Hundreds of Students Gather at Capitol to Protest Education Cuts

Students from across the state gathered underneath the Capitol Rotunda Tuesday on Valentine’s Day holding signs and chanting that cuts in education breaks the hearts of students.

Four hundred students from Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Reading, and Chester held signs urging Governor Corbett to restore funding back to its original levels.

“We are telling Governor Corbett that he needs to fall back in love with public education,” said Bernard Nesmith, a senior in the Philadelphia Public School District.

Last year, nearly one billion dollars in education was cut from public education, funding that made learning difficult for some, “That brought along increased class sizes and a lot of teachers were cut from our district,” said Mori Hitchcock of Chester, Delaware County.

Susan Spicka, a parent from the Shippensburg area was also at Tuesday’s rally, “This isn’t routine cutting, this is a shift of priorities and saying our public schools do not matter.”

Some state law makers who support the Governor’s spending plan believe the state shouldn’t be held accountable. 

Billions of federal stimulus dollars geared towards education have now dried up.

State Rep. Gordon Denlinger of Lancaster County, “We are trying to back fill and put those dollars back in place.”

Meanwhile, the Pennsylvania Department of Education said in a statement, “Governor Corbett’s 2012-13 state budget proposes more in Pennsylvania tax dollars for basic education than any other budget in the state’s history.”