NYS Budget To Include Increase In School Aid | WAMC

NYS Budget To Include Increase In School Aid

Apr 7, 2021

The New York state budget includes a $3 billion increase in school funding, as part of a plan to fulfill a 15-year-old court order that required the state to spend significantly more on its schools to guarantee every child’s constitutional right to an education.  

In 2006, New York’s highest court ruled that children in the state were being denied their constitutional right to a “sound basic” education, and that the state had to spend billions more on its poorest schools. A plan to fulfill the court order stalled during the Great Recession in 2008 and 2009, and was not revived until this year’s budget, when it was proposed and passed by the Democratic-led Legislature. By the 2023 school year, the court order will be fulfilled.

Jasmine Gripper, with the pro-education-funding group Alliance for Quality Education, says it’s a victory that’s long overdue.

“We had them say they were going to do it, we had the Assembly say it, then we had the Senate say it,” Gripper said. “And we finally got it in the language in the enacted budget.”

Gripper says the plan guarantees the funding will remain at that rate in future years.

Public colleges and universities and their students also benefit in the budget. A tuition hike at the state and city university systems, proposed by Governor Andrew Cuomo, was removed by the Legislature — tuition will be frozen next year. Student aid grants will increase by $500.