Education Budgets Get Short Shrift, Virginia School Boards Say | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Education Budgets Get Short Shrift, Virginia School Boards Say

Play associated audio
Some education advocates are saying that Virginia's new state budget doesn't allocate enough funding toward public education.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/fortinbras/2931835903
Some education advocates are saying that Virginia's new state budget doesn't allocate enough funding toward public education.

Virginia's legislative session is over, and while public schools were given an additional $2.35 million in this year's budget, representatives of many boards of education in the Commonwealth are concerned that they didn't get enough.

"The state dollars have been declining, the federal dollars have been declining, and it's been put back to the localities to make up that difference," says Barbara Coyle, executive director of the Virginia School Boards Association.

Everyone was pleased when Gov. Bob McDonnell found 2 percent more money for raises to teachers, but some couldn't afford the matching money required to get that cash.

At the same time, Coyle says, the state and federal governments continue to impose requirements like student-teacher ratios, special educations programs, and even nutritional mandates for school meals.

"It's costing local school boards more money to feed the kids," she says. "If it's requiring a local producer or taking away some of the commodities that were provided from the feds, how much is it going to cost them?"

She hopes state lawmakers will pay for what they require in the next session, and she also urged the legislature to allow schools to open before Labor Day.

Virginia is one of just two states that delay the start of classes so tourism has plenty of cheap summer labor. Unfortunately, Coyle says, Virginia high school students are at a disadvantage, because there's no time to refresh and prep for college entrance exams.

"The school systems that start prior to Labor Day tell me what a difference it makes when the test time comes around," says Coyle.

About half of all high schools have requested and received an exemption allowing them to open earlier, and Coyle says the rest should be spared the paperwork and allowed to do what's best for Virginia students.

NPR

The 'Man Who Touched His Own Heart' Changed Medicine

Melissa Block talks to Rob Dunn about his new book, The Man Who Touched His Own Heart, a history of science and medicine's efforts to understand the working of the human heart.
NPR

Shake Shack Sizzles With IPO As McDonald's Fizzles

Shares of the burger chain shot up Friday, its first trading day. Shake Shack and other fast-casual joints are taking a bite out of McDonald's, which can't recast itself to fit the current trend.
WAMU 88.5

Krupicka Wants Landlords To Be More Transparent About Mold

The Northern Virginia delegate has introduced legislation to make sure renters have access to information about mold.
NPR

Media Outlets Partner With Snapchat To Appeal To Younger Users

As people disappear from the audiences of conventional news organizations, 11 media outlets have partnered with Snapchat in the U.S. to offer its younger users easily digested fare within the app.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.