Wolf Prefers Philadelphia Public Schools
When Gov. Tom Wolf vetoed the Fiscal Code last month, education funding in Pennsylvania entered a totally new realm. This past week, the governor chose to shortchange 433 of Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts, which will now all receive less money thanks to distribution of basic education funding using a formula he created. In doing so, the governor completely ignored the work of the Basic Education Funding Commission (BEFC), which was created two years ago to address inadequacies in Pennsylvania’s basic education funding formula.

Education Secretary Pedro Rivera admitted during the recent budget hearings he did not know how basic education funding that was appropriated in December was going to be distributed. In turn, Gov. Wolf has not disclosed the methodology by which he will be sending money to our schools.

What we do know is this: 

    • The governor is sending MORE THAN $1 BILLION in basic education funding to the School District of Philadelphia. This is 18 percent of the money made available in the state budget and far more than any of Pennsylvania’s other 499 school districts is receiving. 

    • In Adams County, five of the six school districts lose a combined total of more than $403,000 in basic education funding when compared to the BEFC formula (Fairfield receives an increase under the governor’s formula). 

    • In Cumberland County, seven of the eight school districts lose a combined total of more than $1 million in basic education funding when compared to the BEFC formula (Big Spring receives an increase under the governor’s formula).

Gov. Wolf does not have the authority to distribute the new education funding dollars in this manner. With his actions, he is clearly violating the law and the Constitution he has sworn to uphold, in addition to penalizing the vast majority of our school districts. What possibly could be his reasoning? Is he paying back some political promise he made?

The governor is wrong on the education funding formula and clearly does not understand the limits to his power. Perhaps he thinks he is acting as the CEO and president of his personal business. Gov. Wolf originally described the BEFC formula as “a big step forward for the people of Pennsylvania and for our education system.” His actions clearly contradict those remarks.

By State Reps. Dan Moul, 91st Legislative District
and Will Tallman, 193rd Legislative District

Representative Dan Moul
91st District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Media Contact: Donna Pinkham

Representative Will Tallman
193rd District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives  

Media Contact: Scott Little
717.260.6452 717.260.6137 
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