The Short Answer: Is your school finance plan real?

The Short Answer, Week 3

There’s a lot of reporting on the 2015 mayoral race. Some of it is good, even admirable. Most of it is very long, and you know…. that’s not what we do here at Metro.

Welcome to Week 6 of The Short Answer.

Each week, we ask the mayoral candidates a question. Some will deal with personality, others policy. We give them 50 words to answer it, and yes, we do chop it down if we have to.   

Want to ask the candidates something? Send it to [email protected]

This week’s question:

The mayor and his finance director have called your school finance plans inadequate. Convince voters that education in Philadelphia will be significantly different than the recent past if you are elected mayor.

Before increasing taxes, I’d allow the Governor’s budget to provide us some assistance. As Mayor, I’d work with educational experts and others to create a school system that we believe will educate kids before trying to permanently fund something that we all generally agree wouldn’t work, with or without money.” — Doug Oliver

“Unlike my fellow candidates’ proposals, my plan will provide $105 million to schools from recurring revenue sources that are under mayoral control.  Through reverse auctioning procurement, zero-based budgeting and increasing the land value of tax abated properties, we will fund schools by asking the wealthy to pay their fair share.” — Jim Kenney

“I want to change to a K-14 education model, giving high schoolers extra time to graduate with skills/certifications, or an associates degree so they’ll be prepared – upon graduation – for a career or college.  I believe we need an integrated approach that prioritizes quality, centers on students and families, and values educators.” — Tony Williams

“I have a comprehensive plan on my website to appropriately fund education; that’s why The Inquirer said that my “detailed proposals come closest” to what our schools need. We need to invest hundreds of millions more in schools, and shift the tax burden off the poor and middle class.” — Nelson Diaz

“Local revenue streams is a crucial priority.  The focus must be on the real culprit—separate but equal funding from the state.  It’s wrong that Philadelphia gets less state funding than more affluent areas.  That’s the biggest problem.  I’ll take Harrisburg to federal court if we don’t get equal funding.” — Lynne Abraham