DeLaney comments on Bray letter threatening to cut funding to schools
INDIANAPOLIS – State Representative Ed DeLaney (D-Indianapolis) released the following comments after Indiana President Pro Tempore Rodric Bray sent a letter to school corporations threatening cuts to school funding. The letter warned school leaders that current law would be upheld, and districts that do not offer in-person instruction this fall would only receive 85 percent of expected funding.
On June 17, Governor Eric Holcomb promised the opposite to K-12 public schools suggesting they would not face funding cuts based on local reopening choices. As recently as last week, Holcomb has repeated this claim.
Statehouse Republicans' reversal means schools now stand to lose more than $850 per pupil. Schools in DeLaney's district and across the state choosing not to return to school buildings in the fall have projected losses amounting to more than $27 million for Indianapolis Public Schools, and around $9 million for both Pike and Washington Township Schools.
“Bray's letter shows why the Democrats on the Indiana House Education Committee wrote the Governor back in June, and again in July where we insisted that schools would be guaranteed no lost revenue,” DeLaney said. “Republicans are breaking their promise to K-12 schools, students and taxpayers. Make no mistake: this is punitive action against schools that have moved from traditional in-person methods of education.
“With the way the current law is written, I am fearful that even those schools that have opted for a combination of in-person and online instruction could be in jeopardy.”
Most Hoosier schools have chosen a hybrid education system where students attend their classes in-person on set days, and then attend virtually on others. DeLaney fears that Bray's standards for funding cuts could also put schools using these methods at risk.
“It is disgraceful to watch my Republican colleagues attempt to undermine the decisions of local school districts,” DeLaney said. “I will continue to press Governor Holcomb and Republican legislators to make sure K-12 schools have the resources needed to succeed and do it safely.”
Read a statement from Indiana House Democrats here: https://indianahousedemocrats.org/news-media/house-democrats-dismayed-as-statehouse-republicans-walk-back-promises-to-indiana-school-districts