Wednesday, April 22, 2015

NEW YORK STATE BADASS TEACHERS ASSOCIATION - PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 22, 2015
More Information Contact:
Marla Kilfoyle, General Manager, BATs
Melissa Tomlinson, Asst General Manager, BATs
contact.batmanager@gmail.com
Badass Teachers Association - http://www.badassteacher.org/

NY BATs – Time for Tisch and Flanagan to Step Down

The New York Badass Teachers Association, is a diverse pro-public education organization of 3,225 members.  It is the state affiliate of the Badass Teachers Association, currently 55,493 strong nationwide.

NY BATs proudly applaud the parents of New York State who have sent a strong message to the Governor, the Regents, and the Legislature with their refusal to take tests that have no value to their children’s education. Over 180,000 parents showed a strong vote of no confidence in the Governor, Chancellor Tisch, and Senator Flanagan when they would not allow their children to take corporate created ELA standardized tests.  Parents recognize that these tests have no value to education, are developmentally inappropriate by being 2 grade levels above the grade tested, were ripe with errors, and  contained product advertisements inappropriate for our youngest learners.  It is at this time, and due to the strong message over 180,000 parents sent to NYS, that we demand  Chancellor Merryl Tisch and Senator John Flanagan (Head of the Education Committee) step down, immediately, from their posts.  The parents of New York State have spoken – they have NO confidence in you.

“Chancellor Tisch and Senator Flanagan have ignored the wishes of public school parents in New York State.  They continue to push through an education agenda that is harmful to our children, not rooted in sound research, and supports the privatization movement underway in this country”, said NY BAT and parent Marla Kilfoyle.

Special Education advocate and NY BAT Terry Kalb said, “Parents across NYS have voted NO CONFIDENCE in Tisch's leadership of our public schools by refusing state testing despite her threats and intimidation. All attempts to get the Chancellor to pause, reflect, adapt, change direction have been stonewalled.  We need new leadership and a new direction from The NY Regents and our legislators to support our public schools, our teachers as professionals, and the concerns of the parents.”

“Chancellor Tisch and Senator Flanagan should step down in their roles because they do not have the best interests of New York public school students, teachers, or parents at heart. They have consistently shown their allegiance to special interest groups such as charter schools and testing corporations. They serve hedge funds not the people of New York State,” claims Michael Flanagan a NY BAT and parent.

NY BAT Jamy Brice Hyde states that Tisch and Flanagan are, “Out of touch with all stakeholders in public education.  The Chancellor and Senator won't hear the concerns of public school teachers and parents.  Both serve the Governors disastrous political agenda and Tisch is the one perpetuating the false idea that the massive test refusal by parents is a labor dispute.  She has offered no solutions and no road map to get NYSED back on track.  There is very little evidence that they care about our public schools and the children who attend them.”


The parents of New York have been ignored and marginalized by former Education Commissioner John King, Chancellor of the Regents Merryl Tisch, and the Education Committee led by Senator Flanagan.  The parents of New York State have spoken by initiating the largest parent led test refusal movement in history.  As teachers, we stand firmly with our parents.  Education in New York State needs to be returned to teachers so that they can best serve the children in their classrooms.  Senator Flanagan and Chancellor Tisch have shown they are NOT capable of guiding education policy in New York State.  It is time for them to step down so we can get education right for our children.
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