United Federation of Teachers puppets on the City Council have joined in demanding Adams “immediately restore” some $215 million that the council voted to slash when it passed the city budget last month.
The modest cut — 0.69% of the Department of Education’s $31 billion-plus budget — is the result of 1) the winding down of $7 billion in temporary federal COVID relief, 2) falling student enrollment and 3) the need to rein in years of off-the-charts spending (with no improvement in citywide student achievement).
So Adams is entirely right to stay the course, and to slam the protesters who disrupted a recent, unrelated town hall as “clowns.”
As Banks told NY1, the schools facing cuts have lost enrollment and “it’s not feasible to continue funding schools as if they haven’t lost students.” For example, “I was just talking to a school today [that] went from having 300 kids to having now about 45 students that are actually coming in this year. It’s a dramatic loss of students, so I can’t give them the same budget they would have had otherwise,” he said.
Lefty city Comptroller Brad Lander claims about 1,200 of the DOE’s 1,850 or so public schools are seeing cuts to the main source of their funds through the Fair Student Funding formula. Yet, for all his noise about unspent stimulus cash, he still to admit that the schools facing cuts are losing enrollment and that the DOE is choosing to apply “the remaining one-time federal funding to other uses.”
The UFT agenda here has nothing to do with teaching kids; it’s all about keeping up the ranks of its members even as families flee the regular public schools. (Same goes for the UFT drive for a state NYC-only law mandating class-size reductions.)
Yes, the union’s got some parents irate over losing reading teachers. But Banks must look out for the system as a whole. Notably, Politico reports that the popular 3K preschool expansion is heading toward a fiscal cliff, even as the Legislature refused to include state funding for the UFT’s class-size measure.
Record inflation, a looming recession and a city economy still in recovery mode oblige Adams and Banks to find prudent spending trims — not burn billions on the new hires the UFT wants.
Don’t fall for this latest UFT campaign of lies.