ALBANY, NY (December 17, 2018) — In an address today, Governor Andrew Cuomo called the Campaign for Fiscal Equity (CFE) lawsuit and Foundation Aid school funding formula “ghosts of the past and distractions of the present.” In response, public education advocacy organization the Alliance for Quality Education released the following statement:
“Cuomo is the Ebenezer Scrooge of public schools, starving children of much needed resources and state funding. Rather than taxing billionaires and having the state fairly fund schools, Cuomo would have local school districts take money from one high poverty school to give it to another one. In high-need, underfunded districts like Buffalo, Schenectady or Brentwood, all of the schools are high poverty. Distributing the money between schools within districts is not the problem; the problem is that under Andrew Cuomo state doesn’t provide enough funding to meet the growing needs that result from growing poverty and increased numbers of English language learners,” said Jasmine Gripper, legislative director, Alliance for Quality Education.
“Foundation Aid is not a fictitious ghost of the past, it’s New York state law, which is why every year the State Education Department calculates the amount of Foundation Aid still owed to school districts statewide. According to the Board of Regents and SED, schools are currently owed about $4 billion in Foundation Aid. Governor Cuomo’s denial of this fact today reflects his growing fears over the new reality in Albany — he knows he can no longer play the Republicans in the Senate as the backstop for blocking CFE.”
“The systemic racism in education funding continues to deny New York’s Black and Brown students access to a high quality education easily afforded to white suburban students. As a result of Governor Cuomo’s policies the gap in funding between wealthy and poor school districts has grown by 24 percent since he took office to nearly $10,000 per pupil.”