ALBANY — The seven leading statewide educational organizations issued a report today that includes strong support for the state’s planned $2.4 billion school aid increase for 2022-23 and for the pledge to fully fund Foundation Aid over the next two state budgets.
Titled, “Rising to the Occasion: Investing in Student Success in Extraordinary Times,” the report from the Educational Conference Board (ECB) also emphasizes the importance of full funding for expense-based aids like Transportation and BOCES aids. Additionally, the education organizations describe three areas where investment is especially needed: Career & Technical Education; student mental health services; and universal prekindergarten.
The full report can be read here: https://nysut.cc/ECBReport2021
The most recent update to the Division of Budget’s state financial plan projects a $2.4 billion increase in school aid for the 2022-23 school year. The ECB paper highlights the fact that the state’s projections for the next two school years are based on the Foundation Aid phase-in, assumed growth in expense-based aids, a minimum annual increase and extra support to high-need districts.
When Foundation Aid was implemented in 2007, the plan was for it to be fully phased in with the 2010-11 school year. The ECB report documents how this effort has stalled over the years, but appears to be back on track with the historic commitment that state officials have made to Foundation Aid, with passage of the current state budget, and with Gov. Hochul’s recent settlement of the NYSER case (New Yorkers for Students’ Educational Rights).
“We applaud the commitment that the state has made to school funding at this extraordinary time,” said ECB Chair John Yagielski. “Prior to the pandemic, our organizations had called attention to growing needs of schoolchildren across the state and COVID has only added to the challenges. In the coming years, the state’s planned investment in schools is critical to making progress on the needs and opportunities we identify in the paper. We must keep these efforts on track.”