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Malloy's ECS Plan to Give Newtown $5 More a Pupil

Gov. Dannel Malloy's plan to add $50 million in Educational Cost Sharing funding would net Newtown an additional $5 a pupil, or about a total of $29,000 or less than 1-percent.

Local officials are responding positively to Gov. Dannel Malloy's plan to bolster Educational Cost Sharing grants by $50 million across the state, which specifically would net Newtown a little more than $29,000 in additional funding, or less than a percentage point of what the town already receives.

That breaks out to an additional $5 a pupil – the town has 5,478 students – according to the governor's office.

"While not a great of money, every little bit helps fund the programs and personnel in our K-12 system," Newtown First Selectman Pat Llodra said in an email. "This legislative session will be very interesting with a great deal of potential change in educational policy and funding approaches.  I am cautiously optimistic that some of these changes will make a difference in the achievement level of our most challenged districts as well as reduce somewhat the financial burden felt at the municipal level."

The bulk of the additional money would go to the state's 30 lowest-performing school districts, which are being referred to as Alliance districts, on the condition they implement education reform. Newtown is not an Alliance district.

An additional $4.5 million in competitive funding would be available to all districts, with preference to Alliance districts.

"From my perspective, additional monies to support the basic implementation of our educational efforts is a good thing as long as there is accountability that comes along with how those dollars are being spent," Rep. Chris Lyddy (D-106, Newtown) said in an email. "This is why I also support measures to track how our education dollars are being expended while also holding our school and district leaders accountable for the outcomes they are charged with getting.  

"In turn, I believe the highest performing schools and districts should be given more autonomy to develop the practices and programs that work while the state focuses its efforts on ensuring those lowest performing schools are scrutinized at a higher level in order to identify areas in need of change."

Lyddy also said would like to see more reforms particularly in determining how the money is doled out. Many officials, including Malloy and legislators from both aisle have said the formula needs to be revised due to inequalities.

"I do not think this new number fixes the equation to fund education, but it is a good first step," Lyddy said of the additional money. "I look forward to additional efforts by the administration and the ECS Task Force to come up with a fair funding formula that supports our reform efforts."

Rep. DebraLee Hovey (R-112, Newtown, Monroe) said "I held my breath" when the ECS numbers came out. She said she was relieved to see that the funding to Newtown and Monroe did not decrease. Monroe also had its funding increased by about $21,000, which also represents an additional $5 a pupil.

"While I am painfully aware that my towns do not get what I would believe to be a 'fair' share of ECS money, especially in light of what they send to Hartford," Hovey said in an email. "I am relieved they did not take a loss, especially in light of the fact the Governor has made it public knowledge that he plans on focusing and giving more money to  those schools that are non performing."

Of particular interest, Hovey said, was indications Malloy would be willing to address a long-standing complaint legislators and local officials have with state mandates that cost municipalities money.

"I listened very carefully to the Governor and if he stays true to his word some of the mandates that cost Newtown money will be set aside and they should give some fiscal relief," she said. "Along with working in the Education Committee on implementation of  Educational Improvements and reforms I will also be advocating for mandate relief for my towns."

Alex Tytler February 10, 2012 at 06:07 PM
Spread the wealth!
NewtownMark February 10, 2012 at 06:54 PM
Either I am nuts or everyone else is - send a dollar to Hartford - .45 goes to administration costs and town gets an extra .01 to the schools while the rest goes to other towns and cities and everyone is happy.
Alex Tytler February 10, 2012 at 07:15 PM
You are 10000% right mark. That $5/student is costing us millions. We are on the wrong side of spreading the wealth, we are the "other people" in OPM.
John Munro February 10, 2012 at 10:42 PM
When they add the Democrat "vig" the cost of that $29,000 to Newtown taxpayers will most like be about a cool million dollars. Don't believe me? Well they gave the banks roughly $750 billion (don't even get me started on how much more the Fed has given them) and the President just announced a plan to spread about $25 billion in "settlement" funds to his chosen few. You think anyone in Newtown will see that money? LOL. All these characters are addicted to our cash. As Judge Schwartz used to say "The way to tell when an addict is lying? Their lips are moving!" P.S. The day the President made this deal all the banks stocks went up. Like punishing your kids with pizza, ice cream and a movie.
Swami February 10, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Imagine the WHINING if you folks actually lived in a Country with high taxes. http://www.businesspundit.com/12-countries-with-the-highest-lowest-tax-rates/
Desiree Galassi February 11, 2012 at 02:25 AM
Sully, thanks for sharing the article. It's interesting to see taxation from the global perspective.
Alex Tytler February 11, 2012 at 03:03 AM
http://www.lowtax.net/lowtax/html/hongkong/jhktax.html
Alex Tytler February 11, 2012 at 03:09 AM
http://www.worldwide-tax.com/russia/russia_tax.asp
Andrew February 11, 2012 at 03:40 AM
Sully. Did you read the comments under country headers in your link. Interesting how countries with high tax rates are losing their smartest and most productive citizens to low tax countries, referred to as the "brain drain" in the article. If the U.S can't produce students of this caliber perhaps we should keep our tax rates low to bring these people here so that their prosperity can add to our own.
sadielee February 11, 2012 at 11:49 AM
Russia and China? really? thats a laughable comparison. Unless of course taxes are the ONLY aspect of your life you care about. Like playing 18 in FL? not happening in either of those countries. As a matter of fact your patch posts won't fly either in China, one hint of anti government on a social/news site and they shut you down.
Alex Tytler February 11, 2012 at 12:32 PM
Actually Hong Kong has a much higher standard of living than we do, and is self governed as a separate entity from the PRC. Russia? Not so much, but they are making alot of billionaires.
NewtownMark February 11, 2012 at 12:59 PM
Sully, seems the high taxes in socialist countries model doesn't work - does it? Maybe looking to the government to solve every aspect of every part of life is not the answer - maybe?
Swami February 11, 2012 at 01:56 PM
Mark, what data are you looking at? Norway, Australia and Sweden have both very high income taxes (40, 45 and 57%), and the best standard of living in the world.
Steven DeVaux February 11, 2012 at 02:01 PM
Board's of Finance around the state should match the state, dollar for dollar with the ECS grant as it is the clearest indicator of the state's commitment to public education. So Newtown should match the $5 increase per student. Works out to about a $20K increase for the year for the Board of Education. After all, that's fair, right?
NewtownMark February 11, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Italy France and Germany are sited among the highest and all three are in big trouble - also the article conveniently ignores the two highest taxed countries - Greece and Portugal
Alex Tytler February 11, 2012 at 03:05 PM
Why don't you go there Sully instead of trying to impose it here?
Liam Heller February 11, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Bill gates (within the last few years) has been quite vocal about the necessity to complete change the way America teaches its children. COMPLETELY change. Basically, he's made us aware that because of the WAY kids are taught in public schools, based on the educational guidelines that have been set in place for decades... Americans are being squeezed out of the running, when it comes to the kinds of jobs that require the mentality/ability to create new technology or invent new science or perform the jobs that require someone to "think outside the box". Our scientists are diminishing. Our technical inventors are diminishing. Our medical front-runners are diminishing. Bill gates has said (and this is from memory), that a little over 17,000 positions, out of the roughly 800,000 American job opportunities available, which are devoted to these kinds of jobs, are actually going to Americans. Our schools are failing at teaching kids to WANT to learn as much as they can, about the jobs that keep progress moving along. "Nearly thirty years ago, American researchers found that there was no connection between spending and educational results." http://www.dailyreckoning.com.au/good-education-gone-bad/2011/10/31/
Liam Heller February 11, 2012 at 05:07 PM
Taxing people more and throwing more money at the schools, is NOT the answer. It's a "Band-Aid" that makes politicians look like they're actually doing something, without actually doing anything. The education industry has been corrupted by too much easy money. It is now zombified. Sclerotic. And parasitic. It now subtracts value. It takes valuable resources...not the least of which are the minds and bodies of people at their most energetic stage in life...and squanders them, making us all poorer.
Liam Heller February 11, 2012 at 05:14 PM
U.S. Manufacturers Say There Aren't Enough Skilled Workers To Fill Job Openings http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/12/us-manufacturers-skilled-workers-job-openings_n_1007902.html Almost every nation is having the same problem with this. We have to step back and analyze what we're teaching the kids and exactly WHY we're teaching the kids. I'm all too terrified to say, it's because of the business of making money by sending kids to college... http://youtu.be/Ww4m8GUK69E
Liam Heller February 11, 2012 at 05:23 PM
More and more people in America are opening their eyes to the flaws in its public educational system. More and more people are homeschooling their children, WHILE also paying high taxes for public schools, only because they simply don't trust the system. It's NOT the teachers... It's the system they work in. They're not allowed to teach anymore. Teachers aren't ALLOWED to teach our kids. Instead, they're all taught how to all teach the same way, across the nation. Since our federal government has gotten involved in the educational system, now our public school teachers have to follow the same "mantra" that the nationwide chain of www.supercuts.com has to follow, in order to provide the same haircut in Connecticut as you;d get in California. Our kids deserve better than McDonald's. Our TEACHERS deserve better than McDonald's... Changing Education Paradigms http://youtu.be/zDZFcDGpL4U
Liam Heller February 11, 2012 at 05:36 PM
"Every education system in the world, is being 'reformed', at the moment. And it's not enough. "Reform" is of no use anymore... Because that's simply improving a broken model. What we need, and the word's been used many times, Is NOT "Evolution"... It's REVOLUTION." "We make poor use of our talents." ~ Sir Ken Robinson http://www.ted.com/talks/sir_ken_robinson_bring_on_the_revolution.html
Sam Mihailoff February 11, 2012 at 06:51 PM
thanks Darnell...this pays the Ann Baldwin tab I feel much better now
Douglas Brennan February 16, 2012 at 02:48 AM
This is the reason why Newtown should opt out of the State Education mandates. We get no money but we get plenty of rules and regulations that were dollars not attached are in violation of the Home Rule rules.
Douglas Brennan February 16, 2012 at 02:54 AM
"Leaders take us far away from ecology with mythology and astrology." ..."It's time to get back to the truth..." Strangers in a Strange Land
Douglas Brennan February 16, 2012 at 04:29 PM
$4.5 million in competitive funding. This must be some sort of joke by the current governor. When a company doesn't have enough money to do the job they have contests. You know the type. Enter to win and you will get a free trip to the Bahamas etc. Real companies like real governments do not have contests for something that is important. They either fund it and hold people accountable or better yet determine that it is not worth funding and do not waste resources either funding evaluating or preparing to enter the competition.

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