A majority of New York voters support the concepts behind Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Parental Choice in Education Act and oppose (though by a slimmer margin) extended mayoral control in the Big Apple, a new Q poll found.

Sixty-six percent of poll respondents said they are in favor of providing $500 worth of state income tax credits to parents who earn up to $60,000 annually and pay tuition for children to attend private schools – including religious schools, the poll found.

And 55 percent said they back giving tax credits to individuals and companies which donate to private and parochial schools. Democrats are divided on this issue, with 49 percent in favor and 46 percent opposed. But other party, gender, regional and income groups support the measure – including 60 percent in New York City.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been making a big end-of-session push on the tax credit front after failing his effort to link the EITC with the DREAM Act during the budget battle.

During a CapTon interview last night, Assembly Majority Leader Joe Morelle said there is support in the Democratic conference for the education tax credit, and he did not rule out the possibility that some version of it could be included in the Big Ugly – though he said it would likely have to be amended to make it onto the floor.

So far, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, who used to be a sponsor of the EITC (back before he ascended to the leadership post and pulled his name off all bills), has been steadfast in his insistence that there is not sufficient support among Assembly Democrats to move the measure.

Speaking of New York City, 55 percent of voters across the state do not support the extension of mayoral control of the public school system in the five boroughs. New York City voters, who are directly impacted by this issue, are divided, with 48 percent in favor, and 44 percent opposed. Opposition is 59-23 percent upstate and 64-28 percent in the suburbs.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio gets a negative 28-40 percent favorability rating in this poll, with a 46-41 percent positive in New York City and negative grades of 12-29 percent upstate and 27-57 percent in the suburbs.

More bad news for de Blasio – 53 percent of voters say they the idea of expanding charter schools, with even stronger support – 62 percent – in New York City. The Senate Republicans, who are no fans of the New York City mayor, have advanced legislation linking raising the charter cap by 100 schools and doing away with regional barriers to extension of mayoral control.

Fifty-nine percent of voters say they disapprove of the way Cuomo is handling education, and 54 percent say they trust the teachers union more than the governor to improve the system of educating kids in New York.

On the testing front, 64 percent of those polled said they don’t feel standardized tests are an accurate way to measure student performance, and 51 percent feel parents should be allowed to opt their kids out if they so choose.

Sixty-nine percent said teacher pay should not be based on student test performance, and 65 percent said that should not impact decisions about teacher tenure.

Q poll finds NY voters support EITC, oppose extension of NYC mayoral control. by liz_benjamin6490