Students Ask For Voice in Education Reform

Pearl River High School graduate Mark Svensson joined with other student leaders calling for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to add current students to the New York Education Reform Commission.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo created the New York Education Reform Commission in April, bringing together experts in education, business and local communities to suggest reforms.

The current commission does not include any current students, something Mark Svensson of Orangeburg and other students in New York are hoping to change.

“Students know best what works and does not work for them when it comes to education," said Svensson, a Pearl River High School graduate. "Having students’ recommendations and insight is critical if we want to adequately address flaws in the system."

The group is asking Cuomo to include two current secondary school students in New York State and graduate of a New York secondary school currently in college.

"Students have invaluable and unparalleled insight into the inner workings of schools," students wrote in a letter to Cuomo. "Students must not only be heard, but also be put in a position where their ideas can be put into action."

To this point, Cuomo has agreed to give current students the opportunity to testify at regional meetings and work with the commission to make sure student voices are heard. They will also be able to submit reports of their own suggesting reforms.

Richard Parsons, a retired Citigroup chairman, Randi Weingarten, the president of the American Federation of Teachers, and Geoffrey Canada, founder and CEO of Harlem Children's Zone are currently members of the commission.

To learn more about the student movement for reform, go to www.StuVoice.org or join the weekly Twitter chat #StuVoice Mondays at 8:30 p.m.

stephany July 31, 2012 at 02:39 AM
check the profile of the person you are thanking. he most likely 100% just agreed with you to disagree with me. it is what clarkstowngetalife does. troll sound right.
Andromachos July 31, 2012 at 01:38 PM
Maybe Cuomo could give students as much input on education reform as the citizens of Rockland and Westchester get on the design and tolls for the new Tappan Zee Bridge. (BTW inviting the proles to hundreds of meetings to allow them to vent and giving them the illusion that they are "part of the process" while just ignoring their input is the way that works). Good luck to you, though. I hope it turns out better.
stephany July 31, 2012 at 07:17 PM
how long before the paypal button appears
stephany August 01, 2012 at 08:18 PM
"In a democracy everyone is entitled to their own opinion" Never said they weren't--care to quote me where I said anything that could be misconstrued as that. Having an opinion and having input into something you are not paying for are 2 completely different things .can my 5th grade granddaughter have the podium please. she has a lot of opinions everyone can have an opinion and everyone can speak it, but it don't count 'till you can vote. clarkstowngetalife always has an opinion. it is usually the opposite of whatever opinion I and a few others have..nothing else matters. If I say the sky is up he says I hate cops. his comments are truly a waste of time to read but I do just to see how he can contort the facts.. cgalife is good at that - contorting i mean
Amanda Elliott August 17, 2012 at 12:59 AM
//"everyone can have an opinion and everyone can speak it, but it don't count 'till you can vote."// So when people turn 18 they suddenly become more mature? Why shouldn't a 17 year old's opinion about education be valued? That's the whole point of this movement. These young people can't vote, but that doesn't mean that they should be ignored. The 5th grader example is ludicrous. Representation would only apply to young, mature adults. And they may not pay income taxes, but they pay taxes are everything they buy. The whole purpose of education is to prepare the upcoming generation to become good citizens and to enter the work force. A simple question, "Do you think the education you are receiving now is effectively preparing you for life?" will get more effective responses from current students, rather than from adults who cannot even remember when they were in public education.


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