Senator Jack M. Martins along with colleagues, Senator Dean Skelos and Senator John Flanagan, met with school superintendents in Albany to discuss important issues affecting school districts. The school leaders that made the trip to Albany included Mineola School Superintendent Dr. Michael Nagler, Great Neck School Superintendent Dr. Tom Dolan and Franklin Square School Superintendent Patrick Manley.
When the Governor proposed his executive budget, there were crucial items concerning schools including an increase in state aid. However, the increase is tied to school districts implementing the Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR). Senator Martins believes the proposed teacher evaluation system is flawed. However, he hopes a fairer system can be agreed upon so that the state can receive the federal Race to the Top funds for education.
As it stands on state aid, Senator Martins was disappointed in the Governor’s proposal for the amount of aid coming to Long Island schools in the Executive Budget proposal. Senator Martins, Senator Flanagan and Senator Skelos will be working with their colleagues to see that Long Island gets a greater share of state aid in the final state budget, which will be negotiated during the upcoming months.
Another issue concerning education is mandate relief. Senator Martins is the lone member from Long Island on the newly formed Mandate Relief Council, which will seek ways to alleviate certain mandates passed onto schools and local governments. Any regulations that can be eliminated or modified will result in savings for the taxpayers.
“I want to thank our school superintendents for coming to Albany to meet with us. They care a great deal about our schools as do I. It’s important we continue to discuss the crucial issues that affect education on Long Island,” said Senator Martins.