The following statement may be attributed to Baltimore County elementary school teacher and Maryland State Education Association President Cheryl Bost:
“Governor Hogan’s proposed $345 million in cuts to public school funding are unconscionable and endanger the health of Maryland’s educators and students. Crisis distance learning this spring has deepened inequities and achievement gaps among our students—and the governor’s cuts would only make them far worse. As just one example, his millions of dollars in cuts to the Healthy Schol Facilities Fund—designed to improve the public health conditions in school buildings—seem completely disengaged from reality.
“Educators have stepped up throughout this crisis to do all we can for our students, and the governor’s cuts are a slap in the face. These cuts are simply wrong; students and educators need more—not less—support, resources, and safety measures. We condemn and oppose these cuts in the strongest possible terms and call on the Board of Public Works and the legislature to reject these cuts.”
Details of Cuts
$110.8 million in cuts will be considered by the Board of Public Works on Wednesday, July 1. The cuts include:
- $12.4 million in disparity grants to less affluent jurisdictions that are often used to fund education.
- $71.8 million in teacher retirement contributions, including teacher retirement supplemental grants; these grants were established when the state shifted pension costs to local governments. Counties will still need to come up with these funds, so it turns into an unfunded liability for local governments and potential cuts to local education funding or funding for other essential services.
- Approximately $25 million in other cuts, including to the Healthy School Facilities Fund and limiting reimbursement for child care subsidy providers.
$233.9 million in cuts are proposed as future cuts that would need to be considered by the legislature in the form of a Budget Reconciliation and Financing Act during a future legislative session. These cuts include:
- $201 million cut in statewide K-12 school funding aid, impacting every jurisdiction in the state.
- $32 million cut in capital improvements for schools, including a $21 million cut to the Healthy School Facilities Fund and $8 million to Public School Safety.