Less Than a Day

Yesterday I was careful to post a non-biased piece about the new Commissioner of Education in New York State, Mary Ellen Elia (ok, there was a hint of snark, but I kept it tame) and encouraged readers to welcome her back to our wonderfully snowy state.

Just about 24 hours after posting a “Welcome” to the new Commish, Ms. Elia provides a first glimpse of her thoughts on parents of New York with this quote:

“Opt-outs are no good for teachers and no good for parents,” Elia told teachers and Albany City Schools Superintendent Marguerite Wyngaard.”

(The full article can be read at The Legislative Gazette here)

I did my best to give Ms. Elia a fair shot but her first impression leaves this parent peeved, but not surprised.  The new Commissioner has gone out of her way to praise teachers and state the importance of showing educators support (and rightfully so), but like every other ‘leader’ in Albany, has willfully ignored parents and insulted an active and informed group who led opt outs to record numbers.

Game on, Elia.  As I stated yesterday, one thing is certain: parents will continue to refuse to participate in exams used to evaluate teachers.  We are accustomed to being ignored and insulted, Ms. Elia.  You’ll fit right in here in NY and we are excited to welcome you with our 2016 Opt Out Letters.

Less Than a Day

Welcome Back to NY, Ms. Mary Ellen Elia

Today it was announced that the NYS Board of Regents unanimously appointed MaryEllen Elia as the next Commissioner of Education of the Empire State.  Currently a resident of the Sunshine State, Ms. Elia is no stranger to New York where she received her college education and taught social studies in the Buffalo area.  Even though the next Commissioner will find the chillier temperatures and snowfall familiar (in fact, they may bring relief following  the heat she felt in Florida) Opt Out CNY feels it’s appropriate to say, “Welcome Back!” and take a moment to help Ms. Elia learn more about the current education climate in New York.

We think the best way to greet our new Commissioner is to simply send her a copy of our 2016 Opt Out letters and encourage you to do the same.WelcomeElia-4

Why?  Until we get to see the new Commissioner at work for the children of New York State, there is only this certainty: parents will continue to opt out of standardized tests until they are written by NYS teachers, developmentally and pedagogically appropriate, and decoupled from teacher evaluations.


Welcome Back to NY, Ms. Mary Ellen Elia