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Campaign for Fiscal Equity

Wed, Nov 12, 2008

CFE Statement on Governor's Two Year Deficit Reduction Plan

November 12th Plan Cuts Education Budget by Over $800 Million

"Today, Governor Paterson - once a partner in securing the legislation that was finally going to turn a constitutional right into a reality - took a wrong turn when he proposed his two-year deficit reduction plan. Back in 1990 - the perfect school funding nightmare occurred. Both the state and city proposed steep mid-year cuts to schools. Parents, community members, education advocates and the unions all came together and said: 'Enough is enough - we have still never recovered from the drastic school cuts during the mid-70s.' The Campaign for Fiscal Equity lawsuit was born out of that activism - the need to tell the story that New York City's schools are shamefully underfunded resulting in an inadequate education for too many of our students," said Geri D. Palast, Executive Director, Campaign for Fiscal Equity.

"Mid-year cuts hurt," said Palast. "Schools already have received their funding and now they will have to make tough decisions: Do I cut the before or after school programs targeted at helping struggling readers? Do I cut the librarian, art or science teachers? Do I remove all access to AP classes? Make no mistake - mid-year cuts are not for the faint of heart. This is not a cut in the increase as the Governor presented - but a retreat from meeting a constitutional obligation that took 15 years to litigate and legislate. New York City alone has to swallow $255 million mid-year. The CFE funding is earmarked for our most vulnerable students that still do not receive a 'sound basic education.' If the historic presidential election is any indicator - wealthier New Yorkers want us to make progress with our neediest students."

Parents from across the state march on the Capitol in Albany to show support for CFE.
CFE Litigation CFE v. State of New York
In 2006, after 13 years in the Courts, the New York State Court of Appeals affirmed the right of every public school student in New York to the opportunity for a sound basic education and the state’s responsibility to adequately fund this right, but deferred to the Governor and the Legislature to determine the appropriate amount. more >