Protect State Aid For Long Island Public Schools

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Dear U.S. Senators Schumer and Gillibrand and Congresspersons King, Meeks, Rice, Suozzi, and Zeldin:

We appreciate the unprecedented economic challenges the country is facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the huge responsibility you and your colleagues have in Congress in crafting measures that will effectively mitigate the harm this crisis has brought to individuals and businesses here in our communities and across New York State and our country. In doing so, we implore you to make our young people and their education a priority in your deliberations. Now, more than ever, we need you to fight for the additional funding New York State needs to ensure the state’s education funding will not be reduced or compromised in any way. This crisis has already resulted in a reduction in the state aid our school district and all school districts across the state were promised in January.

The need for federal funding to maintain adequate state aid this year is vital for more than just core academic programs ensuring our children’s success in the future. Without it, our district might have to eliminate essential programs such as safety and security systems, social-emotional support programs and healthcare services. That could mean a loss of guidance counselors, social workers, security personnel, and technology. Without additional federal support to New York State, the reduction in state education aid could also result in a loss of ELL, special education and career and technical education programs. To allow state education funding to be reduced any further could cripple our district’s ability, and the ability of districts across New York State, to create an educational and nurturing academic environment that provides our students with the resources to excel both in the classroom and beyond. Without federal assistance for New York State, we fear this is exactly what will happen.

We know you are fighting hard for us. We recognize that. We hope that our voices, raised loud through the thousands of signatures on this petition, will help give you leverage in your advocacy to ensure New York State receives the financial resources it needs and deserves in the next round of COVID-19 funding. This is a critical moment for our children’s educational futures. Our children, and by extension our school districts, need your success in directing the necessary funding to New York State. With it, education on Long Island can remain the gold standard in public education that it represents. Without it, the educational advances made in so many of our districts, and the ongoing development and success of our children, will be put at risk.  

Thank you for your continued advocacy and support for our children and education. We are depending on you.

Sincerely,

Parents, students, school district educators and staff, business owners and community members of Long Island.