It’s easy to get frustrated with politicians who talk about education. They tend to reduce the issues in education to “academics,” “achievement,” and “standards.” Those things are important–they also tend to ignore other very important matters like poverty, institutional racism, and class. In this clip from a 2012 meeting on education in New York State, Governor Andrew Cuomo addresses a commission he established to write up a recommendations report for how to improve education. What interested me most happens at about the 11 minute mark where he argues that the word “school” gets in the way of real reform because it masks the fact that different communities sometimes have very different needs. As a result, they can’t be assessed the same way. Is it semantics or insight? You assess.
And if you are interested in the final report, well here it is.