Be an Advocate!



Will you join us in contacting local delegates to ask for additional funding? 

Sample Messages:

Twitter bird

Sample Tweet 

<Insert Twitter Handle> Please advocate for children in @SyracuseSchools by supporting our specific requests as you consider this year’s budget! Details: www.syracusecityschools.com/funding

Email

Sample Emails

Dear Representative,

As a proud member of the Syracuse City School District community, I am asking for your help in advocating for our students as you consider this year’s Budget priorities.

Please consider increasing the Career and Technical Education Funding to help our children become career ready. Please include 9th grade students in the funding formula so they can get a head start on their career readiness and increase the CTE Rate by 10%. 

I also ask that you increase the weight in the Foundation Aid formula for English as a New Language students and those with special needs and living in poverty. With a majority of Syracuse City School District students living below the poverty line, and with over 65 different languages spoken by our students, Syracuse students would benefit greatly from a properly weighted Foundation Aid formula. 

With your support, we can ensure that Syracuse City School District students have the resources and supports needed to lead them to success. Please visit syracusecityschools.com/funding for more information.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

NAME
ADDRESS
 



Dear Representative,

As a proud member of the Syracuse City School District community, I am asking for your help in advocating for our students as you consider this year’s Budget priorities.

I ask that you increase the Special Services Aid which funds the 27 Career & Technical (CTE) Pathways in the Syracuse City School District. High School CTE programs provide vital college and career ready skills to over 1,500 students. By including 9th grade students in the CTE funding formula and increasing the rate by 10%, you are investing in our future!

With your support, we can ensure that Syracuse City School District students have the resources and supports needed to lead them to success. Please visit syracusecityschools.com/funding for more information.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

NAME
ADDRESS
 



Dear Representative,

As a proud member of the Syracuse City School District community, I am asking for your help in advocating for our students as you consider this year’s Budget priorities.

Please reject the proposal to reduce and collapse expense-driven aids. Transportation Aid is a vital expense-driven aid which provides our children with a safe means of getting to and from school. If Transportation Aid is reduced, more children may have to walk through unsafe intersections.

Additionally, please reject the Local District Funding Adjustment (LDFA). Syracuse City School District does not receive the full School Tax Aid Relief (STAR) that is the basis for this reduction. The LDFA reduction of $7.4 million for Syracuse will impact the District's ability to provide programming and services to students.

With your support, we can ensure that Syracuse City School District students have the resources and supports needed to lead them to success. Please visit syracusecityschools.com/funding for more information.

Thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

NAME
ADDRESS

Telephone

Sample Phone Script

Good afternoon. I’m calling to ask you to advocate for the Syracuse City School District as you consider this year’s budget priorities. The district has set up a website with details on how you can help support our unique student population – at syracusecityschools.com/funding. As a member of the Syracuse City School District community, I appreciate your help in speaking up to support our children. Thank you.


 


See below for contact information for your New York State representatives:

Find the name of your New York State Assembly Member

Find the name of your New York State Senator

 
NYS ASSEMBLY MEMBER
129th Assembly District
William Magnarelli – (D)

(315) 428-9651
Magnarw@nyassembly.gov

NYS SENATOR
50th Senate District
John W. Mannion - (D)

(315) 428-7632
mannion@nysenate.gov

NYS SENATOR
53rd Senate District
Rachel May - (D)

(315) 907-7148
may@nysenate.gov

NYS ASSEMBLY MEMBER
128th Assembly District
Pamela J. Hunter – (D)

(315) 449-9536
HunterP@nyassembly.gov


GOVERNOR
Kathy Hochul – (D)

(518) 474-8390
 


NYS SENATOR
Chair of Education Committee
Shelley Mayer - (D)

(518) 455-2031
smayer@nysenate.gov

NYS SENATOR
Chair of Finance Committee
Liz Krueger – (D)

(518) 455-2297
lkrueger@nysenate.gov 


NYS ASSEMBLYPERSON
Chair of Education Committee
Michael Benedetto - (D)

(518) 455-5296
benedettom@nyassembly.gov


NYS ASSEMBLYPERSON
Chair of Ways & Means Committee
Helene Weinstein - (D)

(518) 455-5462
WeinsH@nyassembly.gov

BOARD OF REGENTS MEMBER
Elizabeth S. Hakanson

(518) 474-5889
Regent.Hakanson@nysed.gov


 
 
 

Funding requests:

1. Eliminate Local District Funding Adjustment 

The Local District Funding Adjustment in the Executive Budget is a recurring reduction based on STAR – School Tax Aid Relief. Syracuse does not receive the full STAR revenue and the impact on City Maintenance of Effort is unclear. This adjustment may also result in lower local share.

2. Reject Consolidation & Reduction of Expense Driven Aids

Please reject the proposal to collapse and reduce Transportation Aid, Special Services Aid, Academic Enhancement Aid, and Charter School Transitional Aid. Since this year is at record low expenditure levels due to the Pandemic, collapsing these aids in 2021-22 is especially damaging long-term because these lower spending levels will artificially deflate future years’ aid.

3. Reject Mid-Year School Aid Cut Provisions

This year the Executive Budget proposal includes mid-year cut provisions. I ask that you reject this proposal. The current mid-year withholdings have caused havoc in our planning, staffing, program offerings, cash flow, and ability to ensure contractors that funds are appropriated.

4. Pay Charter School Transitional Aid in Current Year

Charter School Transitional Aid is paid one-year lag. If the State would pay this aid in the current year, it would provide a one year pick up in 2021-22 and then will help with cash flow thereafter. The District is mandated to pay Charter Tuition prior to receiving Foundation Aid (or risk having it intercepted) then must wait a year before receiving Charter Transitional Aid.

5. Permanently Cut Charter Tuition Rate & Set Saturation Cap

Please consider reducing the rate by at least 25%. Charter Schools in Syracuse are paid $13,158 per pupil currently, and much of this ends up in the savings or fund balance of privately-held, for-profit charters at the end of the year. A 25% reduction would save SCSD over $6 million dollars (approximately $3,300 x 2,000 pupils) per year.

Limit Charter School saturation to 10% in urban centers allowing for school choice while limiting the financial burden on public school districts. In Syracuse, charter school enrollment has increased to 10% in recent years costing nearly $30 million. Students enrolling in charter schools are coming from every school and grade level in the District, making it nearly impossible to offset additional tuition expense with reductions in existing District programs and classrooms.

6. Increase CTE Rate & Include 9th Grade Students

Provide Special Services Aid for 9th grade students enrolled in Career & Technical Education courses. The current formula only funds students in grades 10, 11 and 12. Additionally, increase the cap on the per pupil rate by 10% (from $3,900 to $4,300). Data is being collected and reported on 9th grade CTE students and this is investment that will provide opportunities for students to be college and career ready.

7. Weight the formula for ENL, Special Needs, & Poverty

Ensure the formula includes proper weighting of student need by revisiting weighting for poverty, special needs and ENL status and use updated census, poverty, enrollment and regional cost factors. We anticipate and welcome a renewed growth in our settlement communities this year and need funding to ensure that we can provide equitable services to ENL students.