Letter: Republican Budget Boosts Education Funding [Courant]

May 23, 2017

The following Letter to the Editor appeared in the Hartford Courant

A recent letter appearing in The Hartford Courant mischaracterizes how the Senate Republican revised budget proposal supports education across the state [May 18, “Proposed Charter School Funding Hurts Children“].

The Senate Republican revised budget is the only plan that reformulates the state’s Education Cost Sharing (ECS) grant to provide all towns and cities with either more funding or hold them harmless to ECS cuts in 2018.

It is the only budget that provides over $170 million more for education over the next two years, and $680 million more for education over 10 years.

The Senate Republican budget and the governor’s budget are the only proposals that address the state Superior Court decision that found the current education funding formula is unconstitutional.

Our budget offers a new, real formula to ensure education dollars are distributed fairly. Our proposed formula includes weighing factors such as school enrollment, poverty, wealth, and number of English language learners so the state can better address its achievement gap and do more for students most in need.

In addition, the Senate Republican budget does not cut funding for vo-tech schools, nor does it cut the per-pupil grant for charter schools, which has increased in recent years.

The disparities in the state’s education system are inexcusable.

Even as the state faces one of its most challenging budget years ever, the Senate Republicans’ revised budget continues to make education for all students a top priority.

Len Fasano, North Haven