What's New

Zack Hutchins
Director of Communications

January 29, 2007

Governor Spitzer proposes links between educational funding and performance

Governor Spitzer has proposed a tough new education reform strategy that would, for the first time, tie increased state school aid to firm standards for accountability and for results.

“My vision for education reform is built on a single premise,” the Governor said. “To be effective, new funding must be tied to a comprehensive agenda of reform and accountability.”

“There will be no more excuses for failure,” the Governor said Monday in a special message delivered before a standing-room-only crowd of more than 1,000 educators, public officials and others gathered in an auditorium at the state Education Department.

“The debate will no longer be about money, but about performance,” he said. “The goal will no longer be adequacy, but excellence; and the timetable will no longer be tomorrow, but today.”

The Governor said that in his budget proposal later this week, he will propose “the largest infusion of resources in our state history” for school districts, concentrated on those with the largest proportions of low-income students and the weakest tax resources of their own.

But he said that each district receiving a state aid increase of $15 million, or of 10 percent above the previous year, would be required to enter into what he called a “Contract for Excellence”— a “serious reform plan that specifies the uses of any new funds, how current programs will be changed, and — very importantly — the improvement in educational performance the districts will achieve as a result.”

The proposal would require of each such district that it:

“Accountability should run through the system from top to bottom,” he said.

Governor Spitzer also embraced a number of other ideas long sought by advocates of education reform, including:

The full text of the Governor's address may be found at: http://www.ny.gov/governor/keydocs/0129071_speech.html