Rep. Williams, Policy Committee discuss fair education funding

COATESVILLE, Aug. 12 – State Rep. Dan Williams, D-Chester, today hosted a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing on fair education funding at The Spackman Center in Coatesville.

Williams requested the hearing to discuss ways to improve the allocation of educating funds for school districts throughout Pennsylvania. Testifiers and lawmakers examined how money impacts education, how well-resourced schools generally perform better on achievement tests, the best ways to adequately fund schools, and why senior citizens are concerned about an increase in property taxes.

Williams was joined by legislators from across the state, including Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster.

“Today’s hearing allowed many voices to be heard, voices of folks who are invested in our youth, who care about making sure our schools are properly funded, and that those funds are fairly distributed,” said Williams, a member of the Children and Youth Committee who represents the 74th Legislative District, including Coatesville. “It’s vital that we continue to have an open dialogue with our residents, including our seniors whose property taxes fund their local schools, as well as with educators, policy directors and fellow lawmakers. All of us share in a desire to do what’s best for our next generation.”

Added Sturla: “As I’ve said numerous times, we need to find ways to accelerate equitable funding that guarantees no students, regardless of where they come from, are left behind. This hearing gave a voice to those who truly care about the quality of education for all of our children.”

The committee heard testimony from Dr. Pamela Brown, president of PSEA Southeastern Region; Henry Assetto, school board director at Coatesville Area School District; Tomea Sippio-Smith, K12 policy director for Public Citizens for Children and Youth; Reynelle Brown Staley, policy director for Education Law Center; and local senior citizens about property taxes.

This hearing is among a series being held across the commonwealth on House Democrats’ Plan4PA, which focuses on putting people first by growing good jobs, providing health care access, creating quality schools and providing training for jobs in a fair economy. More information about the plan is available at www.plan4pa.com, and hearing materials can be found at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee.