Democrats like that, who needs Republicans?

Since then, Governor Andy has supported and implemented a 2% tax cap for school budgets. While this does not affect NYC, it affects almost every other district in the state. When I visited my kid's guidance counselor last school year, she couldn't promise that the courses my daughter wanted would even exist come September. Yet Governor Andy not only opposes a millionaire tax that might supplement lost revenue, but also finds the audacity to compare said opposition to his father's stand against the death penalty. Do we really need a governor who passionately defends the bank accounts of the uber-wealthy against the education of our children?

As if that were not enough, Governor Andy continues to defend the junk-science based APPR system, sitting mute against John King's insistence that Buffalo use it to fire teachers even if it's untested and unreliable. In fact, as King and Tisch wandered the state in their fake listening tour, as parents overwhelmingly condemned their implementation of Common Core, we've heard very little from our esteemed governor on what action he'll take. He'll appoint a panel to study it. Weren't the voices of outraged parents and teachers all over the state evidence enough? Or do we need to make sure the conclusions are OK with DFER, Students First, Moskowitz backers, and whoever else wields the suitcases full of cash that lubricate our political process?

It's certainly true that Cuomo took a stand against the odious LIFO legislation that would have affected only NYC teachers. But he didn't really say he supported an objective form of layoffs, rather expressing support for the end of LIFO, and suggesting it wasn't practical to pass such legislation at that time. Rather, he supported the junk-science evaluation system, a system by which he still stands, despite no evidence whatsoever that it is effective in proving anything.

As for evidence, that's something our governor has little use for when dealing with education. His most recent stroke of brilliance is a merit-pay scheme, despite the fact it's an old idea that's never worked anywhere.

It's disappointing that the Delegate Assembly, overwhelmingly dominated by chapter leaders who signed a loyalty oath to act in the interests of union leaders rather than members, wants to leave the door open to endorsing an anti-union opportunist who cares not at all about us or our children.
blog comments powered by Disqus