*Heroes or vulnerable incumbents?: the members of the Assembly's Education Committee
NYS Public School Parents blog addresses the fight-back against the inBloom data mining system (using a SLDS is mandated by Race to the Top) associated with the Bill Gates-engineering unconstitutional Common Core, standards turned curriculum, one writer is appropriate redubbing national standards, which parents and students detest, therapists deplore, and asks why not such successful resistance in New York State.
First, in Illinois the political leaders listen a little bit more to the people. But in New York State it is like 19th Century Prussia with Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch and NYS Education Commissioner John King not deigning to listen to those outside the privileged top class. Tisch, King, Governor Andrew Cuomo know they can get away with this. King and Tisch are only accountable to Regents. And the latter themselves are insulated, only accountable to the legislature, and only up for re-election in 2015, a year after the 2014 state elections. As the New York Times indicated in an article on the influence of the shadowy Regents Fellows, an unaccountable private clique that sets education policy behind the scenes, the Regents are split into a Bloombergian metrics-faith-based faction, and a more traditionally educator faction. The lag time between now and 2015 will give them time to regroup or at least plot to thwart a popular mobilization against them.
NYS Assembly Education Committee chair Catherine Nolan has distinguished her self in speaking for the public schools at out-going New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg's sham Panel for Educational Policy hearings. Surely, she must smell the acrid stench of the Common Core cafe. Thus, if she leads the Assembly charge against the Common Core and assists in the formation of a Senate caucus against the Core (in that chamber the parties are more evenly divided and it is there that the CCSS might be thwarted more quickly), she will be well positioned to catapult to the next political level, a US House of Representatives seat.
But which seat would she want? Not her own turf, her ally Joseph Crowley is there; not the Forest Hills/Flushing seat, new frosh Grace Meng is there. Money bags Carolyn Maloney of Upper East Side/Astoria would be a tough one to beat with her resources. Yet, the perniciously anti-Muslim Peter King would be a perfect target to challenge. Nolan, start shopping for a home in his district!
Sadly, while the Chicago Teachers Union has taken wise stands on inBloom and Common Core, in New York City we have the United Federation of Teachers leadership which as recently as this summer staunchly supported the Common Core. The UFT's president Michael Mulgrew's approach to co-opt the Common Core anxiety: just complain about missing curriculum and call for postponing associated high-stakes tests, note: not calling out of principle to reject the standards and the ancillary high stakes tests. Mulgrew, will you call on the next mayor to pull New York City out of inBloom's jaws?
Postscript: a Congressional seat is Nolan's to walk away with. The following are members of the New York State Assembly Education Committee, their district number and main communities in their district. Note how --aside from New York City, Long Island, as well as (by coincidence or design?) communities that were the site of tumultous town halls over the Common Core, figures prominently in the locales represented by the education committee. And to underscore the salience of this issue, we call attention to Perdido Street School's report that the Common Core has become a lightning from for voter discomfort and some state politicians are already running scared. The legislature members are sitting ducks for challenges, as the legislature failed to pass provisions that would have protected student privacy. Challengers, you want and issue to take down representatives? Study the Common Core and inBloom fiascos.
PPS: NYSAPE developed an essential list of state legislators for pressuring them to support the removal of John King, in the webpage, "Change NYS Board of Regents Elections - ACTION ALERT!"
Catherine Nolan, Chair, 37 – Long Island City, Sunnyside and Ridgewood
Carmen Arroy, 84 - Bronx
Michael Benedetto, 82 - Bronx
James Brennan, 44 - Brooklyn
Karim Camara, 43 - Brooklyn
Barbara Clark, 33 - Queens Village and SE Queens
Jane Corwin, 144 – Clarence & NE suburbs of Niagara Falls and Buffalo
Steve Englebright, 4 – Coram, East Setauket, Stony Brook, Port Jefferson
Al Graf, 5 – Centereach, Farmingville, Holbrook, Ronkonkoma
Carl Heastie, 83 - Bronx
Earlene Hooper, 18 – Hempstead, Roosevelt, Freeport
Kieran Michael Lalor, 105 – hamlets east of Poughkeepsie: Wappinger Falls, Fishkill, Hopewell Junction
Peter Lopez, 102 – Cobleskill, Catskill, Saugerties
William Magnarelli, 102 – Syracuse and NW suburbs
Alan Maisel, 59 - Brooklyn
Shelley Mayer, 90 – Yonkers and towns to the east
David McDonough, 14 – Bellmore and Wantagh
Steven McLaughlin, 107 – Troy and most of Renssalear County
Michael Miller, 38 – Ridgewood and Woodhaven
Joan Millman, 52 - Brooklyn
Daniel O'Donnell, 69 - Manhattan
Amy Paulin, 88 – south White Plains, Scarsdale to New Rochelle
Edward Ra, 19 – Glen Head, Westbury, Mineola, Garden City
Phil Ramos, 6 - Brentwood, Islip and North Bay Shore
Robert Sweeney, 11 – Lindenhurst and other SW Suffolk County towns
Claudia Tenney, 101 – Utica to Walden in Orange County
Fred Thiele, Jr., 1 – Hamptons and Montauk
Matthew Titone, 61 – Staten Island
Michele Titus, 31 – South Ozone Park to Far Rockaway
Harvey Weisenberg- 5 towns, Oceanside and Long Beach