Although many parents, teachers and public school advocates already know that Governor Dannel “Dan” Malloy is the most anti-teacher, anti-public education Democratic Governor in the nation, Malloy’s proposed budget drives the message home in a very big way.
Last month Malloy proposed a new budget plan for the fiscal year that starts on July 1, 2015.
While the Governor used his annual budget speech to brag about his election year gimmick to provide a “sales and gas tax refund of $55 to single filers earning less than $200,000 and $110 to joint filers earning less than $400,000,” Malloy failed to explain that his budget DOES NOT INCLUDE the $18.8 million that is needed to keep Connecticut’s public magnet schools operating, nor does it provide the money needed for the new magnet schools that are opening.
Malloy’s failure to properly fund the state’s magnet schools didn’t stop him from attending the recent ribbon cutting at the new Connecticut River Academy Magnet School’s $57 million school building in East Hartford where he told students, “This is our gamble, our bet, our investment in your future, that is saying that we want Connecticut to be as successful as it ever was, in fact we want it to be more successful…You have the opportunity to see the tone, to make sure that each student that follows you understands how high the bar has been set.”
But the truth is that even though the Malloy administration knew the additional funds were needed, they failed to add the $18.8 million because it would have pushed Malloy’s budget plan over the state’s spending cap.
Although Malloy failed to properly fund Connecticut’s public the magnet schools, the avid disciple of the corporate education reform industry and their Common Core, Common Core Testing and pro-charter school agenda, had no problem adding money for Connecticut’s privately run charter schools.
As Governor Malloy has increased charter school funding from $65 million last year to $75.6 million this year. He plans to spend an incredible $92 million on charter schools in the coming year.
When the General Assembly’s Appropriations Committee approved Malloy’s proposed budget on March 28,2014 they also failed to include the money needed for the magnet schools and, like Malloy, failed to put in the money that is needed for the magnet school expansion that has already been approved.
As reported by the CT Mirror,
“By capping magnet school funding, the committee also decided not to provide the $30 million needed to increase enrollment at 10 magnet schools that have already opened and that the state spent millions to build. Typically, when a new magnet schools opens, the state phases in funding for enrollment growth by opening a new grade or two each year until the school is at capacity. The 10 magnet schools that had been set to increase enrollment before this budget were in the Bridgeport, Hartford and Windham regions. Malloy’s proposal also did not fund the magnet expenses.”
Despite failing to put in the funds needed for the magnet schools, Democrats on the Appropriations Committee left Malloy’s addition $16.4 million for charter schools untouched.
The impact of Malloy’s budget plan means that Commissioner Pryor and the State Board of Education can go ahead with plans to approve new charter schools this year.
The State Board of Education is expected to approve at least two new charter schools. Among those being considered is the charter school being proposed by Steve Perry, the principal of Hartford’s Capital Prep Magnet School. Readers know that Perry, who has failed to show up for his City of Hartford principal’s job more than 20 percent of the time, has created his own charter school management company and is now trying to open a charter school in Bridgeport with the help of Bridgeport Mayor Bill Finch and Finch’s disgraced campaign treasurer and former Bridgeport Board of Education Char Reverend Kenneth Moales, Jr. Perry’s proposal is to have the state’s taxpayers pay for all the costs associated with the charter school that will be run by his private company.
And what will happen to the thousands of Connecticut children who are attending magnet schools when those schools run out of money part way through the year.
Not to worry;
Sources within the Malloy administration explained that Malloy’s plan is to go back to the General Assembly after the election to get approval for spending the extra funds needed to keep the magnet schools open.
Meanwhile, Pryor and his charter school operators will get their taxpayers funds up front.
Throughout Malloy’s tenure as governor he has utilized numerous budget gimmicks to make his spending plans appear balanced. Malloy claims that his $19 billion proposed budget for this coming year includes a $22 million surplus and is under the state’s constitutional spending cap by $8 million.
Oh and for those who were wondering, Malloy’s new budget plan simply overlooks the $1.1 billion budget deficit that is projected for the year after this November’s gubernatorial election.