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New Alliance Seeks to Reform NY Education

A new alliance of educators, parents, administrators, school board members, unions, and community groups
have launched a campaign to boost funding and seek reforms to education. Hudson Valley Bureau Chief Dave
Lucas reports.

Frustration over teacher layoffs and public school program cutbacks statewide has prompted a new,
year-long campaign intent on getting state government to “go back to the drawing board.”
Educate NY Now! is demanding that lawmakers uphold New York’s constitutional obligation to provide all
students with a quality education.  

Billy Easton of the Alliance for Quality Education explains the campaign will organize a series of
activities to highlight the issues that Governor Cuomo and state legislators must address to put New York
State back on a path to providing every student with a “sound, basic education” as required by the state
constitution.

Easton notes that about 93 percent of school budgets were passed last Tuesday, indicating that most New
Yorkers support education. And that puts the "tax cap" high on Educate NY Now's agenda.

The group is specifically targeting Governor Andrew Cuomo's education policies, which they say have done
more damage than good to education. The governor's office did not return calls for comment.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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