Governor Dannel P. Malloy today presented his sixth budget proposal this year in hopes that our state officials will reach an agreement on a state budget. Jennifer Alexander, CEO of the Connecticut Coalition for Achievement Now (ConnCAN) offered the following reaction:
We applaud Governor Malloy for continuing to work towards a fair and predictable Education Cost Sharing formula and for his willingness to tackle this issue of fundamental fairness for our state’s children. History tells us that the opportunity to develop a new funding formula happens once every generation, at best.
We are encouraged that this proposal attempts to move the needle further towards a fair and sustainable funding formula. We appreciate Governor Malloy’s attempts to include weights in the formula for students with the greatests learning needs, including English Language Learners and students in poverty. Given Connecticut’s economic crisis, we also acknowledge the sensibility of phasing in this formula over a small number of years to allow districts to adjust to the proposed changes.
However, this proposal, similar to those before it, falls short of the comprehensive fix needed to set all our children and our state up for success. It would continue to treat students differently depending on the kind of public school they attend–even though their learning needs remain the same. This proposal would perpetuate the tangled web of funding for our public schools and leave Connecticut out of sync with other states.
It has been a year since Judge Moukawsher ordered Connecticut to come up with a rational, sustainable and verifiable funding formula for our schools. Connecticut’s students can’t wait any longer for a fair and consistent funding formula. We hope the governor and our state leaders are able to work together to establish an education funding formula that benefits all of our students, at all our public schools.