Speaker Testifies Before Joint Legislative Panel on School Funding Formula
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto testified Tuesday before a joint legislative committee on the importance of crafting a new school funding formula that strikes the right balance for New Jersey’s diverse population, an issue that the Assembly will begin to delve into tomorrow with the first of several public hearings on the matter.
“Our school funding formula is one of the most important issues facing our state right now, one that demands long overdue attention. Our constitution mandates a thorough and efficient education for every child and it’s our obligation to make sure that is a reality. I commend the Joint Committee on the Public Schools for joining us in taking up this task.
“As we’ve noted, one of the biggest problems with our current formula is that it has never been fully funded. That’s why it’s going to be so important for us to hear from key stakeholders and entities like this as we move forward in order to make the best decisions for everyone.
“Our goal is to look at the whole formula from A to Z; to examine what has worked and what hasn’t so that we can achieve the right mixture. We have an obligation to taxpayers so it’s incumbent upon us that we strike the right balance.
“As we embark on a series of hearings tomorrow before the Assembly Education Committee, we do so with no predetermined outcome. We are going to examine every aspect of this issue and hear from a host of people that have ideas.
“Ultimately, we want to make sure that at the end of the day we don’t hurt our children, our districts or our quality of life. Balance in delivering a quality education is our ultimate goal,” said Prieto (D-Bergen/Hudson).