Governor gets thumbs up from SUNY Geneseo students


Students for Education Reform at the State University of New York at Geneseo supports Gov. Andrew Cuomo on the teacher-evaluation deal he helped broker last week. “I support you Governor Cuomo,” is what dozens of students say in a video created by the organization.

The group says in a statement that state Education Commissioner John King, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and unions “came through big time for kids.”

“An effective teacher evaluation system a big step towards ensuring that students will excel above and beyond our expectations — that can only happen if teachers are evaluated effectively” said Julia Addeo, co-chapter leader. “At the end of the day, every child needs to have access to great teachers.”

Addeo, who appears first in the video, says she plans to teach high school math and understands why creating a successful evaluation system is important. “As an educator, I need to know what is working for my students and what is not and be able to plan my lessons accordingly,” she says.

The agreement for a revamped teacher- and principal-evaluation system was incorporated into the governor’s 2012-13 budget proposal last week. Lawmakers have until April 1, the start of the new fiscal year, to adopt a budget. They are expected to approve the deal on evaluations.

Cuomo said last month that the teacher-evaluation legislation enacted in 2010 is a “failure” and has been taking too long to implement. He gave the state Education Department and New York State United Teachers until last week to reach a settlement on a lawsuit the union had filed on regulations for the system. The 2010 law and the proposed deal tie student performance and growth on standardized tests to teachers’ and principals’ annual evaluations.

Students for Education Reform promotes educational equity and has more than 80 chapters in 29 states. There are 11 chapters in New York.

This is the video:


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  1. WOW…Congrats to the students of SUNY..You all are in for a rude awakening in teaching. If you think that the only indicator is from a test then you haven’t learned squat in college. Does a test give you insight in a childs homelife…criminal backround…socio economic status? You will all soon find out that’s not the case. This is nothing more than a witch hunt and diversion from the real issues in the state. This is a plan concocted by their majesties Bloomberg and Cuomo to save money on the backs of deserving students. Just hope and pray you teach in a school district that has high passing rates and good students. Districts like Yonkers, Poughkeepsie, and many other low income urban areas the students will chew you up and spit you out. There will be no lesson planning and the like. It’ll be more like babysitting and security..May God help you because you all got a lot to learn yourself. And if you think for one minute your gonna go in there and change for the good?!?! Ya better change your major and become an Engineer!

  2. “Babysitting and security” are already the accepted norm in the school systems you describe.

  3. Sal Paci, I can’t just stand by while ignorance condemns a fellow SFER chapter. Students for Education Reform is a national movement of undergraduate and graduate students trying to address a laundry list of problems in education that was passed on to us by either the incompetence, greed, or carelessness of policy makers that came before.

    First off, your comment is just so ill-informed. Who the hell said anything about testing being the only indicator of anything? Teachers need to be held accountable for their students’ successes and failures. Is the purposed system going to be perfect? Highly unlikely. But it’s more damn progress than anything that has been accomplished in the last two years by the teacher’s unions and the education department. It’s a step in the right direction. Is this a panacea for all the problems in education? No. Do districts need to assess the functionality of the system? Yes, and then some.

    As for your little conspiracy theory, Bloomberg and Cuomo planned for an appalling two year negotiation stalemate between educators and policy makers? What the hell are you talking about no lesson planning? This means teacher will stop caring? Do you honestly believe that those districts you’re referring to now don’t already have their resources dissipated trying to “babysit and secure?” Good teachers are tired of bad teachers and the hypocrisy of an educational system that targets and punishes lesser achieving schools to the point where they can’t even come back while throwing money at schools as long as they can fudge numbers to pass. The system isn’t working the way it is, the status quo is not OK, and if you don’t understand that than you really need to research your opinions a bit more. Witch hunt? Diversion? The real issues in this state (and to an extent, this country) are the ignorance, greed, and shortsightedness of the bureaucracy, Governor Cuomo and Bloomberg included. But the students who created this video would like to give acknowledgement to a person who finally drew a line in the sand so that teachers across the state could at least have a plan again, not sit idly by while their union representatives and employer took recess after recess about their future, their job security, their way of life. The two year arbitration between the education department and teacher’s unions while the educational system of New York continued to fall apart is an appalling and eye-opening instance of just how mindless and stubborn these institutions can be.

    I think I’ll keep my major thanks. But I hope you aren’t involved in education. Because it’s your attitude: the “And if you think for one minute your gonna go in there and change for the good?” attitude, that really is the problem with an apathetic teacher. I don’t know how much I’ll impact the school I’ll teach in. But I’m going to damn well try, and not stop trying. Call it a superman complex, call it naivete, but the fact of the matter is I’m not going into teaching to not try to get every student to understand what I teach them. Some won’t care, and I expect that. I welcome the opportunity to change a child’s mind about education, even if I fail time and time again. It’s people with your mentality and apathy that are the real reasons things don’t get fixed in this country. Students in this country should feel apathetic about education, the leaders of our country have talked and talked and talked about improvement, but either seem to really know or care about what they’re doing. The students who made this video should be proud of what they’ve done. And you should feel ashamed for your condescending tone to a group of people you don’t know and who don’t share your apathy.

    Our generation has been encumbered our entire lives with politicians who are corrupt or useless. Politicians who lie, steal, cheat, and bribe their way through all aspects of government. All while I grew up watched the economy, educational system, and quality of life in America crumble. Sex scandals, embezzlement, and close minded hypocrites have created a generation of citizens who believe the government is hopelessly broken and can never be fixed. Finally, a politician managed to do something our organization feels we can get behind: giving two educational organizations who were too busy jerking each other around for two years a wake-up call so we can actually get something in the classrooms to try and fix all the problems the last generation of leaders has so *cough* wonderfully handled.

    So Sal, as my generation would say, STFU and GTFO. If there’s one thing American education doesn’t need anymore of it’s negativity and ignorance.