We Need to Fund Our Schools
Since a lot of people have been asking me about what’s happening with the school budget, I wanted to give you an update and let you know where I stand on school funding. I’m very happy that County Executive Leggett proposed fully funding the schools’ operating budget and I look forward to voting for his proposal. My one regret is that it did not contain additional money for school counselors and psychologists, which is sorely needed. From my seventeen years as a teacher, I know firsthand how important it is for students to get the counseling and other supports these school staff provide during the day.
In addition, while Executive Leggett didn’t fully fund the Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) capital budget, I am glad I was able to lead the effort to add at least $20 million back of the $79 million that was cut from the MCPS request. This $20 million will help address school overcrowding and provide major maintenance and repair work. I will continue to advocate for prioritizing capital funding for schools in the budget because, as I wrote on March 11, “even full funding for the...capital budget does not address the many capacity needs the school system faces. If growth continues at the current pace, full funding will produce fewer new seats than the number of students we are likely to add over the next six years. So an already bad situation will just get worse.” I would like us to avoid going down that path.
I hope you will join me in advocating for the funding to meet our schools’ needs. Our students deserve it.