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PNS Daily Newscast - October 29, 2020 

Trump supporters left to battle frigid temperatures in Omaha; absentee ballots surge in Tennessee.

2020Talks - October 29, 2020 

The Supreme Court blocks North Carolina and Pennsylvania Republicans from requiring ballots to be delivered by Election Day. And a Texas court is requiring masks at polling places.

NY School Cut Consequences “Catastrophic”

September 20, 2012

LE ROY, N.Y. - The impact of $2 billion in cuts to state aid to education over the last two years is being felt again this fall in cancelled after-school activities, laid-off teachers, larger classes and a heightening of the disparity between the haves and have-nots among school systems. Dr. Mike Glover, superintendent of the Genesee Valley Education Partnership, says that situation drives home his - and others' - belief that there are two public school systems in New York: one for the affluent and one for the rest.

"The poorest districts in the state - ironically, not the wealthiest but the poorest districts - have had to expend their reserves down. We are facing a really catastrophic situation in low-wealth rural, suburban and urban centers in the state."

He'll be participating in a media event next week in Batavia, under the banner of "Educate NY Now." A rally this afternoon, in Hauppauge, on Long Island, will hear from students and others affected adversely by the funding cuts.

Darlina Sanchez is a senior at Central Islip High School. Because her parents both work, she has to leave school early on some days to care for her 5-year-old brother, whose kindergarten class has been cut to less than half a day.

"The budget cuts not only affect the parents, the kids, but it affects the older sisters, too, because I feel as responsible as my mom would feel for him. We can't afford a babysitter, so it's hard."

Glover hopes the media event planned for a week from today in Genesee County will send a message to state legislators in Albany.

"I understand that the state has a fiscal crisis. I understand that the nation is in a fiscal crisis. But a fiscal crisis does not in any way abrogate their responsibility to provide for a sound, basic education. That's guaranteed in the state constitution."

Sanchez adds that extracurricular activities have been curtailed at her school because, without compensation for supervising sanctioned clubs, teachers can't afford to volunteer to oversee them.

"After-school activities are important, because for college resumes and applications, you want to put as much as you can that you were involved in."

"Educate NY Now" is a statewide campaign made up of students, teachers, parents and education reformers.

Mark Scheerer, Public News Service - NY