Fabius-Pompey Central School District
Timothy P. Ryan, Superintendent of Schools
1211 Mill Street
Fabius, NY 13063
Phone - 315-683-5301
Fax - 315-683-5827
On January 16, Governor Cuomo presented his State of the State address and signaled his priorities for the upcoming budget. The State’s budget is not official until approved by the State legislature. Currently, there is a great deal of negotiating happening in order to present a budget which most closely represents the priorities of the citizens of New York State. Education is a part of the budget and always a topic of debate. Because educational priorities differ from Long Island to Upstate, from urban to suburban to rural districts and from wealthy districts to impoverished communities, State representatives have a complicated task when determining the most equitable manner in which to distribute education resources.
The evolution of charter schools and a host of other educational initiatives ranging from pre-kindergarten to college tuition waivers make it difficult to understand what is truly being funded. Very often when discussing the State budget, it is said that money for education has increased by a significant percentage. Sometimes that means that local schools, like Fabius-Pompey, have received an increase in aid. Most often, it means that there has been money added to the budget to support new ideas or new initiatives in education. It is not unusual for that additional aid to be in the form of a grant. Sometimes the type of initiative supported by that grant may be relevant to a small district such as ours, but more often these grants are designed to help out larger districts.
Since there are many special interest groups that work hard to influence our elected representatives, it is not unusual for the additional aid to serve the purpose of establishing a new program or initiative. Occasionally that type of targeted funding is essential to moving a district in the right direction. An example at F-P is the Smart Schools Bond Act. This voter-approved funding allowed the District to upgrade the technology infrastructure and to be confident in a long-range plan for the implementation of educational technology. But, in most cases, money set aside for new programs in the State budget is difficult to access, and if used in the short-term, leaves a long-term cost.
The educational aid formulas are complicated to follow and distribute funds in a variety of ways. Based on the Governor’s proposed budget for 2018, Fabius-Pompey is scheduled to receive an additional $74,000 for instructional purposes and to help address an approximate $300,000 increase in mandated expenses. This is the reality our representatives face as they advocate for an equitable distribution of educational funding.