Pennsylvania’s constitution calls for the state to provide the resources for a thorough and efficient system of public education, yet the state continues to shortchange our students. For years, the burden has hurt local taxpayers and students.
Over the last 25 years, Pennsylvania students have attended schools that have suffered horrible draughts of resources, causing essentially a famine in school districts across the commonwealth.
PCCY has been a preeminent voice in the halls of the PA Capitol, in Philadelphia City Hall and in school districts across the Delaware Valley. Over the decades, PCCY led advocates from across the commonwealth in several education related campaigns. Through its research, reports and advocacy, PCCY’s north star remains the best interest of students.
More than half a million children attend public schools in southeastern Pennsylvania. PCCY works to ensure that our region’s children arrive at school ready to learn and attend schools that have the resources needed to provide a high-quality education.
PCCY advocates for that to be achieved through fair and predictable funding and equal opportunity for all students. PCCY considers this nothing less than a crusade.
In the early days, PCCY focused on data driven advocacy that resulted in full day kindergarten, increased access to early education and increased focus on equity. During the early 2000’s, PCCY hit the halls of the Capitol with cans of spinach to encourage lawmakers to be strong for kids – this visibility and undying advocacy helped propel a massive focus on education in Governor Ed Rendell’s Plan for a new PA, which at the time marked the largest investment in public education in PA history.
Then came the public education famine of 2011-2015, which was the worst in political memory. It was so long that it caused schools to lose tens of thousands of educators. School libraries were shuttered and their art rooms became storage for a nostalgic look back at when our students created works of art, learned music and performed for and with their peers – all of which enhanced their educational experience.
The funding crisis in education was caused by short sighted partisan thinking that placed short-term economic and electoral interests over the long-term moral imperative we all share to raise up the next generation. PCCY took up the mantle and began a fight to restore funding and equity.
The Campaign for Fair Education Funding was launched to advocate for a fair funding formula. The state made progress in 2016 when it adopted a fair funding formula, but the formula will only help districts in need if it is fully funded. That campaign created the opportunity for $685 million in new education funding, after which PCCY co-founded PA Schools Work to take the fight to the next level. As part of the ongoing PA Schools Work campaign, PCCY organized two local community summits on education funding that were attended by hundreds of parents,