Washington, DC – Following the release of Mayor Bowser’s 2023 budget, DC Charter School Alliance Founding Executive Director Shannon Hodge released the following statement:
“We’re grateful to Mayor Bowser for taking the first steps in prioritizing students in the budget, starting with support for increasing the UPSFF foundation by 5.9 percent. Now more than ever, we need a budget that demonstrates a commitment to adequate funding for our schools to continue providing the opportunity for every student to acquire the knowledge, skills, and values necessary to be successful and find fulfillment in their lives.
“As the health and safety of our students continues to be the top concern of school leaders, we ask the DC Council to provide access to charter schools for stabilization funding announced in the Mayor’s Budget for repairs and maintenance of HVAC systems. All public schools in the city must be fairly funded as we all work to safely provide a high-quality education for every student.
“Though the budget does include a 2.2 percent increase for charter school facilities funding, our schools have invested thousands of dollars to retrofit buildings and ventilation systems at high costs to support in-person learning. We’ve asked for a 3.1 percent increase to meet the anticipated needs of schools, and encourage the Council to raise the allotment and make sure charter schools can continue to secure and maintain buildings for the nearly half of public school students they serve.
“As the DC Council works to approve the budget, they must fully fund the at-risk weight to the level recommended by the 2013 adequacy study to ensure schools have the resources they need to support their most vulnerable students, increase adult school funding to level recommended in the 2013 adequacy study and provide funding for at-risk adult students, and increase funding for the DC DBH’s school-based mental health program.
“We thank Mayor Bowser for her leadership in the budget process thus far. To build a truly equitable system that provides a high-quality education for every student in the City, we all must think boldly about the future of public education. We look forward to working together to make sure our students receive the education they deserve.”