Friday, March 25, 2011

Budget Cuts: Take Action/ PN: 2/3 of voters support Marcellus Shale tax/ WGAL:Warwick Approves Pay Freeze/ MCALL: Bethlehem Cuts/ Mandate Relief

A large crowd at yesterday’s Education Policy and Leadership Center presentation in Philadelphia heard that the PA House may be moving on the Governor’s proposed budget within the next two weeks.

There is a new page on the Keystone State Education Coalition website with links to a number of sites you can use to quickly and easily contact your legislators and key legislative leaders to express opposition to the budget cuts for K-12 education.  It also lists info on a couple rallies to be held in Harrisburg on April 26th (NAACP) and May 3rd (CLEAR Coalition).

Please make those contacts today and urge all public education stakeholders and supporters (your boards, PTO’s, business owners, friends, family, neighbors) to do likewise; programs are in jeopardy: full day kindergarten, class sizes, math and reading support; libraries, athletic programs, band, orchestra, choir and arts programs to name a few.

Two-thirds of Pennsylvania voters support tax on gas from Marcellus Shale

Published: Thursday, March 24, 2011, 5:00 PM
A new poll shows a strong majority of Pennsylvania voters — of all political persuasions — support a tax on the gas being extracted from the Marcellus Shale.
More than two-thirds — 70 percent — of voters across the state support the tax, including 62 percent of registered Republicans, according to the poll conducted by Susquehanna Polling Research. A majority — 52 percent — say they strongly support it. Lancaster

Warwick Teachers Approve Pay Freeze

Measure To Save District About $575K

POSTED: 11:03 am EDT March 23, 2011
LANCASTER COUNTY, Pa. -- The Warwick teachers' union has approved a one-year salary freeze for the 2011-12 school year, school officials said.
The measure will save the district about $575,000.

168 school jobs could be cut in Bethlehem Area School District

Pay freeze and perhaps other cuts needed to bridge funding gap caused by governor's proposed budget.

11:12 p.m. EDT, March 24, 2011
The Bethlehem Area School District could layoff about 168 employees — 8 percent of its workforce — to combat a massive cut in state funding in Gov. Tom Corbett's proposed budget for 2011-12.


Senator Piccola’s Weekly Column: Relief Proposed for Pennsylvania’s School Districts

Pennsylvania’s tough economic times are calling for desperate measures by all of its citizens to deal with the fiscal situation before us. The 2011-2012 budget proposed by Governor Corbett requires substantial reductions across all levels of the state including education in order to address a $4 billion deficit. Based upon the cuts being proposed, school districts throughout the state are being forced to do more with less and make difficult decisions and changes regarding the elimination of programs and positions

PSBA Welcomes Mandate Relief Efforts
The Pennsylvania School Boards Association (PSBA) is encouraged by a package of mandate relief legislation introduced by Sen. Jeffrey Piccola on March 22

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