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News stories tagged with "teachers"

Canton Central School.
Canton Central School.

Schools worry about the costs of Race to the Top

Schools are getting ready to open for the year. And this fall most have some new obligations. New York was awarded nearly $700 million from the federal government as part of President Obama's Race to the Top education program. Now districts are gearing up to put the new mandates into practice.

Stephen Todd is assistant superintendent of the St. Lawrence and Lewis BOCES, which serves 18 school districts in Lewis and St. Lawrence counties. He says there are three major pieces to Race to the Top.

First, changing the core curriculum in math and English classes. "Instead of trying to teach a mile wide and an inch deep, let's teach what's essential and teach it really, really well. Instead of trying to read everything under the sun, let's make sure what we are reading, we are reading carefully and closely and deeply."

Second, says Todd: data analysis. In the past, he says, schools kept statistics about students and classrooms, but the analysis came only after the school year was over.

Todd says that's about to change: "Instead of doing an autopsy, let's do a physical. Part way through the year, we'll look at the patient. The individual student, the collective group, whether it be classroom or building. Let's see what's working, what's not working. Let's make mid course corrections, that allow us if there are problems to fix those and save the patient. So we're not doing an autopsy later, we're treating the patient as it goes along."

The third major piece of race to the top has to do with keeping closer track of teacher performance. Julie Grant visited the Canton Central Schools to find out what's changing with evaluations, and she found that both teachers and administrators are concerned about the cost in time and money.  Go to full article
Weíve tried to be extremely reasonable. We arenít going for the Wisconsin, nuclear war approach.

Tax cap could prompt union, management clash

The prospect of a property tax cap could heighten tensions between workers and management at public schools in the state, as both sides gear up to fight over shrinking revenues and resources.

Karen Dewitt reports from Albany.  Go to full article
They didnít have to do it...and the board appreciates it and I want to believe the community will appreciate it as well.

Teachers step up to help school budgets

School across the North Country finalized their budget plans last week. Now they go before the voters on Tuesday, May 17.

Most spending plans raise taxes and cut staff and programs. But the situation could have been worse if teachers didn't help out.

According to New York State United Teachers, at least 200 local teachers' unions - or about a third statewide - accepted contract concessions or restructuring to give more money to their school budgets.

Pressure to do so came from the highest levels of state government, and some say teachers didn't give enough. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Budget protesters plan camp-in in Albany

Teachers, public workers, renters, health care advocates and college students are packing sleeping bags and toothbrushes in preparation for a massive protest of state budget cuts at the Capitol. The demonstrators from various groups across the state plan an overnight camp-in starting this afternoon to protest Governor Andrew Cuomo's plan to close a $10 billion budget gap with cuts in education and health care spending and state worker layoffs. Organizers expect up to 1,000 people to participate in a variety of events.

Meanwhile, lawmakers passed the first state budget bills last night, and say they are still hoping for an on time budget. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article
They want to oppose the cuts politically, so what do they say? ĎIím going to hurt your child.'

Cuomo defends education cuts

The fight between Cuomo and school districts flared up when Governor Cuomo delivered a stern lecture to schools, who are complaining about the governor's proposed budget cuts to education, saying they are playing a "game" and issuing empty "threats". Karen Dewitt reports.  Go to full article
This is not acceptable for our community to cut our young energetic teachers who are our next generation of community leaders.

Tri-Lakes teachers, supporters look for equity in job cuts

School districts across the North Country are working to assemble their budgets for the next school year.

Faced with rising expenses, looming state aid reductions and the possibility of a tax levy cap, many districts are planning sweeping cuts that may include staff and teacher layoffs.

That threat has left many teachers on edge, wondering whether their jobs are secure.

In Saranac Lake, where the school district is considering layoffs for the second consecutive year, a large group of teachers showed up at a school board meeting this week to deliver a statement to school officials.

Chris Knight has details.  Go to full article
I don't think it's unreasonable to say that seniority can't be the sole criterion.

Opposing bills for NYS "last in first out" teacher policy

The push to change teacher hiring rules to end the policy of last hired first fired got a boost when Governor Andrew Cuomo introduced a bill to extend the proposal to all schools in the state. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

Critics of Cuomo's budget plan push millionaires' tax

There's just six weeks until the New York State budget is due, and groups affected by Governor Andrew Cuomo's proposed $10 billion in cuts have begun stepping up their efforts to win public support for alternatives, like extending a tax on the rich. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

Teachers union launches ads

A major New York State union is going on the air with televisions ads to try to convince state lawmakers to continue a tax on the wealthy instead of adopting Governor Cuomo's billion and half dollars in school aid cuts. Karen Dewitt reports.  Go to full article

Lt Governor defends proposed school aid cuts

In a move that veteran lawmakers called "unprecedented", Governor Andrew Cuomo sent his Lieutenant Governor, Robert Duffy, to defend his proposed school aid cuts to a joint hearing of the legislature's education and fiscal committees. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

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