Hawley Blasts State For Hurting Low-Income Schools

Claims less-wealthy school districts under fire
November 16, 2011
Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R, I, C – Batavia) is voicing his opposition to cuts in state funding to the least-wealthy school districts, the bulk of which are located in Western New York. Recent analysis from The Alliance for Quality Education (AQE) shows that per-pupil support for students in economically disadvantaged areas has been disproportionately reduced relative to more affluent districts in the last two years. The assemblyman recently issued a letter to school superintendents statewide seeking their input on how to best provide equitable education aid regardless of geographic location.

“We cannot allow Western New York’s students to suffer while out-of-touch politicians siphon crucial education funding downstate,” said Hawley. “Less-wealthy districts have a smaller tax base than affluent areas, which means they rely on state support more than anyone else. To see so many Western New York school districts bearing the brunt of the pain while the wealthiest areas keep raking in state support is both baffling and appalling. I will continue working with the Governor and the legislature to make sure Western New York’s children get their fair share.”

AQE comprised a formula to calculate “community wealth ratios” based on personal income and property wealth. Nearly all of the schools in nearby counties fell into the “poor” or “poorest” categories. The report can be found at the Alliance for Quality Education Web site.