Monday, April 1, 2019

NYC parents and advocates frustrated and angry with results of this year’s state budget for our schools

Contact: Naila Rosario,,  917-865-5578
Leonie Haimson,, 917-435-9329

 NYC parents and advocates frustrated and angry with results of this year’s state budget for our schools

Naila Rosario, President of NYC Kids PAC, said, “We’re very disappointed that the Legislature and the Governor have decided to renew NYC mayoral control for another three years with only minor tweaks, enabling one-man rule to continue.  An additional member to the Panel for Educational Policy will be elected by Community Education Councils and another will be appointed by the mayor, who will keep his supermajority and be allowed to fire any of his appointees at will, as long as he gives a ten-day warning explaining his decision. As a result, the Mayor’s unilateral authority will have no effective checks and balances.  NYC parents, local elected officials and community members will remain as disempowered as before.  There is no reason that something as important as the future of NYC school governance should be rolled into the budget, rather than carefully considered, debated and voted on separately.”

“The failure to fully fund the promise of CFE is also extremely disheartening,” said Leonie Haimson,  Executive Director of Class Size Matters. “Despite the fact that the Assembly and Senate proposed adding $1.2 billion to the education budget as a down payment for the $4.1 billion still owed our schools, instead there will be only a $50 million increase over last year. The state will continue to shortchange NYC schools  by at least $600 million – less than what could have been raised by a tax on pied-a-terre homes.  The only good thing about the education budget is that the Contracts for Excellence program remains – with the smidgen of transparency and accountability that it requires, including NYC’s obligation to lower class size, which parents have sued DOE to carry out.” 

Shino Tanikawa, District 2 parent leader and NYC Kids PAC member concluded: “Parent leaders have asked for amendments to Mayoral control every year since 2015. Thanks largely to Senators Liu and Jackson, this year some of the changes are incorporated.  While I appreciate these small improvements, I am disappointed the legislature did not establish a commission to evaluate the school governance system.  Additionally, I am deeply concerned by the level of Foundation Aid funding.  After the Senate and Assembly one-house budgets, the rug was pulled from right under us and our children will continue to suffer in large classes for another year.  When do we start prioritizing the future of our State by providing a sound basic education to all our children?” 


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