Boston, Mass. (May 8, 2019) – The following is a statement from Stand for Children Massachusetts following today’s briefing with the mayors and other officials from the cities of Brockton, Worcester and New Bedford.
“The parents of Stand for Children Massachusetts applaud the mayors, superintendents and lawyers who expressed their concern today that the state is not moving decisively toward fair funding of Gateway City schools across Massachusetts. We cannot wait for all of our children to receive a high-quality education and for all of our schools to have the kind of funding that makes that education possible.
We believe that Governor Baker, the Senate and the House have all said the right thing – that we must increase funding for English language learners (ELL), for low-income school districts and for special education. And most important, we must change the state’s formula for education funding to be sure that students in New Bedford, Worcester, Brockton and other school districts have the same opportunity to provide a high-quality education as schools in wealthy districts.
A potential lawsuit is one course of action, but it is not the most timely or effective solution to this problem. The solution lies with the Legislature and the Governor to fix the formula and allocate appropriate resources to achieve a solution for fiscal year 2020—our children cannot wait any longer. We hope this expression of deep concern will move them to pass legislation that will make schools across this state better when students return to their desks in September.”
Massachusetts’ school funding formula has not been changed in 25 years, and does not currently adequately account for low-income families, English language learners, special needs students and rising healthcare costs. The failure to adequately address this school funding crisis not only harms Massachusetts students but hinders the economic growth of the entire Commonwealth.