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Cuomo appoints panel to review Common Core

February 7, 2014
Updated 10:05 p.m.
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— Gov. Andrew Cuomo named 11 members to the state’s Common Core Implementation Panel, which is tasked with reviewing the rollout of Common Core education standards.

Chairing the panel is IBM executive Stanley Litow, the company’s vice president of corporate citizenship and corporate affairs. Other members include state Sen. John Flanagan, R-Nassau County, chairman of the Senate Education Committee, and Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan, D-Manhattan, chairwoman of the Assembly Education Committee.

The panel will immediately review Common Core’s implementation, according to a news release from the governor’s office. Common Core is a set of testing standards for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. The standards work to ensure high school graduates are prepared for college and the workforce.

The state Education Department and its commissioner, John King, have faced widespread criticism over implementation of the standards. Parents, educators and lawmakers have argued school districts do not have adequate resources to meet the standards and it’s unfair to evaluate teachers based on student performance.

During his budget address last month, Cuomo said he supports the Common Core agenda but that its implementation is flawed. He proposed improving the rollout of the standards through the Common Core Implementation Panel.

“The Common Core standards are a critical part of transforming New York’s schools, and the failure to effectively implement them has led to confusion and frustration among students and their families,” Cuomo said in the news release. “I urge the members of this panel to work speedily in bringing forward a set of actionable recommendations to improve the implementation of the Common Core.”

Earlier this month, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, Senate GOP leader Dean Skelos, R-Nassau County, and Senate co-leader Jeff Klein, D-Bronx, called for a two-year delay in the use of Common Core-based tests to evaluate students and teachers. Panel members Flanagan and Nolan backed the call.

Following the Assembly and Senate leaders’ push for a two-year delay, Cuomo’s communications director issued a statement saying it would be “premature to consider any moratorium before the panel is allowed to do its work.”

The panel also includes Linda Darling-Hammond, a professor at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Education; Todd Hathaway, a teacher at East Aurora High School in Erie County; Alice Jackson-Jolley, a parent in Westchester County; Anne Kress, president of Monroe Community College; Nick Lawrence, a teacher at East Bronx Academy for the Future; Delia Pompa, senior vice president of programs for the National Council of La Raza; Charles Russo, superintendent of the East Moriches Union Free School District on Long Island; and Dan Weisberg, executive vice president of The New Teacher Project.

 
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