State of Education: Looking ahead to 2013 in education
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
As we begin 2013, we thought we'd take a look at some education topics that are on the radar for the New Year. We start with the education commission report, which touches upon expanding pre-kindergarten. Tim Kremer from the NYS School Board Association says if done right, it's worth it.
"They'll have extraordinary success later on and it will avoid a lot of problems later, but the payoff, the return on investment as a lot of people refer to it is very high for early childhood education, so we would love to see that happen," Kremer said.
Speaking of money and budgets, we have the fiscal cliff and as of now, negotiations are still on the table
Kremer said, “And if they don't get that done, we have here in this state about $164 million in federal aid that is in jeopardy."
That breaks down to about $243,000 per school district. There's also school evaluations, as the State Education Department reports, all but nine districts have submitted their performance evaluations
"And you have to have it for both your teachers and your principals and they have different unions and these things need to be negotiated,” Kremer said.
And if a district doesn't submit and get approved by January 17th, they risk losing their state aid increase for this fiscal year. As the governor states, to accomplish this, a deadline can help.
"They passed a law that said teacher evaluations had to happen years ago. Well, they passed the law because they wanted to qualify for federal funding, they got the federal funding and never implemented the evaluation system," Governor Andrew Cuomo said.
There's also part of the commission report that refers to a "teachers' bar exam"
Kremer said, "I think when they talk about a bar exam, they're talking about somebody who's been through that training program, received their proper degrees and credentials and now they have to take this exam to enter into the profession."
We also turned to a complicated issue: Gun control and school safety. Kremer says a school resource officer is the right way to go, but arming teachers is a different story.
"I don't want teachers feeling as if their professional development program is gonna target shooting. That would be something that sends a wrong message to kids, that the only way that the only way they're going to survive in this world is to arm themselves," Kremer said.
The governor's State of State speech is also coming up January 9th, where topics are likely to be further addressed.