Schools in New York announce budget cuts

Local News

ALBANY, NY – As the wait for a federal stimulus drags on, school districts in New York continue to announce budget cuts.

NewsChannel 34’s Corina Cappabianca looks into the breakdown of where the money comes from.

Students, parents and teachers from across the Capital Region voicing frustrations today over school funding.

((Shazia Pirzada, Schenectady High School Senior)) It’s crazy to me that casinos are being opened up- schools are being-budget cut. Like it just doesn’t make sense to us. I’m losing my senior year, I lost half of my junior year, I don’t even understand chemistry no more. I was supposed to learn that. I don’t learn anymore. I’m just passing.

Analysis from the State Education Department shows about 57% of school funding comes from localities, 40% from the state, and 3% from the federal government.

But, all of that varies district to district.

((Andy Pallotta, NYSUT President)) Many districts are much more dependent upon the state than others. For example, Buffalo, Rochester, Schenectady, Albany, New York City, Yonkers, so when you take those cities into consideration, they are much more dependent and vulnerable when there are budget cuts from the state.

Governor Cuomo has said that without federal stimulus funding to schools will be cut by 20%.

((Andy Pallotta, NYSUT President)) Districts right now are starting to put forward budget cuts, and with that staffing cuts… the other night it was Schenectady cutting hundreds of positions.

The US House of Representatives passed the Heroes Act which would provide additional funding for schools, but it has not passed the Senate.

((Paul Tonko, Congressman)) Pass the Heroes Act. If you’re not satisfied with the Heroes Act come up with a plan that speaks to municipal assistance. Come up with a plan that speaks to our schools and opening our schools safely.

The Governor has also spoken out against a FEMA policy going into effect on September 15th that restricts reimbursements for PPE to emergency work, saying it will ‘undermine efforts to fight COVID-19’ in schools.

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