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Governor’s Increase in Basic Education Funding is Welcome, but more Investment is Needed Moving Forward

(Harrisburg, Pa.) – The Campaign for Fair Education issued the following statement on Governor Tom Wolf’s proposal to increase basic education funding by $100 million in his 2017-18 budget proposal:

We appreciate the Governor’s continuing commitment to our public schools. The Governor’s proposed increase of $100 million for public schools, driven out through the state’s fair funding formula, is a welcome investment in a difficult budget year, and it remains important to recognize that we need even greater increases going forward to support all Pennsylvania students.

The bipartisan fair funding formula that was enacted last year disperses state dollars more fairly to our schools, and if we want all students to be given the same opportunities for success, the state must make significant and sustained funding increases in the upcoming years.

The Campaign for Fair Education Funding estimates that to achieve fair and adequate school funding, the state must increase its investment in public schools annually over time by nearly $3 billion. The gap only grows without consistent investment from the state.

Pennsylvania’s state share of public school funding remains one of the lowest in the country. We simply will not be able to get students what they need – smaller class sizes, a full array of courses and activities, tutoring and other academic support, up-to-date textbooks and technology – without greater resources.

We look forward to working with the Wolf Administration and the General Assembly to explore ways to further expand the state’s investment in Pennsylvania’s students this year and into the future.

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The Campaign for Fair Education Funding consists of more than 50 organizations representing educators, faith-based organizations, children’s advocates, business leaders, and representatives of charter schools and rural, urban and suburban school districts across Pennsylvania.

 

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