"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Governor Christie Starving Public Education for a Fifth Year

Governor Chris Christie is still bullying public schools and public school teachers who do not work for his bosses in New Jersey. You know, the ones who are being paid off with favors and punished for not bowing down to him.

The governor who is under investigation for closing bridges and playing games with Hurricane Sandy funds, is once again putting children and families in harms way by not adequately funding public schools.  He knows how to keep a promise when it comes to not raising taxes on millionaires and billionaires in his state. After all, why would a governor want to generate revenue for infrastructure, education, medicine and transportation projects when they can keep his friends happy.

Under Christies proposed school budget, The Garden State provides whopping $20 per student increase in funding for 2014-2015 school year.

Let's see, is that extra $20 going to Achieve? or to Pearson? It's hard to tell these days.

ELC Calls On Legislature to Provide 5% Increase in State Formula Aid
In a statement to the Assembly and Senate Budget Committees, Education Law Center is calling on the Legislature to flatly reject Governor Christie's proposal to provide almost no state aid increase for New Jersey school districts in the 2014-15 school year.
The Governor's proposal marks the fifth straight year of his refusal to comply with the School Funding Reform Act (SFRA), New Jersey's landmark weighted student formula enacted with bipartisan support in 2008, and upheld as constitutional by the NJ Supreme Court in 2009.
The Governor proposes to increase school aid by a mere $20 a student, and to allocate this paltry sum in off-formula categories. All aid under the SFRA is frozen at last year's levels, including foundational equalization aid, special education aid, and transportation and security aid.
If the Governor's proposal is enacted, districts would be faced with a fifth year of aid cuts or no real aid increase, triggering yet another round of painful cuts to teachers, support staff, intervention services and programs essential to ensuring students a thorough and efficient education.
The Governor's miniscule aid increase comes against a backdrop of an Administration that has amassed a cumulative $5.1 billion under-funding of districts under the SFRA formula. And the Office of Legislative Services' analysis of the Governor's FY15 proposal confirms ELC data showing that, as a result of this massive under-funding, the aid levels in 80% of our school districts are below what they were in 2009-10, when the Governor took office. Statewide, districts are now more than $275 million below their state aid levels five years ago.

Press Contact:
Sharon Krengel
Policy and Outreach Director
973-624-1815, x 24

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