Gov. Wolf's state budget proposal will fix the school funding crisis
On Feb. 9, Gov. Tom Wolf proposed a state budget that will erase the looming $2 billion budget deficit, balance the state budget, fix our state's school funding crisis, and make sure that Pennsylvania has the resources to invest in public schools for years to come.
But, in his budget address to the General Assembly, the governor made clear that a crisis is looming unless lawmakers take immediate steps to solve it. If the budget deficit isn't fixed, public schools could face $1 billion in funding cuts.
"Anyone who says this isn't a crisis is just wrong," said PSEA President Jerry Oleksiak. "Gov. Wolf has a solution to fix it. We need to get this done, and we need PSEA members to speak out to their legislators until it is."
"If Pennsylvania doesn't start making the right budget choices, another generation of kids - not some hypothetical kids, but real kids, our children and our grandchildren - will struggle to learn with larger classes, fewer teachers, shuttered libraries, and no school nurses. Some schools won't even have enough money to stay open through June. We can and must do better."
Gov. Wolf proposed a plan to increase school funding by $350 million for the remainder of the 2015-16 school year, and by another $200 million in 2016-17. This would restore individual school district funding levels above what they received in 2010-11, and put school funding back on the right track.
Right now, Pennsylvania ranks 50th in equity and 45th in state support for public schools. That's because only 32 percent of the money school districts spend on classroom instruction comes from the state's basic education subsidy.
"Pennsylvania has 1.8 million students who are looking to elected officials to make sure they have access to public schools that can afford to offer a well-rounded curriculum. Gov. Wolf's budget proposal would make sure they get it. It's time to get this done."
Learn more at www.psea.org/schoolfunding.