500 signatures reached
To: Gov. Cuomo, Senate Leader Dean Skelos, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie
Gov Cuomo: Fully and fairly fund New York schools
As clergy and people of faith from across New York State, we call on you to fully and fairly fund New York's public schools.
We join with education experts, parents, teachers and students in calling for a $2.2 billion increase in state aid for education in the 2015-2016 budget.
Why is this important?
Decreases in state education aid since the 2008 recession have been devastating for our state's schools, leading to cuts in essential programs and staff in districts all over the state. For poor districts, which were already severely underfunded, the last seven years have been catastrophic. Inequality in our schools is now at an all-time high: our poorest districts get by on $8,733 less per pupil than our wealthiest. This is wrong.
At a time when New York State spends $7 billion per year in tax breaks for corporations, we can afford to invest in education. Not only does New York have the resources to adequately fund our schools, it has the constitutional and moral obligation to do so immediately.
This money should have no strings attached; it is public money which our schools need and to which they are entitled. To tie needed funding to unproven "reforms" that scapegoat teachers, rather than addressing underlying inequality and poverty, is unconscionable.
For the sake of the well-being of our children and our communities, we call on you to prioritize our public schools and give them the additional $2.2 billion they urgently need.