Educating City Hall
At a recent City Council budget hearing, Mayor Landrieu’s budget director, Cary Grant, suggested that the council consider repurposing school board millages (property taxes) to pay for other city services. He said that the school board has “a huge fund balance” because their 44 mills pay for only 33 schools now, down from 120 schools before Hurricane Katrina. Mr. Grant is wrong.
- These taxes fund students at all New Orleans public schools, not just OPSB schools. That’s 87 public schools educating 45,000 students.
- These funds (98%) go directly to the public schools for their operations. They do not go to increase OPSB’s fund balance.
- Public schools in New Orleans are funded below the state average. They receive an average of $9,200 per student in state and local money; the state average is $9,500.
- Repurposing the millage would take money away from schools, and our schools do NOT need a cut in funding. Investing in our children and providing them opportunity is the best long-term strategy to lower the city’s criminal justice costs!
If you know Cary Grant, or if you know a City Council member, Educate Now! suggests you drop them a note and let them know these funds are very much needed.
NAEP Results Are In
Louisiana students score near bottom on national test
Times-Picayune – November 7, 2013
Students in Louisiana showed slight improvement in reading on the latest NAEP test (National Assessment of Educational Progress) but still rank near the bottom in reading and math when compared to the rest of the United States. Superintendent John White said the results show why Louisiana needs to implement Common Core. “Our own growth, our own progress within Louisiana doesn’t mean as much if we’re not really competitive with our peer states.”