New York Department of Education

CUPROF

A major part of Common Core learning standards is a standardized testing system. A system that many have taken issue with.

“I’m all for setting the bar high, but you are setting the bar so high that you are going to defeat a group of people and they’re going to drop out of school,” said parent Lisa Arnone. “As a middle school teacher I already hear them talking. They say ‘they’ll never pass those tests and they’re done.’ And that will be a shame that they will be defeated by these tests.”

Thomas Favre-Bulle / via Flickr

A new assessment for students seeking teacher certification in New York state has been causing controversy. Implementation of the educative teacher performance assessment, known as edTPA, has been delayed. But some are saying the assessment still has unresolved issues.

The new assessment was scheduled to become a requirement for teacher certification on May 1. But the New York State Board of Regents made a last-minute decision to implement a safety net for students who fail the edTPA, so they can still earn initial certification.

There are more than a dozen Syracuse public schools that are staring down major changes or closure in the near future, much like what three city schools are going through this year.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Both the Syracuse school district and state education officials are being hush about the future of one of the city's elementary schools, possibly because the district is still scrambling to come up with a plan, as sources have indicated to WRVO.

Under state policy for chronically underperforming schools, Delaware Elementary School must be drastically overhauled or shuttered.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

The state Department of Education has given the Syracuse City School District two extra weeks to come up with plans to phase out two underperforming schools in the city.

A letter dated Feb. 27 - and provided to WRVO Tuesday - from the state education department to Syracuse superintendent Sharon Contreras included an April 18 deadline for plans. A spokesperson for the education department gave WRVO a second letter dated March 4 that extends the deadline to April 30.

The Syracuse City School District is working on plans to phase out one of its high schools and two elementary schools, under state requirements to overhaul chronically underperforming public schools.

Fowler High School, Hughes Elementary and Delaware Elementary schools have been below state standards for three year, earning the designation of "priority schools," and now the district must overhaul or close them before the 2014-2015 school year.

Ellen Abbott/WRVO file photo

In classrooms across New York, students are being taught under the Common Core learning standards, requirements that specify what students should know in English Language Arts and math based on grade level.

Students are expected to read and more thoroughly analyze nonfiction text as part of the English requirement. In math, students must have a deeper understanding of concepts and memorize certain formulas.

Jon Lim / Flickr

As the Syracuse City School District goes into its budget process, it’s looking at a $24 million spending gap, a revenue problem stemming from years of stagnant state aid in the face of rising educational costs.

The District’s Chief Financial Officer, Suzanne Slack, decided to name this year’s budget report after a weather event. She saw a news story about frigid temperatures this winter caused by the Polar Vortex.

James F Clay / Flickr

The leaders of the New York state legislature are urging the state Board of Regents to delay the effects of the new federal Common Core standards for at least another two years.

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver is asking the state Board of Regents and the state Education Department to slow down their rapid adoption of the Common Core standards. Currently, the results of student scores on the new high stakes testing will be used to evaluate teachers this year, but Silver says that should be delayed for another two years.

Tom Magnarelli/WRVO

New York State Education Commissioner John King was in Syracuse last night at public broadcaster WCNY for a community forum on the Common Core education reform. King tried to address the controversy over the rollout of the program.  

About 160 people made up of mostly teachers and parents of students were fairly unanimous in their disapproval of the rollout of Common Core standards reform for kindergarten through 12th grade.

Charles Lane / WRVO

New York Education Commissioner John King visited a Long Island elementary school earlier this week, where he met privately with educators to talk about the state’s new, more rigorous education standards called Common Core. 

The meeting came after King canceled several public events following a raucous PTA meeting in Poughkeepsie last week. At that meeting, parents lashed out at King using insults and curse words.

Gates Foundation

It’s an initiative that aims to boost student interest in Science, Technology, Math and Engineering across the state. The Master Teachers program also hopes to ensure teachers perform at their highest level.

More than 250 current math and science teachers will be chosen from the Mid-Hudson, North Country, central New York and western New York regions to participate in the program, where they’ll mentor undergraduate education students and early career teachers.

Mohawk Valley school districts consider merger

Oct 17, 2012

With dropping enrollments and less money coming from the state, many school districts across New York are looking into joining forces. That is the case in the Mohawk Valley near Utica, where a school merger is on the ballot this week.