Corbett’s Budget Hits Education Hard

Posted on April 13, 2011 by

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Governor Tom Corbett recently disclosed the state’s new budget of $27.3 billion dollars. This amount is a 3% drop from last year’s fiscal spending. Corbett decided to shuffle the manner in which money is dispersed across the state. He has decided that the majority of budget cuts will be from Pennsylvania’s education programs K-12. Budget cuts will also be in effect for the 14 state-owned universities in the State System of Higher Education, which includes such schools as Bloomsburg, Kutztown, and West Chester. Also, colleges such as Pitt, Temple, Penn State, and Lincoln will be hurt by the budget cuts.

In the K-12 Education system, there will be a budget cut of $550 million dollars, which signifies a decrease by 10%. Corbett also proposes a $625 million dollar cut, more than 50%, for 14 state-owned universities. Even though Corbett has cut budgets for schools all over Pennsylvania and, according to some, is crippling the Education System, he remains proud that he has created no new taxes for PA residents. Public reaction from the educational sector is anything but pleasant.

“Corbett has been through schooling already, so it is as if he is not worried about the kids who have not been through it themselves yet. He has had opportunities to go to college and experience that lifestyle, and now, because of the harsh budget cuts, a lot of kids will never be able to afford college and have the very same experiences that he has had,” commented English Teacher Sarah Wilkinson.

Numerous teachers questioned how the state expects PSSA testing scores to improve without increasing the funding for new and better educational programming.

“What kind of message is Corbett sending about his priorities? More money is going into welfare and other programs such as that; however, now it will affect students’ ability to go to college,” said English Teacher Andrew Good.

Some wealthier schools have reported a decrease of up to two million dollars from their annual budgets; such schools include Parkland Area School District and Northern Penn School District. School districts and universities now have growing concerns about their ability to maintain educational rigor in the midst of such drastic funding shortages.

These budget cuts are a truly scary thought for every student, particularly those with plans to attend a Pennsylvania college or university.

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