2008 Meeting Review
from the
New York State Assembly
Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan
Sheldon Silver, Speaker • Catherine Nolan, Chairwoman
Spring/Summer 2008

Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell Appointed to Assembly Education Committee by Speaker Silver:

Assembly Education Committee Chair, Catherine Nolan, welcomed
Assemblyman Daniel O’Donnell to the Standing Committee on Education.

photo Assemblywoman Nolan welcomes Assembly member O’Donnell to the Education Committee.

“Assemblyman O’Donnell’s conscientious advocacy on the part of children and families will be an indisputable asset to the Committee on Education,” said Assemblywoman Nolan. “The issues examined by the Committee are of paramount importance to the families of New York State, and his strong progressive voice will serve the state and our children well.”

Assemblyman O’Donnell has been involved in issues such as mayoral control, opportunities for English Language Learners, and other education policy issues prior to his appointment to the committee. He was the sponsor of the Dignity for all Students Act, legislation that protects students from discrimination and ensures a safe educational environment. The bill passed the Assembly in February, and would afford all students in public schools an environment free of harassment and discrimination based on actual or perceived race, national origin, ethnic group, religion, disability, sexual orientation, gender or sex.

“I am honored to have been selected to serve my community and the Assembly in this capacity,” said Assembly member O’Donnell. “I look forward to working closely with Education Committee Chair Catherine Nolan to develop education policy that serves all the children of New York State.”

Assemblymember O’Donnell represents the 69th Assembly District, including portions of the Upper West Side, Morningside Heights, Manhattan Valley, and West Harlem.

Education Chair Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan Announces Record Increase for Public Schools

State budget ‘Keeps the Commitment’ through $534 million aid increase for NYC schools

photo Assemblywoman Nolan with Billy Easton of the Alliance for Quality Education, Assemblywoman Rosenthal and Geri Palaste of the Campaign for Fiscal Equity during budget negotiations in April.

ALBANY - New York State Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan, Chair of the Education Committee, announced today that New York State will keep its promise to public schools and the students and parents they serve.

Total spending for schools statewide increased by $1.75 billion over 2007. This record increase brings the education budget to an unprecedented $21 billion for 2008-09. New York City public schools will receive $534 million more than they did in 2007, with a total of $8 billion in total funding for 2008-09.

“We have kept the promise to education as required by the Campaign for Fiscal Equity decision. In the face of economic difficulties, this historic level of funding demonstrates our commitment to schools, our children and the future. I want to thank Assembly Speaker Silver and my colleagues in the Assembly who, together with Governor Paterson, worked tirelessly to make sure that our schools have the funds to educate our children.”

The final budget adds $85 million for additional programs and restorations, including adult literacy education, independent living centers and libraries. The aid will also support programs that provide needed services to disabled adults.

The final budget rejects the 18-month lag for New York City building aid, instead seeking to ensure that building aid estimates are more accurate and that aid is issued in a timely manner. A proposal to offset New York City operating aid with increases in reimbursable aids was also rejected.

Assemblywoman Nolan said the final budget allocation for universal pre-K totals $450 million, an increase of $96 million over 2007-08. This expands the number of 4-year-old children attending pre-K from 93,000 up to 121,000, bringing New York even closer to achieving universal pre-K.

“All New York children should reap the lasting benefits of attending pre-K,” Assemblywoman Nolan said. “Studies show again and again that pre-K gives our children an advantage in student achievement, college enrollment and future earnings. More detailed budget information is available on the Assembly web site.

Meeting Summary
The following bills were reported by
the New York State Assembly Committee on Education, Monday, April 12, 2008.

A1338 McEneny  This bill authorizes and directs the Commissioner of Education to require that school districts adopt student to adult ratios in outside play areas. Adults will serve in a supervisory capacity to ensure the safety of public school children. This bill was reported to the Ways and Means Committee.

A6636 Heastie  This bill would amend the Education Law to change the definition of a child to include persons under the age of 21 who are enrolled in a school district of a city with a population of one million or more. The intention of the bill is protect children from abuse and maltreatment in educational settings. The bill was reported to the Codes Committee.

A9824 w/a Nolan  This bill would amend the Education Law to state explicitly that meetings of parent or parent teacher associations must be open to the public, if held on public school property. All organizations which sponsor meetings, entertainments or other events at schools would be provided with written information about the law. The bill was reported to the Assembly Floor with amendments.

Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan
Assembly Education Committee Chair
NYS Seal
Room 836 LOB
Albany, New York 12248
Fax: 518-455-3847
61-08 Linden Street
Ridgewood, New York 11385
Fax: 718-417-4982
45-25 47th Street
Woodside, New York 11377
E-mail: nolanc@assembly.state.ny.us

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