No Appetite to Educate: Stacking the Deck Against Children In Poverty

Marina Marcou-O’Malley:

New York State has a massive funding gap between rich and poor schools and it has grown rapidly since Governor Cuomo took office in 2011.

The funding gap between the 100 poorest school districts and the 100 wealthiest is $9,796 per pupil. In a school of 300 students this amounts to $2.9 million annually.

The funding gap grew by $1,772 per pupil since Governor Cuomo ended the state’s commitment to the Foundation Aid formula that was enacted in 2007. The Foundation Aid formula was enacted as a result of the Campaign for Fiscal Equity and was designed to narrow the gap.

If the Foundation Aid Formula were to be fully funded it would close the gap by $2,824 per pupil.

The funding gap closely correlates with graduation gap of 26%. The difference in graduation rates is as staggering as the difference in funding. The high spending, wealthy school districts have a 92% graduation rate, whereas underfunded, poor communities graduate 66% of their

The funding gap is also tied to advanced educational opportunities. Half of the graduating cohort in well-funded, wealthy school districts leaves with the highly coveted Advanced Regents diploma, whereas only 1 in 5 students leave school with an Advanced Regents diploma in underfunded poor districts.

Education Inequality and Income Inequality