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Friday, January 6, 2012

Student Lobbyist????

According to the Albany Times Union, Andrew Cuomo announced in his recent State of the State address that he has added another job title and specific area of responsibility to his duties as Governor of New York: "Student Lobbyist."

"The only group without lobbyists are the students. ... This year, the students do have a lobbyist: I'm taking a second job," he said, as the image changed to his office with a "students' lobbyist" sign on the door."
This proclamation is implicitly insulting to anyone with any connection to a learner in school. Such a statement infers that parents do not advocate for their own children in school, that teachers are not acting in the best interests of learners, and apparently nor are the administrators, staff members, board of education members or the general public that votes on the annual budget that supports education. He suggests a mass indifference to the needs of learners and issues involving the education of children in our state.
Instead of drawing attention to himself as the sole lobbyist for learners, perhaps the Governor could inject some much needed leadership and political capital toward efforts to ensure more equity in the distribution of state aid to public schools. Please read the following essay written by Dr. James N. Baldwin, District Superintendent of the Questar III Boces: . Baldwin raises several critical concerns regarding the manner in which state aid is allocated to schools.

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