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NEA President to Gov. Cuomo: students need more time to learn and foster creativity

Gov. Cuomo’s budget ignores the will of the public and educators

WASHINGTON - April 01, 2015 -

NEA President Lily Eskelsen García today commented on Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget.

“Even on April Fool’s Day, the public isn’t fooled by Gov. Cuomo’s ill-conceived budget. It’s disappointing that he refuses to engage in an honest and open dialogue with the public and educators to put together a commonsense proposal to allow educators to again inspire students’ imagination and desire to learn.

“Gov. Cuomo’s budget severely undermines – in fact, it damages – the commitment every educator has to the success of every student. His budget decimates the trust that parents and the public have in educators, as trusted professionals, to make school and classroom decisions to ensure student success.

“At a time when more and more policymakers are recognizing the growing problem with too much testing, Mr. Cuomo does the complete opposite: he doubles down on the failed policies of testing, labeling, and punishing students and schools.

“Testing takes time away from learning. In fact, NEA’s own nationwide survey found that teachers who taught classes where students took a state standardized test spent, on average, 29% of their work time on tasks related to that testing. The vast majority of that time was spent preparing students to take tests; very little time was spent using test results to improve instruction.

“We stand with New York families and call on Gov. Cuomo to start listening to the public and educators if he is seriously committed to the success of every student of New York.”

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The National Education Association ( is the nation's largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers.

CONTACT: Miguel A. Gonzalez