Before analyzing Governor Cuomo’s proposed budget it is important to recognize that the Governor has yet to fulfill the State’s financial commitment under the Contract for Excellence so there is no guarantee that should the proposed budget be ratified, any agreements will be honored.
In the Description of 2013-14 New York State Executive Budget Recommendations for Elementary and Secondary Education the first paragraph of the School Aid Overview states,
“The 2013-14 Executive Budget reflects a strong commitment to improved student outcomes, sustainable cost growth, and an equitable distribution of aid. It builds upon reforms implemented in prior years as well as the first round of recommendations from the New NY Education Commission.”
1. High need districts will receive 75 percent of the 2013-14 allocated increase and 69 percent of total formula-based School Aid.
* Funding districts in this manner supports and promotes failure in order to guarantee receiving the largest amount of State revenue. Education revenue should support and strengthen student success.
2. Within formula-based aids, including Building Aids, 517
school districts have aid increases totaling $591.23 million and 159 school districts are projected to have aid decreases amounting to -$40.92 million.
* We must fund education according to the needs of the children not the districts that serve them.
3. For the 2013-14 school year, school districts may qualify for additional amounts for full-day prekindergarten through a competitive grant application process.
* The Governor is asking districts to bet their children’s future on an application process.
4. For the 2013-14 school year $204.19 million, a decrease of -$1.28 million, is available for Special Services Aid for career education programs and school computer services.
* This is not indicative of a commitment to improved student outcomes.
5. An increase of $60.87 million, for a total of $1,722.49
million (including summer transportation aid), is provided for expense-based Transportation Aid to reimburse school districts for the cost of transporting 2.3 million students statewide.
* The Governor’s New Education Commission recommends neighborhood schools, an increase in busing reimbursement is counter productive to this goal.
Actions speak louder than words, the proposed budget tells the public what State leaders really want for our children, more of the same.
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