Media Advisory: NYSUT to kick off ‘Fund Our Future’ state budget campaign in Albany Wednesday

NYSUT to kick off ‘Fund Our Future’ state budget campaign in Albany Wednesday

ALBANY, N.Y. Jan. 14, 2020 — New York State United Teachers, state lawmakers and others will gather at the state Capitol at 11 a.m. Wednesday to kick off the union’s Fund Our Future statewide bus tour. The tour will draw attention to New York’s failure to fully fund public education, the severe impact this is having on schools statewide and the need for new revenues that will enable the state to tackle educational inequality, among other pressing needs.

NYSUT President Andy Pallotta will join other NYSUT officials, local union leaders, and lawmakers on the fourth floor landing of the Senate staircase to highlight the need to address inequality in our education system and how income inequality across New York contributes to that educational inequality. Lawmakers scheduled to participate include:

       Senator James Gaughran;

       Senator Robert Jackson;

       Senator Andrew Gounardes;

       Senator Shelley Mayer;

       Assemblymember Steve Stern;

       Assemblymember Kimberly Jean-Pierre;

       Assemblymember Taylor Darling; and

       Assemblymember Marianne Buttenschon.

They will be joined by local union leaders, including:

       Laura Franz, Albany Public School Teachers Association;

       Tara Molloy-Grocki, Guilderland Teachers Association;

       Matt Miller, Ravena Coeymans Selkirk Teachers Association;

       Tim McGuiggan, Saratoga Springs Teachers Association;

       Natalie McKay, Schoharie Teachers Association; and

       Sarah Hoffmann, Scotia-Glenville Teachers Association.

The Capitol kickoff event will be followed by a tour of Bradt Primary School in the Mohonasen Central School District (2719 Hamburg St., Schenectady) beginning at 12:30 p.m. There, administrators and educators will detail how a lack of state funding has impacted Mohonasen students as class sizes have ballooned and various programs have been cut.

As the state budget takes shape, the Fund Our Future bus tour will stop in school districts around New York that, like Mohonasen, have been underfunded by the state. The tour will continue Thursday with stops at schools in Westchester County.

In the coming weeks, NYSUT is planning visits to at least 10 towns and cities in every region of the state.  Additional tour dates and locations will be announced in the near future.

NYSUT, as a member of the New York State Educational Conference Board, is calling for a $2.1 billion increase in state aid in the 2020–21 state budget, which includes the first installment of a three-year phase-in of the more than $3.4 billion in Foundation Aid owed to more than 400 school districts around New York.

In order to generate the revenue needed to fully fund Foundation Aid, in addition to other state services like health care, housing and transportation, NYSUT is supportive of new taxes on billionaires and ultramillionaires.

New York State United Teachers is a statewide union with more than 600,000 members in education, human services and health care. NYSUT is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association and the AFL-CIO.