Legislature Passes Historic Education Funding Bill
Last week, Representative Carolyn Dykema joined her colleagues to vote to enact S.2365, An act relative to educational opportunities for students, or the “Student Opportunity Act,” investing an additional $1.5 billion in the Commonwealth’s public schools over seven years. On Tuesday, Governor Charlie Baker signed the bill into law at a high school in West Roxbury.
Funding from this bill, which includes a $1.4 billion increase in Chapter 70 aid, will go towards both local and state-wide efforts over the next seven years, with an emphasis on measures to support innovative educational approaches, employee and retiree healthcare, special education services, and support for students from low-income households and for English language learners. The law establishes the 21st Century Education Trust Fund, which provides $10 million to support innovative approaches to education and expands the state’s special education reimbursement program by $90 million to offset out-of-district transportation and other related costs for local municipalities.
“These new funds will help ensure that teachers have the tools they need to help all students reach their full potential,” Rep. Dykema said. “I would like to thank Chairwoman Peisch for her hard work on this bill and for taking the time this spring to meet with local school committee members in our community to ensure that their concerns were addressed.”
This bill will be phased in over the next several years, beginning with a $260 million increase in Chapter 70 funding for FY20.
Representative Carolyn Dykema represents the communities of Holliston, Hopkinton, Southborough and Precinct 2 of Westborough in the Massachusetts House of Representatives.