School budget votes add up to wins and losses (Updated)

The oft-used phrase from ABC Sports about the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat so applies to school budget votes. The thrill of victory is for the vast majority of school budgets across the state that passed. NYSUT President Dick Iannuzzi called the successful voting day “a resoundingly positive message about public education. […]

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Vote on school budgets today!

My school district’s proposed budget only increases .74 percent but, because the tax levy is going up 5.4 percent, 60 percent of voters need to approve it today for it to pass. The tax levy on local taxpayers has gone up because the South Colonie schools have lost $13.4 million in state aid over the […]

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Heartache for Oklahoma (Updated)

At 11:34 a.m. Check this link from the AFL-CIO on disaster relief efforts. Horrifying news last night about the tornado that devastated a suburb of Oklahoma City, killing more than 24 people including a number of school children. If you have relatives or friends in that area, our thoughts are with them. Here’s a link […]

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Feel Good Friday: Vote May 21

You hold the future of hundreds of thousands of students across our state. On Tuesday, you get to say whether their school budgets should pass or fail. In so many communities, there are many feel good events (regardless of what some politicians might be telling you.) Here’s photo gallery of just one school district’s efforts […]

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School boards agree: Put the brakes on high-stakes testing (Updated 2x)


School boards across the state are passing resolutions asking the State Education Department to ease its reliance on standardized test scores in making decisions ranging from student placement to school accountability status to teacher evaluations. The West Irondequoit school board in Monroe County went a step further. Click here for the full letter signed by the […]

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They will be there!


Members from the Yorktown Congress of Teachers recently received the gift of a chocolate bar from their local union. Here’s a photo of the front of a special wrapper for the candy bar. On the back is the following message: The YCT will join with our brothers and sisters from all over New York state […]

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Parent perspective: It’s just a test – even in Illinois


As we’ve heard from AFT President Randi Weingarten, the implementation of the Common Core Standards and the use of high-stakes tests to make high-stakes decisions about students and teachers isn’t only a problem in New York but across the country. Kelly Wickham, a school administrator and parent from Springfield, Ill., offers her perspective. If you’re […]

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May 21 Matters: One week to go until school budget votes

It’s now one week before most school districts submit their annual budgets to voters. NYSUT United brought you the news more than two weeks ago that fewer districts are trying to override the tax cap and that many are staying well within the cap. That story was based on a NYSUT survey of districts before […]

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Another apple; another story


This time of year the apple trees are stunning. Delicate, paper-like pink flowers crown the crooked branches in a halo of soft color. Once the blossoms drop, it is time for farm workers to sort out the branches of the apple trees to make more room for the apples to receive the sun, and to […]

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Sherburne-Earlville TA stands against high-stakes testing

Jennifer Moore, president of the Sherburne-Earlville TA, notes her members got national attention for their stance against high-stakes testing last week. “I’ve received a number of emails from all across the country, thanking us for what we’ve done and even calling us heroes,” she said. “Some even want to buy our shirts!” You might recall […]

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