As Pennsylvania faces continued budget challenges for the coming fiscal year, every dollar matters, particularly for students in our public schools. Yet, legislators are trying to tinker with the budget in a way that would negatively impact public schools across the commonwealth. House Bill 250 would add $50 million (to $175 million) to the existing Education Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) and $25 million (to $75 million) to the Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit (OSTC) programs. The state is challenged to close an estimated $716 million revenue on this year’s budget, and is looking at a growing structural deficit at nearly $3 billion. Now is not the time for the General Assembly to redirect tax dollars into programs that largely benefits private, nonpublic schools. These programs shift limited state funds away from public school districts, by siphoning valuable dollars from the general fund, via tax credits, that could otherwise be used for public schools. As a result, millions of dollars will not be available to fund the basic education subsidy that goes to school districts to provide instruction and educational services for the 1.8 million students in public schools.
Bill/Resolution HB250 PN0211 Type of Motion Report Bill As Committed
Post Gazette By Erica Werner and Maria Danilova / Associated Press February 7, 2017 6:14 AM
Janine Yass is vice chair of the Center for Education Reform's board of directors. She founded the Boys' Latin Charter School in West Philadelphia.
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Forum #2 – Harrisburg Area (Enola, PA) Tuesday, February 28, 2017 – Capital Area Intermediate Unit – 55 Miller Street (Susquehanna Room), Enola, PA 17025
Forum #3 – Philadelphia Thursday, March 2, 2017 – Penn Center for Educational Leadership, University of Pennsylvania, 3440 Market Street (5th Floor), Philadelphia, PA 19104
Forum #4 – Indiana University of Pennsylvania Tuesday, March 14, 2017 – 1011 South Drive (Stouffer Hall), Indiana, PA 15705
Forum #5 – Lehigh Valley Tuesday, March 28, 2017 – Carbon Lehigh Intermediate Unit #21, 4210 Independence Drive, Schnecksville, PA 18078
Plan to join public education leaders for networking and learning at the 2017 NSBA Annual Conference, March 25-27 in Denver, CO. General registration is now open at https://www.nsba.org/conference/registration. A conference schedule, including pre-conference workshops, is available on the NSBA website.