The November 4, 2014 election is over and before I put all my campaign posts to bed, I wanted to summarize regarding the various candidates and their educational stands.
For some reason I never posted this after writing it back in November 2014. I am posting it now (May 2015) even though quite a bit of time has elapsed. I thought it might be interesting to look back on what the various candidates had to say about education now that we are almost six months into their current term.
Some of the candidates who I have advocated for won and some did not.
Regardless of who won and who lost, our job as citizens is not done. We must continue to interact with our elected officials and make sure that they are representing us properly in government. We need to remember what they said during their campaigns; make sure they are sticking to the promises they made; work with them to determine if we can change their perspectives or come to satisfactory compromises if they have stands with which we do not agree. We can not just wait until the next election and then vote.
New York State Governor – Andrew Cuomo defeated Rob Astorino but by a much smaller margin than many would have anticipated. Rob Astorino actually ‘won’ the majority of the vote in Ulster County (46.6% for Astorino versus 41.7% for Cuomo according to politico.com) by a slight margin and the margin increases if the votes for Green party candidate Howie Hawkins (11%) are included. These leads me to conclude that a number of people in Ulster County are not thrilled with Governor Cuomo and I like to think at least some of that discontent is due to his educational policies. Governor Cuomo stated right before the election that he intends to ‘break the public school monopolty’ (read here) and his actions regarding education is an issue that we will need to keep an eye on in the upcoming months. I personally liked many of the aspects of Rob Astorino’s education platform and will be keeping it in mind to see if there are ways they can be incorporated into New York’s educational policy even though Rob Astorino did not win the position of Governor. Astorino-Moss Education Plan 2014
New York State Senator – 46th Senate District: George Amedore defeated incumbent Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk. Senator Tkaczyk made education a significant part of her focus during her time in office so George Amedore is going to have to step up and take a stand on the educational issues as he moves into his new position as Senator for the 46th Senate District. He ran on the new StopCommonCore party line and will be held accountable in that area. There are many areas of concern in education beyond Common Core that he will also need to address including school funding and unfunded mandates.
New York State Assembly – 103rd Assembly District: Incumbent Assemblyman Kevin Cahill defeated challenger Kevin Roberts to retain his seat as representative for the Kingston City School District. As with the governor position, I would like to see if there are ways that we can work with Mr. Cahill to change some of his perspectives on education to achieve the goals that Mr. Roberts would have taken with him to Albany had he won the assembly seat. This video provides a clear distinction between the two on their education stands.
U.S. Congressman New York State’s 19th Congressional District: Incumbent Congressman Chris Gibson defeated newcomer Sean Eldridge and will be returning to Washington D.C. to represent the 19th Congressional District.
Smart Schools Bond Act (proposition 3): The Smart Schools Bond Act passed and we will have to wait and see how Kingston City School District will use the money and how much it will cost the taxpayers.
StopCommonCore party line: The new StopCommonCore party line received just over 50,000 votes and is therefore eligible to be its own party and to appear on the ballot as a party for the next four years.
Read here for a summary of campaign platforms and campaign videos about the various candidates.
This summary is focused on the Kingston City School District but I would like to highlight one other post that has Ulster County wide information regarding the Assembly candidates for four districts (assembly districts 101, 102, 103 and 104) since the candidates had such clear and differing stances regarding Common Core/education. Click here to access the post.