I apologize for such frequent legislative action requests (3 in 5 days). Unfortunately some of our legislators in the New York State Assembly have decided they need to rush through bill A8929 when bill A8844, which has been worked on for months, has also been presented for consideration. More on the politics of this when things settle down – for now I will just state that politics should NOT be driving the education of our children!
Bill A8929 was introduced to the education committee on Friday, voted on by the committee today (Tuesday) and is expected to show up for a vote on the floor of the assembly tomorrow (Wednesday) when the session begins at 9:45am. If you are new to this saga of the two Common Core bills, you can read more details in my BLOG post from Monday.
What you need to do before Wednesday 9:45am:
- Contact Assemblyman Kevin Cahill email@example.com (518) 455-4436
- Contact Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver firstname.lastname@example.org (518) 455-3791
- Contact Assembly Education Committee chair Catherine Nolan email@example.com (518) 455-4851
- Contact any other assembly members whom you feel you can influence
This is what you NEED to say when you make those calls/send e-mails VERBATIM:
The Edward Ra/Al Graf Bill (A8844) is going up as an addition to the Nolan bill (A8929), we expect YOU to support it. We want A8844 to pass as an amendment to A8929.
The instructions above regarding what to say to the assembly members come directly from Assemblymember Al Graf. This gets bill A8844 out of the education committee and onto the floor for a vote to determine whether A8844 (Ed Ra/Al Graf bill) is germane to the purposes of A8929 (Catherine Nolan bill). (Germane definition: relevant to A8929).
Assemblyman Al Graf discusses the Apple Plan upon which bill A8844 was based in this video .
If you are at all concerned about the state of the educational system right now in New York and particularly Common Core and can possibly spare 5-10 minutes, your urgent action is needed.
The New York State assembly introduced a bill A8929 on Friday that appears to ‘fix Common Core’ but in fact that is not the case. You can read more about the situation in my BLOG post from the weekend. Basically the bill presented on Friday leaves us stuck with the way things are right now BUT there is another bill A8844 which will actually provide some relief from Common Core and is a much better bill.
What you need to do:
- Contact Assemblyman Cahill and tell him to drop support of the bill A8929 introduced on Friday and instead support bill A8844.
- Contact Assembly Speaker Silver and tell him to drop support of A8929 and to support A8844 instead.
- Contact Assembly Education Committee chair Cathy Nolan who introduced bill A8929 and ask her to support A8844 instead.
Contact information for the legislators:
UPDATE 3/3/14 5pm: The assembly education committee is scheduled to vote on bill A8929 tomorrow (Tuesday 3/4/14) so there is still time to contact the legislators if you have not been able to do so yet today.
I am including the e-mail I sent to Assemblyman Cahill if you would like to use it as a template but feel free to write your own version instead – it will have even more impact if it is in your own words. When I called, I left a very simple message asking the legislators to drop support of A8929 and to instead sponsor A8844.
Dear Assemblyman Cahill,
I have just learned that you have signed on to sponsor assembly bill A8929. I am actively working to enact changes to the Common Core Agenda in New York State, however bill A8929 does not make the changes that are needed for our children. This bill does not deal with the problems regarding testing for our special education and ELL students. It does NOT stop the error-filled Common Core curriculum or tests. It does not provide support for our advanced learners (of which my daughter is one). In the end this bill adopts the federal standards and leaves our local teachers, parents and communities with the same problems we are facing right now and no way of fixing them.
You MUST remove your name from bill A8929 and instead support bill A8844 which provides relief in all of the areas I have listed. I am looking forward to hearing a response from you as soon as possible.
(include your address here)
A bill has just been introduced to the New York State assembly that looks like a fix for Common Core but please don’t be fooled! The bill A8929, sponsored by Kingston’s Assemblyman Kevin Cahill, simply takes away the consequences for the Common Core tests for 2 years and adds more Common Core teacher training (not sure where the funding for it is coming from!) This bill does NOT stop the curriculum or the tests, nor does it stop the teacher evaluations without the waivers from the federal government. It does not deal with children with disabilities, nor does it deal with children who are advanced learners. In the end it adopts the federal standards, and attempts to get the sponsors past the next election.
Assembly bill A8844 DOES address the problems listed above and has a companion senate bill. Please contact Assemblyman Kevin Cahill and tell him to remove himself as a sponsor from bill A8929(bad bill) and add his name to A8844(good bill)!
Assemblyman Kevin Cahill firstname.lastname@example.org (518)455-4436
A Rochester NY station reported on the new bill yesterday but did NOT point out the problems with the bill.
You may read bill A8929 here (the one that will NOT fix our Common Core problems).
Read bill A8844 here that WILL slam the breaks on the Common Core Agenda and sign a petition in support of bill A8844.