In anticipation of the governor’s second budget address next week, the Campaign for Fair Education Funding today formally requested that Gov. Tom Wolf and members of the General Assembly resolve their differences and make a significant, long-term and equitable investment in public schools beginning with this fiscal year, and build on that investment in the 2016-17 budget.
The Campaign, a diverse coalition of more than 50 organizations, signed and delivered a memo to state lawmakers stating that each day that passes without action, opportunities for children to benefit from investments in public education are lost, and the state’s well-documented economic, racial and ethnic student achievement gaps will only widen and continue to hurt the state’s economy.
In its memo, the Campaign wrote, “Overall state education funding has been insufficient to support what is needed to educate all students to state standards. The result has been clearly and repeatedly illustrated in recent research, school district surveys, and news coverage: more and more school districts, without the revenues sufficient to cover mandated and necessary costs, will continue staff layoffs, cutbacks in academic programs, and other measures to close their fiscal gaps.
“There is no more vital investment we can make to propel our economy forward than building a well-educated and properly prepared workforce. Even more fundamentally, there is no more important obligation than to give all of Pennsylvania’s children a high-quality education and a strong foundation for full and productive lives.”