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THE CONVERSATION: Breaking News in the 18th District

School Funding Increase the First Step to Solution

Senator Patrick Diegnan Jr. told constituents that for the first time in nine years, the state budget provides $130.4 million in increased aid as a down payment to the 73% of New Jersey schoolchildren and taxpayers who have not been getting the state aid they are owed under a fair school funding formula, and begins to shift funding away from districts that have been getting more than their fair share.

For the first time, Senator Diegnan said we are providing $25 million to expand preschool education, which business leaders and educators agree is the best investment we can make. And for the first time, the state budget adds $25 million in funding to increase compensation to school districts for the costs of educating students with extraordinary special education needs. This year’s increases are the first step in a comprehensive and fully detailed strategy to fully and fairly fund state aid in a way that meets the constitutional mandate that we provide a “thorough and efficient” education to all schoolchildren regardless of where they live and that will provide property tax relief to the overwhelming majority of New Jersey residents.

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