We Can't Keep Shortchanging Our Future

Yesterday, US News & World Report ranked Massachusetts #1 in the country in education. That's all well and good, but that hides more than it reveals.

That's because we have one of the most unequal education systems in the country: the children in Lawrence and Brockton are not getting the same quality of education as students in Dover and Weston.

The question is not whether we are doing more than other states but whether we are doing as much as we need to--and as much as our students deserve.

The answer there is a clear no. Four years ago, the Foundation Budget Review Commission found that Massachusetts is shortchanging local aid to public schools by up to $2 billion a year because of outdated calculations of the cost of health care, special education, English Language Learner education, and closing income-based achievement gaps.

The picture isn't any better when it comes to higher education. Due to misguided tax cuts from almost twenty years ago, we've been disinvesting from our public colleges and universities, leading to deeper cuts, higher tuition, and spiraling student debt.

We can do better. And we will demand that our legislators do better.

That's why we're proud to join the Fund Our Future coalition today for a rally in support of the PROMISE Act and the CHERISH Act today at 5pm at the State House. There will be actions starting at 1 pm, so if you can make it earlier, even better.

Will we see you there?

 

FundourFuture_rally.jpg

And If You Can't Make It...

If you can't make it in person, then you can still call your legislators in support of the PROMISE Act (S.238/H.586) and the CHERISH Act (S.741/H.1214).

  • The PROMISE Act would fix our outdated school funding formula to more accurately and equitably distribute resources – giving all schools the funding they need to deliver high-quality education.
  • The CHERISH Act would commit the Commonwealth to funding public higher education at 2001 levels, adjusted for inflation.

You can check if your legislators are already co-sponsors of the PROMISE Act here.

 

But Wait...There's More...

The Senate is voting on its budget next week. And your senator has the opportunity to support raising new revenue and investing more in our students. 

Let your senator know that you support these amendments:

  • Statutory Charter Tuition Reimbursement (Chang-Diaz, #323): Would invest an additional $90 million in struggling school districts that are losing money due to charter school growth by closing corporate tax loopholes
  • Funding Low-Income Student Undercount (Chang-Diaz, #320): Would add more money for struggling school districts that have been shortchanged due to a flawed methodology for counting the low-income student population
  • Corporate Tax Rate Restoration (Rausch, #53): Would raise the corporate income tax back up to 9.5%, raising $375 million in additional revenue
  • Aircraft Prats (Eldridge, #46): Would close an absurd tax exemption for sales of luxury planes, raising $21 million in additional revenue
  • Single Sales Factor (Eldridge, #37): Would close a corporate tax loophole that lets corporations get away with not paying taxes on property and payroll, raising $143 million in additional revenue

Can we count on you to call your senator?

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