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New_Changes_Planned_For_The_New_York_Schools_By_The_State_s_New_Governor

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					Title:
New Changes Planned For The New York Schools By The State’s New Governor

Word Count:
643

Summary:
Many states are experiencing the shock of new governors who are breaking
the mold of former elected officials. In past generations, new state
governors created a transitional governing period during which they and
their staffs could get up to speed on the operations and issues of their
states’ governments. In 2007, many new governors are hitting the ground
running. Transitional periods seem to be nonexistent with the newly
elected governors barely settling into the governor’s...


Keywords:
new york schools, schools, new york


Article Body:
Many states are experiencing the shock of new governors who are breaking
the mold of former elected officials. In past generations, new state
governors created a transitional governing period during which they and
their staffs could get up to speed on the operations and issues of their
states’ governments. In 2007, many new governors are hitting the ground
running. Transitional periods seem to be nonexistent with the newly
elected governors barely settling into the governor’s residence before
making changes within their states.

New York’s new democratic governor is such an elected official. Governor
Eliot Spitzer was swore in on January 1st, taking his oath of office and
delivering his inaugural speech. By the end of January, he already has
formulated new plans to put the New York schools and its students back on
the road to success.

Spitzer’s major push is his series of “Contracts for Excellence”, which
are methods and programs to improve the New York schools and the
education its students receive.

One initiative will provide a significant increase in state aid to poorly
performing districts within the New York schools. Of course, this
increase in funding has strings attached that the governor believes will
set a new course for success for the problem schools. New York schools
receiving the extra funding must justify any improvements to their
facilities. They also must set goals for their New York schools’
students’ performance. If these New York schools meet their goals, they
will receive special recognition for their success, along with the
possibility of receiving even more funding. Failing to meet their goals,
however, means these New York schools risk funding penalties and the
removal of superintendents, principals, and even school district board
members.
A second initiative from Spitzer is report cards for New York schools’
leadership. In a recent speech at the State Education building in Albany,
Spitzer stated that currently only New York schools’ students and their
schools receive report cards. Soon, the New York schools’ leadership will
begin receiving annual report cards that will trac k the performance of
district superintendents and individual school principals from year -to-
year. For the first time, the New York schools will be able to rigorously
compare and evaluate their performance with the report cards following
them from one school district to another within the state of New York.

Other initiatives under Spitzer’s Contracts for Excellence for the New
York schools are:

• A universal pre-kindergarten for all four-year-olds within the New York
schools’ area by 2010. All children deserve the opportunity to get a head
start on education through this uniquely designed preschool period of
acclimatization.

• The class sizes in the New York schools are much too large, making
students in large classrooms difficult to teach and learning next to
impossible for the children. Spitzer sees smaller class sizes as a must
for educational success within the New York schools.

• Spitzer wants the cap on public charter schools within the New York
schools to be raised from the current 100 to 250. Many see these public
school academies as the solution to poor performing traditional New York
schools. The charter schools also will be required to meet their own
“Contract for Excellence” every five years in order to remain open.

• The governor wants to appoint a “Children’s Cabinet” to assist with and
guide the improvement efforts of the New York schools. The cabinet will
be comprised of regents, education experts, and the state education
commissioner.

Lastly, Spitzer announced his appointment of Manny Rivera as his new
deputy secretary for education. Rivera is the former superintendent of
schools in Rochester, New York.

Though Spitzer did not provide any details of how his proposals will be
implemented or from where the funding will come, he did note that his
plans will be meticulously formulated in detail during the creation of
the state’s budget proposal to the legislature.

				
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