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File #: 160049    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: REPORTED FAVORABLY, SUSPENSION
File created: 1/21/2016 In control: Joint Committees on Children & Youth and Education
On agenda: Final action:
Title: Authorizing the Committee on Children and Youth and the Committee on Education to conduct hearings concerning the impact of five years of reduced state funding on safety, essential services and academic outcomes in Philadelphia schools, and on vulnerable student populations.
Sponsors: Councilmember Gym, Councilmember Blackwell, Councilmember Reynolds Brown, Councilmember Quiñones Sánchez, Councilmember Henon, Councilmember Green, Councilmember Squilla, Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Oh, Councilmember Taubenberger, Councilmember Domb, Councilmember Parker, Councilmember Bass, Councilmember Greenlee, Councilmember Jones, Councilmember O'Neill
Attachments: 1. Signature16004900.pdf
Title
Authorizing the Committee on Children and Youth and the Committee on Education to conduct hearings concerning the impact of five years of reduced state funding on safety, essential services and academic outcomes in Philadelphia schools, and on vulnerable student populations.

Body
WHEREAS, In 2007 the state of Pennsylvania determined that public schools across the state needed an additional four billion dollars in order to meet basic goals of adequacy and equity, and to allow students the opportunity to meet state academic standards; and

WHEREAS, In 2011 the state passed a budget that included unprecedented steep cuts to school funding for Philadelphia, creating a $300 million shortfall in the budget for the School District of Philadelphia that resulted in expensive borrowing as well as devastating reductions in staffing and services; and

WHEREAS, These state cuts persisted in subsequent years, and led to the Philadelphia School District adopting a series of so-called "Doomsday" budgets that resulted massive school closings, staff layoffs, and attrition as well as the elimination of important school programming; and

WHEREAS, Conditions in individual Philadelphia schools significantly deteriorated as a result of inadequate funding, and parents and community members filed over 800 complaints in the fall of 2013 that documented alleged failures to meet state curriculum standards; and

WHEREAS, The number of teacher and staff vacancies have reached alarming and persistently high levels, thereby leading to increased class sizes, impairment of students' learning, and limited access to essential services; and

WHEREAS, A shortage of core personnel, in particular among nurses and counselors, has raised significant safety concerns given the medical and mental health issues faced by the City's high-poverty student population; and

WHEREAS, Vulnerable students including those with Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and English Language Learners,...

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