PROTESTS POOR STATE OF EDUCATION -THE STATE SENATE HAS FAILED
US & FLOUTED THE COURTS ORDER ON EDUCATION
ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity
Albert, a parent and strong believer in education, with his
son Gandhi Mandela & spouse Tara: "Our kids-yours and mine,
must be nurtured in a strong educational environment."
Albert sharing concerns with teenagers. Many considered
education to be one of the most lacking in vision and
"Our children are our future!" Baldeo urges. We have to make a
better tomorrow for them, but our school system is far behind.
In order for our children to get the best education possible,
there must be a sacred trust between our school children and
our elected officials, or they would be unworthy of public
office. One of the greatest obligations of public office, in
fact a constitutional right, is to ensure that our kids
receive a sound basic education.
Recently, the Appellate Division Court issued an
order requiring the State to resolve the Campaign for Fiscal
Equity (CFE) lawsuit by April 1. "We hold that the State, in
enacting a budget for the fiscal year commencing April 1,
2006, must appropriate the constitutionally required funding
for the New York City schools,"
the Court ruled.
The court clearly affirmed that the operating needs of the New
York City schools are at least $4.7 billion and that the
capital needs of the City schools are over $9 billion,
although it accepted a four-year phase-in in order to meet
student need. The court order clearly stated that it is
undisputed that the State has failed to appropriate an
adequate amount of funding to meet its educational mandate as
outlined in CFE II."
Yet, lo and behold, the recent state budget fails to provide
our schools with the necessary resources. It is a major
disappointment because it fails to reform state school aid. It
does not add billions of dollars in new funding to meet the
needs of high needs districts. It fails to include any
multi-year plan to phase in the funding increases needed for
all of our kids to succeed. It does not comply with the CFE
court order that requires the state to add $4.7 to $5.6
billion in increased operating aid for New York City, which
can only be construed as a contempt of the court order. It
does not offer a statewide solution to the school-funding
crisis that would apply the court order to school districts
all over the state. Are our state senators above the law, so
much so that they refuse to obey a court mandated order?
The Senate Majority adamantly resisted including provisions in
the final budget agreement similar to the Assembly budget
bill, which would have fundamentally reformed school aid so
that it is distributed based on student need. Clearly, this
budget in no way addresses the operating aid requirements of
the CFE court order, either for New York City or the rest of
Other states have better educational programs in place than
ours, although we pay more taxes. We, as parents of kids who
reside in New York, may have to relocate and give up our jobs.
So let us demand our just share from our political
Albert Baldeo, Esq.
Community Activist & Parent