September 3, 2015

Speaker Heastie Statement on Governor Cuomo's Plans for Common Core

The Assembly Majority has always been an outspoken advocate for education policies that put the needs of our students first. There is no question that we have a duty to educate our children and ensure their ability to compete in their future collegiate and professional pursuits. Earlier this year, the decision of thousands of parents across the state to "opt out" of standardized testing for their children shows that an increasing number of New Yorkers are not satisfied with the current implementation of the new education standards and related standardized tests.

We believe that raising education standards will give our students the skills they need to succeed alongside their peers not just here in New York, but across the country and the globe. While there have been challenges, any transition in education will require collaboration among parents, teachers and policy makers and we know there is still much work to do. Governor Cuomo's decision to draw on the expertise of a broad spectrum of stakeholders to recommend policy changes and the legislative reforms passed this year are steps in the right direction and shows our parents, teachers and students that we are serious about strengthening public education in New York.

We look forward to working with the Governor and all of our partners in education including new SED Commissioner MaryEllen Elia and the Board of Regents, teachers and parents to improve the implementation of these standards.