PHILADELPHIA–“When Mayor Kenney announced an end to state control of Philly’s schools, he reasserted what has been the central focus of his Administration: ensuring that our children have the resources and opportunities they deserve. The Mayor’s budget proposal is a good demonstration of that commitment.
“Over the past 17 years, ‘doing without’ has become the new normal for our schools. School district budget deficits ballooned, while our schoolchildren lost extracurricular activities; art and music classes; nurses; counselors and librarians. The PFT’s most recent member survey shows that class size is the top challenge faced by educators. Our schools need more teachers, assistants and other personnel to ensure that children are safe and getting the attention and support they need to get the most out of their education. None of this can happen without adequate and sustained funding for our schools.
“We appreciate Mayor Kenney’s commitment to ensuring schoolchildren and educators won’t have to endure the program cuts, layoffs and school closings that marked the SRC era. But we also understand that we can’t let Pennsylvania’s leaders off the hook for funding public education. The Commonwealth must do a better job of addressing the school funding disparities that have kept districts like Philadelphia in fiscal crisis for too long.