Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (R) stunned most people in his state when he announced his plan to slash more than $1 billion from education funding. If enacted, the radical proposal “would amount to the largest single-year cut ever in American public higher education,” in addition to gutting funds for K-12 education. Corbett is also calling for a public school employee wage freeze and more “freedom” to furlough teachers. Pennsylvania State University called the cuts “catastrophic.”
Decked neck to sneaks in bright orange and blue, Masterman teacher Louis “Luigi” Borda took off this morning on a 100-mile run to Harrisburg.
The aim was to publicize the need to better fund public education, as lawmakers finalize a state budget that drastically cut financial aid to schools. […]
In Harrisburg, he said, “we’ll be running around the capital building until they’re done voting,” he said. “Hopefully the governor will give us a little audience…and tell us how we can fix this problem.”
Borda teaches geography and social studies at the Masterman school. According to the AP, athletes from at least two state universities also ran to Harrisburg in March to protest proposed cuts to their institutions.
The deep cuts Corbett is proposing go well beyond “shared sacrifice” and will profoundly impact low-income students and school districts that rely on state aid. Pennsylvania’s public university prices are already the fourth highest in the country and the base price of tuition could rise as much as $10,000 more as result of the cuts.
“You’re breaking people’s dreams,” Kaitlyn Grzywinski, 19, a freshman at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, said of Corbett’s cuts. “This decision will ruin some people’s chances of going to college. Cost is a huge factor.”