In light of a U.S. Department of Education directive, U.S. Rep. Albio Sires (D-8) is calling on Gov. Phil Murphy (D) to restore funding in Jersey City, Hoboken, and Weehawken.
” … In accepting federal COVID-19 relief funding from the American Rescue Plan earlier this year, the state had to comply with a clause prohibiting states from cutting aid to high-need school districts between 2021-2022,” Sires said in a statement.
“I urge Governor Murphy to swiftly reinstate the funding cuts sustained to Jersey City, Hoboken, Weehawken, and other impacted school districts due to reductions in state aid passed by the legislature in 2018. Jersey City faces the largest school funding cuts in the state despite serving one of the highest-poverty student populations.”
On Tuesday, the Education Law Center revealed that the Jersey City Board of Education could recoup as much as $126,434,477 in state aid cuts following a directive from the U.S. DOE.
Their decision came after the ELC and Jersey City Together filed complaints that claimed the “maintenance of equity” provision of the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Relief Fund (ARP ESSER) says “high need” districts will not see state funding reduced and the U.S. DOE concurred.
While modest in comparison to Jersey City, the ELC estimates that Hoboken BOE is now owed $1,290,485, while Weehawken Public Schools need $292,848.
“The school districts’ needs have only grown during the pandemic, and it’s crucial that Jersey City, Hoboken, and Weehawken receive adequate funding from the state,” added Sires.
The governor’s office declined to comment this afternoon.