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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Kory, Evans defend need-based funding

Del. Kaye Kory and Fairfax County school board members Sandy Evans (Mason District) and Tina Hone (at-large) have issued the following statement in response to an Oct. 13 Washington Post article about GOP strategist Catherine Lorenze, who wants FCPS to do away with the needs-based formula. According to Lorenze, poorer schools, like those in Annandale and Bailey’s Crossroads, “make out like bandits” under this formula.

“While we appreciate advocates who want to hold our school system accountable, any effort to roll back our needs-based funding formula is wrong-headed,” state Kory, Evans, and Hone.

“Our schools with large numbers of at-risk students are provided enough resources to give them a fair and equal shot at academic success. Students who come to us from impoverished backgrounds, with language barriers, who may not even get a full meal other than the one they get at school, who often don’t have computer access or even a quiet spot to do homework, need and deserve extra support to reach them and teach them.

“This is a sacred trust of any public school system and ultimately benefits all of us who want an educated community.

“Class sizes may indeed have become too high in some places. If so, we need to look for solutions that don’t set one part of the county, or one part of our population, against the other. The answer certainly isn’t to take from the poor to give to the wealthy,” the statement concludes.

Evans has previously issued a more detailed explanation of why the needs-based formula is necessary, and several candidates running for the school board discussed the issue at a recent forum.

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