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Rogan Slams Cuomo's New Education Commission

Huntington school board president says more representation needed from local levels.

The make up of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's newly formed education reform commission drew fire from the president of the Huntington Union Free School District this week.

At a school board meeting Monday at , Emily Rogan said the 20-member New NY Education Reform Commission lacked sufficient representation from local levels.

"I just wanted to go on the record and say I think it's horrible," said Rogan. "How do you look at education reform without getting input from the people that are actually dealing with what we are dealing with on a day to day basis?"

Bringing together nationally-recognized education, community and business leaders, Cuomo has stated the group will meet multiple times to gather input and information from across the state before submiting reform recomendations to the governor's office by Dec. 1, 2012.

"The commission will examine the current structure of the state's education system including teacher recruitment and performance, student achievement, education funding and costs, parent and family engagement, problems facing high-need districts, and the best use of technology in the classroom," said Cuomo, in a press release.

Rogan said it "bugged" her that Cuomo's commission appointees consist mainly of representatives from higher education and big organizations but nobody who is in the trenches doing what local school board members do. 

Currently running for a third term on the school board, Rogan said the outcome of the commission is something everyone should be following.

Cuomo named former Citigroup and Time Warner Chairman Richard Parsons to lead the commission. Membership includes: 

  • Richard (Dick) Parsons, retired chairman of Citigroup
  • Randi Weingarten, president, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO
  • Geoffrey Canada, founder and CEO, Harlem Children's Zone
  • Irma Zardoya, president and CEO, NYC Leadership Academy
  • Elizabeth Dickey, president Bank Street College of Education
  • Mary Anne Schmitt-Carey, president, Say Yes to Education
  • Lisa Belzberg, founder and chair emeritus, PENCIL
  • Michael Rebell, co-founder and executive director, Campaign for Educational Equity
  • Karen Hawley Miles, president and executive director, Education Resource Strategies
  • José Luis Rodríguez, founder and CEO, Hispanic Information and Telecommunications Network, Inc.
  • Sara Mead, associate partner, Bellwether Education Partners
  • Eduardo Martí, vice chancellor of community colleges, CUNY
  • Thomas Kane, professor of education and economics, Harvard Graduate School of Education
  • Jean Desravines, CEO, New Leaders 
  • Michael Horn, executive director and co-founder, InnoSight Institute
  • Chancellor Nancy Zimpher, SUNY 
  • Chancellor Matthew Goldstein, CUNY
  • John B. King, Jr., commissioner, New York State Education Department
  • Sen. John Flanagan, chair, Senate Education Committee 
  • State Assembly Member Cathy Nolan
Hikerr May 09, 2012 at 10:04 AM
Are we not surprised? Randi Weingarten, president, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO. Just what we need get the unions involved. This is going to go nowhere and cost us more money in concessions.
JSC May 09, 2012 at 01:35 PM
A commission packed full of higher ed and city ed representatives and many other groups I've never heard of. What exactly is Cuomo expecting from this group? At the very least I would have wanted a representative from NYSSBA (school board assoc). The city will be moaning about not enough funding and the colleges will say they'll do something new for teacher training - none of which will affect LI. How many people are going to go into education now? Teachers are being laid off left and right down here and if jobs do come back, they will be the ones getting their positions back first - not any new graduates. Mandate relief is number one Mr. Cuomo - you know this and yet nothing has been done about it for years now. Then we have to stop this testing insanity that has totally changed how teachers teach and has put so much pressure on little children, with no benefit in sight. How about that for education reform?
Amy Waldhauer November 27, 2012 at 01:16 PM
I see people from CUNY, SUNY, and Harvard. These are the people who have to clean up the mess when the students graduate from high school. Eduardo Marti in particular has to deal with bringing his students up to a level where they can handle college-level work. I think it is entirely appropriate for them to be on the board. The people from industry also have to deal with educating their workers. Letting them provide input will help them to find qualified workers, and so our kids will be more likely to get a job when they grow up. Right now, they often hire foreign workers who were educated overseas because they are better prepared to do the work. Finally, Randi Weingarten is there to make sure the teachers have a voice. The people in the trenches, the teachers, have to deliver what the committee plans and Weingarten is there to make sure it is realistic. She is the head of the union and it is her job to represent her members. I am sure all of us have had a boss make an unrealistic promise that some work will get done, and made us do the work. Weingarten will make sure that doesn't happen to the teachers.

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