Tuesday, June 3, 2014

New York BATS Press Release Endorsing Howie Hawkins and Brian Jones

More Information Contact:
Dr. Mark Naison, Co-Founder of BATs
Marla Kilfoyle, General Manager, BATs
Badass Teachers Association -  http://www.badassteacher.org/
After a vote of its membership, The New York Badass Teachers Association, an organization of close to 2000 educators which works to elect candidates  committed to defending and preserving public education, announced today its endorsement of Howie Hawkins and Brian Jones who are running on The Green Party platform.

This decision was made because of extreme disillusionment with the current New York Governor, Andrew Cuomo, who has earned an appalling reputation for supporting and in some cases ramming anti-public school legislation through the legislature, among which are the “federally” mandated Common Core Standards, requirements that all teachers in the state be rated on the basis of student test scores; that charter schools be favored over public schools, and  that Common Core aligned tests be administered to the children of the state that have resulted in 70 percent of children be judged “failures” and the state’s ELL and Special Needs students be subject to unconscionable humiliation.
It also reflects our members strong reluctance to support Republican Challenger Rob Astorino, who though he has taken a much welcome stance against Common Core, has aligned himself with the 1%, and with Governor Cuomo, by calling for an end to the state’s cap on charter schools and who has accepted the support of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, one of the nation’s most fervent opponents of collective bargaining and a supporter of school privatization.
By contrast, the Green Party Platform opposes Common Core in the context of a platform that calls for the defense and enhancement of public education in the state, including:

1.       Opt out of Common Core and Race To The Top.
2.       Opt into common standards, curricula, and diagnostic tests written by professional teachers in the schools, not by outside corporate contractors.
3.       Opt into teacher and school evaluation based on collaboration
4.       State legislation to reduce class sizes and caseloads.
  1. Fully funded, full day, and developmentally appropriate Universal Pre-K and Kindergarten with certified and unionized educators.

  1. Opt out of high-stakes testing for students, teachers, and schools.

“The Green Party platform is built around standing up for public education, children, and parents.  The Green Party would lead the way in defending public education, the children who attend public schools, parents of public education students, teachers who teach in public schools, and address how child poverty influences educational outcomes.” said NY BATs Administrator Marla Kilfoyle.
“The Green Party ticket is the only one which is not funded by billionaires or dominated by policies that take power away from teachers, parents and students.  It is the only ticket in the field that opposes all 4 major components of Race to the Top:  Common Core Standards,  Mandatory Closings of “failing schools,” Preference to Charter Schools; and Rating of Teachers on the basis of student test scores ( APPR and VAM).   It represents the future of public education in America; not the terrible so-called “Reform” policies of the past two decades supported by both major parties,” said Dr. Mark Naison, co-founder, Badass Teachers Association
The Green Party presents a platform to parents and teachers that is about children, equity, and equality in education.