Why Is Pennsylvania Unable to Pay for Public Schools?

Diane Ravitch’s blog: A site to discuss better education for all, August 13, 2013 //

Pennsylvania has more cyber charters than any other state (16 at last count). It also has a large charter sector that performs no better than public schools. The Governor took $1 billion out of the public schools’ budget, and he is allowing the public schools of Philadelphia to die.

Here is a good explanation:

“We cannot afford four separate school systems

“Pennsylvanians must decide if we want to continue to support public education or if we will allow those who want to privatize education to prevail. Pennsylvania taxpayers are now supporting four separate school systems – our traditional community-based public schools, bricks and mortar charter schools, cyber-charter schools and private schools. We simply cannot afford it. The funding being diverted from our community-based public schools to charters and private schools is killing public education.

“Pennsylvania taxpayers are spending $946 million on bricks and mortar charter schools, 71 percent of which did not meet the federal Adequate Yearly Progress standard (AYP), $366 million on cyber-charters, none of which met AYP. The Education Improvement Tax Credit program is diverting another $200 million from public schools to support private schools.

“The Philadelphia public school crisis shows us the future for many public schools around the Commonwealth if we do not recommit to adequate funding for our school districts.”



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