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On Board Online • January 22, 2018
By Cathy Woodruff
It's shortly after lunch at Hamilton Elementary School in Schenectady, and Ashleigh Caster's students are stretched out on the floor of her second-grade classroom, eyes closed.
A recording of a woman's voice leads them through a soothing meditation: "Take a breath in through your nose ... Feel how your tummy gets like a big balloon ... Imagine you are lying on the grass in a beautiful park ... a very friendly butterfly comes to say 'hi' ."
Next, it's time for a lively round of rhythmic movement set to some silly lyrics - "Banana, banana, meatball!" - before turning to the first lesson of the afternoon.
January 16, 2018
Earlier today, Governor Cuomo released his proposed 2018-19 state budget. The Executive proposes a $769 increase in education funding. This is a 3% increase in education spending. The allowable growth under his self-imposed link to personal income growth would have been half that at 1.5%
$769 increase in education (3%)
January 16, 2018
The Division of the Budget has released the school aid runs that support the Executive's 2018-19 budget proposal. District by district information can be accessed below.
Join NYSSBA's Governmental Relations team to get the details on the Executive budget next Tuesday, January 23rd at noon.
The governor’s budget proposal would constrain the ability of school board members to do the jobs they were elected to do.
The proposed school aid increase is simply inadequate to meet the needs of students – many of whom have special needs that require significant resources. To put school funding needs into perspective, the governor’s proposed $288 million increase in unrestricted foundation aid is about one-fifth of the $1.4 billion increase in foundation aid requested by NYSSBA.
January 11, 2018
On Monday, legislative leaders presented their legislative agendas. Despite the difficulties of the current fiscal environment, Speaker Heastie renewed his conference's commitment to funding education and indicated he wanted to "build on the success" of the past years, specifically in relation to Foundation Aid. The Senate focused more on tax relief, including reducing current mandates and prohibiting future unfunded mandates.
The Governor has announced he will release his 2018-19 Executive Budget on Tuesday, January 16th at 1:00 p.m..
Following the release, the NYSSBA Governmental Relations team will provide an overview and analysis, as well as school aid runs as soon as they become available.
January 4, 2018
Yesterday, Governor Cuomo delivered the 2018 State of the State address. Returning to a more traditional schedule, which he had abandoned in recent years, the Governor delivered the address on the opening day of session separate from the release of the 2018 Executive Budget.
Education issues were given very little time during the speech itself. The actual comments on education policy included:
Governor Cuomo's State of the State speech was short on specifics for public education. We anticipate the upcoming legislative session will be dominated by discussions about state budget deficits and tax restructuring. Worth noting is that the governor never mentioned budget cuts. A few of the education items the governor did propose -- such as funding for prekindergarten, mental health services, and after school programs -- have the potential to make a positive impact on students.
The governor's proposed expansion of Early College High Schools could help students get a jump on their college education and save money by earning college credits in advance.
Members of the New York State School Boards (NYSSBA) elected a new president and a slate of board officers to lead the Association effective Jan. 1, 2018.
William Miller of Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES was elected president of the Association’s board of directors and Fred Langstaff of Eastern Suffolk BOCES was elected 1st vice president. Peggy Zugibe of North Rockland was elected 2nd vice president and Thomas Nespeca of Monroe 1 BOCES was elected treasurer. All were elected to one-year terms
John Redman of Goshen was elected to a two-year term as Area 9 Director of the New York State School Boards Association. As Area 9 Director, Redman represents school districts in Dutchess, Greene, Orange, Sullivan and Ulster.
Since 2000, Redman has been on the Florida Union Free School District Board of Education and is now serving his sixth term. He has served as both president and vice president of the board.
Catherine Lewis of Schenectady was elected to a two-year term as Area 7 Director of the New York State School Boards Association (NYSSBA). As Area 7 Director, Lewis represents school districts in Albany, Columbia, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Warren and Washington counties.
Since 2010, Lewis has served on the Schenectady City School Board of Education.
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