New York State Education Commissioner, Dr. John King, held a three-hour forum on Wednesday, November 13, 2013 at Mineola High School to field questions on the roll out of the controversial Common Core curriculum from the residents of the Seventh Senate District.
Senator Jack M. Martins (R-C-I, Mineola), who coordinated the forum along with the superintendents from each of the fifteen school districts in the Seventh Senate District, moderated the discussion in order to give parents, students, and educators the opportunity to directly question the Commissioner and express their concerns about the New York State Education Department’s roll out of the Common Core curriculum, teacher evaluations, testing and student privacy.
During Senate Standing Committee on Education hearing about the Regent's Reform Agenda, much of the discussion revolved around standardized testing. Senator Jack M. Martins, one of the members of the committee, spoke about the aims of student testing. The Senator questioned whether, in evaluating students by giving them a score from 1-4, the state education department is losing sight of what is most important, which is the self-esteem of a child.
Children with high self-esteem will be more apt to learn and take part in extra-curricular activities, where they can let their creativity shine.
Senator Jack M. Martins stood up for schools in the Seventh Senate District during a Senate Education Committee hearing on the Regents Reform Agenda. Senator Martins questioned representatives from the New York State Department of Education on a statistic that says 50 percent of students aren't college-ready.
Senator Martins frequently visits schools throughout the Seventh Senate District and stated that students are achieving high and going on to college, where they are achieve there as well, as he questioned the validity of the statistic. Senator Martins comments can be seen here.
Senator Jack M. Martins spoke in favor of enacted a legislative package for women's equality, saying that as a father of four daugters, equality for women is an issue that is near and dear to him.
The legislative package ensures equal pay for women, strengthens laws against human trafficking, provides greater support and protection for victims of domestic violence, further deters sexual harassment, and ends discrimination of women in the workplace related to gender, pregnancy, and family status.
Legislation passed by the Senate includes bills that:
During the Senate Standing Committee on Transportation meeting regarding the nomination of Tom Prendergast as new head of the MTA, Senator Jack M. Martins expressed the concerns of many of the commuters who take the LIRR into the city for work. Among the Senator's points were the frequently at which fare increases are sought and that Penn Station remains at its current capacity to service LIRR riders. Senator Martins had addressed this concern in his column, "From the Desk of Senator Jack M. Martins," which can be read by CLICKING HERE.
On the most recent edition of "Your Voice" from Albany, Senator Jack M. Martins discussed a Boy Scout from the Seventh Senate District who saved his sister's life, the induction of Walter Hobbs of Mineola into the New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame, the successful passage of the school bus mandate relief act and the upcoming Senator Jack Martins 3-on-3 Classic basketball tournament in Elmont.
The State Senate today passed legislation (S.3141) sponsored by Senator Jack M. Martins (R-C-I, Mineola) that would relieve school districts of the state mandate which would require them to provide bus transportation for every eligible student whether they ride the bus or not, beginning in 2014.
The bill makes permanent school districts’ ability to coordinate student transportation based upon patterns of actual ridership rather than on the number students who are eligible to take the bus. It also allows school districts to realize additional savings through the coordination of transportation services on a regional basis, in cooperation with neighboring districts.
After passing a bill to name a bridge overpass in Bellerose after Nassau County Police Officer Arthur Lopez, Senator Jack M. Martins was successful in passing his bill to rename the bridge overpass on New Hyde Park Road, which crosses over the Long Island Expressway, in honor of another brave officer, Joseph P. Olivieri Jr.
A former NYPD officer and a 15-year-veteran of the Nassau County Police Department, Officer Olivieri, as a member of the Nassau County Police Department's Highway Patrol, was investigating a traffic accident near exit 35 on the LIE, involving an intoxicated driver, when he was tragically struck and killed by another motorist.
State Senator Jack M. Martins paid homage to a fallen New York City Police officer who was killed in the line of duty by passing a bill to name the Jericho Turnpike bridge overpass, crossing over the Cross Island Parkway in Bellerose, as the "Police Officer Arthur Lopez Memorial Bridge."
Officer Lopez had served with the Nassau County Police Department for eight years and was assigned to the Emergency Services Unit, one of the department's most elite units after only five years of service. During his time on the force, Officer Lopez earned six meritorious service awards, three excellent police duty awards and several other command recognitions.
State Senator Jack M. Martins discussed additional funding coming to the Seventh Senate District on "Your Voice" from Albany. Through the budget, there were more resources allocated to local governments and school districts. Senator Martins discusses the benefits.
Senator Jack Martins and Soulfood Society's held their first 1st Annual Poetry, Music and Spoken Word. Various members of the community exhibited their talents and they expressed themselves through poetry and song. The first event was a tremendous success and Senator Martins and Soulfood Society plan on continuing the event as part of the "Birth of Royalty" series.