The story has circulated in the media that megastar Cynthia Nixon may run against Andrew Cuomo for governor. You may have seen her on television or on Broadway, but what you don’t know if that she is a public school parent in New York City and cares deeply about public education.

In this article, she explains that New York City public schools have been denied funding that was promised by the courts. She also explains that Andrew Cuomo is no friend of public education. He is a cheerleader for the charter industry, whose wealthy patrons have underwritten his past campaigns.

Nixon knows more about education that any other candidate who will be on the ballot in 2018 in New York state.

She writes:

As a public school parent, I am fearful about what our new U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has in store for our nation’s public schools.

The Trump-DeVos agenda includes more support for privately run charter schools — which in DeVos’ home state of Michigan are known for being some of the worst performing in the country — and a dramatic expansion of school privatization through vouchers. It could also greatly reduce federal funding for public schools. For New York State that could mean a cut of up to $2.5 billion.

Frightening. But equally frightening is how much Betsy DeVos and Andrew Cuomo’s policies echo each other.

Governor Cuomo wants to eliminate New York’s obligation to provide schools statewide with $4.3 billion in additional funding, including nearly $287 million for schools in Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties. There is no doubt that high-needs schools require this support: Guidance counselors in Yonkers carry a caseload of 750 students. Ossining and Peekskill struggle to find resources to serve a growing influx of English language learners. And parents in Mount Vernon are suing the state to receive their fair share of education funding. We have the same problems in New York City.

In 2001, on the day my oldest child Sam began kindergarten, I was shocked to find that two thirds of the school’s paraprofessionals, the art teacher, the music teacher and the assistant principal were all gone since the spring tour I had taken a few months earlier — casualties of a woefully inadequate budget. On that day, I joined the fight for New York State to fully implement the ruling from the landmark Campaign for Fiscal Equity lawsuit against the state…

In 2007 and 2008, the state made progress towards its constitutional obligations to students by funding Foundation Aid, but after Cuomo took office he did everything he could to avoid paying this debt, and now he wants to eliminate Foundation Aid outright.

He also wants to increase the number of privately-run charter schools in New York City by more than 50 percent. And he has been a loud proponent of private school tax credits, essentially a backdoor voucher system. These are policies we expect from Betsy DeVos, but from Andrew Cuomo?

Whoever runs for office in New York and in other states should go on the record about whether they support public schools. We know the answer from Cuomo. He wants more charter schools. This will be an albatross around his neck if he runs for president in 2020. That is, unless Cynthia Nixon beats him!