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Stories tagged: Mayor Nutter

Lump sum budget counts on $440 million not yet secured; principals storm Council

By Dale Mezzacappa on Mar 27, 2014 10:27 PM

The School Reform Commission voted Thursday to approve a $2.8 billion “lump sum” budget for fiscal 2015 that counts on receiving $440 million more in revenue than it currently has secured.

It did so shortly after an unprecedented scene in City Hall, when a few dozen school principals clogged the corridors to dramatize the appalling conditions in their schools and ask Council members for more funds.

And State Sen. Vincent Hughes addressed the SRC directly after holding a rally on the District’s steps in which he called for taxing Marcellus Shale extraction – Pennsylvania is the only gas-producing state in the country that doesn’t do so – to raise money for education.

Gov. Corbett’s school budget proposal draws mixed reviews

By the Notebook on Feb 5, 2014 06:03 PM

Gov. Corbett delivered his annual budget address in Harrisburg yesterday, indicating that public school funding would see an increase of $369 million. Two-thirds of that – $241 million – will be directed to the "Ready to Learn" block grant focused on early learning, STEM education, and supplemental instruction. Basic education funding, however, remained flat. Philadelphia will get a $29 million increase through the grant program.

The Notebook gathered reactions to the budget proposal from several education advocates and organizations.

Senate approves Green and Jimenez for School Reform Commission

By Wendy Harris on Feb 4, 2014 05:49 PM

The State Senate approved the nominations of City Councilman Bill Green and People’s Emergency Center executive director Farah Jimenez to the School Reform Commission in a vote of 44-2 this afternoon. Sens. Vincent Hughes and Andrew Dinniman were the dissenting votes.  

Gov. Corbett nominated both Green and Jimenez to the five-member panel last month. Green will fill the chair position left vacant by Pedro Ramos, who resigned in October, citing family issues. Jimenez will fill the seat left vacant by Joseph Dwortezky, whose term expired in January.   

Local campaign launched to have all students reading proficiently by 3rd grade

By Dale Mezzacappa on Dec 20, 2013 05:48 PM

A newly formed coalition in Philadelphia is joining the national Campaign for Grade-Level Reading, an effort to make sure that as of the year 2020, all city students read on grade level by the end of 3rd grade. 

Passivity in mayor’s office isn’t helpful

By the Notebook on Dec 3, 2013 03:54 PM

Doing the right thing

Response to Oct. 17 news post “SRC rejects plan to sell off art.”

The SRC is to be commended for voting not to sell the artwork which was, for all intents and purposes, stolen from District schools. [Former Superintendent] Paul Vallas and [former SRC Chair] James Nevels had no right to take it, and the way they did it was just plain ugly. They never told anyone – not even the principals – what they were about to do. 

Countdown, Day 5: Teachers' union to pull new ad attacking Mayor Nutter

By the Notebook on Sep 4, 2013 04:14 PM

by Holly Otterbein for NewsWorks

The Philadelphia teachers' union said that it is putting on hold a new ad that blasts Mayor Nutter and Gov. Corbett over the School District's budget woes.

George Jackson, spokesman for the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, said the union has made the decision because Nutter and PFT president Jerry Jordan have scheduled a private meeting this week.

"We think we got [Nutter's] attention," Jackson said. "In the interest of fostering a productive dialogue, for right now, we're going to suspend the ads."

[Update: The ad reportedly aired on NBC10 Wednesday after the PFT said it was pulled. Jackson said there was a "miscommunication" with the station, and that it should be off the airwaves by Thursday.]

Teachers' union ads target Mayor Nutter

By the Notebook on Aug 22, 2013 03:58 PM

by Holly Otterbein for NewsWorks

The Philadelphia teachers' union is taking a shot at Mayor Nutter with a new ad campaign.

The group's TV, radio, newspaper and online advertisements tie Nutter, a Democrat, to Gov. Corbett, a Republican, who has been knocked for cutting schools funding in past years.

"You've sided with Gov. Corbett, against my kids, against their teachers," says public school parent and activist Kia Hinton of Nutter in the radio ad. "You've let us down. You've been starving our kids of the education they deserve."

Countdown Day 31: Safe corridors the goal of new citywide campaign, WalkSafePHL

By the Notebook on Aug 9, 2013 03:05 PM

by Mark McHugh

Student safety inside and outside the classroom has been a community concern as the District works on the transitions for students from 24 closing schools in the midst of a profound budget crisis. In response, Town Watch Integrated Services (TWIS) is spearheading an initiative called WalkSafePHL, intended to ensure the safety of students travelling to and from school.

The effort was the subject of a press conference Friday morning involving Mayor Michael Nutter, Superintendent William Hite, and Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Cynthia Dorsey.  They are billing the campaign as “the city's strategy for ensuring students are able to travel safely to and from school this fall.”

Nutter: Opening schools with adequate staffing is number one priority

By the Notebook on Aug 1, 2013 12:56 PM

by Holly Otterbein for NewsWorks

Some education advocates charge that Mayor Nutter is not doing enough to ensure that schools open in September with adequate staffing.

But Nutter says that is his one, laser-like target right now.

“My primary focus, fairly singular focus at the moment,” he said, “is making sure that we can open schools six weeks from now with the appropriate level of personnel.”

He is urging City Council to extend the one percentage point local sales tax in order to raise $120 million annually for the schools in future years. Instead, some Council members want to split the sales tax proceeds between schools and the city’s drastically underfunded pension system.

Lessons from a budget battle

By Helen Gym on Jun 28, 2013 12:15 PM

Last Thursday, City Council decided that democracy was inconvenient.

Faced with a deluge of phone calls and an unprecedented outpouring of parent action supporting the progressive Use & Occupancy tax, City Council President Darrell Clarke shut down an expected vote on the tax and instead announced that the city would seek more than $74 million for schools through a tax on cigarettes and improved delinquent-tax collection.

One City Hall insider told me that certain members of City Council were “sh*!%ing bricks” at the number of phone calls they were receiving and were unhappy at the idea of taking a public vote on the Use & Occupancy tax.  At least one City Council office said it had received almost 100 phone calls on Wednesday, the day before the vote.

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