Statement of New York State School Boards Association Executive Director Robert Schneider on the State of the State
CONTACT: David Albert
Governor Andrew Cuomo proposed some laudable goals – such as closing the achievement gap, enhancing school safety, advancing net neutrality protections and expanding pre-K and afterschool programs – in his State of the State address. These are all goals that school board members can rally around, to be sure.
We are encouraged by the governor’s promise of increased funding to support some of these initiatives, as school boards expect to have limited ability to raise additional local revenue if the property tax cap is again below two percent.
We cautiously await the governor’s budget proposal. With adequate funding from the state, school boards are optimistic that they can continue to make progress toward closing the achievement gap, creating safe havens for learning, addressing the vaping epidemic and meeting the growing mental health needs of students.
One easy way lawmakers can improve school safety is by allowing school boards to make decisions about whether schools should be used as public polling places, when boards determine that holding elections in schools presents a safety threat or a disruption to learning.
We look forward to continuing our partnership with the governor and lawmakers so that we may best prepare students to meet the challenges of the future through a vibrant educational system.