Statement of Timothy G. Kremer, Executive Director of the New York State School Boards Association, on the 2014 State of the State
FOR RELEASE: January 8, 2014
CONTACT: Al Marlin
(518) 783-3723 or (518) 527-6933 cell
On Twitter: @nyschoolboards
The governor’s State of the State address today presented several promising initiatives for schools. Among them: a $2 billion “Smart Schools” bond referendum, universal prekindergarten, and rewards for highly effective teachers.
These are all sound proposals.
In today’s world, information moves at lightning-fast pace. Schools must be properly equipped to handle this flow in order to effectively educate students. As described, the governor’s Smart Schools referendum could represent a major step in helping districts get up-to-speed.
School boards support a universal prekindergarten program: one that is not tied to competitive grants and offers every district the opportunity to participate. We only ask that the governor’s soon-to-be-released budget provide sufficient state aid for schools to maintain or add quality early childhood education programs.
Finally, whether lawmakers adopt a circuit breaker, a state reimbursement of property tax increases, or some other means to keep property taxes in check, we urge them to do so in a way that allows schools to raise the local revenues that they need to ensure each and every child a quality education.
We look forward to working with the governor, legislative leaders and the State Education Department to improve our schools.