Please help stop looming budget cuts to schools!

March 29, 2020

Dear folks:  Hope you and your families are figuring out how to cope with all the new restrictions on life as we used to live it, as well as the new regime of remote learning – if that’s what your child’s school is trying to do.

1. Meanwhile, NY Governor Cuomo has signaled that he is preparing to make huge cuts in the education budget for next year and will be successful unless the State Legislature stands in his way.   The deadline on finalizing the state budget is supposed to happen this Tuesday by midnight.

Please send a message to your state legislators now, NOT to cut vital education funding, as the state can raise revenue in a variety of ways:  by increasing taxes on ultra-wealthy individuals, by taxing the carried interest income of hedge funders the same as regular income, and imposing sales taxes on the purchase of yachts and private planes, without hurting our students and schools. In most districts, schools haven’t even recovered from the 2008 recession in terms of the loss of services and increases in class size — they can’t afford to lose even more ground.  The evidence does not support the claim that this will cause millionaires and billionaires to move out of state.

 Just click here to send a message; feel free to revise it any way you like by adding your own thoughts.

2. Also, this Wed., April 1 at 10 AM, on my weekly WBAI radio show Talk out of School, we will interview Randi Weingarten, President of the American Federation of Teachers.  We will ask her about her idea that during this crisis, schools should be assigning capstone projects to students instead of following the regular curriculum.  We will also discuss  the threat of looming state and local budget cuts, the risk to student privacy of online learning, and whether she’s worried that the ed tech industry will try to use the sudden disruption of our education system  to accelerate their takeover of instruction in schools.

Please tune in at 99.5FM or online at and call in with your questions.   Last week’s show was fascinating, which featured Akil Bello of FairTest explaining about how the  pandemic has affected standardized testing in NY and elsewhere; you can download the podcast and listen here.

Keep safe and healthy,  Leonie

Categories Newsletters, Uncategorized, Updates | Tags: | Posted on March 29, 2020

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