Blog: Education Advocates Make a Case for Philly School Funding

Cross posted at Third and State

Sharon Ward, PA Budget and Policy CenterA coalition of education advocates joined forces to call on Philadelphia City Council to provide $195 million in sustainable local funding to the city's school district next year.

At an event last Thursday when Council met, several speakers explained how much students have suffered from budget cuts in recent years and how city leaders must step up once again to provide needed funding for city schools.

“Philadelphia students, teachers, and staff cannot go through another year of upheaval and uncertainty,” said Sharon Ward of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, one of the advocates to participate Thursday.

Ward also said that advocates should continue to fight for fair funding from the state, a point noted in a WHYY Newsworks report:

The $195 million would get the district close to the $200 million it says it needs merely to return services and staff to this year's dismal levels.

In total, the district is seeking $440 million before next school year. That sum would return many staffers and services that were cut this year and begin to implement aspects of Superintendent William Hite's Action Plan 2.0.

So even if the city can come through on the $195 million the district seeks, where will the remaining $245 million come from?

"We should be joining forces and going to Harrisburg, working together for more state funding for Philadelphia schools," said Sharon Ward, executive director of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center.

Read other media reports from last Thursday's call for adequate funding of Philadelphia schools in: