NYSUT here, there and everywhere

NYSUT President Dick Iannuzzi will be talking to broadcast journalist Susan Arbetter at 11 this morning on her “Capitol Pressroom” radio program, heard around the state at various times. No surprises as to the topics: teacher/principal evaluation and property tax cap. Our friend Frank Mauro of the Fiscal Policy Institute will also be on the program to talk tax caps. To listen live online, go to www.thecapitolpressroom.org at 11 a.m.

Meanwhile, statewide media has been doing its job, getting “the other side” — NYSUT — when the Regents and Albany lawmakers put forward bad policy. Dick and some of the other officers have been all over television, radio and newspapers explaining to the public that the bad evaluation system approved by the Regents and the bad tax cap bill making its way through the Legislature will hurt kids and communities.

Some of the many newspapers with which we’ve shared our message are the New York Times, Newsday, Buffalo News, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, Albany Times Union, Utica Observer-Dispatch, as well as the Associated Press. Just to name a few.

NYSUT will continue to get the word out as part of an aggressive advocacy effort on behalf of students and New York’s future.

One Comment

  1. Dan McConnell May 29, 2011 at 8:54 pm #

    Mr. Iannuzzi,

    I write this as an open letter to you, as leader of our union, and to all members of the union.
    I fear this is too little too late. I fear the attackers approached us with the offer of a seat at the table while they planned to strangle us from behind. I feel like we were led like lambs to some make-believe land of cooperation while our profession was being slandered loudly in the media.

    We need to advocate effectively for teachers regarding the unrealistic, and unclear expectations that are an obvious campaign to break unions, “clear house” of experienced professionals and recreate a “standardized” and “cost effective” approach to educating kids-despite the fact that kids are not standardized.

    The expectation of “career and college ready” students and data holding teachers accountable in a public way should only come with a unified call for the same public measuring of politicians who will be made responsible for keeping college affordable for these students and creating real careers with at least median income that will help pay back tuitions and support communities and the economy. Families have suffered for decades under the business model that has promoted corporate profit over community health, and today’s more difficult students are a reflection of that condition disintegrating the family supports that promote school success. Data doctors love to ignore this impact and try to pretend that standardized and “value added” measures adjust for the factors that bring kids to school with baggage and issues weighing them down-but we all know the schools where kids are most likely to succeed. They’re the schools where families are together, own homes, have jobs, and send their kids to school valuing themselves and success.
    State Ed’s current path pays no respect to these facts, history, or the truth of what is really behind the quiet plan to break what is left protecting the middle class.

    The general public needs to know what is going on. We need to demand our newspapers and TV programs report fully on what is happening. Parents should know what their kids are being put through with these tests and grading systems that appear to continually change in order to make schools look bad. Also, we need to demand that comparisons of US schools to schools in other countries should come with a comparisons of teacher pay/respect, social structures and nation-wide income distribution.

    Thank you for your efforts.

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