ALBANY -- Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo will start airing a statewide television ad this week to push his reforms to the Common Core curriculum so students won't unfairly be hurt by test scores under the new, higher standards, a spokesman said Sunday evening.
The governor's push comes amid a move by Assembly Democrats to delay aspects of the highly criticized Common Core standards for two years.
Cuomo speaks directly into the camera in the ad, which is designed to underscore his proposal to better train teachers and prepare students and their parents for the national Common Core initiative. Cuomo supports the higher standards, but said the uproar in recent months by parents and teachers shows the rollout by the state Education Department was flawed.
"While the state's new Common Core curriculum is heading in the right direction, testing on it is premature," Cuomo tells viewers. "It creates anxiety and it's just unfair. And their [children's] scores should not be counted against them."
Such TV ads aren't uncommon for governors seeking to gain public support for their proposals. A Cuomo spokesman said the ad will be paid for by Cuomo's campaign.
Cuomo has created his own commission to find a way to better inform parents and students, and better train teachers to adjust to the higher standards. Cuomo also wants students in kindergarten through second grade to be exempt from standardized tests, which critics say are stressing students in all grades.
The ad comes as the Assembly's Democratic majority plans to introduce a bill that would delay teacher evaluations conducted under the Common Core effort for two years, defying Cuomo's plans. The Democrats, including Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) and Education Committee chairwoman Catherine Nolan (D-Ridgewood), are scheduled to discuss the proposal in closed-door conference Monday and perhaps vote on it this week.
Odd that Cuomo is running an ad to defend his Common Core reform policy, since he just told us last week that he has nothing to do with the state education policy.
Clearly he is feeling the pressure over CCSS and feels like he needs to defend Common Core himself, in a commercial paid for by his own campaign, with him speaking directly into the camera about the reform policies.
I'll have a lot more to say about this later today, but let's say for now that by defending CCSS in his own words (even as he criticizes the state's implementation of the standards) he is now out in the open owning Common Core as his policy.