Senator Flanagan and John King
Last week, on the first day of school, Senator Flanagan, no friend of education, and NYSED Commissioner John King, who should be fired, visited Hauppauge Middle School and Pines Elementary School together. The purpose of their visit was to
see how well their plans to destroy public education are progressing “observe classes and facilities and talk with students and faculty.”
“I was impressed with the school, where you have an energetic, committed principal [and] teachers who are clearly committed to kids’ success,” King said following his visit to Hauppauge Middle School.
I wonder how many of those teachers who were “energetic” and “committed” got “ineffective” growth scores according to King’s plan? Even the most “energetic” and “committed” can be rated “ineffective” under King’s plan, given the fact that figuring out a growth score is akin to playing “Pin the Tale on the Donkey”.
King, a former history teacher himself, said he was thrilled to see such an engaging experience in which one of the two teachers was dressed in historical attire while discussing public policy issues with his students.
While I am sure it was a great lesson, I wish the teacher was empowered enough to facilitate a lesson where the students could ask the Commissioner and Senator why they were selling their education to the highest bidder. It’s irritating to see teachers putting on a dog and pony show for these phonies rather than standing up for their profession and using the opportunity to explain to King and Flanagan how destructive their policies are to students and teachers. I can’t understand how any public school in New York State makes itself a welcoming place for John King.
“That’s exactly what Common Core is looking for us to do,” Fletcher said. “To pull experiences together instead of learning in little chunks. It’s really looking for bigger ideas and asking kids to make connections to other things.”
It’s also bothersome when you see administrators who simply act as a shill for people like King, who are seeking to destroy their profession. It would be refreshing if more administrators were as courageous as superintendent Joe Rella and principal Carol Burris.
“It was great to hear their excitement about school,” King said. “They were excited about school, about specific classes, about technology class. … That’s always nice to see, when kids are really engaged with school. I could also see how the enrichment activities matter a lot to them, whether the thing they’re most excited about is sports … or music. We’ve got to make sure we protect those things in all of our schools.”
It’s comical to believe that King would make this statement when his unfunded mandate policies are forcing districts to gut these very programs.
Remember, today is the first of Flanagan’s four “public” hearings throughout the State. He has an “invite only” list of people who will be allowed to speak at these meetings. If you want your voice to be heard, be sure to submit your written testimony. Otherwise, Flanagan and the people who agree with him will be the only opinions heard. In the coming months, we will provide you with other opportunities to let Senator Flanagan hear your voice.