Senator Parker Addresses Quality Education
Parker introduces a legislative package modeled on AQE’s “Averting Educational Crisis” Conference
(Albany, NY) Today, Senator Parker unveiled a Quality Education legislative package. This package is a continuation of last week’s package of Early Childhood Education. (See http://www.nysenate.gov/press-release/senator-parker-addresses-early-chi...). The package consists of nine pieces of legislation he believes are necessary to improve New York’s education system. “The Alliance for Quality Education’s conference hits the three major areas of main concern in New York’s education system: Educational Opportunity, Kindergarten to College Readiness, and Solutions rather than Suspensions” said Senator Parker. “The bills in this legislative package address these issues head-on. It is time to take the lead in education reform.”
In his memo to his Senate colleagues requesting co-sponsorship of the package and assistance in moving the individual bills forward in the legislative process, Senator Parker underscored the message that quality education results in an increased likelihood to graduate from high school, higher salaries and greater job satisfaction, higher rates of home ownership, and even longer marriages. “In light of those overwhelming positive results, why would we not make sure our education system is the best?,” asked Parker.
Legislation in this proposed package includes:
• Creating parent and student training centers operated by the City University of New York for all five boroughs. Designed to encourage parental engagement within public schools, by conducting training and support programs for parents to increase their capacity to participate in school governance.. S 1333/A 3614 Parker/Perry
• Creating a continuum of the higher education pipeline within the State University of New York, continuing the record of higher education access and service provided by the State University to the academically and economically disadvantaged residents of New York State; S 2705/A768 Parker/Gibson
• Encouraging the parents of New York City students to attend and participate in New York State Board of Regents meetings by requiring at least two meetings each year to be held in New York City. S1411 Montgomery
• Establishing the Universal Prekindergarten Program (UPK) as a State-funded program that provides educationally based high-quality prekindergarten to four-year-old children. S1570 Parker/Nolan
• Codifying the authority for school health demonstration projects to conduct projects for the purpose of providing expanded school health services for pre-school and school-age children Espaillat S.1826.
• Requiring principals to give additional information to the city or district school authorities of the discharge or transfer of students. S1396 Montgomery
• Establishes a mentoring program for youth released from facilities of the Office of children and Family Services (OCFS) in New York city within ninety days. S3209 Parker
• Place a Child in Every School Seat Act of 2014 - Establishes a public awareness and education campaign on the importance of earning a high school degree, and create an incentive program to improve school attendance. S1574 Parker
• Prohibits waivers for nominees to the office of chancellor of the NYC school district. S.1408 Montgomery
"Senator Parker has been a consistently strong voice for quality education for all students and for adequately funding our schools by complying with the Campaign for Fiscal Equity. Among other important priorities, this package of proposals empowers parents, expands pre-kindergarten, and helps get students back on track who have been released from OCFS facilities. Senator Parker's proposals are focused on preparing students for school, keeping students in school and empowering parents to advocate on behalf of their children," said Billy Easton, Executive Director, Alliance for Quality Education.
“Effective support services in early education are paramount to ensuring our kids stay in school, excel in school, and are able to pursue their dreams,” said Senator Espaillat (D – 31). “By integrating and strengthening preventive health services into our schools, we can keep our children healthy and focused on their studies. Working together, we can build a more holistic school environment that takes into account all of our children’s needs and empowers educators to help them succeed in life.”
"Our children need a strong foundation from which they can grow and flourish. A quality education, comprehensive medical care and mental health services are some of the vital building blocks to their well being. From birth through adulthood, I am committed to creating opportunities for our children's success," said Senator Velmanette Montgomery, Ranking Democrat on the Senate Committee on Children and Families.
“I am proud to introduce and cosponsor legislation that will improve education for all our children,” says Senator Parker. “I look forward to working with all of my colleagues to pass this legislative package,” he continued.
About Senator Kevin Parker
Senator Kevin S. Parker is intimately familiar with the needs of his ethnically diverse community in the heart of Brooklyn that consists of 318,000 constituents in Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood, Ditmas Park, Kensington, Windsor Terrace, and Park Slope. He is the Ranking Member of the Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee, Assistant Democratic Leader for Intergovernmental Affairs, and Chair of the Democratic Task Force on New Americans.