Governor Cuomo has once again tapped former Citigroup chairman Richard Parsons to lead his second Commission on education. The first one ended in a report ironically entitled “A Final Action Plan.” I wonder if this means a teacher will be tasked with directing Citigroup’s next $45 billion bailout?
This Commission is comprised a lot of fractured reputations that have privately agreed to do some mending. Let’s be clear, these reputations have taken a well-deserved hit because the parents of 225,000+ children have been screaming for help and these leaders have ignored their call. For many in this Cuomo Common Core group, it is not an act of altruism, but one of self-preservation.
Yet, I remain hopeful that the predetermined solution arrived at by this committee in a few months will present some form of compromise. There is no way these figureheads would risk what little is left of their reputations.
Take for instance AFT President Randi Weingarten. Randi has hitched her hopes and future to the Hillary Clinton bus and there is no way she can afford another misstep- especially in her home state of NY. She robo called for Cuomo, fully supports Common Core testing IN ALL GRADES, stood by UFT President Mulgrew as he threatened to punch anyone in the face that opposed Common Core… I could go on, but considering her role is the President of the teachers’ union, I think that should suffice.
Then there is our new NY Commissioner of Education Elia. She wore out her welcome pretty quickly by insisting parents of the opt out moment just needed to be educated on the matter. She shared some more of her profound thoughts on education when suggesting that the solution for NY’s education problems was to provide students with alarm clocks. She has been a disaster for the champions of Common Core. While she will take on the evaluations that forced former Commissioner King to leave, she doesn’t seem to possess the intellect or the acumen to handle the position. As for her expertise on teacher evaluations, ask her former district- they in financial ruins because of it.
NYSUT leaders have already begun blabbing about the need to obtain curriculum that is tied to the flawed tests… Is this what the students, teachers, and parents of NY truly need? Tying curriculum to tests you cannot see or even speak about??? I guess the cardboard Cuomo cutouts were the best they could do.
Cuomo claims Common Core is headed for a total reboot. Oddly enough, he has chosen 15 people that never had a problem with it to begin with. It is not often that you ask the bull to clean up the mess in the china shop. None have the skill set nor the compassion to handle the task. None have a child that has been impacted by Common Core, testing, or teacher evaluations. None have crafted a vision that promotes excellence in schools, collaboration in the classroom, and a return to the joy of learning to the school house and dinner table.
But stay positive, the players involved have far too much at stake for this to fail- Gov Cuomo included. We can expect mediocre solutions to severe and systemic problems.