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School District of Philadelphia Superintendent Tony Watlington Sr. said Pa. Gov. Josh Shapiro’s billion-dollar increase in basic education funding for public schools statewide is the “right proposal at the right time” to help the district deal with its challenges.
In his second budget address Tuesday, Shapiro announced a record $1.1 billion dollars in increased funding, building on historic levels of education funding in his budget approved by the Legislature in 2023.
“We absolutely must get the funding that the governor has proposed and hope that the legislatures will see fit to say, the School District of Philadelphia has made progress, our students are worthy of these dollars and these investments and let’s get on down the road and do what needs to be done here so that our students can have an opportunity to participate in any career that they can imagine or realize,” Watlington said.
In 2023, the Commonwealth Court ruled that the state’s public education formula was unconstitutional and had resulted in Philadelphia’s and other school districts being underfunded for years. The court directed the state to fix the problem.