Are you concerned about the challenges facing our public schools?  Croton Advocates for Public Education wants your input! CAPE is a group of residents that wants restoration of funds that were promised to our schools, fair assessments, and enrichment opportunities for every student.

Remember, the majority of your property taxes go to our school district and you have every right to raise your concerns and have your questions answered.
You can also like CAPE on Facebook!

Five resolutions that the Croton-Harmon Board of Education passed at their Thursday, March 16th meeting are linked below for your information.

New York State will be finalizing its budget in the next few weeks, and public education will be tremendously shortchanged.  Only half of what the NY State Board of Regents recommended is included.

For example, based on the existing legislature-approved Foundation Aid formula, the Croton-Harmon district should have received over a million dollars more in 2016-17. A new, proposed formula would relieve the state of millions of dollars in past obligations to the district and other schools across the state, and make long-term financial planning very difficult for all public schools.

If you would like to add your own voice on these topics, you will see that there is a live link next to each resolution listed that will take you to a specific letter that is part of the Westchester Putnam School Boards Association (www.wpsba.org) Voter Voice letter-writing program.

While all these resolutions would have an impact on public school funding across the state, we are listing them in the order in which we think they would have the biggest impact on our district, with the first one having the most impact.

Sincerely,

Iris Bugliosi, President
Croton-Harmon Board of Education

 

 

 

 

 

Croton’s Board of Education passed a resolution on Thursday, February 2nd opposing the nomination of the unqualified Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education, stated in full below:

Dear Members of the Croton-Harmon School Community:

Last night the members of the Board of Education passed the following resolution regarding the nomination of Betsy DeVos for United States Secretary of Education:

RESOLUTION REGARDING UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF EDUCATION NOMINEE BETSY DeVOS

WHEREAS, Betsy DeVos has been nominated to serve as the next United States Secretary of Education, subject to confirmation by the United States Senate, and

WHEREAS, Ms. DeVos has, through her public statements and her testimony before the United States Senate demonstrated a substantial lack of understanding of the federal statutes and regulations governing the provision of primary, secondary and post-secondary education in the United States, and a disregard for the rights set forth by law for special needs students and for female, minority, and LGBTQ students, and

WHEREAS, Ms. DeVos has no experience with public schools, either as a student, parent of a student, teacher, or administrator, and has demonstrated no knowledge of the manner in which public schools of this nation are governed or operated, and

WHEREAS, the appointment of Ms. DeVos as United States Secretary of Education will be directly and significantly harmful to the provision of public education to the students of this nation, including the students of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District;

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Croton-Harmon Free School District Board of Education hereby declares its opposition to Betsy DeVos serving as United States Secretary of Education, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District Board of Education directs that a copy of this resolution be transmitted as expeditiously as possible, by email, to President Donald J. Drumpf; to Senator Charles Schumer; to Senator Kristen Gillibrand; and to every other member of the United States Senate, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that a copy of this resolution be posted on the website of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District and on other social media utilized by the District.

Adopted: February 2, 2017

Board of Education of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District
Iris Bugliosi, President
Patrice Davidson, Vice President
Joshua Diamond
Todd Freebern
Andrea Furey
Neal Haber
Giuseppina Miller

Croton’s Board of Education passed a resolution on July 13th, 2016, stated in full below. CAPE urges you to take a stand against the proposed regulations drafted by U.S. Secretary of Education John King for implementing the accountability provisions of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).  Although the intent of ESSA was to put an end to the “test and punish” regime of NCLB and give more flexibility to the states, in some ways the draft regulations are even more punitive and prescriptive than under NCLB. For example, although ESSA permits states to pass laws allowing parents to opt their children out of taking the state tests, the draft regulations would require states to harshly punish or label as failing, schools in which more than 5% of students opt out. The regulations would also require that every public school in the country receive a single grade–based primarily on test scores and other strictly academic factors — even though the law properly leaves it up to the states to devise their own grading systems within certain limits. This would impose simplistic and damaging school grades that have already been found defective in many states and districts across the country. In short, these proposed regulations would micro-manage the ability of states to create their own accountability systems, and take away the opportunity for parents and educators to have a voice in their school accountability system.

US Department of Education Draft Regulations for Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) expressly replaces the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act’s overly prescriptive federal system of school accountability with statutory language that gives increased flexibility for state and local decision-making while maintaining federal guardrails to protect the intent of Title 1-A. Yet provisions in the US Department of Education (DOE) draft regulations would perpetuate federal overreach in areas that ESSA specifically delegates to states and to local school districts.

WHEREAS, provisions in the proposed DOE regulations run contrary to the language and spirit of ESSA by imposing narrow, prescriptive mandates that would hamper the ability of states and districts to devise their own accountability systems; and

WHEREAS, ESSA’s statutory language explicitly states that it shall not override “a State or local law regarding the decision of a parent to not have the parent’s child participate in the academic assessments,” yet draft regulation 200.15 would require states to choose one of three specified sanctions for any school in which less than 95% of students take state tests, and these sanctions include lowering the school’s ranking or identifying the school as needing “targeted support;” and

WHEREAS, ESSA requires four school accountability indicators, the fourth being an indicator that is not based on test scores or graduation rates, yet DOE proposed regulation 200.14 would insist that there be research proving a linkage between the fourth indicator and achievement or graduation rates, and while ESSA allows for the inclusion of school climate, safety, engagement, etc. in the fourth indicator, the draft regulations would restrict what factors a state can choose to include; and

WHEREAS, ESSA requires states to create a growth score as an indicator for elementary and middle schools, yet DOE draft regulation 200.13 would require that the academic indicators give equal weight to proficiency on state reading/language arts and mathematics assessments, continuing the NCLB over-emphasis on ELA and math state assessment scores; and

WHEREAS, there is no mention in ESSA of providing a single grade for schools, yet DOE Draft regulation 200.18 would mandate that states combine multiple indicators into a single “summative” score or rating, derived by combining at least three of the four indicators used to assess its performance, undermining the use of alternative methods of accountability such as dashboards, and continuing the opaque grading of schools under NCLB; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District that the new US Department of Education regulations must comply with the letter and intent of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA); and be it further

RESOLVED that the flexibility for state and local decision-making embedded in the spirit of ESSA must be fully incorporated into the federal regulations implementing the Act; and be it further

RESOLVED that the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District calls upon the U.S. Department of Education to revise the proposed regulations to comply with the statutory language set forth in ESSA; and be it further

RESOLVED that the Board of Education of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District directs the District Clerk to send a copy of this resolution to:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal (https://www.regulations.gov/docket?D=ED-2016-OESE-0032)
      OR
    Meredith Miller, U.S. Department of Education, 400 Maryland Avenue SW., room 3C106, Washington, DC 20202-2800,
  • Secretary of Education John King,
  • Congresswoman Nita Lowey,
  • The Hon. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand,
  • The Hon. Senator Charles Schumer,
  • Ms. Lisa Davis, Executive Director, Westchester-Putnam School Boards Assoc.,
  • Croton-Harmon Education Community, through K-12 alert.

Respectfully submitted by the Croton-Harmon Board of Education: Iris Bugliosi, President; Patrice Davidson, Vice President; Joshua Diamond, Todd Freebern, Andrea Furey, Neal Haber, and Giuseppina Miller, Trustees

On July 13, 2016, in support of the educational community, students and taxpayers of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District, 10 Gerstein Street, Croton-on-Hudson, NY 10520.

Croton’s Board of Education passed a very important resolution on June 16, 2016, stated in full below. Last year our elected officials voted down the Education Tax Credit, which siphons money from public schools and rewards those who send their children to private school with a tax credit. Specifically targeted towards parochial schools, this acts as a “backdoor voucher” system and violates the separation of church and state. CAPE supports the language of the legislation supporting the extension of schools’ ability to evaluate their own staff but is disappointed in the attempt to pair what is best for public education with what dismantles it.

Resolution re: NY Senate Bill S08135

WHEREAS New York State Senate Bill S08135 introduced by Senate Majority Leader, The Hon. Senator John Flanagan, and Senate Education Chairman, The Hon. Senator Carl Marcellino, includes provisions both for 1) tax credits for parents of children attending private schools; and 2) an extension of the implementation deadline for a negotiated teacher/principal evaluation plan under section 3012-d of the Education Law which would allow local school districts to continue to use either their current section 3012-c or 3012-d evaluation plan without financial penalty;

And WHEREAS the Board of Education of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District believes that the provision of tax credits for private schools acts as a “back-door voucher” program that would siphon money from public schools in a way that violates the Constitutional separation of church and state to the detriment of public school education in what are already fiscally stringent times under the tax levy cap;

And WHEREAS the Board sees that the extension of the implementation deadline for a negotiated teacher/principal evaluation plan would be an essential step in giving public schools the time needed to develop a meaningful and productive plan while shielding them from financial aid penalties;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Education of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District calls upon the State Senate to vote down NYS Senate Bill S08135 and pass a new bill that includes the APPR provision but does not create any tax credit for private school attendees.

AND FURTHER BE IT RESOLVED that the Board of Education of the Croton-Harmon Union Free School District directs the District Clerk to send a copy of this resolution to:

The Hon. Senator John Flanagan, the Majority Leader of the NYS Senate
The Hon. Senator Carl L. Marcelli, Chairman, NYS Senate Education Committee
The Hon. Senator Terrence Murphy
The Hon. Assemblyman Carl Heastie, the Speaker of the NYS Assembly
The Hon. Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan, Chair, Committee on Education
The Hon. Assemblywoman Sandra Galef
The Hon. Andrew Cuomo, the Governor of the State of New York
Ms. Lisa Davis, Executive Director, Westchester-Putnam School Boards Assoc.
Croton-Harmon Education Community, through K-12 alert.
Respectfully submitted by:

The Croton Harmon Board of Education: Giuseppina Miller, President; Iris Bugliosi, Vice President; Patrice Davidson, Joshua Diamond,Todd Freebern, Andrea Furey, and Neal Haber

On June 16, 2016, in support of the educational community, students and tax-payers of the Croton-Harmon School District.

Please let us know if you have any questions or comments that you would like to share at BOE@chufsd.org.

Sincerely,

The Croton-Harmon Board of Education