HALIFAX, Pa., Aug. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The statewide "Schools That Teach" tour continued today as Secretary of Education Pedro A. Rivera stopped by Halifax Area School District in Dauphin County to talk to teachers and administrators about education funding and investing in Pennsylvania's schools.
Attendees at the roundtable discussed how Governor Tom Wolf's historic education funding proposal, achieved through a commonsense severance tax on gas drilling, would impact Halifax Area School District and the community it serves.
"After spending the past few months touring the state and speaking to teachers, administrators and school board members about the issues they're facing, it's been made abundantly clear that nowadays, schools are doing more with less," Rivera said. "The governor's plan to restore the painful cuts school districts across the commonwealth have been dealt over the last four years is an investment that would make an undeniable difference in schools across the commonwealth. No one can disagree that our public education system needs this assistance, but a new school year is on the horizon and the time to act is now."
During the visit, administrators and staff detailed to Secretary Rivera their hopes for how the additional funding would be used, specifically the district's plan to invest in high-quality early education programs.
"It's been proven that high-quality early education programs have a lifelong impact on children, as they go on to perform better in school, graduate at higher rates and earn more throughout their lives than those who do not have access to early learning programs," Halifax Area School District Superintendent Dr. Michele Orner said. "The additional funding proposed in Governor Wolf's plan would allow our district to make changes that would benefit the children and the families of this community for many years to come, and we are hopeful that we will have that opportunity."
Investing in high-quality early childhood programs, and providing students with career and college counselors were among the options provided in a letter Rivera sent to the superintendents of all 500 districts in March.
In the letter, Rivera called on districts to submit plans to ensure this new investment reaches the classroom and to measure results for Pennsylvania's students. Ninety-six percent of Pennsylvania school districts across the commonwealth submitted funding impact plans to the state Department of Education, outlining how the governor's proposed $400 million basic education funding increase will be invested directly in classrooms.
MEDIA CONTACT: Nicole Reigelman, 717-783-9802.
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Education