Education

If Cuomo Wins Third Term as Governor, N.Y. Districts Could See More Fiscal Scrutiny

By Daarel Burnette II — September 14, 2018 2 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been one of the most aggressive governors in the nation in scrutinizing how districts spend state tax dollars.

With his sound defeat of challenger Cynthia Nixon in Thursday’s Democratic primary, he heads into the November election heavily favored against Republican nominee Marcus Molinaro. So what would that mean for school districts if he wins a third term as governor?

For one thing, districts could expect that any more money they get from the state in the coming years would be heavily scrutinized by Cuomo’s office for how efficiently and effectively it’s spent. Here’s why.

During Cuomo’s first two years in office, he ramped up the weight test scores held in teachers’ evaluations and promised to “bust up the monopoly of public schools. " But, as public sentiment turned against testing and grew more sympathetic toward teachers and public schools, Cuomo in 2016 backed off, turning instead his attention to school funding.

Last year, on the heels of a little-known new requirement under the Every Student Succeeds Act that states report school-level spending, Cuomo signed a bill into law that not only requires districts that receive state funds to report out school-level spending patterns but to have those numbers scrutinized by his budget office. That process began earlier this month.

During his heated campaign against Nixon, he touted his $1 billion increase in state spending last year and told voters that, if elected, he would assure that districts spend its money on students who need it most.

“The real issue is the distribution of that money,” Cuomo said at a press conference in March. “We have an education inequality problem in this state.”

Nixon, who lost in a landslide, had said she would tax the state’s wealthiest residents and corporations to bring $7 billion more to schools.

Elsewhere in the country, progressive gubernatorial candidates in states such as Arizona and Florida in this year’s race are touting higher taxes on the wealthy and corporations as a way to pay for teacher raises and new school construction, among other things. And Republican gubernatorial candidates in Colorado and Oklahoma have, like Cuomo, expressed skepticism that school district officials spend their money on classrooms.

During an especially rowdy debate at Kansas’ state fair last week, Republican gubernatorial candidate Kris Kobach accused a school in Wichita of hiring 12 vice principals, a claim the district vehemently denied.

“My high school had one assistant principal, and I didn’t know what that guy did,” Kobach said. “Why does a school district, or a high school, need 12 assistant principals? We have got to stop spending so much money on administration and spend it instead in the classroom—on the teacher salaries and on the computers and books.”


Don’t miss another State EdWatch post. Sign up here to get news alerts in your email inbox. And make sure to follow @StateEdWatch on Twitter for the latest news from state K-12 policy and politics.

A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.

Events

Classroom Technology Webinar How Pandemic Tech Is (and Is Not) Transforming K-12 Schools
The COVID-19 pandemic—and the resulting rise in virtual learning and big investments in digital learning tools— helped educators propel their technology skills to the next level. Teachers have become more adept at using learning management
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
Building Teacher Capacity for Social-Emotional Learning
Set goals that support adult well-being and social-emotional learning: register today!


Content provided by Panorama
Jobs October 2021 Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Gunman in 2018 Parkland School Massacre Pleads Guilty
A jury will decide whether Nikolas Cruz will be executed for one of the nation’s deadliest school shootings.
3 min read
Annika Dworet and her husband, Mitch Dworet, wipe away tears as their son's name is read aloud during Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz's guilty plea on all 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder in the 2018 shootings, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021. The Dworet's son, Nicholas Dworet, 17, was killed in the massacre.
Annika Dworet and her husband, Mitch Dworet, wipe away tears as their son's name is read aloud during Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz's guilty plea on all 17 counts of premeditated murder and 17 counts of attempted murder in the 2018 shootings, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. on Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021. The Dworet's son, Nicholas Dworet, 17, was killed in the massacre.
Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun Sentinel via AP
Education Briefly Stated: October 20, 2021
Here's a look at some recent Education Week articles you may have missed.
8 min read
Education Gunman in Parkland School Massacre to Plead Guilty
The gunman who killed 14 students and three staff members at a Florida high school will plead guilty to their murders, his attorneys said.
4 min read
Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz is sworn in before pleading guilty, Friday, Oct. 15, 2021, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on all four criminal counts stemming from his attack on a Broward County jail guard in November 2018, Cruz's lawyers said Friday that he plans to plead guilty to the 2018 massacre at a Parkland high school.
Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz is sworn in before pleading guilty, Friday, Oct. 15, 2021, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on all four criminal counts stemming from his attack on a Broward County jail guard in November 2018, Cruz's lawyers said Friday that he plans to plead guilty to the 2018 massacre at a Parkland high school.
Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun Sentinel via AP
Education California Makes Ethnic Studies a High School Requirement
California is among the first in the nation to require students to take a course in ethnic studies to get a diploma starting in 2029-30.
4 min read
FILE - In this Jan. 22, 2020, file photo, Democratic Assembly members, from left, James Ramos, Chris Holden Jose Medina, and Rudy Salas, Jr., right, huddle during an Assembly session in Sacramento, Calif. Medina's bill to make ethnic studies a high school requirement was signed into law by California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday, Oct. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)