As Ti Superintendent John McDonald has often explained, the current system is especially unkind to districts like ours, since our high property values can effectively reduce state aid even as the district’s high needs status warrants an increase.
Now is the time to demand thoughtful, logical change that will promote greater funding equity for schools statewide, preserve quality, gradually reduce the overdependence on the burdensome property tax, and ultimately reduce costs.
Personally, I expect to support the proposed 2012-13 budget. I think our board has done about all one can reasonably expect in this one year.
But whatever the voting results, we’ll remain in crisis. The board should resolve now to seriously explore the need for systemic funding change, drawing on resources of the School Boards Association and exploiting the opportunity afforded by the governor’s new Education Reform Commission. I hope teachers and other employees and residents - particularly parents of current and future students - will encourage and support this effort.
The state can do better for its children. It’s time we insist on it. It is, after all, our state, just as it is our school, our kids and our future.
Legislative Affairs Officer
NYS Property Tax Reform Coalition