GR Updates

Government Relations Updates

Click on the date to view the complete update.

August 8, 2023

  •  – The deadline for the electronic application submission is extended to September 1, 2023 at 5:00 pm. If a district has already submitted their application, they may revised and resubmit. Contact  for further assistance.
  • In 2021, the legislature placed a moratorium on the purchase or use of biometric identification technology (BITS) until the commissioner of education authorized such purchase and further, the commissioner was directed to issue a report on the use of BITS in educational settings.
  •  – “Today, State Education Commissioner Betty A. Rosa and Department staff met with leaders from Governor Kathy Hochul’s Office and the New York City Department of Education to discuss supports for schools and school districts statewide related to the arrival of large numbers of asylum seeker and migrant students.

August 3, 2023

  • Governor Hochul announced a historic amount of funding for youth mental health services.
  • Federal Appropriations for FY24 – The House and Senate have both proposed funding bills for education.

May 4, 2023

Senate Hearing: S.1040 – the Solutions, Not Suspensions proposed bill

On May 3, 2023, the Senate held its first of two hearings on S.1040 – the Solutions, Not Suspensions proposed bill. The proposed bill would have a significant impact on building administrators’ use of suspensions. SAANYS has been working with many stakeholders on this bill for several years.

The areas of the legislation most problematic for SAANYS members are:

  • prohibition of the use of suspensions in grades Pre-K-3,
  • the use of a suspension cap of no more than 20 days,
  • prohibition of suspensions for acts of willful disobedience,
  • requirement of districts to use a wide range of interventions or programs available prior to suspending a student, without requiring the participation of the student, or consent from the parent/legal guardian,
  • lack of funding to meet the requirements of the proposed bill.

Our opposition to these components of the legislation is based on valuable information from our members and our government relations committee. If you recall, SAANYS sent a survey out to all members in December 2022 on this topic. Over 66 percent of the respondents opposed prohibition of suspensions in Pre-K-grade 3, 70 percent opposed a 20-day cap on the days for suspension, and 70 percent opposed prohibition suspension for willful disobedience.

SAANYS is indebted to the presentation of testimony by two of our members: Dr. Gloria Jackson, elementary principal, Brentwood School District and W. Charles Brandy, director of social studies, Buffalo City School District. Their presentations were outstanding and provided the Senate with an excellent perspective on how and when suspensions are used. They pointed out that the first goal is always to keep students in school, they discussed the types of strategies used prior to a suspension being issued, and what specific incidences required the use of suspensions. Dr. Jackson and Mr. Brandy were asked many questions from the senators and again provided compelling information on this topic. Many thanks to Dr. Jackson and Mr. Brandy for their dedicated work on this testimony and their professionalism on this complex issue.

Along with Dr. Jackson and Mr. Brandy’s presentations, SAANYS submitted written testimony on suspensions, which can be found .

The link to the entire hearing may be found at: 

Should you have any questions or comments regarding the SAANYS testimony or general comments on this topic, please feel free to contact Cindy Gallagher at  or by calling 518 782-0600.


April 19, 2023

April Board of Regents Meeting

  •  – NYSED is recommending that changes be made to both provisional and professional certification due to the inability of building administrators and other classification areas to complete requirements in the expected time frames.
  •  – The Board of Regents determined that is was necessary to reexamine existing regulations that protected student safety regarding corporal punishment and isolation interventions.
  • Prohibition of the Use of Indigenous Mascots – The Board unanimously voted to prohibit the use of indigenous names, mascots, and imagery in all public schools. School districts will be required to adhere to this decision by the end of the 2024-25 school year.
  •  – As the Blue-Ribbon Commission continues its work, recent focus has been to develop a portrait of a graduate of the 21st century.
  •  – The Board of Regents undertook an endeavor to examine the values and purposes of New York’s assessment strategy and has been doing that work for over a year.
  •  – This group of students entered grade 9 in 2018 and are the cohort that experienced three years of the COVID pandemic and had Regents exams suspended in years 2020-22.

April 5, 2023

  • Since last week, over 50 more swatting calls have been made. School districts in Central New York, Long Island, the Southern Tier, Northern Region, and Capital District school districts have been impacted. School districts in other states are reporting similar incidents and the FBI is investigating the sources of the prank calls. Some of the perpetrators are thought to be foreign actors. Please see this 

April 3, 2023

April 1, 2023

  • School Safety Memo from Commissioner and NYS PoliceThis past week has seen increased incidents of violence and threats of violence targeted at schools both nationally and in our state.

March 22, 2023

  • SAANYS DC Advocacy Day On March 26-29, 2023, a team of 10 SAANYS members will be headed to Washington, DC to advocate for both federal and state level support and funding important to building leaders across the nation.
  • This week in Albany was filled with Education Committee meetings and  joint meetings on the one-house bills.

March 15, 2023

March Board of Regents Meeting

February 14, 2023

February Board of Regents Meeting

February 13, 2023

February 2, 2023

  • On February 1, 2023, the governor presented her statutorily required proposed budget.This sets in motion a process in which the two houses of the legislature review the proposed budget, propose changes, and then negotiate a final budget. For SAANYS, this also begins the process of analyzing each budget proposal, presenting testimony on how the proposal will impact building administrators, and meeting with legislators to articulate our concerns and/or support. Click here for a summary of the key components of the governor’s proposed budget as it pertains to education.
  •  and  – SAANYS was informed today by SED that the 2018 Cohort data was posted to their website and they also sent along a PPT that provides an overview of the information.

January 18, 2023

  • Results from SAANYS’ Membership Survey on School Discipline.

January 12, 2023

The Board of Regents held its first meeting of 2023 on January 9-10, 2023.

  •  – The proposal allows a candidate from another US state or territory to receive NYS certification by demonstrating “comparable,” instead of equivalent, experiences and education.
  • SAANYS has participated in the NYS School Safety Task Force since its inception. SAANYS sought the advice of the membership throughout the development this report and SAANYS has in turn expressed the strong concerns of members to the Task Force. SED acknowledged that the report did not have the unanimous support of all Task Force members.
  • Via this short survey (), SAANYS is seeking member input on these recommendations and strongly urges you to take a few minutes to share your opinions. The recommendations made in this report will have longterm impacts on building-level administrators and program directors.

January 10, 2023

  • Governor Hochul gave her  today, highlighting achievements of the past year and identifying high-priority initiatives.

January 5, 2023

December 14, 2022

  • Mr. Tony Cardamone, president of SAANYS and director of Elementary Curriculum & Instruction (Pre-K-6) for the Baldwinsville Central School District, presented testimony to the Assembly Education Committee on the issue of learning loss..

December 13, 2022

December 9, 2022

  • NYSDOH and NYSED Joint Letter on Precautions for Winter 2022-23 – Due to the convergence of increasing cases of the flu, and the continued threat of COVID, both NYSDOH and NYSED are urging communities and schools to use common sense precautions during this time.
  • Joint Letter from NYSDOH and NYSED Regarding Immunizations – This letter from Commissioners Rosa and Bassett reiterate school district responsibilities relating to student immunizations.
  • Assemblyman Benedetto has announced a hearing on December 14, 2022 on the topic of learning loss. This is an important issue for SAANYS members and Dr. Tony Cardamone will provide oral testimony on behalf of building administrators across the state.
  • On December 14, 2022 at 4:00 pm, SED will hold a webinar on its PLAN Pilot. The Performance Based Learning and Assessment Network was established by SED to explore the role and efficacy of performance-based assessments in New York.

December 2, 2022

  • The New York State report cards for school districts are an important tool for parents and families for understanding how students perform on state assessments. The 2021-22 NY State Report Card Group 1 release is publicly available on the .
  • NYSED has revised the  to ensure equitable access to athletics for students of all genders.

November 18, 2022

  •  – As many of you have read in the news, the commissioner of education ruled that all Native American mascots, team names, logs, etc., must come into immediate compliance. NYSED will be promulgating regulations that provide additional information.

November 17, 2022

  • – SAANYS met with the Health Education Constituents group to discuss the Health Care Worker Bonus Program. The most updated information is highlighted in yellow.
  • State commissioners were told this week to not exceed FY 2023 funding levels. The state’s budget plan anticipates a $148 million deficit next fiscal year with a possible increase to $3.5 billion for the 2025-26 fiscal year.

November 16, 2022

November 7, 2022

November 4, 2022

  •  – NYSDOH just released this webinar to further explain COVID-19 reporting requirements.
  • On November 2, 2022, the GRC met with representatives form the offices of Governor Hochul and Commissioner Rosa. The items discussed at each meeting included mental health, staffing shortages, and school safety.

November 1, 2022


October 23, 2022

Government Relations Update, presented by Dr. Cynthia Gallagher, SAANYS Director of Government Relations


October 17, 2022

October 6, 2022

Overview of the Board of Regents monthly meeting

September 13, 2022

Overview of the Board of Regents monthly meeting

September 9, 2022

September 1, 2022

  • Resources for Commercial Driver Resources – The NYS Department of Motor Vehicles has developed the above resource and hopes that it will be helpful to school districts.
  • Welcome Back to School – The New York State Education Department and Governor’s Office are undertaking a joint campaign to welcome back students and the school communities.

August 29, 2022

August 23, 2022

August 17, 2022

August 12, 2022

  •  – The CDC issued new guidance to support safe in-person learning and to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
  • – Some of the information harkens back to the use of levels of community spread. When levels are high, schools should consider adding layered prevention strategies to keep schools open.
  •  – A considerable portion of the new guidance focuses on everyday strategies for the spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.
  • Masking is not required, but suggested, for persons exhibiting symptoms while at school.
  • Management of Cases and Exposures – If students or staff develop symptoms while at school, such individuals should be asked to wear a mask.

August 9, 2022

July 25, 2022

July 21, 2022

  • Fall Action Plan – The governor has announced a Fall Action Plan to prepare for a new COVID-19 season.

July 5, 2022

  • COVID Report Card – daily reporting is not required for the COVID-19 Report Card (districts may continue to report if they so choose).
  • Requirements under 10 NYCRR 2.62 regarding COVID-19 testing have expired. Schools are no longer required to conduct weekly testing of unvaccinated teachers or unvaccinated students.
  • Guidance and Resources – NYSDOH continues to stress that testing is a recommended prevention strategy and encourages districts to offer access to screening and diagnostic testing for staff and students.

June 28, 2022

June 24, 2022

  • S.7132-b/A.10018Governor Hochul signed into law, known as Alyssa’s Law. This law requires school districts to consider the use of panic alarm systems as part of their safety plans.

June 22, 2022

June 17, 2022

SED Computer Based Testing Memo

June 14, 2022

Board of Regents P12 Subcommittee Items:

Higher Education Items:

June 7, 2022

  • S.9113-a/A.10502 – The Red Flag Law is expanded to allow multiple categories of mental health practitioners, who have examined an individual within six months, to make a petition to the courts.
  • S.9458/A.10503 – Bans the sale of semiautomatic rifles to anyone under the age of 21 by requiring a license.
  • S.9407-b/A.10497 – Prohibits the sale of body vests for anyone not working in an eligible profession.
  • S.4116-a/A.7926-a – Requires the Division of Criminal Justice Services to examine the technology of micro-stamping for pistols, and if the technology is viable, to require semi-automatic pistols to be micro-stamped-enabled in New York.
  • S.9456/A.10504 – Expands the definition of a firearm to include any weapon not defined in the Penal Law that is designed to be converted to expel a projectile through the use of an explosive.
  • S.89-b/A.6716-a – Would also create a crime of making a threat of mass harm.
  • S.4511-a/A.7865 – Requires social media to provide clear polices on how they respond to incidents of “hateful conduct” on their platforms.

June 3, 2022

May 31, 2022

  • Frequently Asked Questions on Cancellation of Regents Examination in United States History and Government (Framework)

May 24, 2022

  • U.S. History and Government Regents exam canceled.
  • Elementary- and Intermediate-level Science Tests
  • SAANYS Government Relations Committee Meeting with Commissioner Rosa – topics included end-of-year concerns, student mental health, state assessments, and attendance.

May 16, 2022

  • Requires all NYS Police to be trained and instructed on how to file an application for an extreme risk protection order in keeping with the Red Flag Law.
  • – These plans include high-tech security tools, entry control and video systems, and emergency classroom notification systems.
  • Refresher on the Red Flag Law