Educational Racism: Cuomo’s Record of Underfunding Schools in Black & Latino Communities

by Marina Marcou-O'Malley

Sep 11, 2018

The numbers tell the truth: the schools with the most need are being shortchanged the most. American history has confirmed this time and time again, even though it was supposed to be rectified with Brown v. Board of Education. Educational racism explains the fact that two dozen school districts are owed the most Foundation Aid by the state.

  • Two thirds of the districts in New York State are still owed Foundation Aid. By contrast, 100 percent of high needs school districts with majority Black and Latino students are owed Foundation Aid.
  • There are 25 school districts that are both high need and majority Black and Latino. These school districts are owed 62 percent ($2.6 billion) of all Foundation Aid. The failure to fully fund Foundation Aid results in the failure to adequately fund schools that are majority Black and Latino.
  • The students in these 25 districts represent 80 percent of the Black and Latino students in the state and 69 percent of the economically disadvantaged students in the state.
  • Research proves that increases in funding improve student outcomes. A 10 percent increase in funding results in 10 percent increase in graduation rates.
  • Underfunding schools in New York State has negative and disparate impacts for Black and Latino and low income students.
  • Wealthy districts, where schools spend on average nearly $10,000 more per pupil, graduate 95 percent of their students, with the majority of them earning the Advanced Regents designation. In contrast, the districts that the state classifies as high need and with more than 50 percent Black and Latino students -districts which all have been chronically underfunded by the state- graduate 69 percent of their students with only 13 percent of them earning Advanced Regents.