ALLENTOWN, Pa. | POWER Interfaith will lead the 'Still Separate And Unequal: 100% Fair Funding Now Day of Action' this coming Monday, June 21, according to a press release statement.
Clergy, advocates, teachers, students and youth activists from James Lawson Freedom School say they will rally at Stevens Park, and then march to Senator Pat Browne’s office, to draw attention to what they say is 'the stark underfunding' afflicting Allentown.
Allentown School District has almost three times as many students living in poverty as the next-highest district, and more than five times as many English language learners as the next-highest, the protestors say. Diversity is a strength for the community, but they say the legislature’s continued neglect has deprived students of the tools they need to thrive.
Allentown is the fourth largest school district in Pennsylvania according to official reports, and 90% of students are people of color. Research has shown that race is even more predictive of per-student underfunding than poverty.
Applying the fair funding formula to the state’s education budget is crucial to getting all students the funding they need, officials stated.
Allentown’s rally is one of four actions hosted by POWER Interfaith, they say, as part of a statewide, multi-site campaign for Governor Wolf’s proposed budget.
Events are also reportedly scheduled in Pottstown, Philadelphia, and Lancaster, urging support for Gov. Tom Wolf's proposal on education funding.
Part of the action also will be live-streamed for remote participation, register online to participate.