Albany 101: Here are the big NYC education issues to watch in the new legislative session

Albany 101: Here are the big NYC education issues to watch in the new legislative session

When New York state’s legislative session begins this month, don’t expect to see the familiar rallies of advocates, union leaders and lawmakers pressing the governor to boost money for schools.

That’s because state lawmakers passed a budget last session that, for the first time, committed to fully cover Foundation Aid, the formula that provides the funding base for school districts and sends more money to those with higher needs. As a result, school districts received a total $3 billion increase in the last state budget, with about a third of that just for New York City schools.

“Funding is always an issue, and this year is utterly unique,” said Bob Lowry, deputy director for advocacy and communication at the state’s Council of School Superintendents.

Without a fight over Foundation Aid, education advocates and lawmakers are shifting their focus for the next legislative session. Various groups are looking to raise more awareness on different programs, such as career and technical education programs, student mental health, and improving access to advanced courses.

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