Tag: Arne Duncan

In a 49-40 vote Monday, the U.S. Senate confirmed President Barack Obama’s nominee for U.S. Department of Education secretary, former New York State education commissioner John B. King, Jr., inciting harsh criticism from education advocates across New York, as well as denunciation from U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. New York’s other senator, Chuck Schumer, voted in favor of King’s confirmation. The split vote comes amid ever-growing protests against the controversial education reform Common Core by statewide education advocates, who had experienced firsthand the aftermath of King’s tenure. More than 240,000 students statewide “opted-out” of taking the exams last April. Sen. Gillibrand was the lone Democrat opposing the nod.

State lawmakers joined Common Core opponents in criticizing President Barack Obama’s nomination of former New York State Education Commissioner John King for U.S. Secretary of Education in the first day of confirmation hearings Thursday. King, who assumed the role of acting secretary in January, remains a lightning rod for fury among parents and teachers across New York State upset about his botched implementation of the controversial Common Core education reforms, which led to hundreds of thousands of students across the state and nation “opting out” of taking the standardized tests.

"You can’t punish a teacher, a district, a school—without punishing a child."

The parents and teachers opposing the program say they are fighting for something beyond a price tag: the minds of their children and students.