Connecticut’s General Assembly was unable to come to a budget agreement by the legislature’s June 30th deadline. The good news is, unlike places like New Jersey and Maine, we didn’t have a government shut down. Our state is still functioning because Governor Dannel P. Malloy signed an Executive Order Resource Allocation Plan.
Unfortunately, when it comes to schools, that is the only good news to report.
According to a recent CT News Junkie story, state leaders don’t seem to be nearing a deal. Which is a major problem, because that executive order is only a stop gap measure. If Connecticut legislators don’t pass a full budget before the state’s first payment to schools, it could mean deep cuts.
This is no joke — according to an analysis report published by the Connecticut School Funding Project, a non-profit that releases information on schools budgets, Gov. Malloy can’t raise revenues or appropriate funds outside of what’s allowed by state statute. The result is enormous cuts to education, including a $506 million projected cut to the state’s Education Cost Sharing Grant (ECS), the main grant that funds education.
That number doesn’t include cuts to municipal aid, the elimination of Priority School District funding, which assists low-performing schools districts, or cuts to schools of choice. While magnet school funding will remain the same, both charter schools and Connecticut Technical High School system would potentially be affected.
While magnet school funding will remain the same, both charter schools and Connecticut Technical High School system would potentially be affected.
For some districts, it’s looking even worse. According to estimates, these cuts could mean $15 million cuts from Bridgeport, a $19 million cut from Hartford and $26 million cut from New Haven. Though there’s a handful of district getting an increase, most districts would be taking a hit.
Now, keep in mind, these are all projections. At any time the state legislature could pass a budget that would override the governor’s executive order. State legislators are meeting next week to hash out the budget, however, if they are unsuccessful and something isn’t done, it could have dire consequences for schools across the state.
For more on this, including a breakdown of how Malloy’s Executive Order Budget allocates ECS grant funding, check out Connecticut School Finance Project’s Report below: