Monday, January 04, 2010

N.Y. must get in the race: $700 million in aid hangs on speedy school reform by Albany

An editorial in the NY Daily News on the latest in NY state:

New York State has just one month to get into the running for as much as $700 million in federal education aid - and damn well better make sure it does.

Gov. Paterson and the Legislature face a Jan. 19 deadline for enacting sweeping school reform legislation to become eligible for a share of the Obama administration's Race to the Top money.

This is one task that must not die by Albany dysfunction. There will be hell to pay should the Legislature reject the smart, necessary measures that are required for qualifying or fail to act in time.

…To their credit, Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch, state Education Commissioner David Steiner and Deputy Commissioner John King have gone beyond the Race to the Top mandates. They also want the authority to shut down chronically failing schools - or entire districts - and, in extraordinary cases, to order outside organizations to run them.

They want districts to be able to offer incentive pay for science, math and special education teachers. And they want the power to winnow out incompetent teachers by streamlining an endless disciplinary process.

When legislators come back into session after new year's, they'll have less than three weeks to make these crucial changes in education law. Many states have already changed theirs. But as they've been racing to the top, New York has stood still. Albany must get moving. And fast.


N.Y. must get in the race: $700 million in aid hangs on speedy school reform by Albany

Friday, December 18th 2009, 4:00 AM

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